Homemade No Yeast Bread (Soda Bread)

This wonderfully easy and convenient no yeast bread is also known as soda bread. Adapted from my Irish Soda Bread, this dense loaf is made from just 6 ingredients and ready in about 1 hour. There’s no complicated shaping or kneading necessary and I offer plenty of flavor suggestions. We love this with oats and/or coarse salt sprinkled on top!

no yeast bread

Highly requested and majorly convenient if you (1) don’t have yeast and (2) crave bread, this no yeast bread comes at the perfect time! I adapted this recipe from my Irish Soda Bread, a recipe straight from my late grandmother’s kitchen. I made 3 loaves just this past week and am thrilled to share the simple process with you today.

This No Yeast Bread Is:

  • Ready in 1 hour
  • Made with 6 ingredients
  • Convenient if you don’t have or don’t want to use yeast
  • Dense, satisfying, and crusty
  • Delicious toasted or warm with honey butter
  • Made with buttermilk for extra flavor and richness
  • Wonderful plain or with optional flavors

no yeast bread

no yeast soda bread slices

The Exact Texture to Expect:

My no yeast bread has a crumbly golden brown crust with a dense, tight crumb inside. Since there’s no yeast, don’t expect an airy, light, or bouncy bread. If you want an airy yeast bread, I recommend my sandwich bread or artisan bread.


These Ingredients Are Crucial

This section is important to review if you’re wondering about ingredient substitutions or why certain ingredients are used.

  1. All-Purpose Flour: All-purpose flour is best for this loaf, though the same amount of bread flour may also be used without any changes to the recipe. See my recipe notes about whole wheat flour. I have not tested this recipe with gluten free alternatives.
  2. Salt: I use 1 and 1/2 teaspoons of fine sea salt for flavor, but have also tested this recipe with the same amount of regular table salt. Both are excellent.
  3. Baking Soda: This is a quick bread, so the bread rises without the use of yeast. Baking soda is our leavening agent and if you remember from my baking soda vs baking powder page, baking soda requires an acidic ingredient. Do not use baking powder– you will need an excessive amount in order for this bread to rise and that much baking powder will leave a chemical aftertaste.
  4. Butter: You’ll notice that I use melted butter in this loaf while my Irish Soda Bread uses cold butter that you cut into the flour. I played around with this dough A LOT and found that I could successfully use melted butter and skip the cutting step (in conjunction with leaving out the egg). The bread isn’t quite as heavy and rich as my grandmother’s recipe, but it’s still plenty flavorful.
  5. Honey or Sugar: Either work with zero changes to the recipe required.
  6. Buttermilk: Buttermilk, an acidic ingredient, adds richness, flavor, and aids in the loaf’s rise. If you don’t have buttermilk, see my recipe note about a DIY version.

A sprinkle of oats, seasonings, and/or coarse salt on top is optional!

ingredients in no yeast bread

No Yeast Bread Video Tutorial

Now that you understand why each ingredient is imperative to the recipe’s success, let’s watch a super quick recipe video. Yes, the process really is this easy!


Overview: How to Make No Yeast Bread

While the full recipe is written below, let’s quickly walk through the process with step-by-step pictures. I want you to be confident and have instant success!

  1. Combine the dry ingredients.
  2. Mix the honey and melted butter, then stir into the dry ingredients.
  3. In 2-3 additions, fold in the buttermilk to create a shaggy and slightly moist dough.
  4. Turn dough and any flour crumbles at the bottom of the bowl onto a work surface. Using your hands, bring the dough together into a ball then flatten into a 2 inch thick, 7-8 inch disc. These measurements don’t need to be totally accurate.
  5. Place onto a lined baking sheet or your baking pan of choice. (See next section.) Brush with a little more buttermilk and, if desired, sprinkle with some oats and/or coarse salt.
  6. Using a very sharp knife, score the top of the dough with an X that’s about 3/4 inch deep. This allows the center to bake.
  7. Bake until golden brown. Tent with aluminum foil halfway through baking to prevent the crust from over-browning before the center cooks through.

soda bread dough

no yeast bread dough

no yeast bread before baking

no yeast bread

Best Baking Pan to Use for No Yeast Bread

  • I usually use a half baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
  • You can also use a seasoned 10-12 inch cast iron skillet– feel free to pre-heat the skillet in the pre-heating oven, though that’s not necessary.
  • Greased 9-10 inch cake pan or pie dish.
  • A dutch oven large enough to fit the loaf. Line with parchment paper before placing the dough inside. Feel free to bake the bread with the lid on, which helps develop a crispier crust. Remove the lid for the last 10 minutes of baking. The bake time may be longer since the bread is in a closed pan for most of the oven time.
  • Any square or rectangular pan large enough to fit an 8-inch round loaf.

See all of my quick bread recipes. Excited for you to try this easy bread!

Print
clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
no yeast bread

Homemade No Yeast Bread (Soda Bread)

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Total Time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: 1 loaf
  • Category: Bread
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

This dense, chewy, and satisfying no yeast bread rises with baking soda and buttermilk. Before beginning, review the blog post above, recipe notes below, as well as the video tutorial.


Ingredients

  • 4 and 1/4 cups (531g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled), plus more for hands and surface
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 4 Tablespoons (1/4 cup; 60g) unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 Tablespoons honey (40g) or granulated sugar (25g)
  • 1 and 3/4 cups (420ml) buttermilk, plus 1 Tablespoon for brushing the dough
  • optional: 1 Tablespoon whole oats and/or a sprinkle of coarse salt for topping

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F (204°C). There are options for the baking pan. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat, use a seasoned 10-12 inch cast iron skillet, or grease a 9-10 inch cake pan or pie dish. Set aside. Feel free to pre-heat the skillet in the oven too, though that’s not necessary.
  2. Whisk the flour, salt, and baking soda together in a large bowl. Set aside.
  3. Whisk the melted butter and honey/sugar together. Pour into the flour mixture and toss to combine. (The mixture won’t fully combine yet since there’s so little wet ingredients and so much flour.) In 2-3 additions, pour in the buttermilk mixing for 15-20 seconds after each addition. After all of the buttermilk has been added, mix gently to form a shaggy, stiff, and slightly moist dough. If you used honey, there could be little specks of honey/butter in spots. That’s ok! Those will be extra flavorful specks in your bread.
  4. Pour the shaggy dough and any flour crumbles that haven’t been incorporated onto a lightly floured work surface. With floured hands, work the dough into a ball and flatten into a (approximately) 7-8 inch disc as best you can (make it about 2 inches tall). If the dough is too sticky, add a little more flour.
  5. Transfer the disc to the prepared skillet/pan. Brush the whole loaf with 1 Tablespoon buttermilk. Using a very sharp knife, score a 3/4 inch deep X into the top. (Without scoring, the bread can’t bake properly in the center.) Sprinkle optional oats and/or coarse salt on top of the loaf.
  6. Bake until the bread is golden brown and center appears cooked through, about 45 minutes. Loosely cover the bread with aluminum foil halfway through bake time to protect the crust from over-browning before the center has a chance to cook.
  7. Remove from the oven and allow bread to cool for 5 minutes before slicing. For best taste, though, let the bread cool for at least 30 minutes before slicing and serving. If you made a plain loaf, the slices are delicious spread with honey butter or your desired spreads. Slices taste wonderful toasted, too!
  8. Cover and store bread at room temperature for 3 days or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

Notes

  1. Freezing Instructions: Baked and cooled bread freezes well up to 3 months. Freeze the whole loaf or individual slices. Thaw in the refrigerator or at room temperature, then reheat as desired.
  2. Buttermilk: Using cold buttermilk is best. Buttermilk is key to the bread’s flavor, texture, and rise. The bread will not rise without it. If you don’t have any buttermilk on hand, you can make a homemade “DIY” version. Whole milk or 2% milk is best, though lower fat or nondairy milks work in a pinch. Add 1 Tablespoon of lemon juice or white vinegar to a liquid measuring cup. Add enough milk to make 1 and 3/4 cup. Whisk together, then let sit for 5 minutes before using in the recipe.
  3. Alternative Flours: Instead of all-purpose flour, you can use the same amount of bread flour with no other changes needed to the recipe. If you’d like to use all whole wheat flour instead of all-purpose flour, expect an extremely dense and heavy loaf. Instead, I recommend using half all-purpose flour and half whole wheat flour. Still, the bread will taste pretty heavy. If you’re interested, here are all my recipes using whole wheat flour. I have not tested this bread with any gluten free alternatives, so I’m unsure of the result. Let me know if you do! If you’re interested, here are all my gluten free recipes.
  4. Optional Flavor Additions: Feel free to add flavor to this bread by mixing any of the following or a combination of them in with the flour in step 2: 2 Tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary or other chopped fresh herb, 1 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese or other shredded cheese, 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, 1 diced jalapeño, 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning or other ground seasoning/herb, 2 cloves minced garlic, or 1 cup dried cranberries, raisins, or other small dried fruit. Sometimes I add 1 extra Tablespoon of sugar/honey, 1 cup raisins, and 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon.
  5. Best Baking Pan to Use: I like using a regular sheet pan because it’s easy, convenient, and universal to most kitchens. I do not recommend a loaf pan because the loaf may not bake evenly inside. This dough is best as a flatter loaf. See blog post above for different pans.

Keywords: soda bread, no yeast bread, quick bread

no yeast bread

166 Comments

  1. Betty Wilhite says:

    Can you make this bread in a rectangular loaf pan? Or in a rectangular shape in a flat pan. Would like to have it in a ‘loaf’ rather than a ’round’?

    1. Hi Betty! As noted, I don’t recommend a loaf pan. Any baking pan large enough to fit an 8 inch round loaf (with some room to expand) works.

  2. Donna Fickenscher says:

    Looks so yummy. I have rosemary growing in my patio so will try that one as well as with dried cranberries . Does it matter if I use unbleached flour?

    1. Thanks Donna! I use both interchangeably and haven’t detected a difference in this bread.

  3. Do you think melted margarine would work as a substitute for the melted butter in this recipe? Or any other suggestion if we don’t have butter on hand? Thanks.

    1. Hi Kate, you can try it. You’ll lose the butter flavor though.

  4. Good Morning Sally! I’m gathering up the ingredients as I’m typing this. Here’s my science question for the day- I know in many cookies/cake recipes ingredients should be room temperature- what do you think about the buttermilk? Even though there is no yeast, I’m a wondering. Secondly, I’m making paremesan peppercorn bread- do you think I should lower the sugar amount? Too late to make adaptations for today, but I’m sure this will be a “keeper” recipe, so would love your opinion for the next time.

    1. Hi Lisa! The dough is easier to mix together if the buttermilk is room temperature (because it won’t solidify the butter), but I’ve made this with cold buttermilk (or the DIY buttermilk option) with zero issue. Either are fine. Feel free to reduce the sugar and use your seasoning!

  5. It’s in the oven right now! 🙂 Thanks for another great recipe.

    1. Stephanie Gustafson says:

      My family loved it yesterday, fresh and warm, and it was great toasted this morning, too.

  6. Thank you for this timely recipe! Made it for dinner last night and the whole loaf is nearly gone. I think we like it even more than your other soda bread! It was easier too.
    Thanks again!!

  7. This bread is wonderful Sally! I made it as soon as I saw the recipe come to my inbox. Skipped the oats, but topped with the coarse salt and some fresh ground pepper. It was delicious and hearty dipped into our chili.

  8. I used 2 tablespoons of apple sauce in place of the butter and it turned out pretty good!

  9. I made this bread tonight and my family and I loved it! thanks for the recipe, I love how it has ingredients that are already in the house. And very easy and quick to make.

  10. Thanks for the great recipe. The bread succeeded amazingly. My family is impressed.

  11. I had never made bread before this. But with all this time on my hands I though I would go for it, however, yeast is sold out in stores. So I decided to make this recipe. It is sooooo good!! The recipe is simple at the flavour in the bread is amazing. 100% will make again.

  12. I made this bread twice today. It’s very quick and easy to prepared. The bread has such a delicious smell and subtle flavor. Is it the buttermilk? The honey? Whatever it is, it’s yummy! This is a keeper! Thanks for another great recipe, Sally!

  13. This bread is incredibly delicious! Thank you so much for the wonderful recipe. I used Oat Milk and vegan margarine and it turned out so delicious and flavourful! I can’t stop raving about it.

  14. thanks! it tastes like a dense cake/bread and I added oats and chia seeds into the dough for texture and it turned out magnificently ( first time baking bread)

  15. Sushma Kini says:

    Dear Sally, Another thing this is my first attempt at bread baking and I cant tell you how happy I am that the whole thing got over almost instantly!!!!
    The only problem I faced was the base was hard.
    I didnt use oats or salt granules on top.
    Thanks once again for the wonderful recipe.
    Sushma

  16. I made this bread today and cut all the ingredients exactly in half. It was perfect. For anyone else who wants to try this, my bake time was 30 minutes. Thanks for this wonderful recipe Sally!

  17. I just Love this bread recipe. So easy and delicious. One must try this at his/her home. Thanks for the recipe. Also sharing with you guys a post of no yeast bread recipe as well.

  18. Hi Nagi
    I tried this recipe as I needed a quick and easy bread as it was late in the night and bread via the yeast method would have taken too many hours from prep to rest to bake. I added cranraisins to the mixture and it was fantastic.

    I have never used baking soda for bread and this has become my go to for a quick bread. My husband and daughter found it delicious, I even got frowned on when I wanted to share the last quarter with a friend.

    My pallette had to adjust to the slight saline taste that comes with baking soda. It makes a great toast.

    Cheers to another great recipe and outcome.

    Leisel

    1. Forgot to rate my 5 stars, sorry there are not 10 stars….lol

  19. Great bread! Made it with the buttermilk substitute and added rosemary, super easy and quick!

  20. If all you have on hand is salted butter, would you decrease the amount of salt used?

    1. You can use salted butter with no changes to the recipe. If you’re sensitive to the taste of salt, feel free to reduce by 1/8 or 1/4 teaspoon.

  21. Hi, Sally! I just want to thank you for this bread recipe! While in “stay at home” mode, we’ve been having groceries delivered, but somehow we ran short of bread, and who knew yeast would be in short supply at stores, so my lack was keeping me from baking standard, yeasted bread. So, I was pleased to see your recent post for this no-yeast bread. I wasn’t sure what to expect from the texture (would it be at all similar to yeasted bread?). Well, I’m here to say that it is so much like regular bread, moist, and so flavorful. It toasts beautifully…great with nut butter, or under a poached egg. Our family loves it, and I’m sure we’ll be making it a lot. I don’t know how you do it, but all of your recipes bring me success in the kitchen. Thank you for the time you put in to give such clear instruction, and for testing recipes so thoroughly!

  22. HI Sally – what are your recommendations to add cheese to this loaf? Just grate some sharp cheddar and mix it into the entire mixture?

    1. Hi Anne! See my recipe note about adding different flavors. I add it directly to the dough with the flour.

  23. Hi Sally,

    I’m wanting to bake this but have no buttermilk, and am almost out of regular dairy milk…we’ve been sheltering at home & I don’t want to use up my dairy. Would the lemon juice trick work with non-dairy milk, like oat milk?

    Thanks so much for all your wonderful recipes!

    1. Yes. See recipe note!

  24. Tried this recipe since i love soda bread. I have baked it many a time. I must admit this is the ultimate soda bread recipe. Love it, yum yum! Children enjoyed it. Thank you Sally

  25. Isabella Cassinelli says:

    Hi! In this version of the recipe there is no eggs, while in the other version there is. Which one is the best then? Thanks!

    1. Hi! The egg in the Irish Soda Bread recipe provides a richer texture, but by using melted butter here, we sort of get that same effect. If you’re interested, see above where I chat about the ingredients.

  26. beautifully tasty x

  27. Excellent! First time ever making bread.

  28. I made this and am going to make it again. I used brown sugar and increased it by a tbsp.

    Loved it. It was great toasted with anything on it….making it again today! I made it on a sheet pan and scattered oats on it like you did and it looked gorgeous. Thank you.

  29. Nikki Chirico says:

    Hi Sally,
    I made this bread twice in the past week…it’s delicious and easy to make. Thank you for this recipe…it is a hit and I’m going to try it with jalapeño next. Hope you and the family are doing well. Thinking of Jude also ❤️

  30. I’ve been wanting to try this recipe but since flour is a very precious commodity during this time I need to use what flour I have wisely. Do you think I could halve this successfully? Thank you-love your site!

    1. Definitely! The bake time will be shorter.

1 2 3 4

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe rating

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

With kitchen-tested quality recipes and step-by-step tutorials, my goal is to give you the confidence to bake and cook from scratch.

Sally's signature

Recipes You’ll Love

Archives

Categories

Join the community on the 1st of every month as we tackle a new challenge recipe. Review Sally's Baking Challenge FAQ page if you have any questions.

View More

Every December I publish 10 new cookie recipes in a row! Sign up via email below and we’ll send you my most popular recipes and all the new cookie recipes once the palooza begins.

View More

Pie Week happens in November and it's all about baking the BEST pies. Sign up via email below and we'll send you my most popular recipes and all the new pie recipes once Pie Week begins!

View More

My Cookbooks

Sally's Cookbooks

About Sally

Welcome to my Kitchen!

I’m Sally, a cookbook author, photographer, and blogger. My goal is to give you the confidence and knowledge to cook and bake from scratch while providing quality recipes and plenty of pictures. Grab a cookie, take a seat, and have fun exploring! more about Sally

×