Even though we don’t have physical seasons in Florida (it’s been 80 degrees for weeks now), I’ve felt a shift toward “spring” over the past week. More of a seasonal food shift to be exact. Maybe it’s the influence of Instagram and following so many food accounts. Or maybe it’s just the subtle change happening in the produce department–the transition from squash and apples to asparagus and berries. Whatever it is, I’ll take it!
My meal plans don’t change drastically between “seasons.” If we lived in a climate where life revolved around four physically-changing seasons, this may be different. For us, we’ll continue to enjoy many of our favorites, like: burgers, soups, quesadillas, tacos, and roasted chicken.
I will start changing out our sides to be more seasonally appropriate. Instead of relying on roasted root veggies to accompany many of our weeknight meals, I’ll start making more cold salads (like this marinated chickpea salad and this simple cucumber salad), or serving more raw veggies (many times with a dip) and fruit on the side–simple changes that make it feel like spring and summer around here, even though it technically always feels like spring and summer ?. We Floridians try to be normal.
Growing up, lemon poppy seed muffins were one of the foods that my mom kept stocked in our kitchen as soon as “spring” rolled around, along with ham and asparagus. I looked forward to finding my favorite bright yellow muffins on the counter every April, and despised seeing the asparagus on the table each week. (There’s hope for picky kids, my friend. Take it from a recovering picky eater.) I could easily polish off a carton of the mini muffins by myself. And yes, they came in a carton from the store.
My love for lemon poppy seed muffins continued through adulthood. I continued to purchase a carton of mini muffins every spring from the exact same store (#tradition), until I learned about real food and reading ingredient lists. After reading just a few ingredient lists, I realized that many of my favorite foods, include the muffins, were made with not-so-real ingredients. And so, for the first time ever, I walked away from my favorite spring muffins.
Of course, I wasn’t going to say good-bye forever. I just needed to figure out how to make the muffins with real ingredients.
At the time, I was learning to work with whole wheat flour, the only real food flour option I knew about. Whole wheat proved to be too heavy for something light and fluffy like lemon poppy seed muffins. I waved my white dishtowel of surrender and gave up.
Then, a couple of years ago, I started playing around with a new-to-me ancient grain, einkorn. All-purpose einkorn flour turned out to be the perfect ingredient for creating lighter baked goods, like sugar cookies, cakes, pizza dough, biscuits, and lemon poppy seed muffins. Einkorn can be expensive and hard to source compared to wheat or spelt, so I only use it in recipes that absolutely need a lighter flour.
My “real foodified” lemon poppy seed muffins are made with all-purpose einkorn flour, honey, fresh lemon juice and zest, yogurt, and butter to create a light muffin with a subtle lemon flavor. The honey taste really comes through in these muffins, which I love, so these muffins are more of a honey and lemon flavor than just lemon. Since poppy seeds are such tiny seeds, a little bit goes a long way, so I only add 1 tablespoon to the batter. If you love poppy seeds, feel free to increase the amount to 1 1/2 or 2 tablespoons.
One last note, these muffins store really well, so they’re great to make on the weekend and enjoy throughout the week for breakfast, on the side of soup for an easy lunch option, or as a snack/treat. I store them in the fridge, but you can also freeze them.
Lemon Poppy Seed Einkorn Muffins
- 8 TB butter *(107g) melted
- 1/2 cup honey (165g) preferably a light honey, like orange blossom
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup plain whole milk yogurt (123g)
- 1 large lemon zested and juiced (for the juice: about 3 1/2 tablespoons // 41g)
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 2 cups all-purpose einkorn flour (233g)
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 TB poppy seeds **
(optional) Lemon Sugar Topping:
- 2 TB turbinado sugar
- 1/2 lemon zested
- Preheat the oven to 350F. Line a muffin pan with paper or silicone muffin liners, or grease the muffin pan.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients: melted butter, honey, eggs, yogurt, the zest and juice from one lemon, and vanilla extract.
- Add the dry ingredients to the bowl (flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt), and stir to combine. Finally, stir in the poppy seeds.
- If you're using the optional sugar topping, place the lemon zest and sugar in a small bowl. Massage the two ingredients together for a few seconds. Set aside.
- Scoop the batter into the muffin pan (it will be thick). I use an ice scooper. If you're using the sugar topping (previous optional step), sprinkle the sugar evenly over the muffins before baking.
- Bake the muffins for 18-20 minutes, until firm on top. My muffins are usually done at 18 minutes, but this may vary with each oven. Allow the muffins to cool for a few minutes before enjoying.
- For storage, I keep the muffins in an air-tight container in the fridge (they will need to be warmed, in my opinion, before enjoying). They also freeze well.
Would this work as a bread loaf?
Hey Kim, I haven’t tested it as a loaf to say 100%, but I believe so. Just bake for longer, probably closer to 50-60 minutes.
They look awesome!
Can I substitute the yogurt for applesauce in this recipe? I wanna make these but follow the master muffin recipe you created as I only have apple sauce—no yogurt
I’m not sure, haven’t tested with yogurt instead. My guess is they won’t be as sweet, but it’s worth a try.
Hi Kristin, would I have to change the measurements if using whole wheat einkorn? That’s all I have at the moment.
I would decrease the flour by 1/4 cup
Can I use white whole wheat flour in place of einkorn?
Hey Olivia, That may work. I’m not 100% sure. It’s worth a try!
Yes I have that one too and intend on using it. Finally got some Einkorn flour today. The idea of lemon/blueberry sounded yummy though. Will comment how it turned out once I try!
Do you think these would work with adding blueberries?
Hey Sophy, I definitely think you could try. Another option is to use the master einkorn recipe: https://livesimply.me/2018/07/23/master-einkorn-muffin-recipe-one-recipe-multiple-possibilities/
I tried them today but they didn’t grow at all even though I used the same exact measurements u provided. They were still pretty yummy but a bit dense (I’m sure it was due to not rising. Also, it took 20-21 min to be done. I have no idea what went wrong?!?
Hey Diana, My thought is maybe the baking powder isn’t very active anymore. This can happen as baking powder ages. Other than that, I’m not sure what may have happened. I’m sorry they came out so dense. Baking times can vary by 2-5 minutes for baked goods, depending on ovens and where the baked goods are placed the oven and what kind of pan is used. This is very normal for baked good recipes.
I gotta say I did them one time before but I used whole wheat pastry flour and I don’t recall having that problem.
Hmmm, and it was all purpose einkorn?
Yes, this second time around I only used einkorn flour, the brand u recommended. I’ll get more baking powder and I’ll try them again, I’ll let u know how they come out.
Great recipe! Is it possible to sub coconut flour for einkorn in this recipe? I know it’s not a 1-1 flour substitute, but I was curious if you had any suggestions! 🙂
Hey Alicia, Thank you. Coconut flour requires lots of eggs and sometimes a starch or another flour to help a baked good bind, so this recipe would need to be rewritten and retested to guarantee the success of coconut flour. So unfortunately, I don’t think coconut flour is possible in this particular recipe.
HI there! Your recipes are always my favorite and I love poppy seed so I’m excited to try these! However, we are a dairy free family – coconut oil is usually interchangeable for butter but I’m not sure about the yogurt. Do you have any recommendations? Also, if you ever feel like experimenting, maybe you should create an almond poppy seed muffin 😉 I would be forever grateful!
Thank you, Andrea! I’m so glad you’re enjoying the recipes. Yes, I think coconut oil should work well as a sub and I would use a plain coconut milk, cashew milk, or almond milk yogurt. Those should work well in place of the dairy yogurt. I have an almond flour poppy seed muffin recipe on the blog, but it’s been a number of years since I made it and posted it, so I want to go back and the try tweaking it a bit: https://livesimply.me/2014/04/23/almond-flour-lemon-poppy-seed-muffins-gluten-free/.
Oh, I had a friend whose mom made a poppy seed cake, no lemon though. It was fabulous. Her mom would pack a piece for me too when she sent it in for lunch. You are right, fond memories. I’ll definitely need to make this as lemon and honey are two of my husband’s favorites. Still haven’t made the einkorn flour purchase because of cost, but I might just have to now.
Hey Katie, Yum, that sounds delicious!! Yes, einkorn can be so pricey, so it’s like a reserved treasure for special baking, lol.
I have never heard of einkorn flour! Your muffins look delicious, so I’m going to have to see if our grocery store carries einkorn. One of my sons *loves* lemon, and we all love poppy seeds … this one should be a winner. 🙂
Thank you, Cindy. I think you’ll love einkorn–it’s such a great flour! Enjoy!
Will maple syrup work instead of honey? I keep hearing honey becomes toxic when heated. Would love to try these muffins . We love your banana bread?
Hey Tina, I’m so glad you love the banana bread–it’s my favorite, too :). Maple syrup is generally pretty interchangeable in baking recipes, but this one is a bit lighter of a muffin, as far as taste. The maple syrup should work just fine, but I’m not sure about the end flavor of the muffins and how it will balance with the lemon. I’d love to know how it goes if you try it!
Thanks for posting this! I just made the almond flour version last week for the first time, and while they were good, they fell apart too easily to eat on the go. Looking forward to trying the einkorn version.
I’m so glad to hear that, Tamara! Yes, the almond flour ones are a bit too crumbly for on-the-go–they really need a plate. These hold together really well–they’re my personal favorite. I can’t wait to hear what you think.
I’ve made two batches of these now and they are fabulous! My mom tasted both and thought the almond flour version to be too sweet, but she loved this one! I like the denseness of these and definitely a win for on-the-go. And they do freeze well!
Awesome, Tamara! I’m so glad you’re enjoying these. Yes, I need to retest the almond flour ones–it’s on my list this month. I think at the time my taste buds were used to something a bit sweeter ;).