Soda Bread With Sunflower Seeds

Written by McDonald, T.  |  Updated 11th of March 2024.

This is very tasty and packed with nutrition and.  The bread has a beautiful crust and a dense crumb and is traditional for st Patrick's Day, which is coming up.  Even if you are just looking for an easy bread, this is quick and simple to make.  It takes less than an hour and is perfect for soups, stews, sandwiches, or toast. You could even just have it with butter and jam.


  • A silicon baking sheet is perfect for this bread. 

  • You can soak the seeds beforehand for an hour. Some people believe it makes them easier to digest.

  • Use a good quality baking try because a cheap one will likely buckle in the oven, changing the shape of the bread.

  • The bread is at 80% hydration

500g of flour x 0.80 = 400 ml
I will use 370 ml water plus 30 ml white vinegar = 400 ml

Preparation time:  10 – 15 minutes

Cook time: 55 – 60 minutes  

Total time: 1.5 hours

 12 – 14 servings. 


  • 250 g self-raising white flour
  • 250 g strong wholemeal bread flour 
  • 30 ml (tbsp x 2) white vinegar 
  • 370 ml of water 
  • 2 tbsp of vegetable oil
  • 1.5 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt 
  • 40 g of sunflower seeds
  • 1 tbsp of hempseeds 


  • Baking try
  • Wooden spoon or Danish whisk
  • Dough scraper
  • Mixing bowl
  • Scales
  • Measuring jug
  • Measuring spoons
  • Silicon baking sheet



  1. Put the white and wholemeal flours, bicarbonate of soda, seeds, and salt into a bowl and stir with a whisk. 

  2. Pour the water and vinegar into the bowl and stir to make a dough.  Use a big wooden spoon or a Danish whisk to mix the dough together, and spend some time on this until you are sure everything is combined equally.  Cover and leave to rest to allow the bicarbonate of soda to work, and it will make the dough easier to handle.

  3. Pre-heat the oven to 170 °C.  

  4. Tip the dough onto a floured board and shape.  Don't try to knead it, or you will just get in a sticky mess.   Just roll it in the flour on the board and by using your hands and a dough scraper to mould it into a ball-ish shape or bloomer.  Cut a cross into the top if you went for the ball shape, it's a tradition.

  5. Bake for 55–60 minutes at 170 °C on the upper middle shelf.

  6. When time is up, check with a thermometer (anything over 95 °C should be fine) or if using a cake tester, the tester should come out clean.  In either case, the bottom should sound hollow when you tap it.  Allow to cool on a cooling rack for about an hour.

Irish vegan Soda Bread dough dusted in flour on a wooden chopping board
Irish vegan Soda Bread dough shaped ballish and on a wooden chopping board
Shape so it looks ball-ish.

Irish vegan Soda Bread dough with a cross cut in on a metel baking sheet
Cut a cross into the top to make it more traditional.


The aroma that comes from the oven is amazing! 

I hope you decide to give this a try.  If you do, please let me know what you thought in the comments or on Twitter.  Please like, share with your friends and subscribe.  


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