Grace and Hope’s Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins

As mentioned before, Grace and Hope have a little business making and selling muffins. They are popular with both ex-pats and Chinese, with one of the favorite flavors being these lemon poppy seed muffins. Though these are called muffins, they could be called cupcakes just as well as they are sweet and cake-y, though dense. I have long held the theory that if it’s not chocolate, it’s not dessert, but these muffins have changed my thinking on this!


3 cups flour

2 1/2 cups sugar

2 teaspoons poppy seeds (You can use more but they are rare here since we can’t buy them..)

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1 1/2 cups milk

1 1/2 teaspoons almond extract

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

3 Tablespoons lemon zest

2 Tablespoons lemon juice

1 cup oil

3 eggs

Mix all ingredients. Spray muffin pans with non-stick spray or use muffin papers. Fill muffin cups 5/6 of the way full if you want a nice “crown” on the muffins. Bake at 375 for about 25 minutes or until golden on top. This recipe makes 18 plump muffins such as those pictured.

We use one of two glazes on these.

Glaze number 1

3/4 cups sugar

2 Tablespoons lemon juice

2 Tablespoons butter

Cook on stove just until sugar is melted. When muffins are still warm, dip top in the muffins.

Glaze number 2

3/4 cup powdered sugar

2 Tablespoons lemon juice

Mix and drizzle over muffins once they have gotten cool.

We prefer glaze number 2. Although it has powdered sugar, it is less sweet and “syrupy”.¬†

If you prefer orange flavoring make as follows:

Substitute orange juice and zest for the lemon juice and zest in the muffin recipe.

In the glaze recipes, merely substitute orange juice for the lemon juice.

If you prefer almond flavoring, make as follows:

Do not add lemon zest or juice to the muffin recipe. Increase the almond extract to 2 teaspoons.

For the glaze, mix 3/4 cup powdered sugar with 1 teaspoon of almond extract and 1 1/2 teaspoons of milk.


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