Lemon Poppy Seed Bread is packed with citrusy freshness from using lots of lemon zest and juice, with crunchy poppy seeds and lemon glaze.

Making easy, puffy and delicious breads is our specialty. We enjoy making them rich and tender like our popular Chocolate Banana BreadSkinny Blueberry Banana Bread and Pumpkin Bread.

Lemon Poppy Seed Bread Recipe

Lemon Poppy Seed Bread

I love a quick and easy dessert, and with my current lemon obsession, making a Lemon Poppy Seed Bread was a no brainier. You see, I grew up eating Poppy Seed desserts, they are very popular in Eastern Europe, and the craving hit hard a few days go. Not one to let a craving go away, I quickly whipped this delicious and refreshing bread, and it’s so good, I can go as far and say that it’s perfect!

The bread turned out fantastic, many people shy away or get annoyed when a bread is described as moist. I am always perplexed by this, because I hate dry desserts, so when I hear the word “moist”, I know I will be all over that dessert. Yes, so the bread is moist, incredibly tender, with a delicate and light crumb. Lots of lemon flavor from the fresh lemon juice and lemon zest. A perfect balance of sweetness and tartness, with a light crunch from the tiny poppy seeds.

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Lemon Poppy Seed Bread recipe

Lemon Poppy Seed Bread Recipe Tips:

  • Lemon is one of the main ingredients here, make sure you use fresh lemon zest for the best lemon flavor.
  • You can use store-bought lemon juice if you have some on hand.
  • This bread can be easily made without the poppy seeds, just skip them, you will end up with a delicious Lemon Bread. No need to alter the recipe if you skip the poppy seeds.
  • If you decide to skip the poppy seeds, may I suggest adding 1/2 cup to 1 cup of white chocolate chips? They will pair so well with the lemon flavor!
  • You can also add chopped walnuts to this bread, about 1 cup.
  • You can use canola oil, vegetable oil or melted coconut oil.
  • The sugar can be reduce from 1 cup to 3/4 cups.
  • The glaze is optional, but delicious. You can also make the glaze with milk and vanilla extract instead of lemon.
  • Watch the bread closely after 30 minutes of baking, to make sure not to over bake it. I like to check on it at the 30 minute mark and if it still needs more baking, check on it every 5-7 minutes until done. A toothpick inserted in the center of the bread should come out clean or just with some crumbs, but not raw batter.
  • You can use this recipe to male Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins, bake for 20-25 minutes.
  • Serve the bread warm or room temperature, you can also warm up slices in the microwave and it tastes delicious with some butter.
Quick and Easy Lemon Poppy Seed Bread

What do you need to make Lemon Poppy Seed Bread :

  • Regular dry ingredients like: flour, sugar, salt, baking powder.
  • Wet ingredients: oil, sour cream, milk, eggs.
  • For the lemon flavor: lemon zest, lemon juice (freshly squeezed or store bought).
  • Poppy Seeds
  • Loaf Pan and baking spray or butter to grease the pan.

How should I store the Lemon Poppy Seed Bread?

The bread can be stored wrapped in plastic wrap at room temperature for 4 days.

How to make lemon zest?

Follow the easy steps below:

  • Rinse the lemon.
  • Set your tool over a cutting board. A microplane produces a very fine zest, perfect for baking and cooking. If you don’t have a microplane, use the smallest holes on an ordinary grater.
  • Grate the yellow skin of the lemon only. Grate just enough to get through the yellow skin, this way you can avoid the bitter white pith underneath.
  • Rotate the lemon and repeat. Once the white pith is exposed, rotate the lemon and zest the next strip of peel. Repeat until most of the peel is removed, or until you have enough zest for your recipe.

Can you freeze the Lemon Poppy Seed Bread?

This bread also freezes well. Cool the bread completely and do not glaze it, if you intend to freeze it. Fully wrap it in plastic wrap, tightly. After that wrap in aluminum foil or place it in freezer bags. Freeze for up to 3 months. Defrost before slicing.

Quick and easy Lemon Poppy Seed Bread is packed with citrusy freshness from using lots of lemon zest and juice, with crunchy poppy seeds and lemon glaze.
5 from 15 votes

Lemon Poppy Seed Bread

Quick and easy Lemon Poppy Seed Bread is packed with citrusy freshness from using lots of lemon zest and juice, with crunchy poppy seeds and lemon glaze.


Lemon Poppy Seed Bread:
  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup granulated sugar or less
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs room temperature
  • 1/3 cup sour cream room temperature
  • 2/3 cup milk room temperature
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 large lemon zested
  • 3 tablespoons poppy seeds
Lemon Glaze:
  • 1 cup confectioners sugar
  • 2-3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon freshly grated lemon zest optional


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Arrange an oven rack in the middle of the oven.

  2. Grease a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan with nonstick baking spray (I like the one with flour) or with butter and set it aside.
Lemon Poppy Seed Bread:
  1. In a medium bowl whisk together dry ingredients: flour, sugar, baking powder and salt, set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer combine wet ingredients: eggs, sour cream, milk, olive oil, lemon juice and lemon zest. Whisk until fully combined and creamy.
  3. Add dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and whisk until fully combined. Stop to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl.
  4. Add poppy seeds to the batter and using a spatula stir to combine.
  5. Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 35-45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the bread comes out mostly clean, with just a few crumbs attached and no raw batter. Start checking on the bread at the 30 minute mark, and if it still needs to bake more, check on it every 5 minutes.
  6. Once fully baked, remove the pan from the oven and set it on a wire cooling rack. Let the bread cool in the pan for 15 minutes. For easy removal, run a knife around the edges of the bread and gently remove from the pan onto the cooling rack. Cool completely before frosting.
Lemon Glaze:
  1. Add sugar and lemon zest to a medium bowl, add lemon juice one tablespoon at a time and stir to combine until smooth, with no lumps. If the mixture is too thin, add more confectioners sugar. If the mixture is too thick, add more lemon juice, 1 tablespoon at a time.
  2. Spread the glaze over the cooled bread. Let it settle.
  3. Slice and serve.
  4. Store in the fridge in an airtight container or wrapped in plastic wrap for up to 4 days.
Calories: 307, Fat: 11g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Cholesterol: 38mg, Sodium: 145mg, Potassium: 204mg, Carbohydrates: 48g, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 33g, Protein: 4g, Vitamin A: 3.2%, Vitamin C: 10.7%, Calcium: 13.1%, Iron: 10.4%

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