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Lemon Poppyseed Muffin Gluten Free

Gluten Free Fluffy, Moist Lemon Poppyseed Muffins

These Gluten Free, Fluffy, Moist Lemon Poppyseed Muffins pack in the flavor and will leave you thinking that *just one* isn’t enough.

Close up birds-eye view of GF lemon poppyseed muffins with crunchy frosted topping
3 Gluten Free Lemon Poppyseed Muffins from a birds-eye view

I woke up this morning with a hankering for some lemon poppyseed muffins.  I’m not sure what spurred this craving, but challenge accepted!  There are certain criteria that truly make a good muffin.  You know what I mean, fluffy, moist, moan-out-loud with the first bite type of good. At one point or another, we have all grabbed for a muffin expecting it to meet those criteria, only to be met with lack luster disappointment. Let me be clear, I am not here to disappoint. These Gluten Free, Fluffy, Moist Lemon Poppyseed Muffins hit every mark of a great muffin.

My wife and our lovely daycare folks all gave rave reviews and couldn’t get enough of these special muffins. Hillary’s husband (a self proclaimed muffin hater) also said it was one of the best breakfast treats he’s ever had. Also conveniently, it’s a simple and straightforward recipe (which we know doesn’t always happen in gluten free community of baked goods).  As I continue to post, you will realize that I really dislike additional steps; they complicate, discourage, and most importantly, waste time.  As much as possible I’ll combine steps to keep the process moving (and avoid extra dishes).  

Opened gluten free lemon poppyseed muffin.

What Makes these different?

Back to the muffins…sweet rice flour is one of the biggest factors in developing the quality of light fluffiness.  Its light binding characteristics help hold in air allowing the batter to rise to that perfect consistency. My preferred brand for flours is Bob’s Red Mill, time and again they have proven to be consistent tasting by using high-quality ingredients. You can shop their flours here. I’ve tried this recipe with other combinations of flours and some have turned out well, but I feel this combination of brown rice and sweet rice flour delivers the most consistent results with the best flavor. Try it out! I’m sure this will fix your muffin hankering as it did mine!

Can I freeze these?

Yes! You absolutely can freeze these. After cooking the muffins, let them cool completely and then place them on a sheet pan to freeze for 20 minutes. Then pack them into an airtight container or bag. DO NOT FROST. When you want to eat them, pop them into a preheated 350 oven for 5-8 minutes, or until thoroughly warmed. While they are in the oven, whip up the frosting (3 minutes) and frost them after removing them from the oven.

 A plateful of gluten free lemon poppyseed muffins
A plateful of gluten free lemon poppyseed muffins

Make these for any holiday!

Instead of using turbinado sugar for a more traditional looking muffin, you can replace it with any color of sugar sprinkles. I tried using a variety of Easter colors that would make this super special for Easter morning. You could change the sprinkle color for any holiday or occasion…baby reveal anyone?

Recipe Tips and Tricks:

  • You can use the batter with a cup of blueberries in a bread pan to make a pound cake. Grease the pan well and bake at 375 for approximately 30 minutes (or until toothpick comes out clean)
  • Don’t skip whisking the dry ingredients! Xanthan gum tends to clump together when liquid is added if it isn’t ‘protected’ by the other dry ingredients.
  • Don’t mix the lemon zest with your mixer, as they zest will stick to the mixer paddles and won’t add the same impact of flavor/look, fold it in gently with a spatula.
  • 4 TBS of lemon zest will take about 2 large lemons.
  • To save time, zest & juice the lemons for the batter and the frosting at the same time. Then reserve the lemon juice and zest for the frosting until ready to use.
  • If you don’t keep sour cream on hand, you can replace it 1:1 for plain greek yogurt.

If you made this recipe, please come back and let us know what you think! We love to hear your comments and feedback.

Gluten Free Fluffy, Moist Lemon Poppyseed Muffins

Recipe by Stevens Haen
5.0 from 3 votes
Course: Breakfast, BrunchCuisine: Bread, Muffin


Prep time


Cooking time



See Recipe Tips and Tricks Here.

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  • Dry Ingredients
  • 1 Cup White Sugar

  • 1 Cup Brown Rice Flour

  • 1 1/4 Cup Sweet Rice Flour

  • 1 tsp Xantham Gum

  • 2 1/2 tsp Baking Powder

  • 1 tsp Baking Soda

  • 1 1/2 tsp Sea Salt

  • 2 Tbsp Poppy Seeds

  • Liquid Ingredients
  • 1/2 Cup Milk (I use organic lactose free whole milk)

  • 1/4 Cup Lemon Juice

  • 3/4 Cup Sour Cream

  • 3/4 Cup Salted Butter

  • 3 Tbsp Lemon Zest (loosely packed)

  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract

  • 2 Large Eggs

  • 1/2 Cup Water

  • Frosting Ingredients
  • 2 Tbsp Coconut Oil (or butter)

  • 1/4 tsp Sea Salt

  • 1 Cup Powdered Sugar

  • 1/4 Cup Lemon Juice

  • 1 Tbsp Lemon Zest

  • 1/4 Cup Turbinado Sugar


  • Lemon Poppyseed Muffins
  • Preheat the oven to 375℉.
  • In a medium sized mixing bowl, whisk together all dry ingredients so they’re uniform throughout. Do NOT skip this step.
  • In a separate bowl, melt the butter in the microwave, then add in the sour cream, milk, water, vanilla and mix for a minute or until well combined. Next add in the eggs and lemon juice and continue mixing for another 30 seconds. Your wet ingredients should be somewhat thick or curdled.
  • Pour the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients (or visa versa) and mix until you have a consistent smooth batter. Lastly, fold in the lemon zest with a spatula, don’t use a beater as the strands of zest tend to tangle and stick to it, defeating the point of using lemon zest at all. Your batter should be slightly thicker than pancake batter, but still malleable enough that it doesn’t retain its form for more than a few seconds when scooped up. If it’s too thick, add a couple tablespoons of water and mix.
  • Next, ladle the batter into your muffin tins until they are about half to two-thirds full. If you’re using foil or paper muffin cups, there is no need to grease them (even though I still gave them a quick spray of canola), but definitely grease the tins with either butter or crisco if you’re not using any liner of sorts.
  • Place the muffin tin in the middle rack of the pre-heated oven and bake for 22 to 25 minutes or until done. Set a timer for around 20 minutes to do a quick toothpick/knife check. If the toothpick comes out clean, it means the muffins are done.
  • Pull the muffin tin out of the oven and allow it to cool for 10 minutes.
  • Frosting
  • Melt the coconut oil or butter in the microwave. Pour the melted oil/butter into a medium mixing bowl. Whisk or beat in the salt, powdered sugar, and lemon juice until its smooth and slightly viscous. Drizzle with a spoon the frosting onto each muffin. Next, sprinkle on both the lemon zest and turbinado sugar to your desire.
  • Eat
  • Once slightly cooled and the frosting has settled, it’s time to indulge. Intently scan each muffin paying careful attention to detail. Now, instinctively reach for the best one. Carefully unwrap the muffin liner to avoid causing any imperfections. Plan the approach and enjoy that satisfying bite of a delicious, fluffy, and moist lemon poppyseed muffin!

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One Comment

  1. Those look delicious!

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