These lemon poppy seed muffins are super moist and burst with a bright citrus flavor. They are delicious plain or even better with a sweet lemon glaze.

This recipe is one of my favorite muffins to make during the week. They reheat nicely in the microwave, so I can quickly grab one and go out the door. You can easily double this recipe, wrap them individually, and place them in the freezer.

What I love about this recipe

  • Simple ingredients What I like about this recipe is that I almost always have all of the ingredients, and if you don’t, there is nothing fancy or hard to find in this muffin.
  • Full of lemon flavor This muffin is packed full of lemon zest and lemon juice. If you love citrus, you will love this muffin.
  • Moist and Tender The sour cream in the muffins keeps them nice and moist, resulting in a tender, delicious muffin.
  • Lemon glaze These muffins are great plain with a little bit of butter, but they are even more amazing when drizzled with a sweet lemon glaze over the top.

The ingredients you will need

  • Flour All-purpose flour gives these muffins a nice, tender crumb; you can use cake flour, but you will have a little denser muffin.
  • Baking Powder leavens these muffins, resulting in a fluffy texture.
  • Salt brings out all the flavors in the muffins.
  • Fresh Lemons Fresh lemon zest adds the most concentrated lemon flavor to the muffins.
  • Poppy Seeds add the best little bit of crunch to the muffins.
  • Butter Unsalted butter gives the muffins the best flavor, which can’t be replicated with vegetable or olive oil. If you’re using salted butter, omit the salt in the recipe.
  • Sugar Granulated white sugar sweetens and adds moisture to the muffins. You can use maple syrup as an alternative sweetener.
  • Eggs Make sure they’re at room temperature.
  • Vanilla adds a sweet note to the batter. I like to use pure vanilla, but good vanilla will work here too.
  • Sour Cream To give these muffins the moisture they need, you want to make sure it’s at room temperature when you add it to the batter. As an alternative, you can use any type of yogurt.
  • Milk I recommend using whole milk, but any type of milk will work for these muffins.
  • Powdered Sugar is used for the sweet lemon glaze, which is optional.

How to make Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F
  • Grease a muffin pan or line it with cupcake liners.
  • Whisk together flour, baking soda, and salt
  • Mix together the butter, eggs, sugar, lemon zest, Greek yogurt or sour cream, and vanilla.
  • Add the dry ingredient to the wet ingredient, mixing until everything is combined. Add poppy seeds and stir.
  • Fill the muffin tins 2/3 full.
  • Bake in preheated oven for 12-16 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
  • Cool muffins on a wire rack.
  • Beat together powdered sugar and lemon juice
  • Drizzle the icing over the cooled muffin and serve.
Lemon poppy seed muffins
Lemon poppy seed muffins

Pro Tips and Suggestions

  • If you don’t have fresh lemons, you can use 2-1/2 teaspoons of lemon extract in place of the lemon zest.
  • Make sure you use a thick yogurt like Greek yogurt or, as an alternative, a thick sour cream. If the yogurt is on the runnier side it will cause your muffins to spread out instead of rise and be fluffy.
  • Use a spring-loaded ice cream scoop to fill your muffin tins for a more evenly sized muffin.
  • Make sure all the wet ingredients are room temperature; wet ingredients can lead to dense muffins, and you want a fluffy texture.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are poppy seeds safe to eat?

Yes, they are safe to eat, but if you don’t enjoy the texture or are concerned about eating them, you can leave them out of the muffin and still have a delicious muffin.

Can you use sour cream instead of Greek yogurt?

Yes, you can definitely use sour cream. My suggestion is that you use one with a higher fat content so that it’s on the thicker side instead of one with a lower fat content that is on the runnier side.

How do I store these muffins?

These lemon poppy seed muffins keep well in an airtight container for up to 2 days. If you want them to store longer, you can freeze them for up to 3 months and thaw them out as needed.

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The Best Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins

These lemon poppy seed muffins are super moist and burst with a bright citrus flavor. They are delicious plain or even better with a sweet lemon glaze.
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 23 minutes
Total Time 43 minutes
Course Breakfast
Cuisine American
Servings 12 muffins
Calories 212 kcal


Muffin Batter

  • 2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1-1/2 tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp baking soda
  • ½ cup unsalted butter melted
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup greek yogurt
  • ½ cup milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1-1/2 tbsp poppy seeds
  • 2 tbsp lemon zest

lemon glaze

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 4 tsp lemon juice


Muffin Batter

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a muffin tin with nonstick spray or line it with paper liners. In a small bowl, melt the butter. Set aside to cool to room temperature.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the whole wheat flour, all-purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and poppy seeds. Set aside.
  • Place the sugar in a medium bowl and add the lemon zest With your fingers, rub the two together until the sugar is moist and fragrant. Add the yogurt, eggs, lemon juice, vanilla, and melted butter. Whisk until smooth.
  • Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients, then carefully pour in the wet ingredients. With a spatula or wooden spoon, mix gently just until the flour disappears. The batter will be thick
  • With a scoop, divide the batter evenly between the muffin cups (they’ll be 2/3 to 3/4 of the way full).
  • Bake lemon poppy seeds muffins for 18 to 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean. Let cool in the pan for 5 minutes, then carefully lift the muffins out of the pan and transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely.
  • While the muffins cool, make the glaze: Place the lemon juice and powdered sugar in a small bowl and whisk briskly until smooth. Drizzle over the cooled muffins.
Keyword muffin, poppy seed
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