You’ll love these easy to make zippy Lemon Poppy Seed Pancake Muffins. These individual baked pancakes are incredibly light and fluffy, and you don’t have to stand over the stove cooking and flipping them, so they make for a perfect lazy day breakfast!
Recipes like my German Pancake and Homemade Granola are great for when you want a family pleasing breakfast with minimal effort. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and this is one of my Breakfast Recipes you’ll want in your recipe box!
This is a recipe I had originally posted in 2013. I made these little muffins for Mother’s Day brunch, and they were a huge hit. This post, with pictures, text, and recipe have been updated for better user experience.
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Please let me know if you have any questions about this recipe. I read all the comments myself and I try to help as soon as I can. I have readers from all levels of comfort and experience in the kitchen on my site, and I’ve tried to answer some of your questions already in the post. But if I’ve missed anything, please feel free to leave a comment and ask.
Baked lemon poppy seed pancakes
When I first made these pancakes into muffins it was to save time and energy. I made the whole Mother’s Day brunch spread, and didn’t want to have to stand at the stove flipping pancakes. So, I popped these in the oven, and they turned out amazing.
As little individual mini muffins, they are just the right size to pop in your mouth one at a time. I think these would be really fun for little kids too. And, baking them as mini muffins made it really easy to fix up a bunch for brunch. No one had to stand over the stove flipping pancakes!
Since then, we’ve made these many times, but it was really fun to make them again for this updated post!
These also make great regular stove top pancakes if you prefer.
If you’re making regular pancakes, heat a griddle or nonstick pan over medium heat. Add a small amount, about a teaspoon, of butter or oil to the pan. Ladle batter onto hot pan, about 1/3 cup per pancake, and cook until golden brown on the bottom and small bubbles appear on the top. Flip the pancake, and continue to cook until golden brown on each side.
Place cooked pancakes on an oven-proof plate and place in a warm (about 200° F) oven until all pancakes are cooked and ready to serve.
Makes about 24 small pancakes. Serve with softened butter and maple syrup.
Filling the muffin cups
I used a regular spoon to fill the muffin cups, but if you don’t have a steady hand and don’t want to try filling the cups that way, I’d suggest filling a large plastic ziptop bag with the batter, then cutting off a small tip from the bottom of the bag, and squeezing the batter into the cups using the plastic bag method.
Can I bake these in paper muffin cups?
I baked a few of these in paper muffin cups, and even though I sprayed the inside of the muffin cup with non-stick spray, the muffin still stuck to the paper.
With the silicone trays, the muffins come right out. I like to gently run a knife around the outside of the muffin to make sure it isn’t sticking, then gently pop them out of the cup.
The silicon mini muffin tray makes it really easy to get the pancakes out. And, there’s no need for additional butter/oil on the pan if you use the silicone. So, I highly recommend the silicone trays!
If you use a regular muffin pan, I’d suggest buttering the sides.
Can these be made ahead?
Yes, absolutely. This recipe makes a large amount of batter, so it’s good that they can be made ahead and eaten at a later date.
Allow cooked muffins or pancakes to cool completely, then store them in an airtight container in the fridge. They will keep for 3 days in the fridge. To reheat, simply pop them in the toaster oven or in the microwave until hot.
Want to keep them for longer?
Take those cooled pancake muffins, wrap them individually (I like to wrap them in parchment paper and them in a ziptop bag), and put them in the freezer for up to three months. Defrost them in the refrigerator overnight when you want a nice breakfast the next day.
Recipe tips and preventative troubleshooting
Typically I find that one lemon yields about 1 tablespoon on lemon zest. This may vary because some lemons are smaller and some have a thicker skin, but on average, that’s about what I get. Also, remember that you just want the yellow part of the lemon skin; the white pith will be bitter, and you should avoid that. Oh, and if you like fresh lemon, you may want to check out my post on How to Freeze and Save Lemons.
The detailed printable recipe card is lower.
Mix the lemon zest and sugar together to release the oils of the lemon. In a separate bowl, mix the dry ingredients, and then mix in the lemon sugar.
The buttermilk and eggs should be at room temperature when you go to mix it all together. Room temperature eggs and buttermilk will form an emulsion, which traps air in the batter. And it’s that trapped air that expands in the oven creating the light and fluffy texture of the pancakes.
Mix the wet ingredients in another bowl, and then mix the wet ingredients into the dry.
There should still be some lumps of flour in the batter when you stop mixing. The flour streaks should have disappeared from the batter, but the lumps should remain. If you over- mix the batter and get all the lumps out, the gluten from the flour will develop, making the pancakes tougher and chewy instead of fluffy.
Fold in the poppy seeds, and spoon or pipe the batter into mini muffin cups. Bake until golden.
How to serve?
These little muffin pancakes, and the regular pancakes if you make those, can be served very traditionally with butter and maple syrup. It’s really fun to dink a mini muffin into the maple syrup, and little kiddo fingers will love that!
They can also be served with a delicious and tangy lemon icing! Since I’m a big lemon fan, I love the citrus icing glaze. It makes these all the more lemony and yummy!
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Lemon Poppy Seed Pancake Muffins Recipe
Lemon Poppy Seed Pancake Muffins
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon zest
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups buttermilk
- 2 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter melted
- 2 tablespoons poppy seeds
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter. melted
- 4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- In a small bowl combine sugar and lemon zest, and rub together with your fingers until sugar is fragrant and light yellow. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients: flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir in the lemon sugar. Set aside.
- In a separate medium bowl, whisk together buttermilk, eggs, vanilla, lemon juice, and melted butter. Pour the wet ingredients all at once into the dry ingredients. Add the poppy seeds and stir until just combined, it’s all right if there are still a few lumps in the batter. Let the batter rest for 10 minutes.
- Butter the inside of a regular mini muffin pan, or if you’re using a silicone mini muffin pan, there’s no need to butter the pan. Fill the cups about ¾ full with batter, and place the filled pans on a flat cookie sheet (to make them easier to move in and out of the oven), and into the preheated oven. Bake until golden brown, and muffins spring back when touched, about 15-25 minutes.
- While the muffins bake, make the icing. Combine icing ingredients (powdered sugar, butter, and lemon juice) in a medium bowl and mix well.
- Gently run a knife around the outside of the baked muffins to loosen them from the pan.
- Serve muffin pancakes with softened butter and maple syrup or drizzled with lemon icing as desired.
Makes about 48 mini muffins, I like about 6 mini muffins for a serving with some scrambled eggs for breakfast.