With a moist, cake-like texture and tart, lemony goodness in every single bite, these Lemon Muffins add a ray of sunshine to any morning!
You’ll find the muffin recipe itself as simple as they come, and one that whips up quickly and easily. Perfect for bakers of any skill level! For an extra special touch, top off your Lemon Muffins with a zesty, 3-ingredient lemon glaze!
Light and fluffy, easy and delicious, you’ll find this muffin recipe is perfect any time of day, on any occasion, any time of year! With just the right amount of sweet, you can enjoy these muffins as a breakfast treat, dessert, or light snack!
Love lemon? You’ll love these Lemon Blueberry Muffins too! Bookmark the recipe in your internet browser for your next baking extravaganza!
WHAT MAKES THESE MUFFINS SO FLAVORFUL?
These muffins come packed with all the bright and lemony flavor lemon-lovers swoon for.
For the perfect Lemon Muffin, we put the lemon to work, using both the juice from within and the zest on the outside. If you love lemon, do not skip on the zest. It really makes a difference.
The zest is the outermost part of the rind. It’s colorful and shiny and positively loaded with citrus oil which is why there is so much flavor in this portion of the lemon.
This particular Lemon Muffin Recipe shows up packing, with a whole heaping teaspoon of lemon zest mixed into the batter; that equals the zest from about 2 to 3 whole lemons. And, it is delicious.
However, you want to do your best to avoid the pith when zesting.
The pith is the white part of the lemon underneath the outermost part of the rind (which is where the zest comes from). When zesting your lemons, do your best to avoid grating into the pith. It is very bitter and not at all appetizing.
If you want the lemon flavor in your muffins to sing a little louder, be sure to top them off with the fresh lemon glaze. It’s an extra step, but it’ll only take you a few minutes to whip up and you’ll find it’s totally worth it after just one taste!
HOW TO MAKE LEMON MUFFINS
- Prep the Muffin Tin – Add paper liners to a standard-sized muffin tin and spritz with nonstick cooking spray to ensure you can easily get those muffins out!
- Mix Dry Ingredients – Mix together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium-sized mixing bowl and set aside. Don’t mix up your baking powder and soda!
- Mix Wet Ingredients – Mix together the sugar, egg, and vanilla extract in a large bowl. Then, stream in the melted butter, whisking all the while until all is well-combined.
- Alternate Adding Dry and Remaining Wet Ingredients – Whisk in the dry mix to the wet mix in three additions, alternating with the lemon juice and buttermilk. Your additions will go like this: dry mix, lemon juice, dry mix, buttermilk, then finally, dry mix.
- Bake – Fill the muffin pan about three-quarters of the way full and bake for about 22 minutes, or until the tops are golden. Set the muffins aside to cool on a wire rack.
HOW TO KNOW WHEN YOUR MUFFINS ARE DONE
There are two ways to determine whether or not your Lemon Muffins have finished baking. The first is to gently poke the center of the muffin. If it springs back at you ever so slightly, your muffins are likely done!
You can also determine the doneness of your muffins by inserting a cake tester or toothpick into the center of the muffin. If it comes out clean or with a few crumbs slightly clinging to it (crumbs not batter), they’re ready!
HOW TO MAKE A LEMON GLAZE
Once your muffins have finished baking and have cooled completely, you have the option to finish them off with a delicious lemon glaze! It’s really easy to make. Here’s how you do it:
- Mix – Add powdered sugar, lemon juice, and a pinch of salt to a medium-sized mixing bowl and whisk until everything is smooth and liquified.
- Drizzle – Spoon drizzles of glaze all over the tops of the muffins, serve, and enjoy!
Depending on the humidity in your environment, you may find you need a little more lemon juice to bring your glaze together. It’s best to add it in small increments (like a teaspoon or so) rather than winging it. This way your proportions won’t get out of whack and you’ll have full control over the consistency!
TIPS FOR MAKING THE BEST LEMON MUFFINS
- Don’t skimp on the lemon zest and remember to avoid the pith when zesting those lemons!
- Preheat your oven and have that oven rack centered and ready to rock.
- Use the specified ingredients! For example, do not mix up or swap baking powder for baking soda or try to sub in cake flour.
- Don’t overmix your batter! As soon as the dry ingredients seem to have disappeared into the wet ingredients, stop mixing.
- Know when they’re done! Not everyone’s oven heats up and bakes at the same rate so it important for you to know when your muffins are done. Begin checking them at the 22-minute mark.
- Allow them to cool completely before adding the glaze. If you add the glaze while the muffins are warm, it will melt right off!
HOW TO STORE LEMON MUFFINS
Store your Lemon Muffins in an airtight container at room temperature, but you’ll want to eat them up within 3 to 4 days for peak freshness.
If you’d like to enjoy your muffins beyond this, I recommend freezing them. In fact, in our house, whatever we don’t eat that day goes directly into the freezer. It’s the best way to keep your baked goods at peak freshness!
To freeze these muffins, simply allow the glaze to set entirely and transfer them to either a freezer-safe, ziptop bag or a large freezer-safe, airtight container.
If you are freezing them to serve to company at a later date, you might want to consider freezing them between sheets of wax paper in the container rather than a ziptop bag. Do your best not to overcrowd or smoosh them so your glaze stays nice and pretty.
Alternatively, you could freeze the muffins without the glaze, then bring them to room temperature the day you intend to serve them, and glaze them just prior to serving!
6 MORE MUFFIN RECIPES YOU’LL LOVE
- Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins
- Cinnamon Muffins
- Apple Cinnamon Muffins
- Blueberry Banana Muffins
- Chocolate Banana Muffins
- Chocolate Chip Muffins
These Lemon Muffins have a moist, cake-like texture and come bursting with lemon flavor! Top them off with a zesty, 3-ingredient lemon glaze for some extra lemony goodness.
- Non-stick cooking spray
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1 heaping teaspoon of lemon zest (from 2-3 large lemons)
- 1 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
- 1/3 cup buttermilk
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 2 tablespoons + 2 teaspoons fresh squeezed lemon juice
- Pinch of salt
Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 350°. Have ready a standard muffin tin with paper liners, and lightly spritz with nonstick cooking spray.
In a medium-sized mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside until ready to use.
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together 3/4 cup of sugar, egg, lemon zest, and vanilla. Add the butter and whisk until combined.
Stir in the dry ingredients in 3 additions, alternating with the lemon juice and then the buttermilk.
Fill the liners or muffin cup 3/4 of the way full, sprinkle with remaining sugar and bake for about 22-25 minutes, or until the tops are golden. Set aside to cool on a cooling rack for 10 minutes. Then, remove the muffins from the tin and set on the cooling rack to finish cooling.
Once the muffins have cooled completely, make the glaze. Add the powdered sugar to a medium-sized mixing bowl, along with the lemon juice, and a pinch of salt. Whisk until the mixture has liquified.
Drizzle the glaze over the top of the muffins with a spoon and allow the glaze to set. About 30-45 minutes more. Serve and enjoy!
Consider using parchment paper muffin liners. If you don't have this kind, it's best to spray the muffin liners and the pan with cooking spray before adding the batter.
Makes about 16 muffins.