Sunshine On a Rainy Day

Oh spring, you’re such a tease.

Naturally the 70-degree, sunny weather couldn’t last, but did you have to go so far in the opposite direction, so quickly? Now grey clouds have rolled in and settled downward, engulfing and insulating our little town from the rest of the world. Like a blanket of cushy bubble wrap, I’m comfortably stuck in place; this fog is thick enough that I can pretend it’s still winter. Not that I really want to, of course… I think we’ve all had enough winter for one, or perhaps two years at this point.

So here we are, arriving at April’s doorstep.

The atmosphere is just barely warmed over and the forecast still foreboding. The only thing to do is bake muffins, and those muffins absolutely must contain bright, cheerful citrus- I think it might even be a law in some states. Consider these simple yet comforting lemon-poppy seed sweets as artificial sunshine for this dark, chilly time in between seasons. Better than an anti-depressant, in my opinion.

Yield: Makes 12 Muffins

Lemon-Poppy Seed Muffins

Lemon-Poppy Seed Muffins

Brimming with bright, zest flavor, these tender muffins are topped with a light crumb for a crispy, satisfyingly chewy bite all around the edges.

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 18 minutes
Additional Time 10 minutes
Total Time 48 minutes


Poppy Seed Topping:

  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 6 Tablespoons Granulated Sugar
  • 1/4 Cup All Purpose Flour
  • 2 Teaspoons Poppy Seeds

Lemon-Poppy Seed Muffins:

  • 2 Cup All-Purpose Flour
  • 2/3 Cup Granulated Sugar
  • 2 Teaspoon Baking Powder
  • 1 Teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 1 1/2 Teaspoons Poppy Seeds
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Salt
  • 1 Cup Vegan Sour Cream or Non-Dairy Yogurt
  • 2/3 Cup Lemon Juice
  • 1/4 Cup Olive Oil
  • 2 Teaspoons Lemon Zest
  • 1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract


  1. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees and lightly grease a baking tin of 12 standard muffin cups.
  2. To first make the topping, simply mix together all of the ingredients in a small bowl, stirring with a fork, until thoroughly combined and slightly clumpy. Set aside.
  3. Moving on to the main muffins, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and soda, poppy seeds, and salt in a large bowl. Make sure that all of the dry ingredients are thoroughly combined. In a separate bowl, whisk together the “sour cream” or yogurt, lemon juice, canola oil, lemon zest, and vanilla until smooth.
  4. Pour these wet goods into the bowl of dry, and with a wide spatula, stir just enough to bring the two together. Make sure there are no remaining pockets of flour hiding in the batter, but it’s alright if a few small lumps remain.
  5. Distribute the batter between the prepared muffin cups, and don’t be afraid to really mound them up- The more the tins are filled, the better the muffin tops will be. Sprinkle your poppy seed topping evenly over each unbaked muffin, piling it on until you’ve used it all up.
  6. Bake for 16 – 20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the centers of the muffins comes out clean, with perhaps just a few moist but fully baked crumbs clinging to it.
  7. Let rest in the tins for 10 minutes before transferring them to a wire rack until completely cool.

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Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 270Total Fat: 11gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 1mgSodium: 308mgCarbohydrates: 39gFiber: 1gSugar: 20gProtein: 4g

All nutritional information presented within this site are intended for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and any nutritional information on should only be used as a general guideline. This information is provided as a courtesy and there is no guarantee that the information will be completely accurate. Even though I try to provide accurate nutritional information to the best of my ability, these figures should still be considered estimations.


36 thoughts on “Sunshine On a Rainy Day

  1. Here in CO it was 82° on Saturday; Sunday it was 32° by the time I awoke from my nap on the couch, it was blowing show…such is spring in the Rockies :D Your recipe was well timed!

  2. These muffins look so yummy! I love the combination of lemon and poppyseed. The past couple of days here in San Francisco have finally been sunny. I’m very ready for spring! I think I might make these to take to work for everyone :)

  3. We had rainy weather today, which I love,as a long dry spell is ahead of us…
    Yummy looking muffins:) The combination of lemons and poppyseed sounds very interesting!

  4. Yum! It’s actually sunny, 70’s, and finally feeling like spring here…although rain and 50’s is on its way for tomorrow.

    Saw your name in VegNews this month!

  5. Have I ever mentioned that lemon poppy seeds are my absolute favorite kind of muffin? Probably not. But they are. They do taste like sunshine. Which we could use some more of over here!

  6. Love lemon poppy seeds combos! This is my oldest sister’s favorite flavor muffin! Love the addition of the poppy seed topping I bet that is a nice addition in flavor :)

  7. Drool! Seriously I am trying to hunt down lemons. lol I love lemon anything. Since going vegan I love anything lemon. My favorite pie before coming vegan was lemon meringue.

  8. These look and sound so tempting. And you’re right about having too much winter already. TOO MUCH! A bright splash of lemon would certainly be welcome in this grey, wet town.

  9. I’m seeing poppy seeds everywhere these days, and it delights me! I’ve always loved the little blighters, and am excited to have so many recipes to make. That is, when i find the time to bake!

  10. the muffins sound so great I just wish I had seen the recipe lastnight then I would be having this morning with my coffee,but ya can bet I will be making them right after work tonight.I too have had enough of winter here in the mountains of northeastern pa. and being 61 yrs, and working in a warehouse don’t make the winters any easier.Love to bake and crochet.

  11. Oh Hannah you pictures are always my Sunshine on rainy days. Just had my breakfast and looking at your picture hungry again. Me too had enough of winter. Saturday it was 70 and on sunday snow storm, can you believe that?

  12. This could not have come at a better time! It has been pouring rain for two solid days, now well into the third. I made these muffins last night and they are SO GOOD!! Thanks so much for posting them :)

  13. I made a half-size batch of these last night. Not only did they make the right number (even allowing for me eating from the bowl!), cook in the right time and turn out looking exactly like the photo, but my husband declared them “the best muffins I’ve ever had in my life” – and he’s a man who likes his muffins! Brilliant recipe – thanks!

  14. Allow me for a moment to rave about your muffin recipe. A friend of mine in my department decided to organize a muffin competition, and so I figured I may as well try your recipe. They turned out amazingly and I won the competition! (Believe me, there was a bacon-spinach muffin in there, so that’s saying something.) My boyfriend was the taste-tester and declared that this was the best thing I’ve ever baked (except for a pumpkin pie I made once), declaring that it had a “perfect texture with a nice sugary crunch on top”, and that I either have to make them all the time or teach him how to do it.

    So thank you, thank you, thank you for posting this recipe!

  15. there must be something about the weather, seriously, i just made lemon poppy seed muffins too! if only the sun was as bright as a our little lemon muffins!

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