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McKiernan Irish Bread - Family Recipe

Updated: Nov 8, 2023

I married a legit Irish-American man. No kidding.

The first big family event I attended I was warned that I would never remember all the names of everyone at this event...and he was right. Grania, Conor, Ethna, Eamon, Brigid, Liadan, Deirdre, Eoin, Fergus, Colin, Nuala, Kieran, Maeve, Naoise, Siobhan, Ronin, Ashling, Liam...the list of Irish names goes on.

Plus, learning all their nicknames? I was lost. Luckily, I was welcomed with open arms and it only took me a couple of years to know almost everyone's name!

One lovely thing I was gifted early on from this big Irish-American family was a delicious Irish Bread recipe.

You bake it in cast iron (my favorite) and it's quick to whip up for the St Patrick's Day holiday if you're celebrating, or any time of year really!

Eat it fresh from the oven with lots of butter, toasted with lots of butter...for a snack, tea, breakfast, anytime.

Sláinte (cheers)!

McKiernan Irish Bread


1 cup sugar

4 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

2 cups raisins

2 teaspoons caraway seeds

1 stick butter

2 large eggs

1 cup buttermilk


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9-10 inch cast iron skillet.

Mix dry ingredients in a large bowl. Mix with softened butter.

Mix eggs with buttermilk in a small bowl and add slowly to the dry ingredients. Mix well.

Knead and pack into cast iron skillet. Cut an "X" into the top of the loaf. Bake for 60-70 minutes.

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