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Mar 15, 2024

Irish Batch Bread

Irish Batch Bread: Four loaves of bread baked in one pan!

Irish Batch Bread separated loaves on a cutting board.

Traditional Irish Batch Bread is a white bread that is made in batches of two to four one pound loaves in one pan. The bread is dark (almost black) on the top due to the high temperature of your oven, and browned on the bottom. Once it's baked and cooled, it is then torn into individual loaves.

I love baking it and then giving the individual loaves away to family and neighbors. 

Irish Batch Bread loaves on a cutting board.

Irish Batch Bread takes "pull-apart" bread to the next level. The individual loaves are simply wonderful sliced for sandwiches and toast, especially with jam and butter. 

I discovered Irish batch bread while researching Irish breads for when I made the Waterford Blaa (worth making by the way). It really appealed to me because of the dark and cracked crust. I love the flavor that a dark crust adds to bread, and I was intrigued that you could achieve this while still getting a soft "sandwich style" interior.

In fact, this bread can be characterized as a cross between a crusty loaf and a sandwich loaf. You can hear the crust crackling as the loaf cools, and the interior is slightly chewy. 

Irish Batch Bread in a pan after baking.

This bread is great for sandwiches, French toast, avocado toast, and garlic bread. 

Equipment You May Need:

This recipe calls for a very large pan for baking the Batch Bread. You will need a pan that is both tall and wide enough to accommodate 4 one pound loaves. I found a 10 inch by 12 inch by 6 inch hotel/steam pan, which I found at a local restaurant supply store, that worked perfectly for me. 

A 9 by 13 by 6-inch half hotel pan would also work... or you could try using a high sided sheet cake pan, a small roasting pan, or even a disposable foil roasting pan.

There is about 1 1/2 pounds (10 cups) of flour in in this dough, which is more than a home mixer can handle, so this recipe calls for making the dough in two batches. After making this dough a couple of times in two batches in the 7 quart KitchenAid, I think it might work in one batch, but I can't be sure. If you use a 5 or 6 quart mixer, definitely mix the dough in two batches.

I'm still dreaming of this Ankarsrum mixer for making large loaves. I'd just have to figure out how to sneak it into the house and justify it when questioned. 

Irish Batch Bread on a cutting board with the loaves separated.


This is a simple recipe. All you need is bread flour, salt, water, yeast, and oil or fat. 

For the fat, you can use vegetable oil, lard, or the more traditional beef drippings. So tasty. 

Irish Batch Bread steps for making collage.


In a stand mixer, mix half of the ingredients for three minutes on low, and then three minutes on medium speed. The dough will be smooth but slightly sticky. Transfer the dough to an oiled bowl or container and cover with plastic wrap. Repeat with the other half of the dough ingredients.

Let both batches of dough rise until doubled, about 1 1/2 to 2 hours. If the first half of the dough rises before the second half, chill it while the second half rises. You can also combine both dough halves into one container and let them rise together. 

Once the dough has risen, divide it into four pieces and shape each into a loaf and place them into a parchment lined steam/hotel pan. Let it rise again and then bake. 

Note: The first time I made this bread, I didn't line the bottom of the pan. I was able to lift this loaf out of the pan without tearing it, but it took a lot of patience. The parchment paper makes it so much easier. 

Irish Batch Bread in the pan with parchment paper.

There's a step in the process where you wet your thumb and push down on the top of each ball of dough before baking. The dough will spring back in the oven, leaving a tiny indentation on the top of the loaves. It's really weird, but it works!

You can kind of see where you've pushed down on the dough if you look closely. 

Irish Batch Bread sliced on a cutting board.

If you try this bread, be sure to join my Facebook Group, Your Kitchen Stories, and post your photos. You can also post all of your food photos there and share recipes. I'd love to see you there, so please join. It's a very friendly group!

More Irish Recipes: 

Irish Champ

Dublin Coddle

Potted Crab

Potato Cakes

Irish Stew

Fisherman's Pie

Cod Soup

The Waterford Blaa (another Irish bread)

Irish Batch Bread on a cutting board.

First published May, 2018 and updated with new photos and details in March, 2024. 

Irish Batch Bread

Irish Batch Bread
Yield: 40 slices
Author: Karen's Kitchen Stories
Prep time: 1 HourCook time: 40 MinInactive time: 2 HourTotal time: 3 H & 40 M
Irish Batch Bread: Four loaves of bread baked in one pan!


  • 1276 grams (45 ounces / 10 cups) bread flour
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon instant yeast
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil, lard, or beef drippings
  • 1 quart water


  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, mix half of the ingredients for three minutes on low, and then 3 minutes on medium speed. The dough will be smooth but slightly sticky. Transfer the dough to an oiled bowl or container and cover with plastic wrap. Repeat with the other half of the ingredients.
  2. Let both batches of dough rise until doubled, about 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
  3. Spray a 10 inch by 12 inch by 6 inch pan (such as a hotel pan) with spray oil and then line it with parchment paper that goes up the sides. Spray the parchment paper with baking spray as well. Preheat the oven to 475 degrees F.
  4. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface, and divide it into four equal pieces and shape each into a round ball. Place the four dough balls into the pan, seam side down, and cover the pan with plastic wrap. Let the dough rise until doubled, about 30 minutes.
  5. Wet your thumb with water, and push it down through the center of one of the dough balls. Re-wet your thumb, and repeat with the other three pieces of dough.
  6. Place the pan in the oven and bake for 40 minutes. The crust should be dark and almost burnt, and the bread reaches an internal temperature of 200 degrees F.
  7. Let the bread cool in the pan for about 10 minutes before lifting it out of the pan and onto a cooling rack. When the bread has cooled, break apart the loaves.

Nutrition Facts



Fat (grams)

1 g

Sat. Fat (grams)

0 g

Carbs (grams)

23 g

Fiber (grams)

1 g

Net carbs

22 g

Sugar (grams)

0 g

Protein (grams)

4 g

Cholesterol (grams)

0 mg
batch bread,
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Recipe adapted from My Irish Table, one of my favorite cookbooks featuring the food of Ireland, published in 2014. If you love exploring the food of Ireland, this book is fabulous. 

My other favorite is The Irish Pub Cookbook. Everything I've tried is fabulous. 

I also recommend Country Cooking of Ireland, although the hardcopy version is out of print. It is available on Kindle

Would you like to comment?

  1. I will not search for that pan. I will not search for that pan... I will not allow my fingers to type the name of the pan in the search box.

    I will not

    Great post, Karen!!!!

  2. I love batch loaf and its impossible to find even a Brennans batch loaf where I am now in the lard the thing that gives it that unique richness? Thanks!

  3. Has anyone from Dublin tried this yet? Tyring to get my hubby to make this and a review from a Dub who tried it would help! Will post a review once I am successful in getting him in the kitchen!

    1. I’m a Dub and yep it’s the real deal. I’ve made it Vancouver for my son and in Connecticut for my brother. My Mother in law told me it tastes like bread used to taste when she was growing up. It’s wonderful toasted too.

  4. Thanks for sharing the recipe, I found the pan you mention above on amazon fr those looking for same

  5. When I combined half the ingredients into my kitchen aid, it ended up lumpy. I literally don't know how to bake but figured how could I mess up 5 ingredients, and yet, I did. Any advice? Thank you!

    1. Try weighing the flour instead of using cups. You can also let the mixed dough sit for 20 minutes, and then mix it again. That should help normally.

  6. I love that you can make multiple loaves in one pan! What a time saver!

  7. I feel badly when I cut a loaf in half and give someone half the loaf. This absolutely solves that!

  8. I need and want that pan! Oh, I really just want this bread! YUM

    1. The pan is so fun!! I think you need to visit a restaurant supply store!


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