Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins

The lemon poppy seed muffins are every bit as good as a bakery muffin! In just 30 minutes, you can make beautifully moist muffins with a lovely fresh lemon flavor.

Close-up photo of lemon poppy seed muffins on a circular pedestal.
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Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins Recipe

Lemon poppy seed muffins have got to be one of the most refreshing sweet treats out there. I love making them in the summer as a dessert, or sometimes even for breakfast.

In my opinion, there are no bad muffins, just some better suited for certain occasions than others! And these muffins are perfect for a light and fluffy spring or summer treat that will still satisfy a sweet tooth.

These mini lemon cheesecakes are another perfect summer dessert filled with fresh citrus flavor. And sometimes I'll make a loaf of lemon blueberry bread too. My husband is known for his love of chocolate, so he frequently requests chocolate chip muffins.

This easy recipe makes the perfect lemon poppy seed muffins every time. Topped with a delicious crumb topping, they're addictively good and pair beautifully with morning coffee, a lot like my coffee cake muffins do!

I love making freshly baked muffins to bring to friends, keep on hand for breakfast, or even whip up as a special afternoon snack.

A lemon poppy seed muffin with a bite taken out of it on a countertop.

Why You'll Love this Recipe

  • You can make a dozen lemon poppyseed muffins in just 30 minutes. A great recipe to throw together when you need a last minute dessert.
  • The flavor of these muffins is bold, but not heavy! They are a great dessert to serve on a warm day.
  • This lemon poppy seed muffin recipe is easy to follow, perfect for even the most novice bakers.

There's never a bad time to eat a muffin. So make sure you have plenty of muffin recipes so that you're always ready to make homemade muffins on a moments notice.

Medium photo of a lemon poppy seed muffin cut in half still in its liner.

Ingredients

Check your pantry and fridge for these ingredients, and then grab whatever you don't have on your next grocery run. Happy baking!

  • flour
  • sugar
  • poppy seeds
  • baking powder
  • salt
  • melted butter
  • milk
  • egg
  • lemon zest
  • lemon juice

Crumble Ingredients

  • flour
  • sugar
  • lemon zest
  • melted butter
Overhead photo of five lemon poppy seed muffins on a rectangular wire serving platter.

Substitutions and Variations

To reduce the amount of refined sugar, replace granulated sugar with coconut sugar. The flavor may change a tad, but they will still be delicious!

Feel free to leave out the crunchy poppy seeds if you prefer lemon muffins without them.

Add a splash of vanilla extract to these moist muffins to provide more depth of flavor.

Make these delicious muffins dairy-free by swapping out the milk for a dairy-free alternative, like coconut milk, and using vegan butter or coconut oil.

Use a gluten-free 1:1 flour substitute, such as King Arthur Measure for Measure Flour, to make this recipe without gluten.

For a sugar-free option, follow these tips to make sugar-free muffins.

Swap out the crumble topping for simple lemon glaze. Mix some powdered sugar, milk, lemon juice and fresh lemon zest, then drizzle the sweet lemon glaze on top of each baked muffin.

Medium photo of lemon poppy seed muffins in the lined muffin tin.

How to Make Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins

Preheat your oven to 425°F and then prep the muffin pan. Line each muffin tin cup with paper liners, or grease it well.

Hot Tip: Don't have muffin liners? Check out this post on how to grease a muffin pan for the best tips and tricks to keep muffins from sticking to the pan.

Combine sugar, poppy seeds, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl until mixed thoroughly. Set it aside for later.

Flour, sugar, poppy seeds, baking powder, and salt in a glass mixing bowl.

In a separate bowl, beat together the milk, butter, egg, and lemon juice with an electric hand mixer or stand mixer.

Milk, butter, egg, and lemon juice beaten together in a glass mixing bowl.

Slowly mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and add the lemon zest. Be careful not to over-mix the ingredients, mix until just incorporated.

Lemon poppy seed muffin batter mixed together in a glass mixing bowl.

Divide batter evenly among each cup of a 12-cup muffin pan.

Lemon poppy seed muffin batter in a paper-lined muffin tin.

Then, in a small bowl combine flour, sugar, and lemon zest for the crumble.

Add the butter into the dry ingredients and mix until a crumbly texture forms. Sprinkle the streusel topping on top of the muffins.

Flour, sugar and lemon zest for the crumble in a small glass mixing bowl.

Bake these easy lemon poppy seed muffins for 5 minutes at 425°F. Then, decrease the temperature to 350°F and bake for 15 more minutes. This helps create perfectly domed muffin tops.

Lemon poppy seed muffin topped with crumble mixture in a paper-lined muffin tin.

Remove the lemon poppy seed muffins from the oven and allow them to sit in the pan until they're cool enough to handle. This helps the bottoms hold together.

Place each muffin on a wire rack to cool the rest of the way. Dig into a fluffy muffin whenever you are ready!

Close-up photo of lemon poppy seed muffins on a rectangular wire serving platter. One muffin cut in half on top of the other muffins.

Tips for Success

  • Use a silicone spatula to fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and incorporate them well without over-mixing.
  • You can chill the muffin batter overnight to bake fresh bakery-style muffins in the morning. Chilling the batter even help make the muffins slightly fluffier.
  • Fresh lemon juice from fresh lemons will produce a better flavor than bottled lemon juice.
Overhead photo of lemon poppy seed muffins in a muffin tin sprinkled with the crumble topping.

How to Store Leftover Muffins

Muffins are best fresh, but they can be just as good a day or two later — or even a month later — if stored properly.

I have a whole post about how to store and freeze muffins, but here’s the gist:

Store muffins in airtight container, lined with paper towels to help collect condensation from residual heat in the muffins. Make sure they are completely cooled before storing for best results.

The best way to store muffins depends on how soon you want to eat them: 

  • Within 3 days of baking them: Store muffins on the countertop at room temperature. 
  • In the next few days: Store them in the fridge, but with the risk of a change in texture. Alternatively, store what you’ll eat in the next few days using the countertop method, then freeze the rest. 
  • Within the next 3 months: Store them in the freezer — reheat when you get a muffin craving! 
Medium photo of a lemon poppy seed muffin unwrapped from its liner.

FAQ

What is the point of poppy seeds in muffins?

Poppy seeds simply provide some crunchy texture in tender muffins and adds a slightly nutty flavor.

Why are my muffins chewy?

If you end up with chewy muffins as the final product, you may have over-mixed your batter. Be sure that you fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until just incorporated, and don't over-mix.

Three lemon poppy seed muffins on a small, circular white plate.

More Muffins Recipes You'll Love

Did you make this recipe?

If you make and love this recipe, please leave a ★★★★★ review below! It means so much to me when you try my recipes, and I'd love to know how it goes. Please leave a comment below if you have any questions.

Three lemon poppy seed muffins on a small, circular white plate.

Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins

These fluffy lemon poppy seed muffins are the perfect citrusy treat! Make these as a dessert or a delicious snack to brighten your day.
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 12 muffins
Author: Madison Wetherill

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ cups flour
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon poppy seeds
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup butter melted
  • ¾ cup milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

Crumble:

  • cup flour
  • cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest
  • 3 tablespoons butter melted

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Place liners in each cup of a muffin pan. Set aside. 
  • In a medium mixing bowl, combine flour, sugar, poppy seeds, baking powder, and salt and set it aside.
  • In a large mixing bowl, beat together milk, butter, egg, and lemon juice.
  • Mix dry ingredients slowly into the wet ingredients until just incorporated, along with the lemon zest. Fill each cavity in the muffin pan and set aside. 
  • In a small bowl combine flour, sugar and lemon zest for the crumble. Add butter and mix until crumbly. Sprinkle crumble on top of the batter in each cavity. 
  • Bake in the oven at 425 for 5 minutes then decrease the temperature to 350 and bake for an additional 15 minutes.

Notes

  1. Store in an airtight container on the counter for 3-5 days. 
  2. Freeze in a ziplock bag for up to three months, and allow to thaw to room temperature before eating. 
  3. You can chill the batter overnight and bake in the morning - this will even help make them slightly fluffier.

Nutrition

Serving: 1muffin | Calories: 248kcal | Carbohydrates: 33g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 45mg | Sodium: 308mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 15g

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