Recipe Review

Domestic Rebel’s Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins Are Small but Mighty Tasty

published May 17, 2022
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Credit: Photo: Joe Lingeman; Food Styling: Jessie Yu Chen; Design: Kitchn

The Domestic Rebel, aka Haley Parker, is a self-taught baker and lover of all things sweet. One of the reasons I was drawn to her recipe for lemon poppy seed muffins was because of her one-bowl approach. I think we can all agree that having lots of dishes to wash, scattered across the kitchen counter or piled up in the sink, is not great fun. I also liked that her recipe called for a bold amount of lemon zest and juice and used oil instead of butter, which I’m a fan of when it comes to muffins. Would these simple, lemon-packed muffins be a hit at my house? I was excited to find out.

Get the recipe: The Domestic Rebel’s Best Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins

Credit: Photo: Joe Lingeman; Food Styling: Jessie Yu Chen; Design: Kitchn

How to Make Domestic Rebel’s Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins

As promised, this recipe is simple and straightforward. I started by preheating the oven and placed enough paper liners in 2 muffins tins to make 20 muffins. I whisked the dry ingredients in one large bowl. Although she did not call for this, I whisked the eggs to blend before adding them to the dry ingredients along with the oil, sugar, buttermilk, lemon juice, and vanilla extract. The last step was to fold in the poppy seeds, which concerned me because I was worried that I’d overmix the batter. I then divided the batter among the paper liners and baked the muffins.

Credit: Photo: Joe Lingeman; Food Styling: Jessie Yu Chen

My Honest Review of Domestic Rebel’s Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins

These little muffins are packed with lots of bright, lemony flavor, and have a lovely, tender texture. Flavor-wise, this recipe called for half the poppy seeds compared to many recipes I’ve tried, and it shows. The lemon flavor, although really fantastic, completely overwhelms the poppy seeds. And the muffins are so little! That could be nice if you’re baking for kids or people who prefer their baked goods on the smaller side, but I prefer slightly larger muffins. And although I appreciated the simplicity of the recipe, I must say that I was tempted to whip up a simple powdered sugar-lemon juice glaze to give them a pretty, zippy topping.

Credit: Photo: Joe Lingeman; Food Styling: Jessie Yu Chen

If You Are Making Domestic Rebel’s Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins, a Few Tips

  1. Buy large lemons. I found I needed 2 large lemons to get 2 tablespoons of zest, although she said she got 2 to 3 tablespoonfuls from 2 medium lemons.
  2. Whisk the eggs. To make sure all of the ingredients are well-incorporated into the batter, whisk the eggs before adding them to the dry ingredients. Yes, that will dirty another bowl, but it’s worth it.
  3. Up the poppy seeds. For a stronger poppy seed presence, double the amount called for in the recipe.
  4. Select your size. For larger muffins, divide the batter among 12 lined muffin cups and bake them for a bit longer.

Overall rating: 7/10

Have you tried Domestic Rebel’s Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins? Let us know in the comments.