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Incredibly soft and moist vegan lemon muffins with an intense real lemon flavor and a buttery lemon crumb topping.

I like to think of them as a portable version of my popular lemon loaf!

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a lemon muffin with crumble topping and a bit taken out of it revealing the fluffy interior.Pin

🧾 Ingredients Needed

This easy vegan lemon muffin recipe uses mostly pantry-staple ingredients. Here's everything to grab:

ingredients to make vegan lemon muffins measured out in bowls on a gray surface.Pin

🍋 Ingredient Notes

  • Fresh Lemons - You'll want the zest of around 3 large lemons and a touch of the juice. Make sure you use unwaxed lemons, organic if possible, and wash them really well before zesting.
  • Vegan Greek-Style Yogurt - This makes a wonderful egg replacer and adds moisture to the muffins. I use Alpro Greek style, but you can also use vegan sour cream or thick coconut yogurt. You could possibly get away with using unsweetened applesauce as well but I have not tested it.
  • Non-Dairy Milk - I recommend soy milk for the best results, but you can also opt for almond or oat milk. This is mixed with a touch of lemon juice which mimics the properties of buttermilk.
  • Granulated Sugar - This is best for lemon desserts, I do not recommend coconut sugar or dark sugar as this will discolor the muffins and overpower the lemon flavor. If you're based in the States, opt for organic cane sugar to ensure it is vegan.
  • Olive Oil - As always, I bake with extra virgin olive oil, but if this is too floral for your tastebuds, feel free to use a lighter oil such as sunflower or canola oil.
  • Pearl Sugar - This is totally optional, but it reminds me of traditional bakery-style muffins and adds a lovely crunch to the topping.
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🥣 How To Make Vegan Lemon Muffins

Here are step-by-step images showing how to make these easy muffins from scratch. Remember, the detailed printable recipe card is at the end of this page:

sugar with fresh lemon zest rubbed into it in a large mixing bowl.Pin

Step 1: Using a large bowl, rub the fresh lemon zest into the sugar using your fingertips. The sugar crystals should feel damp, once the natural oils in the zest have flavored the sugar.

sugar, yogurt, olive oil, vanilla, and lemon zest whisked to a paste in a mixing bowl.Pin

Step 2: Add the vegan yogurt, olive oil, and vanilla extract, and whisk until the sugar appears dissolved.

all the liquid ingredients for lemon muffins in a mixing bowl.Pin

Step 3: Mix the soy milk and lemon juice in a small jug, then whisk it into the other wet ingredients.

lemon muffin batter in a large mixing bowl with a spatula.Pin

Step 4: Fold in the dry ingredients in 2 parts (flour, baking powder, and sea salt).

lemon crumble in a bowl.Pin

Step 5: To make the lemon crumble topping, first rub the lemon zest into the sugar in a small bowl. Then rub in the flour and butter until it resembles a crumb consistency. 

a lemon muffin that's been cut in half revealing the fluffy crumb.Pin

Step 6: Distribute the batter amongst the muffin liners, filling them to the top of the pan. Sprinkle the crumb topping on top and sprinkle with some pearl sugar before baking.

freshly baked lemon muffins in lemon tulip liners on a ceramic plate.Pin

Step 7: Let the muffins cool in the muffin tin for about 5 minutes and then transfer them onto a wire rack to cool fully before garnishing.

a vegan lemon muffin on lemon parchment paper with lemon glaze being drizzled over it with a spoon.Pin

Step 8: Optionally, you can drizzle the cooled muffins with a simple lemon glaze of powdered sugar and fresh lemon juice.

𓇢 Possible Variations

  • Lemon blueberry muffins - Fold 180g ( 1 cup) of fresh or frozen blueberries to the batter at the end with the dry ingredients. Note this will increase the yield of cupcakes by 2 or more.
  • Lemon poppy seed muffins - Add 2 tablespoons of poppy seeds to the muffin batter with the dry ingredients.
  • Mini muffins - When I think of muffins I think large bakery-style and that's why this recipe is catered towards making huge muffins. You can, however, make 12 smaller muffins if you'd like to stretch them out into more servings.

💬 FAQs

How long should muffin batter rest?

I recommend letting the batter relax for at least half an hour in order to get nice tall muffin tops and a soft consistency. You could, however, let it rest for an hour or two covered in the fridge.

Some people even recommend letting the batter chill overnight, but I don't have the patience to wait that long 😂.

How to best store muffins?

Place the muffins in a sealed container or ziplock bag and store them at room temperature for up to 5 days or in the fridge for up to a week. Let them sit at room temperature for an hour before serving if stored in the refrigerator.

Can I freeze lemon muffins?

Yep! You can freeze them in an airtight container or ziplock bag, and then defrost them for a couple of hours before serving.

a lemon muffin that's been cut in half revealing the fluffy crumb.Pin

🧁 More Vegan Muffins

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📖 Recipe

Moist Vegan Lemon Muffins

5 from 10 votes
PREP TIME: 15 minutes
COOK TIME: 20 minutes
Resting Time: 30 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings: 8
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Description

These are the best vegan lemon muffins you will try! Zesty, fluffy, and moist, with huge bakery-style muffin tops and crunchy pearl sugar and lemon crumb topping.
This recipe will yield 8 large bakery-style muffins or 10-12 smaller muffins.

Ingredients

Muffins

  • 200 g (1 cup) granulated sugar
  • 4 tablespoons lemon zest, *see note 1
  • 60 ml (¼ cup) lemon juice, freshly squeezed, *see note 1
  • 180 ml (¾ cup) soy milk, *see note 2
  • 120 ml (½ cup) olive oil, *see note 3
  • 120 g (½ cup) vegan Greek-style yogurt , *see note 4
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 300 g (2 ½ cups) all-purpose flour
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt

Lemon Crumb Topping (optional)

  • 30 g (2 ½ tablespoons) granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest, freshly grated
  • 30 g (4 tablespoons) all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons vegan butter
  • 2 tablespoons pearl sugar, optional

Lemon Icing (optional)

  • 40 g ( cup) powdered sugar
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice, *see note 1

Instructions

  • Flavor the sugar for muffin batter: Add the sugar and lemon zest to a large mixing bowl and use your fingertips to rub the zest into the sugar until the sugar crystals feel "wet".
  • Make vegan buttermilk: In a jug, mix the soy milk and lemon juice. Set aside.
  • Mix wet ingredients: Add the olive oil, vegan yogurt, and vanilla extract to the lemon sugar and whisk. Add the vegan buttermilk (soy milk + lemon juice) and whisk again.
  • Combine dry ingredients: Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt into a bowl and whisk to combine.
  • Make the batter: Fold dry ingredients into the wet ingredients in 2 parts using a spatula. Fold the ingredients into the batter between each increment until there are no pockets or streaks of flour. Do not be tempted to overmix!
  • Rest the batter (optional): Let the batter sit at room temperature for 30 minutes - this promotes high muffin tops.
  • Prepare the oven/pan: Preheat your oven to fan-forced 190°C(375°F) or conventional 210°C(410°F).
    Line 2 muffin trays with 8 muffin liners - leave a gap between each one as you will only be filling every second cavity. I use large tulip liners, if using regular baking cups the recipe will yield more muffins.
    I recommend only filling every second cavity as this promotes high muffin tops! The recipe will make 8 large muffins - so if you only have one muffin pan I recommend baking them in 2 batches.
  • Make the crumb topping: Rub the lemon zest into the sugar using your fingertips until fragrant. Rub in the flour, and then the butter until it resembles a crumb consistency. Set aside.
  • Assemble: Using an ice cream scoop or large spoon, distribute the batter amongst the muffin liners, filling them to the top of the pan. Sprinkle the crumb topping on top and sprinkle with some pearl sugar if using.
  • Bake at fan-forced 190°C/375°F or conventional 210°C/410°F for the first 5 minsThen turn down the temperature to 170°C/340°F or conventional 190°C/375°F and continue to bake for another 15 minutes.
    Allow the muffins to cool for 5 minutes, then carefully lift them out of the tray and transfer them to a cooling rack to cool further for 30 minutes.
  • Make the glaze: Mix together the powdered sugar and lemon juice until smooth. You can add more or less sugar depending on whether you want it runny or thicker. Drizzle the icing on top of the muffins once they have cooled.
  • Storage: Place the muffins in an airtight container and store them at room temperature for up to 5 days or in the fridge for up to a week. Let them sit at room temperature for an hour before serving if stored in the fridge. You can freeze them in an airtight container and defrost them for a couple of hours before serving.

Notes

  1. Lemon Zest & Juice: I used the zest from 3 large unwaxed lemons. Zest the lemons first, then juice them. 
  2. Soy Milk: This gives the best result, but you can also use almond milk or oat milk.
  3. Olive Oil: Or neutral oil like canola (rapeseed oil) or sunflower oil.
  4. Vegan Yogurt: I use Alpro Greek style. You can also use vegan skyr, vegan sour cream, or very thick coconut yogurt.

Nutrition

Serving: 1muffin | Calories: 419kcal | Carbohydrates: 63g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 11g | Trans Fat: 0.01g | Sodium: 267mg | Potassium: 92mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 30g | Vitamin A: 224IU | Vitamin C: 9mg | Calcium: 146mg | Iron: 2mg
Did you make this recipe? Tag me TodayBe sure to leave a rating and a review in the section below, and mention @addictedtodates or tag #addictedtodates

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5 from 10 votes (5 ratings without comment)

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11 Comments

    1. I appreciate you so much, Cassie! Thank you for always taking the time to leave feedback 🙂

    1. Hi Nathan,

      Thanks so much for your feedback, so happy you enjoyed it and will be making them again 🙂

    1. Hi Anabell,

      That's amazing, thank you so much for your lovely feedback! Would you mind sharing which GF flour you used just in case someone else would like to try that too?

      1. I second this response! My sister cannot have wheat and was wondering which flour mix/alternative to use! 🖤

  1. 5 stars
    I knew I had to try them the second I saw the recipe! They were AMAZING! Just the perfect amount of lemon flavor, with a gloriously soft texture. I cannot recommend this recipe enough!!!!!!

    1. Hi Maja,

      Aw you're the best! Thanks so much for trying the recipe so quickly and for your wonderful feedback 🙂