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Blood Orange Poppy Seed Muffins by Baking The Goods

Blood Orange Poppy Seed Muffins

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These easy Blood Orange Poppy Seed Muffins radiate with bright and zesty citrus. Nutty poppy seeds are the perfect companion to the tender and tangy muffins. With a glowing blood orange glaze, topped in tiny poppy seed sprinkles, these simple muffins almost masquerade as fancy cupcakes.


Blood Orange Poppy Seed Muffins

3/4 cup granulated sugar

1 1/2 tablespoons blood orange zest

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

2 tablespoons poppy seeds

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt

2 large eggs - at room temperature

1 cup buttermilk

1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled

2 tablespoons fresh blood orange juice

2 teaspoons almond extract


1 cup powdered sugar

1 1/2 - 2 tablespoons blood orange juice

1/2 teaspoon almond extract

1 tablespoon poppy seeds to decorate


Preheat oven to 375°F. Spray 12 muffin cups with cooking spray, or line cups with paper liners.

Add the sugar and blood orange zest together in a large mixing bowl. Use your fingers to squish the zest into the sugar until it blends in and the sugar turns a warm golden color. The oils in the zest will permeate the sugar with zesty flavor, translating to gentle citrusy sweetness throughout.

Add the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and poppy seeds and whisk to combine. Make a well in the center and set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, buttermilk, melted butter, blood orange juice and almond extract until combined and smooth. Pour 3/4 of the wet mixture into dry mixture, and fold in with a spatula until mostly combined. Pour in the remaining liquid and fold until just mixed. It's ok if some floury bits remain.

Using a 3 TB sized cookie scoop to divide batter among prepared muffin cups, filling almost to the top.

Bake at 375°F for 16-18 minutes, until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Let cool in pans for 5 minutes.

Remove from pans, and let cool completely on wire racks.


In a small bowl, whisk together the sifted powdered sugar, blood orange juice and almond extract until smooth. It should run off the whisk in a thick and smooth ribbon.

Working one at a time, invert each muffin and dip the muffin top into the glaze, twisting slightly as you lift, allowing the excess glaze to drip off. Turn over and return to the wire rack to set. While glaze is still tacky, sprinkle on more poppy seeds for a festive sprinkle like finish!


Muffins are best enjoyed the same day they are made. But they can be stored loosely covered at room temperature or in refrigerator for up to 3 days. If they are stored in an airtight container they will become too moist and the glaze will look chalky.

Feel free to swap in another citrus if blood oranges aren't available. Lemons, oranges, limes, even grapefruit would be great!

  • Prep Time: 20
  • Cook Time: 18
  • Category: breakfast