Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins

Light and wonderful lemon poppy seed muffins made from scratch!


Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins

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When I open up a new Bon Appetit, I usually read it in reverse. That’s because the last page in each issue lists all the recipes in that issue. It saves me a lot of time, because let’s be honest, I rarely care about anything that isn’t a recipe in a food magazine.

The first recipe that grabbed me was the lemon poppy seed muffins. Their recipe called for making “mini-muffins.” I’m not normally a “mini” kind of guy. What’s the point really? I mean, I just end up eating 4 of them instead of one normal muffin and it is a lot more work. I have to butter 4 things instead of 1. Annoying.

I wanted to make them though, and I know that Betsy does like to snack on the mini versions so I ended up making a few different sizes.

It looks like there are three different sizes of muffins, but really there are just two. The medium sized ones should look like the big one in the front, but I underestimated the amount of batter. Oh well. They all tasted the same.

Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins

12 regular muffins
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Light and wonderful lemon poppy seed muffins made from scratch!

Recipe adapted from Bon Appetit 05/2009.


2 Cups All-Purpose Flour
1 Teaspoon baking powder
1/2 Teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 Teaspoon baking soda
1 Cup buttermilk
2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice (about 1/2 a lemon)
1 Cup sugar
1/2 Cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
Zest from one lemon (mayhaps the same lemon you are using to get lemon juice!)
2 large eggs
1/4 Cup poppy seeds


1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Butter your muffin tins and lightly dust them with flour or line the tins with muffin papers.

2) Whisk buttermilk and lemon juice together in a small bowl. In a medium bowl, combien the dry ingredients in the recipe. In a third, large bowl add the butter, sugar, and lemon zest.

3) Cream together the butter and sugar using a hand mixer or a stand mixer until smooth.

4) Add in the eggs, one at a time. Then add 1/3 of the dry ingredients and stir together followed by 1/2 of the wet ingredients. Add half of the remaining dry ingredients, then the last of the wet and dry ingredients.

5) Add in the poppy seeds last and stir until just combined.

6) Fill the muffin tins about 3/4 of the way full.

7) Bake muffins at 350 degrees for 22-24 minutes until they are cooked through.

8) Let the muffins cool briefly before chowing down. They are best slightly warm with a little butter.

Preheat your oven to 350 and butter and flour your pans. Could you use muffin papers? Sure. I didn’t happen to have any though so this works just as well.

Very important if you ever want to actually eat your muffiins.
Very important if you ever want to actually eat your muffins.

Then you’re going to need three bowls. Mix up your buttermilk and lemon juice in a small bowl. Your dry ingredients in a medium bowl and your butter, sugar, and zest in a large bowl.

My Illustrator skills are amazing.
My Illustrator skills are amazing.

These are the steps to make the batter. It isn’t that hard. Don’t freak out on me.

– Cream together your butter and sugar on medium speed until all the sugar and butter are combined and you have a nice light mixture.
– Mix in your two eggs, one at a time.
– Add 1/3 of your dry ingredients and combine.
– Add 1/2 of your wet ingredients.
– Add 1/2 of your remaining dry ingredients.
– Add the rest of your wet ingredients.
– Add the rest of your dry ingredients.

Get it? So you start by adding dry ingredients and you end with dry ingredients. You can eyeball the amounts though. No need to get all scientific.

Once the batter is smooth, add in your poppy seeds. If you haven’t bought poppy seeds before, they are in the spice section.

No drug tests soon right?
No drug tests soon right?

It looks like a lot of poppy seeds, but they are actually pretty mild. I find that they do more for texture than flavor.

Mix it up.
Mix it up.

Once your batter is all set, fill up your muffin tins.

In the pans.
In the pans.

Bake these at 350 for 22-24 minutes. Surprisingly, the larger muffins only take an extra minute or two to cook.

I under-filled mine just a bit. They didn’t quite form the nice muffin top I was looking for. That’s life though.

Pretty muffins.
Pretty muffins.

I took some leftover batter and made one correct muffin, which I called the king muffin. I set up a small kingdom where it ruled all the other muffins. Then Betsy came in and asked why the hell I was playing with muffins so I had to stop.

The king of the muffins.
The king of the muffins.

These guys had a lot of flavor and were really moist. We were able to snack on them all week long.

Wanna be cool? Subscribe to Macheesmo via RSS or email. Even the King Muffin subscribes.

9 Responses to “Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins” Leave a comment

  1. I LOVE 'Bon Appetit' magazine, and just saw that recipe, haha. And I agree about the mini muffin thing – too much work!! And they're eaten up too quickly ;-)

  2. Wait till I tell Sara you totally tried to steal her thunder on these. Too bad for you her’s made the cover of seriouseats.com on a “Blogwatch” post last month, SUCKA!!!


    I think she used an adaptation of Dorie G.’s though, so they are probably “a little” different.

  3. I made these and they were so fluffy and delicious! (used milk because I did not have buttermilk) Only problem is the muffin tops fell : ( (i.e. they were kinda flat). I’m blaming it on having an electric oven – can I do that?

  4. Fab and moist muffins, just baked them and iced with a lemon icing. I will however the next time and there will be a next and a time after that, up the lemon juice just because I think the lemonyer the better ( I don’t think that is a word ) but you get my thinking I’m sure.
    Many thanks for a great recipe

  5. Hi
    Yes I made them again lemonyer this time and I don’t believe there is a better muffin recipe.I have just made them as chocolate muffins too omitting all the lemon stuff and they are still to die for, I am trying to diet for my summer holiday I will just have to hold you responsible for my miserable failure, many thanks you are the guru of muffins

  6. “I have to butter 4 things instead of 1. Annoying.”
    Truer words have never been spoken. Totally making these today! :D

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