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Vegan Lemmmmmmmon Poppy Seed Muffins

Posted Aug 13 2009 6:46pm 2 Comments
From Aug. 2009 photos

The pre-Altered Plates version of these vegan lemon poppy seed muffins originates in Vegan Brunch. I made quite a few changes to the recipe to make it agave-nectar friendly. I also doubled the recipe because I made "Thank You" muffins for my supervisor at the Zimmerli Museum, and sesame seed (instead of poppy seed) muffins from the same batch for some friends who don't eat poppy seeds.

From Aug. 2009 photos

These muffins definitely improve over time. I had one just after they had cooled enough to split open and try, and immediately had doubts about whether to give them to anyone. So, my advice to you: Let these cool completely and don't cover or refrigerate them overnight. The magic that happens is amazing.

I'm also not sure I'd use AP flour again. When I use whole wheat pastry flour in my baking recipes, they tend to turn out better. I'm not sure why, but they just do. Next time, I'm also going to make these with dried cranberries and pistachios instead of lemon and poppy seeds. I'd bet they would be great.

Here's the recipe as I made it.

Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins

Yields 12 large muffins and 24 mini muffins


4 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk (feel free to use whatever suits you here)
scant 1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
3/4 cup canola oil
1 cup agave nectar
4 tablespoons lemon zest
4 teaspoons vanilla
4 tablespoons each of poppy seed and sesame seeds, separated


1. Line your muffin pans with paper liners.
2. Combine the flour, baking powder and salt in a large bowl.
3. Whisk together the almond milk, lemon juice, canola oil, agave nectar, lemon zest, and vanilla until very well combined.
4. Mix the wet with the dry ingredients for 1 minute, maximum, until just combined.
5. Split the mix in two parts, and add the poppy seeds to one half and the sesame seeds to the other. Just fold the seeds in, and don't mix a lot.
6. Begin preheating your oven to 350 degrees F.
7. Using a medium scoop, fill your large muffin cups to the edge of the paper. Using a small scoop, do the same with the mini muffins.
8. Bake the muffins 10 minutes for the minis and 20 minutes for the large muffins, or until a tester comes out clean.
9. Let the muffins cool for 5 minutes in the pans before releasing them onto wire racks to cool completely. Very important: Do not cover or wrap these for at least 12 hours. It will make a huge difference in the outcome of the muffins. Trust me on this.

Comments (2)
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Alrighty then! I'm definitely not a baker and I always stay away from bakeries because thankfully, I've never had much of a sweet tooth. But, for some reason, lately, going to the local bagel shop for coffee near my boyfriend's pad has made me crave the moist and slightly crunch bites of a sweet and tangy lemon poppy seed muffin. I've been dreaming about making a vegan-style recipe for weeks! I finally mustered up the energy to visit Ralph's, Whole Foods and Gelson's for the not so economical ingredients of my new obsession. I did tons of online research and decided to go with your recipe. I replaced the agave syrup with [less] raw sugar. They ended up tasting bland and more like undercooked bland scones. I used coconut oil instead of canola and I think I used a tad less oil and more almond milk. It was tough to stir those mixed wet/dry ingredients. I also took the tray out too early and put them back in for 5 minutes to finish baking. They are in there now cooling down and I'll see if they magically taste better in the morning. I also used pastry flour. I wasn't pleased with the results. Bummer.
It's 5am in the morning and I can't sleep. It must be from a full month of odd hours while healing from an ankle injury and being obsessed with vegan cooking in the witching hours of the night. I must say that after allowing the muffins to cool, the flavor and texture settled in. I took a test bite and it passed, although they taste a bit more like mini-scones due to the density of the texture. Not bad at all.
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