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Wheaten Bread

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Wheaten bread (also known as brown soda bread), is richer and sweeter than soda bread. Made with whole wheat flour, sugar, and butter. A crusty crust with a soft interior, and a slightly sweet, nutty flavor.

Wheaten bread (also known as brown soda bread), is richer and sweeter than soda bread. Made with whole wheat flour, sugar, and butter. A crusty crust with a soft interior, and a slightly sweet, nutty flavor.
freshly baked wheaten bread with slices and butter
wheaten bread on cutting board with slices

Ah, bread! I love a good homemade bread, but our schedules don’t always allow the time (or honestly, the energy), to make a totally from scratch loaf. Enter a good savory quick bread recipe like this Wheaten Bread! 

This is the perfect yeast free bread to go with your favorite soup – like Slow Cooker Irish Potato Soup! It’s also great warm with fresh good quality salted butter, and some good quality Irish cheddar cheese, too!

wheaten bread slices with butter next to loaf

What’s the difference between Irish Soda Bread and Wheaten bread?

There are a lot of similarities between the two quick breads – neither contain yeast, both use baking soda as their leavening, and both can be baked either in a bread tin or as a free form loaf. But there are some differences, too. Wheaten bread tends to use whole wheat flour and brown sugar – which leads to a denser, softer, and more flavorful loaf. 

How to make Wheaten bread

This bread is really easy to make, and doesn’t take much time at all! For the full recipe, make sure you scroll down to the recipe card below. Here is a brief overview of how to make this recipe:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. Butter a loaf pan and set aside.
  3. Using a food processor, pulse the oats a few times to break them down into smaller pieces. You want some flour, some bigger pieces, and some smaller pieces.
  4. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flours, pulsed oats, baking soda, and salt.
  5. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, brown sugar, and melted butter.
  6. Pour the buttermilk mixture into the flour mixture and use a wooden spoon or spatula to combine. It should be thicker than muffin batter but not as thick as a traditional bread dough.
  7. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and smooth it out evenly.
  8. Sprinkle the remaining oats.
  9. Bake for 45-50 minutes, or until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  10. Allow to cool in the pan and on a wire rack for at least 15 minutes. When the pan is cool enough to handle, turn the bread out onto the wire rack to finish cooling. Or serve warm with butter!

*Traditionally this bread was baked in a cast iron skillet over an open fire. This is a great bread to take camping with you!

collage showing steps to make homemade wheaten bread

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I substitute out the buttermilk?

Don’t substitute out the buttermilk! You need the combination of the acidity of the buttermilk to combine with the baking soda to release gas and help the bread rise. If you don’t have buttermilk, you can make your own. Take a 1 cup measuring cup and place 1 Tablespoon of apple cider vinegar in the bottom of the measuring cup. Then fill up the rest of the measuring cup with milk. Allow to sit for 5 minutes, and then use in the recipe.

How do I shape this bread?

You can either bake this bread in a bread loaf tin like I have here, or you can do a free-from round shape on a piece of parchment paper. If you bake it in a freeform round, make sure you score it with an ‘X’ in the middle. 

How do I store this bread?

Irish brown soda bread will keep on the counter for 2-3 days, if wrapped well in plastic wrap and foil. You can also freeze this bread for up to 3 months. Freeze in slices.

loaf of fresh baked irish soda bread with whole wheat flour

Kids in the kitchen: How your kids can help you cook

Baking with our kids is so important! Not only does it help them learn important life skills, but it also teaches them confidence, and helps them be more interested and curious in the food we eat (which means they will be more likely to try it!).

This recipe is a great beginner baker recipe. It helps teach measuring dry and wet ingredients, and mixing the two together. This bread can almost be made entirely by kids!

  • Kids aged 1-3 can help you measure the ingredients, and sprinkle the oats on top of the bread.
  • Kids aged 4-6 can do everything above plus help you blitz the oatmeal, mix the batter, and prepare the pan.
  • Kids aged 7-10+ can help you do everything above.

*Please note that these recommendations are generalized, and to please use your personal discretion with your child’s skill level. And always, always supervise! Read more about how to have your children help you in the kitchen.

wheaten bread loaf with freshly cut slices beside it

Other easy bread recipes:

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freshly baked wheaten bread with slices and butter

Wheaten Bread Recipe

Wheaten bread (also known as brown soda bread), is richer and sweeter than soda bread. Made with whole wheat flour, sugar, and butter. A crusty crust with a soft interior, and a slightly sweet, nutty flavor.
4.25 from 32 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Bread
Cuisine: Irish
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Additional Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings: 12 servings
Calories: 119kcal
Author: Jenni – The Gingered Whisk

Ingredients

  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • ½ cup all purpose flour
  • ½ cup + 2 Tablespoons Old Fashioned Oats
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 Tablespoon brown sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons melted butter

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350F.
  • Butter a loaf pan and set aside.
  • Using a food processor, pulse the oats a few times to break them down into smaller pieces. You want some flour, some bigger pieces, and some smaller pieces.
  • In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flours, pulsed oats, baking soda, and salt.
  • In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, brown sugar, and melted butter.
  • Pour the buttermilk mixture into the flour mixture and use a wooden spoon or spatula to combine. It should be thicker than muffin batter but not as thick as a traditional bread dough.
  • Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and smooth it out evenly.
  • Sprinkle the remaining oats.
  • Bake for 45-50 minutes, or until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  • Allow to cool in the pan and on a wire rack for at least 15 minutes. When the pan is cool enough to handle, turn the bread out onto the wire rack to finish cooling. Or serve warm with butter!

Notes

Can I substitute out the buttermilk?
Don’t substitute out the buttermilk! You need the combination of the acidity of the buttermilk to combine with the baking soda to release gas and help the bread rise. If you don’t have buttermilk, you can make your own. Take a 1 cup measuring cup and place 1 Tablespoon of apple cider vinegar in the bottom of the measuring cup. Then fill up the rest of the measuring cup with milk. Allow to sit for 5 minutes, and then use in the recipe.
How do I shape this bread?
You can either bake this bread in a bread loaf tin like I have here, or you can do a free-from round shape on a piece of parchment paper. If you bake it in a freeform round, make sure you score it with an ‘X’ in the middle.
How do I store this bread?
Irish brown soda bread will keep on the counter for 2-3 days, if wrapped well in plastic wrap and foil. You can also freeze this bread for up to 3 months. Freeze in slices.

Nutrition

Serving: 1g | Calories: 119kcal | Carbohydrates: 21g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 6mg | Sodium: 336mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 2g

One Comment

  1. This was delicious!! I had to substitute almond milk + 1 tbsp ACV for the buttermilk and used some spelt flour as I had it. Turned out beautifully moist and very very tasty. Next time I’ll double the batch and pop one in the freezer!
    Thank you!

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