What did the Vikings eat? How did they cook? What sort of flavours did they add to their food? We’re in the depths of learning all about the men for the north, the Norsemen or Vikings and decided to cook some of their staple foods. So one of them was bread. This recipe is one that I found in an old teaching book and is similar to Norse Soda Bread. So here you go a Viking Bread Recipe to cook with kids.
What did the Vikings Eat
Before we get to the recipe a little about what the Vikings ate and also about bread.
The Vikings ate a very varied diet, they kept farm animals like Pigs, Cows and Chickens so meat, eggs and milk were commonly used in their dishes.
They also hunted and because of being sea faring people they ate a lot of fish either from the sea or rivers where they lived.
Along with the meat they had a healthy diet of fruit and vegetables. Root vegetables and leeks were very common. An interesting fact, the carrots grown weren’t orange like we get today but instead either purple or white!
Fruit was picked wild and would have included many of the fruits that we can grow easily and eat in our gardens in the UK, strawberries, blackberries, raspberries and blueberries.
They also collected honey from bees and used this to sweeten food as no sugar was available.
Grains were grown, harvested and then ground to flour. Barley, Rye, Oats and in warmer areas wheat were grown. The barley (along with hops they found in the wild) were used for making beer whereas oats, rye and wheat for flour to make bread.
Bread was a staple of the diet, however, depending on where you lay in the village hierachy is what type of bread you ate.
The slaves would eat flatbreads cooked on a griddle-type pan over a fire and use it similar to a plate. It would absorb the liquid from the stew and make it softer to eat.
Whereas, this bread which is slightly risen due to the bicarbonate of soda (baking soda) in it would have been for the richer Vikings. The bread would have been torn and dipped into the stew or served with homemade butter and honey or jam for a sweeter dish.
Viking Bread Recipe
As I said above this bread is one for the richer Viking, the Chiefs of the villages. It is very similar to our Irish Soda Bread recipe in the fact that it doesn’t use any yeast in it. However, after having baked the 2 we love the oaty taste and texture of this one of the Irish soda bread.
Ingredients for making bread like a Viking
The recipe at the bottom of the post has everything in grammes (just scroll down further), however, we measured out our ingredients and below you will see them in cups.
- 5 cups plain (all purpose flour)
- 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)
- 1 tsp salt
- 3/4 cups of oats
- 2 cups of warm water
- Oats to sprinkle on the top
How to make Viking Soda Bread
Start by putting all of the dry ingredients in a bowl and mix together.
Add in the warm water and use a wooden spoon (just like a Viking) to stir the ingredients to start to form a dough.
When you can’t stir any more turn it out onto a surface and knead with your hands until firm.
Place on a lined baking tray and into an oven.
With the bread on the tray in the oven switch it on to 180C (fan assisted) and set the timer for 45 minutes.
Once cooked, remove let cool and a little and then enjoy!
We served ours with butter and honey, but you could try making a stew like our sausage and bean casserole to cook with kids and dipping the bread in that to soak up the liquid.
Free Printable Viking Recipe
Would you like a printable recipe card for this recipe for Vikings? Then head to our store and get your FREE Viking Recipe Card.
Viking Books to Read
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If you are looking to read some books whilst studying the Vikings although you will find more in our book list (coming soon!) here are 3 that we have been reading and enjoying together.
We love the DK Eyewitness books and the Viking one is our go-to book for the topic with great information.
Whilst learning about the Vikings we’ve been reading about the Norse Myths with the beautifully illustrated Usbourne book.
Along with the previous two I have really enjoyed our read-aloud book Beowulf the Michael Morpurgo version as it’s written to be read with and by children.
More Viking Activities to Do
Looking for more ideas to do whilst studying the Vikings how about trying these.
Make your own Runes – these are easy to make with a set of wood slices and great to learn about the language that Vikings (and Anglo-Saxons) used to write with.
Viking Bread Recipe
- Wooden Spoon
- Baking Tray
- Put the dry ingredients in a bowl and mix with a wooden spoon.
- Add in the water and using the spoon stir until a dough is made.
- Turn out onto a surface and with damp hands knead the bread until it is smooth.
- Place on a lined baking tray, sprinkle with the handfull of oats and into a cold oven.
- Set the oven to 180C (fan assisted) with a timer for 45mins and cook.
- Allow the bread to cool a little and then serve.
More History Units
Looking to explore more hands-on history with kids then check out some of our History Units which are packed with activities to do together as you learn about different periods in time.
Start history chronologically with a unit on the Stone Age -> click here to view our Stone Age Unit Study.