Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins

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Incredibly tasty, luscious lemon poppyseed muffins made super-moist with Greek yogurt and topped with sweet and tangy cream cheese lemon glaze!

Want all the lemon desserts you can get? Then you’ll definitely want to try my popular posts for Snow-Capped Lemon Cookies, Cream Cheese Lemon Bars, and Cream Cheese Lemon Crumb Cake.

up close muffin with glaze and lemon wedges

Okay, I admit, everyone and their dog has a lemon poppyseed muffin recipe. I’m not claiming to reinvent the wheel here. After all, lemon poppyseed muffins are a classic. But this recipe is my absolute favorite and, as your personal source for yummalicious recipes, I am committed to sharing any recipe that makes me say “mmmmm!!” which, obviously, this recipe does.

The difference in this ever-so-slightly tweaked version of my mother’s lemon poppyseed muffin recipe is that, while she makes hers with oil, I use plain, fat-free Greek yogurt because it adds protein and a LOT of moisture, and replaces the fat from the oil. I also added a rich and tangy lemon cream cheese glaze because, well…do I even need a reason for frosting?

overhead view of nine lemon poppy seed muffins on marble cutting board with lemon wedges

Why This Recipe Works 

Simple ingredients — You know what makes baking so much better? When you have all the ingredients and they’re not complicated. You probably have everything you need right now or one or two missing ingredients are just a quick grocery trip away. Nothing fancy or hard to find here. 

Lemon glaze — These lemon poppyseed muffins are fabulous without the lemon glaze but just a drizzle and you’ll be forever a convert to muffins with frosting. Or, glaze, because the word “glaze” makes it sound less like a cake and more like a healthy muffin. 

Fresh lemon juice — Sure, you can use the bottled lemon juice, and it’ll work just fine. But I truly believe in my heart of hearts that fresh lemon juice just tastes better. It’s more tart and tangy and really has a much better lemon flavor. 

Zest — You know, while we’re on the topic of fresh lemons, I should probably mention how good it is to use fresh lemon zest for adding real lemon flavor to the actual muffin. Try this at home. You’ll thank me later.

overhead view of lemon poppy seed muffins

Here’s How You Make It

collage of four images depicting preparation of muffin batter

Making the muffins 

  1. First, preheat that oven to 450. Then grease a muffin pan or line it with cupcake liners. 
  2. Then, in a medium bowl, add in the flour, baking soda, and salt, and whisk together.
  3. In another large bowl, mix together the butter, eggs, sugar, lemon zest, Greek yogurt, and vanilla. 
  4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix till everything’s combined, then add in the poppyseeds and stir. 
  5. Add the batter to the muffin tins, only filling about ⅔ full. Bake in preheated oven for 12-16 minutes, or till a toothpick inserted comes out clean except for a few moist crumbs. 
  6. Let the muffin tin cool on a wire rack.

collage of four images depicting preparation of muffin batter

Making the icing

  1. While the muffins are cooling, make the icing by first beating together the softened butter and cream cheese for about 2 minutes until fluffy.
  2. Now add powdered sugar and lemon juice to the cream cheese and butter and mix in. Add more lemon juice to taste if you like. 
  3. Drizzle the icing over the cooled muffins. Serve the muffins right away or you can store them on the counter in an airtight container for 3-5 days.

up close view of cross section of lemon poppy seed muffin

What Is the Secret to Making Moist Muffins?

My secret to making moist muffins is to use both butter and Greek yogurt and to be careful not to over-bake. These should take no longer than 20 minutes, max to bake. If they take longer, then they’re probably filled up too much. The longer they bake the most likely they are to get dry.

Are Poppy Seeds Good for You?

Poppy seeds are, indeed, good for you. They are a great source of fiber, which can keep you feeling fuller, longer. They are low in fat, sugar, and calories, and are a good source of magnesium, calcium, iron, manganese, and also contain a little bit of protein. All good things!
Poppy seed oil (oil made from pressing poppy seeds) is a good source of omega-6 and -9 fatty acids, which are a good source of fat for your heart.

hand holding spoon drizzling white glaze on top of yellow muffinExpert Tips

  • Did your glaze come out more like a frosting? That’s okay. You can thin the glaze out a bit by warming it up in the microwave for a few seconds at a time until it’s to your desired consistency.
  • Want to skip the poppy seeds in this lemon poppy seed muffin recipe? No problem. Simply don’t add them and the lemon muffins will still be delish! 
  • If you don’t have Greek yogurt, you can substitute sour cream or you can use vegetable oil but it’s not a 1:1 ratio, so you’ll need to add about 1 ½ cups of oil instead of yogurt.
  • For a lighter lemon glaze you can just use powdered sugar and lemon juice. The ratio is about 1 ½ cups of powdered sugar and 3 tablespoons of lemon juice. Whisk and drizzle over the top of the muffins for a sweet, light tasty glaze. 

overhead view of muffins with poppy seeds, lemon wedges, and lemon glaze

More Tasty Muffin Recipes

Did you try this Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins recipe? EXCELLENT! Please rate the recipe below! 

up close muffin with glaze and lemon wedges

Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins

Incredibly tasty, luscious lemon poppyseed muffins made super-moist with Greek yogurt and topped with sweet and tangy cream cheese lemon glaze!
4.56 from 85 votes
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 12

Ingredients

  • 1 1/3 cups flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup butter (4 tablespoons)
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla (or almond)
  • zest of 2 small lemons (or 1 large lemon - about 2 tablespoons)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 3/4 cup plain fat free greek yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon poppyseeds

Icing

  • 2 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 2 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 3-4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1-2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 450 (see note) and grease a muffin pan or line with cupcake liners.
  • In a medium bowl whisk together flour, baking soda, and salt.
  • In a large bowl cream together butter, sugar, eggs, vanilla extract, lemon zest and juice, and greek yogurt.
  • Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and mix until combined. Stir in poppyseeds.
  • Fill muffin tins about 2/3 full with muffin batter. Bake for 12-16 minutes until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Allow to cool on a wire rack.
  • (See note about icing) To make the icing, cream softened butter and cream cheese for 2 minutes until very fluffy. Add powdered sugar and lemon juice and mix well. Taste and add more lemon juice if desired. Drizzle icing over cooled muffins. (If icing is too thick you can warm it up in the microwave for a few seconds ) Serve immediately or store at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 3-5 days.

Notes

***This recipe was originally posted in 2014 and has since been updated (February 2021). So many readers love this recipe exactly as written so I have not changed the recipe BUT, for those who have asked about the oven temperature and the amount of icing, I have a few updated tips to share.
Oven temperature: I live at a high altitude (northern Utah) and this temperature will work for anyone living at high altitudes. If you live at sea level, you can reduce the oven temperature to 375. 
For the icing: The recipe as written makes a large batch of icing (too much probably) so feel free to half the icing portion of the recipe! 
A few more tips: 
  • Did your glaze come out more like a frosting? That's okay. You can thin the glaze out a bit by warming it up in the microwave for a few seconds at a time until it's to your desired consistency.
  • Want to skip the poppy seeds in this lemon poppy seed muffin recipe? No problem. Simply don't add them and the lemon muffins will still be delish! 
  • If you don't have Greek yogurt, you can substitute sour cream or you can use vegetable oil but it's not a 1:1 ratio, so you'll need to add about 1 ½ cups of oil instead of yogurt.
  • For a lighter lemon glaze you can just use powdered sugar and lemon juice. The ratio is about 1 ½ cups of powdered sugar and 3 tablespoons of lemon juice. Whisk and drizzle over the top of the muffins for a sweet, light tasty glaze. 

Nutrition

Calories: 259kcal | Carbohydrates: 54g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 34mg | Sodium: 182mg | Potassium: 66mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 43g | Vitamin A: 116IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 45mg | Iron: 1mg
Did You Make This Recipe?Tag @cremedelacrumb1 on Instagram and hashtag it #cremedelacrumb!

Try these Cream Cheese Lemon Bars next!

up close overhead lemon bars

 

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Comments

5 stars
Contrary to other people’s comments, I liked that the sides were almost crispy in texture while the inside was still soft and moist.
I did adjust the icing, I used half the icing measurements, except I used 3 tablespoons of lemon juice. All of that was enough for a double batch. I will definitely make these again!

These muffins came out good, my husband really enjoyed this. The muffins were not too fluffy but I might have mixed the batter a little longer than I should but, I will be making them again. Thank you for the recipe 🤗

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