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Irish Soda Bread Muffins

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Jam-packed with tiny sweet currants, flecked with caraway seeds, and sprinkled with coarse sugar, these Irish soda bread muffins are a delicious cross between muffins and scones.

Irish Soda Bread Muffins

These delectable Irish soda bread muffins are filled with sweet currants, speckled with flavorful caraway seeds, and finished off with a crunchy sprinkle of coarse sugar. What sets them apart from regular muffins is their rugged, craggy texture and subtle sweetness. Think of them as a cross between scones and muffins, or as I like to call them, “scuffins.” These muffins can be enjoyed in many ways — straight out of the oven for a warm breakfast treat, as a quick snack, or as part of your bread basket at mealtime. They are especially delicious smeared with salted butter.

What you’ll need To Make Irish Soda Bread Muffins

ingredients to make irish soda bread muffins

The addition of whole wheat in addition to regular flour gives the muffins a nuttier, more complex flavor. The recipe calls for just half a cup, but it makes a big difference. If you’re hesitant to buy a whole bag of whole wheat flour for just one recipe, I have more breakfast recipes that call for it, like morning glory muffins, apple muffins and Ovenly’s famous whole wheat banana bread.

You may associate caraway seeds with rye bread and other savory dishes. With their subtly sweet, anise-like flavor, they also make a nice addition to sweeter baked goods like soda bread, gingerbread, or even shortbread cookies.

How to make Irish Soda Bread Muffins

Begin by combining the dry ingredients — all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, granulated sugar, and caraway seeds — in a medium bowl.

all of the dry ingredients in a mixing bowl to make irish soda bread muffins

Whisk to combine and set aside.

dry ingredients whisked together in a mixing bowl to make irish soda bread muffins

In a separate large bowl, combine the liquid ingredients: the egg, buttermilk, and melted butter.

liquid ingredients - buttermilk, egg, and butter - in a mixing bowl to make irish soda bread muffins

Whisk to combine. The mixture may look a little curdled; that’s okay and normal.

liquid ingredients whisked together in a bowl for irish soda bread muffins

Add the dry ingredients and the currants to the liquid mixture.

adding dry ingredients and currants to liquid ingredients for irish soda bread muffins

Use a rubber spatula to mix until just combined; the batter will be very thick. Do not overmix or the muffins may be tough.

irish soda bread muffin batter in a mixing bowl

Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin pan, filling the cups about 3/4 full. Sprinkle the turbinado (or sparkling white) sugar evenly over the muffins.

irish soda bread muffin batter scooped into muffin tin and sprinkled with coarse sugar

Bake the muffins for 18 to 20 minutes, or until golden and set and a cake tester inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean.

baked irish soda bread muffins fresh out of the oven

Let the muffins cool in the pan for 5 minutes. Then transfer them to a wire rack to cool until you’re ready to serve.

baked irish soda bread muffins cooling on a baking rack

Serve these Irish soda bread muffins warm out of the oven. They are delicious with softened salted butter. This recipe is modestly adapted from King Arthur Flour, one of my favorite baking resources (read the many rave reviews here).

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Irish Soda Bread Muffins

Jam-packed with tiny sweet currants, flecked with caraway seeds, and sprinkled with coarse sugar, these Irish soda bread muffins are a delicious cross between muffins and scones.

Servings: 12 muffins
Prep Time: 15 Minutes
Cook Time: 20 Minutes
Total Time: 35 Minutes


  • 1¾ cups all-purpose flour, spooned into measuring cup and leveled off
  • ½ cup whole wheat flour, spooned into measuring cup and leveled off
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • ⅓ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons caraway seeds
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup buttermilk (see note)
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
  • 1⅓ cups currants
  • 1½ tablespoons turbinado or sparkling white sugar, for topping


  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F and set an oven rack in the middle position. Grease a standard muffin pan with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, granulated sugar, and caraway seeds.
  3. In a separate large bowl, whisk together the egg, buttermilk and melted butter.
  4. Add the dry ingredients and the currants to the liquid mixture. Use a rubber spatula to mix until just combined; the batter will be very thick. Do not overmix.
  5. Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin pan, filling the cups about ¾ full. Sprinkle the turbinado (or sparkling white) sugar evenly over the muffins.
  6. Bake the muffins for 18 to 20 minutes, or until golden and set and a cake tester inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean. Let the muffins cool in the pan for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool until ready to serve. Serve warm, preferably with salted butter.
  7. Note: If you’d like to make your own buttermilk, check out the easy method here.
  8. Make-Ahead Instructions:These muffins are best served fresh out of the oven but leftovers will keep for a few days in a sealed container at room temperature.
  9. Freezer-Friendly Instructions: The muffins can be frozen in an airtight container or sealable plastic bag for up to 3 months. Thaw for 3 – 4 hours on the countertop before serving. To reheat, wrap individual muffins in aluminum foil and place in a preheated 350°F oven until warm.

Nutrition Information

Powered by Edamam

  • Per serving (12 servings)
  • Serving size: 1 muffin
  • Calories: 224
  • Fat: 7 g
  • Saturated fat: 4 g
  • Carbohydrates: 38 g
  • Sugar: 19 g
  • Fiber: 2 g
  • Protein: 5 g
  • Sodium: 184 mg
  • Cholesterol: 32 mg

This website is written and produced for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and the nutritional data on this site has not been evaluated or approved by a nutritionist or the Food and Drug Administration. Nutritional information is offered as a courtesy and should not be construed as a guarantee. The data is calculated through an online nutritional calculator, Edamam.com. Although I do my best to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures should be considered estimates only. Varying factors such as product types or brands purchased, natural fluctuations in fresh produce, and the way ingredients are processed change the effective nutritional information in any given recipe. Furthermore, different online calculators provide different results depending on their own nutrition fact sources and algorithms. To obtain the most accurate nutritional information in a given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator.

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  • Truly, I have been thinking (obsessing?) about making these again since I first made them on St. Patrick’s Day. Today was the day. They’ve got a wonderful texture and flavor and come together so quickly and easily! Besides, I love calling them “scuffins”! Ha!

    • — Lois on April 19, 2023
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  • Soooooooo good. Made a batch and shared with some neighbors. They loved them too. Thanks again for your great recipes.

    • — Mommo on March 23, 2023
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  • These muffins are delicious. I didn’t have wheat flour but I do have Rye flour. I didn’t want to take the chance using the full 1/2 cup in place of the wheat flour so I used 1/4 cup of rye flour and an extra 1/4 cup of all purpose flour. I also didn’t have currents so I used dried cranberries. Like other people have mentioned, it’s the caraway seeds that really make these muffins. I gave some to two friends and they loved them also. I will definitely make them again – probably at Easter to share with the rest of the family.

    • — Denise on March 23, 2023
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  • I made these last night for St Patty’s Day and they turned out GREAT! I actually made 2 double batches as they were for a work event. Followed recipe as written with the exception of no caraway seeds, subbed in Craisins for the currants, and zested in an orange. I saw that a number of reviews had said 20 minutes was too long, so I pulled them at 17 minutes and they passed the toothpick and bounceback tests. I sampled one and it seemed on the dry side, so I then went with 15 minutes for the remaining batches and they were PERFECT. Nice and moist. They tasted like a scone with a softer texture. I think I’ve found my new muffin base recipe!

    • — Jay on March 17, 2023
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  • Did you know that Zante currants are not currants? They are raisins from Black Corinth grapes. I was so disappointed to learn that. I like currants. I remember picking them as a child then helping make currant jelly.

    • — Mommo on March 17, 2023
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    • No, I didn’t know that — as they say, you learn something new everyday!

      • — Jenn on March 17, 2023
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  • The photo does not do these muffins justice. They are Great. Easy to stir up with no mixer, and the family loves them. I used chopped golden raisins instead of currants.

    • — Cindy on March 14, 2023
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  • Hi Jen, I’ve made these muffins multiple times with great raves from friends and family.
    I’d like to try them using a mini muffin pan. What adjustments should be made to the baking temperature and length of time?

    One more random thought: it would be great if questions in the comments section of the recipes could be pulled into a separate section so you wouldn’t have to answer duplicates, and we could eliminate scrolling through comments to see if someone has already posted our question.

    • — Mary on February 21, 2023
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    • Hi Mary, glad you like the muffins! To make minis, I’d leave the oven temperature the same and start checking them for doneness at 10 minutes. And thanks for the suggestion regarding the comments. I will add that list to my list of potential enhancements to the blog. 🙂

      • — Jenn on February 21, 2023
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  • These are amazing! I didn’t have currants, so I used cranberries. I’ll try with just whole wheat flour next time.

    • — Anastasija on February 7, 2023
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  • I made these to take to a “Bake-off” gathering for the residents in my senior citizen apartment building. (I also made the Morning Glory muffins, and one other type that was a non-Jenn recipe.) I had been wanting to make these for some time — I love Irish Soda Bread, but I’m not a bread baker, so muffins sounded like the perfect thing.
    People seemed hesitant to try them, though I got several compliments on the Morning Glory muffins. I will admit that the currants looked a bit like chocolate chips, so maybe that was the turn-off, I don’t know.
    I thought they came out really good, though. Next time, I would cut down on the amount of currants. I used average size muffin tins, and I felt like each muffin was overwhelmed by currants. Also, normally, I don’t like the flavor of caraway, but didn’t find it off-putting at all in these, and in fact, I think without the caraway, the muffins would have been a bit bland. They were also a bit crumbly, but that’s typically for irish soda bread. They’re not overly sweet, which I liked, and would make a good accompaniment with a savory dish like a stew or other soup, a salad, or just about anything else. Also wonderful for breakfast, which is when I like to have them.
    Overall, this is a good recipe for a muffin that’s a bit different, and I would make them again.

    • — Ann Marie on December 6, 2022
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  • Just took these out of the oven and tasted one. Delicious! I used raisins because I couldn’t find currants, and the combo of raisins and caraway seed is surprisingly tasty.

    • — Kitty on March 17, 2022
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  • Made the Irish Soda Bread muffins this morning and they were absolutely delicious! Used all white flour since no wheat in the cupboard…the muffins have that wonderful Irish Soda Bread flavour plus a tender crumb. Will be making these again and again…thank you for the wonderful recipe.

    • — Christine on March 17, 2022
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  • I made these to go with my potato leek soup, but substituted the buttermilk with vanilla yogurt. They were delicious! Thanks for this simple but yummy recipe! I will definitely be making these again. (Oh, and by the way, caraway seeds are supposed to be helpful to those of us who are suffering symptoms of menopause, so hello, added bonus!)

    • — Tamara on February 23, 2022
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  • Hello! Can you suggest a good dairy-free substitute for buttermilk? Thanks!

    • — Alesha on January 27, 2022
    • Reply
    • Hi Alesha, You can make your own dairy-free buttermilk if you have milk (and non-dairy is fine) and either lemon juice or white vinegar. See how here. Hope that helps!

      • — Jenn on January 28, 2022
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  • These muffins are just perfect when you crave something not too sweet to go with morning coffee. I love that they only take 20 minutes and require no mixer to clean and leave time to brew a fresh pot of tea or coffee and take a quick shower while they bake. I usually make them with raisins but today I made them with a cup of raisins and a half cup of craisins. And I have always loved caraway seeds even in curry recipes. What puts these muffins over the top is the sprinkling of turbinado sugar that adds crunch to the already craggy tops. They are so complete there is no need for a smear of butter, but really – what doesn’t get better with a little sweet butter?

  • Fantastic, as is always the case with your recipes! I normally make ATK’s Irish Soda Bread for St. Patrick’s day, which is delicious, but I was bringing the bread for a party of many people and didn’t want the dry crumbles everywhere. These were PERFECT. Easy to serve, stayed softer for hours and everybody absolutely loved them. They were also easier and quicker than bread since you didn’t even have to cut in the butter. For my own tastes, I’ll probably cut back on the sugar and do a full T of caraway seeds next time, but nobody else seemed to mind – people were skipping dessert for more scruffins! I did have to substitute raisens so maybe that’s why they were sweeter…

    • — Lynnessa R Struble
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  • Made these exactly as written for St. Patrick’s Day, and they were fabulous.

  • Irish Soda Bread Muffins – Delicious
    Jenn, I made your muffins to bring to work. I didn’t have whole wheat flour so used AP. Is that why yours may look more browned than mine? I even tried a bit of melted butter before baking but they still weren’t as brown. They turned out marvelous and no muffin was left behind. 🙂 So simple and tasty, thank you.

    • Glad you enjoyed them, Jane! And yes, the difference in color would’ve been due to the difference in flour.

  • I just made these today. I have been craving some Irish soda bread. They are phenomenal. The fact that they are muffins is even better because each one has that crunchy craggy top, just like you said they would. Thanks for this great recipe. The only thing I did different was used all AP flour.

  • Made these as written but subbed raisins for currants since I didn’t have the latter – turned out great!! Thank you so much Jenn, as always!

  • Hi, Jenn! First of all, I hope you and yours are safe. I have made these often and love them. Now to my question. It’s two-prong: can these muffins be made into a loaf bread and 2. I only have A/P flour. Can these be made with all A/P flour and how would they differ? Thank you. Be healthy.

    • Glad you like these, Jane! Yes, I do think it could be made as a loaf bread and that you can use all all-purpose flour. 🙂

  • Oh, my goodness! These were not only easy, but absolutely delicious! What a great combination of flavors. I was leery of the caraway seeds, but as others have said, they really worked. My husband and son thought these were the best Irish soda bread(s) they had ever had – including from our local Irish pub/restaurant. I did use golden raisins, which is what I had on hand (trying not to go to the store more than necessary), but they added a lovely sweetness to the muffins. Also used powdered buttermilk with 1/2 milk and 1/2 water instead of all water. Great recipe – thanks!

  • I made these exactly as written and they are fabulous! My husband and I are really enjoying them. I am not normally a fan of caraway seeds but they totally work in these muffins. Great recipe – thanks, Jenn!

    Carol P.

  • Hi. I made these and they are decliious. I subbed in vegetable oil for the butter but would like to make these even healthier with just using whole wheat flour only, or with white whole wheat flour only. What do you think?

    • Glad you enjoyed these, Jane! I’m not sure that you’d be happy with the texture using all whole-wheat flour; I would encourage you, instead, to try switching the ratios and using 1 3/4 cups whole wheat flour and 1/2 cup of all purpose flour. You can see what you think of the texture with those ratios, and if you like them, you can use all whole wheat the next time. And I would definitely suggest going with white whole wheat. Please LMK how they turn out if you try them this way!

      • Thank you! I still have a dozen of these left and it will be a while til I make the ones with part www flour but I’ll definitely let you know.

      • Hi, Jenn: Getting back to you on the above: I just made these with 1 cup whole wheat and 1&1/4 c. all-purpose unbleached white flour. They were perfect. Since I like a denser consistency and am a bigger fan of whole wheat than white flour, I think they will be fine with 100% white whole wheat and am going to try them that way the next time. I didn’t do so this time because I had some regular whole wheat on hand. I also did not use the caraway seeds because none of us liked that aftertaste. Turbinado sugar on top made it even better. Thanks again! – Jane

        • So glad you enjoyed these with the tweaks – thanks for the follow-up – I’m sure other readers will find it helpful too! 🙂

  • I am not a baker. In fact, I hate to bake – hate it with a passion. But I do love Irish Soda Bread. Soooo….I thought I would try this out. I was so excited to make these for my hubby for dinner, I had to test one straight out of the oven. Yowza! When we sat down to dinner with a guest, I couldn’t wait to for everyone to praise me for this masterpiece while they dripped melting butter down their chins. Our friend just moaned, unable to speak. My hubby set his down before tasting and asked, so I see caraway seeds in there? Umm…yes, you do. He then informed me that he doesn’t eat them. WHAT? Since when? Do I even know you? Do I need to call a lawyer and get a divorce? When he realized that our friend and I were having a food “moment”, he slowly started picking out the caraway seeds. And then eating. On muffin #2, fewer of the seeds were getting picked out. By #3, the butter was going on and he was inhaling them, seeds-be-damned! I will be making this again in a few weeks for a brunch I am having. And the caraway seeds WILL be in them! Thanks Jenn, these are wonderful and so easy to make!

    • — Lynn in the Desert
    • Reply
    • 😂

    • You’re so funny you should be a comedy writer 😝

  • I made a double batch of these muffins for a very belated St. Patrick’s Day party recently (we were waiting for the whole gang to be available). Everyone raved about them, even those who weren’t fans of soda bread (too dry), and I’ve been asked to make them a permanent part of our annual celebration! Your recipes don’t disappoint!

  • I made these this year for St. Patrick’s Day. They came out great and my husband loved them. Nice heated up for breakfast too.

  • So yummy. My daughter doesn’t love dried fruit in baked goods (currants, raisins, etc.) so I cut down on the currants and added some chopped walnuts. They are so good. Going to a brunch soon and will be bringing these.

  • Many thanks, Jen! Had to bake these two days in a row.

  • I was tasked with making Irish Soda Bread for my sister-in-law. I was never interested in making it because I always thought it was dull and tasteless. These muffins were not! They actually were quite good, although not my favorites. So Jenn, you’ve done a great job with the medium. Thanks!

  • Jenn thank you for the amazing recipe. My niece and I made them for St. Patrick’s Day. We had to used dried blueberries in place of the currants and they turned out great.

  • Jenn,
    These muffins are soooo good!! Even my picky eaters enjoyed them. They are still good when kept sealed in the refrigerator after several days. We like to wrap them in tin foil, warm them in the oven, and slather them with butter…yummy!
    Thank you for another great recipe!

  • I made these for St. Paddy’s Day…not only were they easy, but they are so delicious! my husband says they are now his favorite muffin! They did harden quickly but easily softened when reheated in microwave. I will be making these all year round!

  • Delicious!

  • I made these muffins today to go with my corned beef and cabbage dinner.
    My husband can’t stop raving about them!!! NO EXAGGERATION He likes Irish soda bread but not this much! I agree with him that these are excellent, but his reaction was precious!!Thanks, Jen-

  • What an amazing recipe! I made these tonight to go with Dublin Coddle and they did NOT disappoint. Warm with a bit of Irish butter was an amazing way to enjoy these. They were extremely tender and the balance of sweet and salt was perfect. Thank you so much for sharing. We will be eating these for years to come.

  • I have made these several times and if possible they get better each time. Substituted yogurt with a little 2%milk to equal the amount of buttermilk. They are moist and served warm with butter it doesn’t get any better than this.

  • I just doubled the recipe to bring to a St. Paddy’s party tonight and wound up with 34 small muffins – good thing, because we can’t stop eating them!! I have no experience with Irish Soda Bread so can’t attest to their authenticity, but these, right out of the oven, are DELICIOUS.

  • A perfect recipe as always; this is why Once Upon is always my first stop for a recipe/how-to. (Btw, didn’t have any caraway seeds so I substituted 3 tsp of Trader Joe’s Dukkah Nut And Spice Blend and left out the extra salt… works great.) Thanks!

  • I baked these this morning for breakfast, though I left out the currants to make them more diabetic friendly. Delicious! Will definitely bake these again.

    • — Rachel Hartman
    • Reply
  • 12 perfectly wonderful muffins just came out of the oven!!!!!!! Kitchen smells heavenly….having them with clam chowder and salad for dinner…Thank you….once again, you hit it out of the ball park…….Elaine

  • Hey Jenny

    The Scuffins look great … do you think the recipe would work with keto flour which is made mainly of nuts and seeds flour?


    • Hi Mahesh, I don’t have any experience baking with keto flour, so it’s hard to say – I’m sorry! Please report back if you try them this way – I’d love to hear how they turn out. 🙂

  • Jenn,
    I love your recipes! How would you adapt this recipe for a loaf instead of muffins?
    Thanks so much!

    • So glad you’re enjoying the recipes, Jacqline! If you’d like to make this as a loaf, I’d follow the method used here.

  • Hello many thanks for your wonderful recipe which I am yet to try. Just wondering what makes it Irish Soda ? I have seen Irish Soda bread at the market and keen to start making my own
    Regards Elizabeth

    • — Elizabeth Adams
    • Reply
    • Hi Elizabeth, Soda bread is just a bread in which baking soda is used as a leavening agent instead of yeast. Hope you enjoy if you make it! 🙂

  • Are any adjustments necessary for high altitude baking? I’m at almost 5000 ft.

    • Hi Christy, I don’t have experience baking at high altitudes so, unfortunately, I don’t have any wisdom to share – I’m sorry! You may find these tips helpful though. Hope you enjoy the muffins if you make them!

      • Use high altitude hungarian flour

    • Christy, I’ve made these at 5420′ without any adjustments and they turned out beautifully.

  • These muffins come together quickly and are delicious. I served them for brunch with two crustless quiches and fruit. My guests and I agreed we’d much rather get our carbs in these yummy muffins than in crust!

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