Lemon Poppy Seed Cupcakes with Blueberry Buttercream

45 Comments on Lemon Poppy Seed Cupcakes with Blueberry Buttercream


This weekend I’m up in Yorkshire for various family festivities, so I’m keeping this post pretty short. And sweet (of course), which most of my posts tend to be.


With a sprinkle of toasted poppy seeds for texture, a scraping of lemon zest for zing and a swirl of smooth, sharp blueberry buttercream simply for the sake of it.


I don’t often make cupcakes, but when I do, I like them to be light, moist and full of flavour. The sponge in these is as soft and fluffy as can be, and the buttercream not too thick, sharpened with cream cheese and an unsweetened fruit purée. The flowers are a little bit fancy – my very first attempt at working with sugar paste, which I want to work on improving over the next few months* – but without the flowers these little cakes are simplicity itself, topped with nothing more extravagant than a couple of beautiful ripe blueberries.


With their bright, fruity flavour and and pretty pastel colouring, these cupcakes are perfect to welcome in the Spring. If you’re reading this post before Easter, they’d make a great addition to an afternoon tea this weekend. And if you’re reading this after Easter, slowly crawling your way out of a chocolate-induced coma, they might be just the sort of sweet, light treat you’re looking for to remind you that there is a whole world of desserts out there beyond those of the Easter-egg shaped variety.


*If you follow me on Twitter, you’ll know that Carnivorous Boyfriend’s Mum has asked me to make the decorations for her wedding cake in August this year. It’s a big task, and I’ve got a long way to go from this very first attempt, but I’ll be posting my learnings along the way over the next few months…wish me luck!

Lemon Poppy Seeds Cupcakes with Blueberry Buttercream


For the cupcakes

1 tbsp poppy seeds
225g self-raising flour
175g golden caster sugar
Zest of 2 medium lemons
3 large free range eggs
100g natural yoghurt
175g butter, melted and cooled a little


Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C. Line two 6-hole muffin tins cupcake cases.

Toast the poppy seeds in a small saucepan over a low heat for a few minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly.

Sift the flour into a large bowl, then whisk in the sugar, lemon zest and poppy seeds. In a separate bowl, beat the eggs with the yogurt and melted butter. Whisk the wet and dry ingredients together until smooth and lump-free, then divide between the cases.

Bake for about 20 minutes, or until a skewer poked in comes out clean – the cakes will be quite pale on the top. Cool for 5 mins in the tin, then carefully transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling.

For the buttercream


50g unsalted butter, softened
400 icing sugar, sifted
100g full fat cream cheese
2 tbsp blueberry purée (I heated blueberries with a little lemon juice til softened then pushed through a sieve)


In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and icing sugar on slow speed until it resembles a fine powder. Add the cream cheese, increase the speed and beat until a creamy mixture forms. Add the blueberry purée a little at a time, until you have the colour and consistency you like, then continue to whip on high speed for a couple of minutes more until light and fluffy.

Transfer your buttercream to a piping bag and pipe over the cooled cupcakes. Decorate with fresh blueberries, or sugar paste flowers, if you wish (I used this tutorial here).

These cupcakes taste best served at room temperature, so are best made and eaten on the same day to ensure the cream cheese frosting stays fresh and delicious.

45 RESPONSES TO Lemon Poppy Seed Cupcakes with Blueberry Buttercream

  1. Lemon and poppy seeds are a match made in heaven and your flowers are so beautiful! You have to show us a picture of the wedding cake in August!

  2. These look so lovely! I love lemon & poppy seed together as well as lemon and blueberry. What a winning combo!

  3. Oh wow, what pretty cupcakes!! Beautiful job with the flowers, I wouldn’t have known they were your first attempt. I love the idea of the blueberry buttercream, sounds divine…and lemon plus poppyseed is always a winner. Your description of the cake has got me really craving for one of these cupcakes now! x

  4. How did you know I woke up with a craving for lemon-poppyseed treats?!? Spring just must be in the air…

  5. Ohhh wow these look AMAZING! I love love love how you’ve decorated them! And because of my name 🙂 I love the ones with the flowers hehe and i’m just gonna say they’re ‘daisy’ flowers even if they arent lol

  6. These fruity muffins are beautiful – taste, flavours and presentation 🙂

    Happy Easter!
    Choc Chip Uru

    • Amy – thank you, and I definitely will, as long as the cake looks beautiful!

      Heike – lemon and poppy seeds is such a delicious combo – would love to try these with orange zest too…

      My Kitchen Stories – thank you 🙂

      Savory Simple – lemon and blueberry works together so well, will definitely be making again!

      Jaime – thank you! I’m afraid the cupcakes are all gone…maybe next time 🙂

      Meister – this is definitely the perfect treat to welcome in Spring!

      Daisy – thank you, and yes – they’re definitely daisies!

      Choc Chip Uru – thank you.

      Elly – hope you’re having a lovely time in Yorkshire too 🙂

  7. This looks heavenly! What an interesting combination of flavors

  8. Emma -

    These look really inventive and delicious- love the idea of blueberry buttercream! Emma

  9. Love the flowers, they’re so bright and pretty and the cakes look delicious! 🙂

  10. Kafcia -

    These are absolutely gorgeous!… :] I love the combination of lemon and blueberry.
    Wish you a Happy Easter! :)))

  11. These are adorable!! So so pretty…hope you have a happy Easter! And I’m definitely looking forward to hearing about and seeing all your experiments before the big wedding cake day 🙂 x

  12. Amy -

    Ah, so beautiful. I love the look of that blueberry buttercream… how have I never heard of that before? So inspiring!

  13. pencilkitchen -

    Lemon! I’ve been dying to have something made with lemon! Everything is perfect with what you do, sista! Congratulations on the big task! I’m sure you’ll rock it with one hand! ok maybe two! 😉

  14. What lovely pretty and Spring like cupcakes! Really looking forward to reading how you get on with the wedding decorations- on evidence of these beautiful flowers, you’ll have no problem at all!!

  15. Loaf, those are so pretty – I adore them :D. I wish I could decorate with the same skill and dexterity as you.

    • A Taste of Madness – thank you!

      Emma – the blueberry buttercream is yummy although the flavour is fairly subtle. Next time I might add a little more puree, although I do love the pale pastel colour this quantity gives.

      Laura – thank you.

      Kafcia – Happy Easter to you too!

      Elaina – I will keep you all posted on the big day… 🙂

      Amy – thank you lovely!

      Pencil Kitchen – haha, thank you 🙂

      Lorraine – thank you.

      Kate – ah, thank you for the vote of confidence 🙂

      Frugal Feeding – you’re too kind 🙂

  16. Yudith -

    I have been looking for a lemon and poppy seed cupcake recipe. Thanks for sharing!! Yours look delicious, and the decor is beautiful as well 🙂

  17. These look amazing! Lemon and blueberry is one of my favourite flavour combinations. I love the addition of poppy seeds – must try that next time. Good luck with making the cake decorations for the wedding cake – I’m sure it will be stunning, can’t wait to see it. Happy Easter!

  18. Your sugar paste flowers are amazing 🙂

  19. I hope you had a lovely Easter weekend with your family. Your sugar flowers are gorgeous and you’d never know it was a first attempt. The cupcakes sound perfect for a Spring afternoon tea. I am going to have to try the blueberry buttercream, that sounds amazing.

  20. Oh, I love the sugar paste flowers. SO cute! And what could be bad about Blueberry Buttercream. Yum.

  21. lemon-poppy-seed is one of my favorite combinations (just posted some crispy cookies, on that note…). anyways, your cupcakes look delightful! and i wish i had one now!

  22. Mary -

    These really are lovely. The flavors are perfect with each other. I am new to your blog, so I’ve spent some time browsing through your earlier posts. I’m so glad I did that. I really like the food and recipes you share with your readers and I’ll definitely be back. I hope you have a great day. Blessings…Mary

  23. Blueberry and lemon is one of my favorite flavor combinations. Although I have never tried it myself, a blueberry-cream cheese frosting makes so much sense! And this does not at all look like your first attempt at sugar paste flowers.

  24. I love lemon and poppyseed muffins so the idea of them in cupcake form with a blueberry buttercream sounds just heavenly!

    • Yudith – my pleasure, and thank you 🙂

      Baking Addict – thank you! I’ll let you know how I get on…

      Tandy – thank you!

      Laura – thank you so much. Do try the blueberry buttercream, it’s delicious.

      Erin – absolutely nothing, it’s divine!

      Jenni – I wish I could send you one! Sadly they’re all gone…

      Mary – thank you, so glad you like the blog 🙂

      Sacha – hopefully I’ll get much better over the next couple of months!

      Kathryn – they’re really good – perfect for this time of year.

  25. Erin -

    I’m not usually a big blueberry fan, but that icing is gorgeous! Hope you had a good weekend with your family. 🙂

  26. Of course I wish you luck, but I have every faith you will do an absolutely splendid job. I love those flowers. I was going to ask you where you got them from, then read you’d made them yourself! Love the idea of using blueberry puree and the tone it gives to the buttercream is quite elegant.

    Thank you so much for all of your lovely comments on my blog. I do feel bad for not visiting yours more often and it’s not because I don’t appreciate it, I love your blog. I’ve just been incredibly busy over the last few months and am struggling to even lag behind, never mind keep up.

  27. I join the chorus of lemon blueberry love! Your flowers are so cute! They make the perfect topping for those cupcakes.

  28. Fantastic recipe, love that you kept the icing on the less sweet side. i’l have to keep it in mind.

  29. I love lemon poppyseed muffins and would only expect good things from a cupcake! Congrats on the wedding job! You will do wonderful…your frosting and flowers here are so pretty 🙂

    • Erin – I did, thank you 🙂

      Choclette – ah, thank you, you’re too kind! And no worries re blog comments, I know how busy you are!

      Delicio8 – it’s a great combination 😉

      Muppy – there’s nothing worse than too much sickly sweet icing.

      Baking Serendipity – thank you 🙂

      Nic – ah, thanks!

  30. Pingback: Chocolate Coated Peanut Butter Flapjacks with Crystallized Peanuts | thelittleloaf

  31. Euan -

    These are my kind of cupcakes! Not too heavy on the buttercream and with what sounds like a tasty cake and topping. My favourite picture is the minimalist one with the single blueberry topped cake. Nicely composed!

  32. Lovely cupcakes! I love lemon + poppyseed. And I am looking forward to your wedding cake adventures. 🙂

    • Euan – I like that photo too 🙂 The other ones are fancier but sometimes it’s simplicity that really appeals.

      Sarah – lemon + poppyseed = amazing. Will keep you posted on the wedding cake flowers – cross your fingers for me!

  33. Lucy -

    I’ve never thought of toasting poppy seeds before – such a clever idea. The blueberry cream cheese icing sounds gorgeous!

  34. Love the flowers – so colourful. Not used poppy seed sbut I bet they go great with lemon so now another thing to try out! Love it. Good luck with the wedding flowers.

  35. Your cupcakes are beautiful and I love the flavor combination. Must try these! I am sure you will be doing an incredible job for the wedding.

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