Spotted Dog (Irish Soda Bread) Recipe

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When we discovered that Spotted Dog is also the name for a type of Irish Soda Bread, we had to give it a try.  While our Spotted Dog Acres is named after our dog Harper (English Setter and Lab mix), and subsequently our dog Willow (full English Setter), traditional Spotted Dog Irish Soda Bread gets its namesake from the bits of dried fruit inside the bread that give it the spotted appearance. We made ours with dried cranberries!

Image of Spotted Dog Acres farm dogs, Willow and Harper


Flour (4 ½ Cups)
Sugar (2 Tbsp)
Sea Salt – fine (1 Tsp)
Dried Fruit – raisins or cranberries work best (3/4 Cup)
Buttermilk (1 Cup)
Water (3/4 Cup)
Baking Soda (1 ¼ Tsp)
2 Eggs

Steps to Make the Spotted Dog Irish Soda Bread Dough

Spotted Dog Irish Soda Bread dough should be a very wet dough.  It works best if you mix it all together well in as few strokes as possible.  It’s best mixed by hand and not a stand mixer.

  1. Preheat oven to 425 F
  2. Mix all dry ingredients (except fruit)
Dry ingredients are combined in a bowl
  1. Add one beaten egg
  2. Add buttermilk and mix well with spatula
  3. If mixture is not wet enough, you can slowly add the water until all the flour is moist and the mixture starts to form into a lump of dough.
Wet ingredients are mixed with dry and water is being added to moisten mixture.
  1. Once the mixture forms into a sticky dough, add dried fruit
  2. Stir until the fruit is mixed evenly into the dough
  3. Sprinkle flour onto a countertop, table, or other flat workable surface.
  4. Turn out the dough onto the surface and form into 1.5- to 2-inch-thick disc.
Lump of Spotted Dog bread dough sits on flour covered counter top
Disc is formed out of spotted dog bread dough to allow for even cooking
  1. Transfer the dough to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  2. Score the top of the dough
  3.  Create an egg wash by mixing 1 egg with 1 Tbsp of water and brushing on top of the dough
  4. Reduce oven temp to 400 and bake for 30-40 minutes, depending on the thickness of the dough.
  5. Top should be lightly brown when done.
Spotted Dog Irish Soda Bread sits on a cooling rack

Bon Appetit

This bread is delicious any way you have it, but I prefer mine when served warm with a little bit of butter.  Store it in an airtight container or bag for about 5 days or freeze it to use months down the road.  Now you can enjoy some Spotted Dog like it was made fresh on the farm!

Butter melts on slice of bread with the rest of the loaf in the background
Pinnable image with picture of butter on Spotted Dog Irisn Soda Bread with text that says "Spotted Dog (Irish Soda Bread) Recipe" along with the Spotted Dog Acres logo and web address

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