Heat oven to 350º. Grease a cast iron skillet or 9" cake pan with butter. (See recipe notes for other options.)
Whisk together flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. Make a well in the center.
In a small bowl whisk together butter, buttermilk, and egg.
Add the liquid ingredients to the dry, pouring it into the well and stir to form a soft dough. The dough will be very thick and might need to be kneaded slightly to work in the flour. Add the cranberries. Mix or knead until no flour pockets remain.
Shape dough into a ball (use lightly wet fingers if dough is sticky) and transfer to the prepared pan. Use a sharp knife to make an "X" on top of the the ball.
Bake until set, about 1 hour to 1 hour 10 minutes. Insert a knife or toothpick in the middle to make sure it's set. To prevent the bread from becoming overly brown, loosely tent foil over top for the last 10-15 minutes baking time. Baking times can be longer, depend on the size of pan you bake it in and if using gluten free flour, which takes longer.
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**You can also sub in dried cherries or raisins for the cranberries.
Substitute for Buttermilk
Pour 1 tablespoon vinegar or lemon juice in a measuring cup.
Add milk until you have 1 1/3 cup total liquid.
Let sit for 5-10 minutes, stir, and then use.
What Kind of Pan Should Irish Soda Bread be baked in?