Irish oaten rolls with Guinness for st Patrick’s day

These are deliciously malty, slightly sweet tasting rolls that honestly will disappear quickly from any plate at the table so luckily the recipe makes at least 12 rolls or one decently sized loaf.

This has been my first time baking Irish soda bread and believe me it’s not going to be the last. I have plans for baking lots of different types of soda breads soon. I find the texture and flavour of this kind of roll, totally delicious, not only that but extremely easy to make.  Unlike baking with yeast there’s no waiting time for dough to rise, or kneading process.

Irish oaten rolls serving suggestion

These soda bread oaten rolls can be put together quickly and only take a mere 15 minutes to bake in the oven. When you scan through the ingredients you may think, oh buttermilk, I don’t have that in my fridge, where can I buy that ingredient.

Never fear, you can make your own buttermilk by adding a little lemon juice to semi skimmed milk, which gives a buttermilk you can use in this recipe.

Alternatively, just use a runny plain yogurt instead, as I did. St Patrick’s day is on the 17th of March so I thought I would make use of a can of draught Guinness since a good rich stout or a flat beer if that’s all you have available, is often used in an Irish soda bread, depending upon the variation. 

Preparation time for making rolls: 10 minutes. Bake time 15 minutes. Total time : 25 minutes.

If making a loaf: 10 minutes. Bake time 35 minutes. Total time: 45 minutes. 

Nutritional Information:

Calories: 331kcal | Carbohydrates: 57g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 8g | Saturated fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 1mg | Sodium: 628mg | Potassium: 282mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 25IU | Calcium: 43mg | Iron: 2.8mg

Ingredients Irish oaten rolls


400g Wholemeal flour. (I used Wholemeal strong / bread flour since it was in the cupboard but a general Wholemeal flour is all that’s required.)

100g rolled oats. Personally I like organic oats but a cheaper version is fine so long as it isn’t the instant type.

2 Tsp of Bicarbonate of Soda. 

Tsp of salt.

60ml of vegetable oil. Make sure it’s a really good quality oil not mixed. I use a good olive oil as a personal preference. 

300ml of good stout. Again I think Guinness works well but use what you have.

150ml of Buttermilk which is usually available at large chain supermarkets or add 2 teaspoons of lemon juice to 150ml of semi-skimmed milk to have the same effect.  Or like me use a basic plain yogurt, (not the Greek thick version. )

4 tbsp of brown sugar. I’m a big fan of honey as you will notice is a theme in lots of my recipes, and I like modifying to suit, so 60ml of honey works just as well. Use what’s available. The recipe makes 12 rolls or one loaf.


Preparation Guide

Preheat your oven to 220°C/200°C Fan/gas mark 7/425°F.

In a large mixing bowl, add all the dry ingredients. So that’s; 400g Wholemeal flour. 100g Rolled oats. 2 teaspoons of Bicarbonate of Soda. 1 teaspoon of salt. Mix thoroughly with a wooden spoon. 

In a large jug, mix the mostly wet ingredients. I start with the highest volume first; 300ml of Stout /Guinness or whatever you have available that’s suitable. 150ml Buttermilk/plain yogurt.  4 tablespoons of brown sugar Or use 60ml runny honey. Mix really well with the wooden spoon until all combined.

Wet ingredients for Irish Soda bread

Now pour the wet ingredients into the bowl with the wet ingredients and combine well mixing with a wooden spoon or spatula. 

The mixture will look really sloppy at first and quite gooey. It will settle down as the soda starts working and you’ll notice it thickening, still very sticky and gloopy looking. 

At this stage you are ready to put equal amounts onto the prepared trays. Using two spoons, make round-ish heaps of mixture on the trays. Since this isn’t a dough, making each one round is tricky,  so I adjust each rounded heap of mixture so they’re as rounded as possible with space in-between them. 

The recipe makes 12 good sized rolls if you’re careful about proportions, or more if you want smaller rolls.  I put six on each tray, well spaced apart.

Irish soda bread rolls ready for the oven


Bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and put onto a cooling rack if you have one.  (A grill rack works just as well so long as it’s very clean.) These taste best eaten straight away while warm, especially with butter on top and maybe a dollop of jam too. These versatile rolls taste delicious with soup and stews too. The Rolls will keep for a couple of days in an airtight container and are delicious toasted or warmed in the oven the following day, if there’s any remaining. Freezing is possible once completely cold and in a freezer bag or container they will store for up to one month. Defrost fully before using. The texture won’t be quite the same as when fresh baked. 

If making a loaf, use a large, well prepared tray with greaseproof paper and oiled. Carefully make a rounded loaf using the spoon to pat into shape and very lightly sprinkle a little more oats on top. A deep sided tray can be used similar to the type for a tray bake, prepare with grease proof paper and a little oil before setting the mixture evenly into the tray, again,  the option to sprinkle some oats lightly on top too. When baking a loaf, start the oven higher for the first 10 minutes at 220°C/200°C Fan/gas mark 7/425°F before turning the oven down to 190°C/170°C Fan/gas mark 5/375°F and giving it another 25 minutes.

This soda bread is gorgeous with sweet or savoury dishes but it can be eaten just as well on it’s own warm with or without butter. I decided to try some tasty Irish recipes in time for St Patrick’s day, but it’s certain I’ll be baking these all year round now that I’ve discovered a liking for soda bread.  A tasty breakfast suggestion; warm soda bread rolls with a deep filling of BLT using crispy bacon rashers. A delicious side dish especially good for dipping and a must for a St Patrick’s day feast with a Guinness. 


Share with your friends!


  1. Can’t wait to try this recipe. I’ve been using a simpler recipe to make Irish soda farls on top of the stove (they are great tasting too).

    1. Janine Moore says:

      Hello Paula,
      I hope you enjoy making the Irish soda bread rolls recipe. Irish Farls sounds delicious, I must try those some time too.
      kind regards

  2. Mary E Curtin says:

    Love this! Do you have US conversions for quantity?
    Thank you! Can’t wait to make…!

    1. Janine Moore says:

      Hello Mary,
      This has become a favourite recipe in my home. I expect you’ll enjoy it too.
      This is a conversation from Grams to cups and ounces.
      128 g equals 1 cup or 4.5 oz

      I hope this helps you to convert the recipe.
      Kind regards

Leave a Reply

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