Lemon Poppyseed Zucchini Muffins

Lemon poppyseed zucchini muffins held by hands.

Annnd would all the zucchini lovers please stand up?

Although, I guess it’s fair to say that I’m not a MEGA zucchini lover, so maybe I should just be asking for all the Lovers of Excellent Muffins and Sweet Summer Flavors to please stand up?

If you are a) a lover of zucchini, or b) a lover of cold muffins straight out the fridge that are dense, moist, and so texturally perfect that you could basically forget all your problems for at least three seconds while you go into Muffin Bliss Land? Then yes, you are in the right place. These muffins are that.

These zucchini muffins are my idea of textural perfection. They are beautifully puffy, but not overly fluffy on the inside. Can we appreciate the difference here? The zucchini keeps things moist, as does the olive oil (!!!), and the brown sugar gets a little extra caramely so you have that barely-sticky browned crown of a muffin ridge, and then you get just the slightest textural interest from flecks of lemon zest and crunchy poppyseeds. That balance between dense, sticky, and rounded puffy top is just pure magic.


Lemon poppyseed zucchini muffins with bite taken out.

These muffins are actually modeled after one of my favorite quick bread recipes slash “cake” that is appropriate to eat anytime of day. Remember that one? I just wanted a smaller batch of that exact thing in muffin form for easy snacking, and voila. They worked beautifully.

If you’ve made the bread aka cake before, fair warning that it is a tad bit more dense than these newbie muffins are. If you want to replicate that original bread aka cake level of density, just omit the baking soda. But we’ll talk more about that in the recipe notes.

For now, please feast your eyes on the start of this golden crunchy brown sugar meets olive oil meets fresh lemon zest batter. THE FRESHNESS. Hold me.

Ingredients in bowl for lemon poppyseed zucchini muffins.

And now we add the fresh zucchini, which has been shredded and gently squeezed out over the sink in a very elementary hand-held method because we are the type of people who squeeze zucchini shreds with our own two hands, thank you very much.

Grated zucchini for lemon poppyseed zucchini muffins.

Not to be weird or anything, but I know some of you are like me so let’s just take a moment together to appreciate that this batter is lovely.

Batter for lemon poppyseed zucchini muffins.

Bake into muffins…

Lemon poppyseed zucchini muffins in muffin pan.

Go ahead and eat one while it’s still way too hot.

And then store the rest in the fridge for later. I know, you think I’m so weird, but they get REALLY delicious as they densify in the fridge. Yes, densify. Normally not what you want in your muffins, but for this one, you definitely do. There’s so much zucchini and olive oil in there that these are going to stay moist and delish no matter how dense they are.

Lemon poppyseed zucchini muffins.

You really don’t need butter on these. Promise. There is so much good flavor here already and the texture needs no help at all.

But, I guess if you really wanted to put your best foot forward, a tiny shmear of butter would not be a disappointment.

Butter on lemon poppyseed zucchini muffin.

This lemony, caramely brown, zucchini-packed muffin, cold out of the fridge in the morning with a mug of hot coffee?

I don’t know, you guys. It might be my dream start to an August morning.

Watch How To Make Our Lemon Poppyseed Zucchini Muffins (1 Min):

Lemon Poppyseed Zucchini Muffins.

Lemon Poppyseed Zucchini Muffins

  • Author: Lindsay
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 9 muffins


These Lemon Poppyseed Zucchini Muffins are the BEST! Lemony and bright and made with simple ingredients like zucchini, olive oil, flour, and sugar. Love these!


  • 1 1/2 cups grated zucchini (1 medium size)
  • 1 cup brown sugar (loosely packed)
  • 1/2 cup olive oil (mild tasting)
  • grated zest of a lemon
  • 1 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon poppy seeds


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a muffin tin (for 9 standard size muffins).
  2. After grating, give the zucchini a quick squeeze by hand over the sink to get rid of excess water. Set aside.
  3. In a mixing bowl, whisk the sugar, olive oil, lemon zest, vanilla, and egg.
  4. Stir in the flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Then stir in the poppy seeds and zucchini.
  5. Divide batter into muffin tin (I usually get 9 muffins). Bake for 15 minutes or until the tops spring back when pressed. Yum!


Weirdo alert here, but I like these best when stored in the fridge! They get almost a little dense and they stay super moist.

You can also make a more dense version of these by omitting the baking soda. You’ll need to bake those a little longer – closer to 20 minutes. They won’t get the puffy tops, but they’ll be super dense and moist thanks to all that olive oil and zucchini packed in each bite!

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Category: Breakfast
  • Method: Bake
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: lemon poppyseed zucchini muffins, zucchini muffins, lemon zucchini muffins

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