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Rustic Irish Oat Scone Bread (V, GF, Oil-free)

My rendition of a traditional, rustic Irish oat scone bread, made with rolled oats, steel-cut oats and oat flour. It has a chewy, rustic texture that is wonderful for breakfasts, snacks, or alongside entrees of all kinds.
rustic Irish oat scone bread, separated into pieces, on a black cooling rack

Chances are, you’ve come across recipes for overnight oats (for example, my version here on power hungry :)).

But what about overnight oat bread?

It’s real, it’s wonderful, and it’s based on a traditional Irish recipe.

It’s Rustic Irish Oat Scone Bread.

close up of a piece of Irish oat scone bread on a black cooling rack

My version of this bread is based on a recipe from a book given to me by my husband years ago, called The Irish Baking Book (by Ruth Isabel Ross). I’ve only made the original version of her oat bread a couple of times, having since adapted it (e.g., US measurements, smaller quantity, and more). But my updated version has the same chewy, hearty oat goodness of the original.

Oats, Three Ways

Oats are the only grain in the recipe, and they are used three ways:

  1. Rolled oats
  2. Steelcut oats
  3. Oat flour (made from the rolled oats)

This trio of oats produce the signature nubby, dense, chewy texture (which is sooo good with a smear of jam, or alongside a bowl of soup or crisp green salad).

How to Make Rustic Irish Oat Scone Bread

Note that the complete directions are also in the recipe card below.

The preparation is easy, but you do need to plan ahead, as the oats need to soak overnight.

Step One: Soak the Oats

Mix all of the oats, along with salt, leavening, a smidge of (brown or coconut) sugar, and buttermilk (nondairy milk + vinegar or regular buttermilk if you prefer/drink dairy), and then spread in a greased or well-sprayed 8-inch baking pan. Loosely cover the pan and let sit overnight.

The next day, it looks like this:

soaked oats in a cake pan, soaked overnight

Step Two: Make Cuts in the Batter

Using a pastry cutter or a butter knife, cut the dough into 8 equal wedges, like so:

soaked oat bread batter, scored into 8 scone-shape pieces

Step Three: Tightly Cover the Pan with Foil

The original version of the bread calls for baking the bread in a cloche (to trap the steam–for a moist, springy bread– and to produce extra-browned edges).

Since a terra cotta cloche is less than standard in most kitchens, I tried several adaptations to create the same texture, including baking the bread in a Dutch oven.

But I figured out an even simpler, less-cumbersome method that renders near-identical results: tightly cover the pan with foil for the first portion of the baking time (also, bake at a higher temperature at the start). Then, remove the foil and reduce the oven temperature for the remainder of time.

This is the golden yield:

close-up of rustic Irish oat scone bread, in a round baking pan

That’s it! Rustic Irish oat bread, made with ease.

Vary the Bread as You Like

Variations for this bread are vast.

If you want a more tender bread, it’s as simple as adding some fat (replace several tablespoons–anywhere from 1 to 8– of the milk with melted coconut oil, avocado oil or vegan margarine, or butter or ghee if you eat dairy).

You can also go sweeter (more sugar, or add dried or fresh fruit to the mix…or chocolate chips!) or more savory (rosemary, black pepper, chopped parsley, you name it).

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day, and happy baking!

close-up of a piece of Irish oat scone bread on a white plate with a small jar of jam

More Oat Recipes to Love:

Rustic Irish Oat Scone Bread {vegan, gluten-free}

Rustic Irish Oat Scone Bread {vegan, gluten-free}

Yield: 8 wedges
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes

My rendition of a traditional Irish oat bread, made with rolled oats, steel-cut oats and oat flour. It's easy to make and wonderful for breakfasts, snacks, or alongside entrees of all kinds.


  • 1 and 3/4 cups (175 g) old-fashioned rolled oats, divided use
  • 1/2 cup (88 g) steel-cut oats
  • 2 teaspoons (8 g) coconut palm sugar (or brown sugar)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 and 1/3 cups (325 mL) nondairy milk
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons cider vinegar or lemon juice


  1. Grease or spray the bottom and sides of an 8-inch (20 cm) baking pan.
  2. Place 1/2 cup of the rolled oats in a food processor and process into a fine flour.
  3. In a large bowl, stir together the rolled oats, steel-cut oats, oat flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add the milk and vinegar, stirring until well blended.
  4. Spread the oat mixture in prepared pan, smoothing the top.
  5. Cover the pan and refrigerate overnight (or for at least 8 hours).
  6. Preheat oven to 425F (210C).
  7. Uncover pan and cut the dough (with pastry scraper or butter knife) into 8 equal wedges. Tightly cover the pan with foil. Bake, covered for 10 minutes.
  8. Reduce the oven temperature to 375F. Open oven and (being careful of hot steam and hot pan) remove the foil from pan.
  9. Continue baking the bread for 38 to 45 minutes longer until the center is set (springs back when touched) and the edges are a deep golden brown. Cool at least 15 minutes on a cooling rack.
  10. Remove bread from pan and cut into wedges. Serve warm or cool completley.


Storage: Store the cooled scones in an airtight container at room temperature for 2 days, the refrigerator for 1 week or the freezer for up to 6 months.

Oats: Be sure to use certified gluten-free oats if you have a specific gluten intolerance.

Variation: This bread has a rustic, chewy texture. For a more tender bread, replace some of the milk (anywhere from 1 to 8 tablespoons) with an equal amount of the fat of your choice (e.g., avocado oil, vegetable oil, melted vegan margarine, butter or ghee (if you eat dairy).

Nutrition Information
Yield 8 Serving Size 1 wedge
Amount Per Serving Calories 110Total Fat 2.4gSaturated Fat 0.1gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 0gCholesterol 0mgSodium 298mgCarbohydrates 20.1gFiber 2.9gSugar 1.4gProtein 3.9g

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Friday 3rd of March 2023

Would this recipe work with date sugar instead of coconut or brown sugar? Thank you


Sunday 5th of March 2023

Hi Elaine! Yes, I think date sugar will work very welling this recipe--oats and dates are so good together already :). You can use the same amount or adjust the amount to your liking.


Friday 4th of February 2022

This bread is great loving soda breads. I have a cloche, do I leave it covered? My cloche is 11" so I made 1 1/2 recipes. Also, I thought to try adding a few pits of dried fruit to dress it up. Great recipe, Love it thanks so much. Deborah


Thursday 17th of February 2022

Hi Deborah, so glad you like it (I, too, love soda bread. So darn easy!). I envy you your cloche. I had one and then broke it on my last move. Must. Replace. ?. Yum yum yum re: adding dried fruit. We are seriously taste twins.


Wednesday 2nd of June 2021

This bread is outstanding - exactly what I have been looking for. Nutrient dense, low WW points, and VERY tasty, especially with a nice cup of tea. Thank you so much for sharing this!


Wednesday 2nd of June 2021

I am so glad you like it, Jenny!


Sunday 24th of January 2021

Made this last minute and the whole family loved it! Only one small piece was left and I rewarmed it for breakfast (with some homemade preserves). Wow! I reminds me of breads I had in Ireland as a student. Love it!


Wednesday 13th of January 2021

I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease four months ago. I was looking for gluten free recipes, and discovered your Irish Oat Scone Bread. I love it!! I've made it several times now. My husband, who can eat gluten, likes it with butter for a snack. I put peanut butter or lemon curd on it. I love the taste and the texture. Thank you!


Thursday 14th of January 2021

Oh, I am so happy to hear that this works for you Gloria (& your husband :)) Oh my goodness, why have I not tried it with lemon curd (one of my favorite things). Will have to follow suit! :)

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