My Orange Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins are a twist on the original lemon version. Soft on the inside, slight crisp on the outside. And full of flavorful citrus!
Make lemon poppy seed muffins, of course! One of my favorite muffins in the world (besides blueberry, double chocolate and bran muffins – so boring, I know) are lemon poppy seed muffins. I love these springtime, citrus-infused muffins so much that I included them in my cookbook last year. Have you tried them yet?
Today’s muffins are practically the same recipe, with a little orange infusion. I was originally going to make the regular lemon poppy seed muffins to freeze and eat over the next few weeks – nothing screams springtime more! But I quickly improvised when I found only 2 lemons left in the crisper drawer. My recipe calls for 3. Whoops!
And so today’s zingy muffin recipe was born. A happy accident, if you will. Hey, it turned out well because now I can share a new recipe with you. A win-win muffin situation. Hope you’re hungry for a bright & sunny breakfast.
These orange lemon poppy seed muffins are buttery, moist, and bursting with lemon and orange flavors. I’ve had my fair share of bland lemon muffins, but these are a far cry from flavorless. You’ll need 2 lemons, 1 orange, and a splash of vanilla extract for an added flavor punch. Make sure you have a zester handy because you’ll need the zest of all three fruits. Here’s the zester I own and love.
A healthy dose of poppy seeds give the muffins a slight crunch. That’s the best part about poppy seed muffins! They’re a perfect contrast to the muffin’s soft interior. I bought my poppy seeds at the regular grocery store – after two muffin batches, the bottle is already gone. It’s money well spent, I promise.
You don’t need a mixer for this recipe. In fact, I hardly ever use a mixer for my muffin recipes. I like to whisk them all by hand because I can be in full control. Muffin batters are fragile – even the slightest overmixing will give your muffins a heavy texture.
I love sprinkling the tops of muffins with coarse sugar. Similar to the poppy seeds, the coarse sugar gives these muffin tops a delightful crunch. Plus it makes the top sparkle – which I’m all about.
The muffins are baked in a very hot oven for 5 minutes. Then, keeping the muffins in the oven, lower the temperature down for the remaining time. This is my beloved “muffin dome” trick. A quick burst of very hot air allows the muffin top to rise up quickly. Then the lower temperature bakes the center.
Warm from the oven, these orange lemon poppy seed muffins are not complete without a pat of butter melting into each and every crevice. The perfect springtime breakfast if you ask me!
PS: This is the recipe I was testing when Kevin decided to draw the directions. He said my readers might prefer I draw all my recipes going forward because it will make me different from other food blogs. Pretty sure he was serious.
Orange Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins
- 2 and 1/3 cups (292g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
- 1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup (50g) packed light brown sugar
- 3 Tablespoons poppy seeds
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup (115g) salted butter, melted1
- juice and zest of 2 medium lemons2
- juice and zest of 1 orange3
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1/2 cup (120g) non-fat or low-fat Greek or regular yogurt, at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- coarse sugar, for sprinkling
- Preheat oven to 425°F (218°C). Spray 12-count muffin pan with nonstick spray. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk the flour, granulated sugar, brown sugar, poppy seeds, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together until thoroughly mixed. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk the melted butter, lemon juice, lemon zest, orange juice, and orange zest together until combined. Add the eggs, one at a time, whisking after each addition. Whisk in the yogurt and vanilla. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and gently mix together until no pockets of flour remain. Do not overmix. The batter is extremely thick.
- Spoon the thick batter into the muffin tins, filling them all the way to the top. Sprinkle each with coarse sugar. Bake for 5 minutes at 425°F (218°C). Keeping the muffins in the oven, reduce oven temperature to 375°F (190°C) and continue to bake for 10-13 minutes longer until tops are lightly golden. A toothpick inserted in the center should come out clean. Allow to cool for 10 minutes. Top with additional lemon and/or orange zest if desired (optional).
- Muffins stay fresh in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days. Try them with a simple lemon glaze too!
Make ahead tip: For longer storage, freeze muffins for up to 3 months. Allow to thaw overnight in the refrigerator and heat up in the microwave if desired.
- I have used salted and unsalted butter interchangeably in this recipe without changing the amount of added salt.
- 1 medium-size lemon = approximately 1 tablespoon of lemon zest = 2 to 3 tablespoons of lemon juice
- My large orange yielded about 1/4 cup of juice and 2 Tablespoons of zest.
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Poppy Seed Fact: It takes 900,000 of these tiny black polka dots to equal one pound!
Also, try these blueberry muffins next. ♥