Easy Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins With Lemony Glaze

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These Easy Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins with Lemony Glaze are perfectly moist, have a bright flavor made from fresh lemon juice and zingy zest, and have a spongy texture, just like your favorite muffins from the local bakery. This tart and sweet treat is excellent for any time of day! Bite into these beautiful fluffy muffins as a refreshing breakfast treat, mid-day pick-me-up, or a simple after-dinner dessert.

a tray of lemon poppyseed muffins on a table with a citrus press, jar of poppyseeds and lemon slice.

This lemon poppy seed muffin recipe is easy to make with simple ingredients and is super versatile, too!

Toss them in your kid’s lunch box for a lovely treat, or bake the batch for a tasty afternoon snack or post-dinner dessert!

These yummy muffins with sweet lemon glaze and crunchy poppy seeds also work well for breakfast with a bowl of yogurt and granola, a glass of your favorite juice, or a steaming cup of coffee just the way you like it.

Looking for more lemony sweets? Try my refreshing Lemon Ricotta Pancakes, simple and delicious Lemon Ricotta Cake, or this rich and gooey Cream Cheese Lemon Dump Cake!

ingredients for lemon poppyseed muffins on a table.

Key ingredients & substitutions for Bakery-Style Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins

  • Lemon | You’ll need just one fresh lemon for tangy-sweet juice and punchy lemon zest. If preferred, substitute the zest for 2.5 teaspoons of lemon extract and replace the lemon juice with half a teaspoon of white vinegar.
  • Sugar | Bring sweet notes to cut the tart lemon flavor with granulated sugar.
  • Butter | Use unsalted butter, melted and cooled, to give the muffins a buttery taste and moist texture.
  • Eggs | Help the muffins rise with two large eggs at room temperature.
  • Flour | Provide structure with cake flour. If you use all-purpose flour instead, remember the texture will differ slightly.
  • Baking powder | Along with the eggs, the baking powder helps the muffin batter rise as it bakes.
  • Salt | Just a pinch of salt enhances and highlights the sweet and tart notes of the recipe.
  • Milk | Make the batter more fluid with whole milk. You may use skim or low-fat milk if preferred, but the best results are when whole, full-fat milk is used.
  • Poppy seeds | For additional texture, elegant presentation, and a hint of nutty flavor, add poppy seeds to your lemon muffins.

Homemade Lemon Glaze

  • Powdered sugar | This glaze recipe is so easy! The sweetness comes from sifted powdered sugar.
  • Lemon juice | Then, the sugar is mixed well with freshly squeezed lemon juice for a lemony-sweet glaze.

How to make the perfect Lemon Poppy Seed Muffin

Make bakery-quality lemon poppy seed muffins by combining the ingredients, baking for just 15 minutes, and drizzling the tops with a lovely tart lemon glaze — HAPPY BAKING!

STEP 1 | Preheat and prep

First, preheat the oven and line a muffin pan with paper liners.

sifting cake flour and zesting lemon for lemon poppyseed muffins.

STEP 2 | Combine zest and sugar

Then, zest and juice the fresh lemon, adding the zest to a large bowl with the sugar. Reserve the juice to use later.

Rub the zest into the sugar with your fingertips until fully incorporated.

Must-Have Zester

I love my Microplane zester! This classic tool doubles as a citrus zester and a Parmesan cheese grater.

  • zest lemons, limes, and oranges with ease while leaving behind the bitter white pith
  • dishwasher safe
microplane zester

STEP 3 | Add butter and eggs

Next, carefully pour the cooled melted butter and eggs into the sugar mixture, and cream together until the mixture is light and fluffy.

tips

  • Be sure not to overmix the ingredients to avoid a rubbery and dense texture. Just mix until the components are evenly incorporated.
  • Add fresh lemon zest to the glaze for little bursts of lemony flavor!
  • For taller and fluffier muffins, let the batter sit, covered, in the fridge overnight.
  • Add lemon extract to the muffin batter for a more robust citrus kick.
  • It helps to use an ice cream scoop when adding the batter to the cups.
creaming together butter, eggs, and sugar, then adding dry ingredients to make lemon poppyseed muffins.

STEP 4 | Combine remaining ingredients

Now, in a separate bowl, sift together the dry ingredients — cake flour, baking powder, and salt.

Add to the sugar mixture along with the poppy seeds, milk, vanilla extract, and the reserved lemon juice. Mix the yummy ingredients well.

STEP 5 | Bake and cool

Then, divide the batter among the muffin cups in the muffin tin and bake for 12 – 15 minutes, until lightly golden brown.

Once baked, cool the lemon muffins in the pan for 5 minutes, and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

baked lemon poppyseed muffins cooling on a wire rack; frosting muffins with powdered sugar glaze.

STEP 6 | Spread on glaze and serve!

Finally, combine the glaze ingredients by adding the powdered sugar to a small bowl and stirring in the lemon juice just a tablespoon at a time.

Once the glaze is the desired consistency, spread or slowly drizzle it over the cooled muffins for even more fresh lemon flavor. Then, dig in!

Frequently asked questions

Are lemon poppy seed muffins good for you?

Poppy seeds are excellent for improving blood circulation, managing blood pressure levels, and lessening the chance for cardiovascular disease to develop. They also contain some protein, fiber, calcium, and magnesium.

Are poppy seed muffins safe for kids?

Food-grade poppy seeds are known to be safe for children and babies to consume. However, eating large amounts of poppy seeds can be dangerous. For most recipes using them, the amount is mild enough not to be a concern. That said, if you don’t feel sure about giving poppy seeds to your little ones, feel free to omit them from the recipe!

How do you stop muffins from sticking to the liner?

The brand of muffin or cupcake liners is often the cause of sticking. Try searching for a tried-and-true liner brand with good reviews. Or, try spraying the inside of the liners with a small amount of cooking spray. Furthermore, aluminum or silicone liners tend to prevent sticking better than paper.

Can you freeze muffins?

For long-term storage, you can freeze this muffin recipe. Place the muffins in an airtight container or zip-top plastic bag and keep them in the freezer for up to three months. When you’re ready to serve them again, let them thaw in the fridge overnight, then warm them up in the oven for a few minutes, if desired. You can also defrost them on the kitchen counter.

a glazed lemon poppyseed muffin on a wooden block wit a tray of muffins in the background.

Serving suggestions

If you have a crowd to feed for breakfast, or an important event coming up, consider serving an assortment of delicious and fruity homemade muffins, like these Healthy Strawberry Oat Muffins, bright Orange Cranberry Muffins, and cozy Blueberry Streusel Muffins, along with today’s fluffy and lemony poppy seed muffins!

a lemon poppyseed muffin on a plate with a bite missing.
a lemon poppyseed muffin on a serving plate with a lemon slice

Easy Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins With Lemony Glaze

These Easy Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins with Lemony Glaze are perfectly moist, have a bright flavor made from fresh lemon juice and zingy zest, and that spongy texture, just like your favorite muffins from the local bakery.
5 from 3 votes
Prep Time 12 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Total Time 24 minutes
Course Muffins
Cuisine American
Servings 12 servings
Calories 281 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 medium lemon juice and zest
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter melted and cooled
  • 2 large eggs room temperature
  • 2 cups cake flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons poppy seeds

Lemon Glaze

  • 1 cup powdered sugar sifted
  • 2 – 3 tablespoons lemon juice

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line a muffin pan with paper liners.
  • Zest and juice the lemon. You should have about about 3 tablespoons juice. Add the zest to a large bowl along with the sugar. Reserve the juice to use later. Rub the zest into the sugar with your fingertips until fully incorporated.
  • Pour the melted butter and eggs into the sugar mixture, and cream together until light and fluffy.
  • In a separate bowl, sift together the cake flour, baking powder, and salt. Add to the sugar mixture along with the poppy seeds, milk, vanilla extract, and the reserved lemon juice. Mix well.
  • Divide the batter among the muffin cups and bake for 12 – 15 minutes. Cool in the pan for 5 mnutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  • Add the powdered sugar to a small bowl and stir in the lemon juice, a tablespoon at a time, until the desired consistency. Spread or drizzle over the cooled muffins.

Notes

  • Be sure not to overmix the ingredients to avoid a rubbery and dense texture. Just mix until the components are evenly incorporated.
  • Add fresh lemon zest to the glaze for little bursts of lemony flavor!
  • For taller and fluffier muffins, let the batter sit, covered, in the fridge overnight.
  • Add lemon extract to the muffin batter for a more robust citrus kick.
  • It helps to use an ice cream scoop when adding the batter to the cups.

Nutrition

Calories: 281kcalCarbohydrates: 44gProtein: 5gFat: 10gSaturated Fat: 6gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0.3gCholesterol: 54mgSodium: 216mgPotassium: 125mgFiber: 1gSugar: 28gVitamin A: 314IUVitamin C: 6mgCalcium: 74mgIron: 1mg

Life Love and Good Food does not claim to be a registered dietician or nutritionist. Nutritional information shared on this site is only an estimate. We recommend running the ingredients through an online nutritional calculator if you need to verify any information.

Keyword baking from scratch, breakfast muffin, brunch, lemon, lemon glaze
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was.
Sheila Thigpen, blogger

About Sheila Thigpen

Recipe Developer, Food Photographer, Food Writer

Sheila Thigpen is the publisher of Life, Love, and Good Food — a Southern food blog — and the author of Easy Chicken Cookbook and The 5-Ingredient Fresh and Easy Cookbook. After 20+ years in the publishing industry, she retired in 2018 to focus on her own creative endeavors full time. She and her husband live near the beautiful Smoky Mountains and have a precious little granddaughter who has stolen their hearts. As an influencer, Sheila has collaborated with brands like Creamette, Kroger, HERSHEY’S, Hamilton Beach, Garafalo Pasta, OXO, Smithfield, Valley Fig Growers, and more.

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