If you’re a lemon fan, you will love these Vegan Lemon Poppyseed Cupcakes! They are packed with citrus flavors thanks to fresh lemon zest, lemon juice, and lemon extract both in the cake and the frosting.
Happy Monday, my dear friends! Summer is in full swing here in Texas, and I have been on a huge LEMON kick! Give me all of the zesty, refreshing citrus please. I made a cute lemon layer cake for an order last week, and I couldn’t bear the fact that I baked a lemon cake and didn’t get to eat any 😂 So with the leftover lemon frosting as an excuse, I whipped up these delicious Vegan Lemon Poppyseed Cupcakes! Adorable, perfectly portioned, and bursting with bright lemon flavors!
These cupcakes taste just like summer, honestly! The lemon poppyseed cupcakes themselves are soft, moist, and packed with lemony flavor thanks to the triple threat of lemon zest, lemon juice, and lemon extract. The frosting is also super lemony! I have to confess that for these pics, I actually mixed in some leftover lemon curd into the frosting to use it up. For the instructions, I am going to tell you how to make my regular lemon frosting. The curd was a fun addition but just cause I had it in the house – I wouldn’t recommend making it just for the frosting. Though you could definitely make your cupcakes a touch fancier and stuff them with curd if you wanted to!
How do I make lemon poppyseed cupcakes at home?
The technique to make these soft and delicious lemon poppyseed cupcakes is called reverse creaming – I went into detail about it in my Vegan Baking Basics series! I started with my basic white cake recipe, and turned it into lemon cupcakes!
- First, you combine your flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt with the zest of two lemons, poppyseeds, and your vegan butter. Mix it up until the butter has been incorporated and mixture is sandy! I like using a microplane grater to zest my lemons – makes it super easy.
- Next, whip up two flax eggs – just combine two tablespoons of ground flaxseed with water. Flax is my favorite replacer for eggs!
- Prepare your wet ingredients in a separate bowl – freshly squeezed lemon juice, lemon extract, vanilla extract, vegetable oil, nondairy milk and vegan yogurt. My favorite yogurt to use is Silk Soy Yogurt – easy to find in stores, and super creamy so it works well. I also like that the protein content is comparable to dairy yogurt so it makes the cupcakes really soft and moist. Stir all of these up with your vegan eggs.
- Finally, pour the wet ingredients into the dry, and mix until your cupcake batter just comes together. Divide between your cupcake lines, and bake!
- To make the frosting, simply whip up vegan butter with shortening, lemon juice, lemon zest, lemon extract, and powdered sugar until it all comes together. Remember – the recipe is not set in stone. Add more or less powdered sugar as needed to get the right consistency! I go into more detail about this in my Vegan Baking Basics frosting episode!
Looking for some tips on how to decorate cupcakes? Check out my cupcake decorating post HERE.
Looking for more lemon treats?
- Vegan Lemon Ginger Loaf Cake
- Vegan Lemon Blueberry Cupcakes
- Vegan Lemon Zucchini Bread
- Vegan Lemon Berry Rolls
- *for the lemon cupcakes*
- 2 tbsp ground flaxseed + 6 tbsp water
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1¾ cup all-purpose flour
- 1½ tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp salt
- zest of 1 lemon (about 1 tbsp)
- 3 tbsp poppyseeds
- ¼ cup vegan butter, at room temperature
- ⅓ cup nondairy yogurt
- ¼ cup vegetable oil
- 1 tbsp lemon extract
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ⅓ cup unsweetened nondairy milk
- ⅓ cup lemon juice
- *for the frosting*
- ½ cup shortening
- ½ cup vegan butter
- zest of 1 lemon (about 1 tbsp)
- juice of 1 lemon (about 2 tbsp)
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- 1 tbsp lemon extract
- pinch of salt
- yellow food coloring, if desired
- First, make the cupcakes. Preheat oven to 350F and line two muffin pans with 20 muffin liners.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the ground flaxseed with the water and set aside to thicken.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the sugar, flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, lemon zest, and poppyseeds.
- Add in the vegan butter, and beat on low until it's incorporated and has a sandy texture.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the oil, flaxseed mixture, nondairy yogurt and lemon & vanilla extracts, nondairy milk, and lemon juice. Add them to the dry ingredients. Beat on medium-low until smooth and creamy.
- Divide batter evenly among the prepared cupcake liners. Bake cupcakes for 20-25 min until they are fluffy and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
- While the cupcakes cool, prepare the frosting.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the shortening, vegan butter, lemon zest, lemon juice, and lemon extract together until completely smooth and creamy. Add in the powdered sugar, 1 cup at a time, until a thick frosting forms. Add in the salt and some food coloring if desired. You can add a few spoonfuls of nondairy milk if it's too thick.
- When the cupcakes are cooled completely, decorate them with the frosting. I used a 1M tip, and decorated the cupcakes with a small piece of lemon slice and extra poppyseeds. Enjoy!
*Disclosure: I am part of the Amazon Associates Program, and there may be affiliate links on this page. If you buy anything through my website, I will receive a small percentage of the profit at no extra cost to you. Thank you for supporting my blog!*