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Poppy Seed Bread with Lemon Glaze

Poppy Seed Bread with Lemon Glaze


Moist and tender, with a crumb like cake, this poppy seed bread has an optional lemon glaze that takes this treat from breakfast to dessert! This easy recipes makes two delicious loaves of bread so you can share one with a friend or freeze a loaf for later.

Close up of poppy seed bread with lemon glaze

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Poppy Seed Bread with Lemon Glaze Recipe

When spring rolls around, my thoughts turn to light and lovely baking recipes. These are the baked goods to make for spring brunch or Mother’s Day party. The perfect dessert to serve at Easter gatherings, it’s a bright and delicious option.

Two loaves of poppy seed bread with lemon glaze in front of a floral arrangement

This poppy seed bread is particularly excellent choice because of its versatility. Make ahead to serve alongside hearty breakfast options like bacon or scrambled eggs. At brunch, a slice of this bread pairs nicely with a quiche and mimosa. Or save this poppy seed bread with lemon glaze for a delightful dessert. You can’t go wrong!

Unfrosted loaf of poppy seed bread with half a lemon

These loaves have a crisp outer crust with an airy interior, studded with the delicate crunch of poppy seeds. The optional glaze is a must in my opinion, offering the sweet and tangy hit of lemon. The combination of poppy seed bread with lemon is perfection, right?

My husband can be tough to please – but this poppy seed bread? It’s his new favorite treat. A slice for breakfast with coffee and another piece after dinner with a glass of milk. I just baked these loaves and he’s already asking me if we have enough ingredients to make more!

Iced loaf of poppy seed bread with lemon glaze

How to Make Poppy Seed Bread

Baking quick breads is one of the easiest things to cook, especially with kids who want to help in the kitchen. Just a fast measurement and the children can dump it into the bowl. Using a stand mixer like a KitchenAid will ensure you can cream and combine everything well.

Overhead image of two loaves poppy seed bread inside baking pans

Just as I mentioned in the recipe for Double Decker Brownies, you can whip the butter, sugar and eggs for up to about 10 minutes. You kind-of can’t beat it enough. Get it light and fluffy before adding the flour and be rewarded with a light and fluffy quick bread!

When preparing this poppy seed bread, you’ll cream together the ingredients well then add the dry ingredients. Finishing off the mixing with milk will create a thinner batter that will easily spread into prepared loaf pans.

Overhead image of two loaves poppy seed bread with lemon glaze in a cup ready to drizzle

Optional Lemon Glaze is a Must!

Yes, the lemon glaze is optional but I love the extra flavor it adds to each slice. Sometimes I leave the bread in the pans but usually I pop them out to finish cooling and to apply the glaze. I prefer not to risk making knife cut marks inside my non-stick loaf pan. Plus I love how the glaze drips down the sides of the bread!

Drizzle of icing with spoon onto poppy seed bread with lemon glaze

Creating the glaze is super easy. Use a small bowl and a spoon to stir the juice of half a lemon and 3/4 cup of powdered (confectioners) sugar. Make sure that there aren’t any tiny seeds in the juice before adding in the sugar. Stir well until fully combined and lump-free. If the glaze seems too thin, just add a little bit more sugar until it’s the consistency you prefer.

Slice of poppy seed bread with lemon glaze on a plate

Use the spoon to drizzle evenly across the top of the loaves. It’s more than okay that the glaze drips down the sides of the loaf. Just protect under each loaf (I used paper towels under my cooling rack). Let the icing dry and harden before wrapping the loaves for storage. The combination of sweet and tart offers just a small hint of lemony flavor that’s not overpowering to the bread.

Add a Twist with Lemon Poppy Seed Bread

If you LOVE the lemon, add the juice of the second half directly into the batter with the milk. You’ll be rewarded with a stronger lemon essence. Only want a little bit more lemon flavor? Zest the outside of the lemon, avoiding the white pith and add this to the batter.

Iced loaf of poppy seed bread with lemon glaze

Poppy Seed Bread with Lemon Glaze

Yield: 2 loaves
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes

Moist and delicious poppy seed bread with a light lemon glaze on the top of each loaf.


  • 1 cup of butter (2 sticks), softened
  • 2 cups of granulated sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1.5 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1.5 tsp almond extract
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1.5 tsp baking powder
  • 1.5 tsp salt
  • 1.5 Tbsp poppy seeds
  • 1.5 cups milk
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced and seeds removed
  • 3/4 cup confectioners sugar


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Grease two loaf pans and set aside.
  3. Using a mixer, beat softened butter until well creamed. Add in sugar, beating until fluffy (at least 5 minutes).
  4. Add eggs, beating in between.
  5. Add extracts, beating until mixture is light and fluffy.
  6. Add dry ingredients to the bowl, mixing just until combined.
  7. Slowly add milk while mixing, stopping to scrape sides if needed. Mix only until combined.
  8. Divide batter evenly between prepared loaf pans. Bake for 1 hour or until fully baked (check for doneness with toothpick).
  9. Rest on rack until completely cooled before removing loaves from pan and applying glaze.
  10. For optional glaze, combine powdered sugar and fresh lemon juice in a small bowl. Mix well then drizzle across the top of each loaf.


Add more lemon flavor if you wish!

For a stronger lemon flavor, pour in the juice of half a lemon (remove seeds) to the batter along with the milk (reduce the amount of milk until you have 1.5 cups of liquid).

Or, zest the outside of the lemon (avoid the pith) and add to the batter for a lighter lemon essence.

This Disney Banana Bread recipe can be made in either a loaf or muffins. Would you like this poppy seed bread with lemon glaze in a muffin version? I’ll be testing and sharing that with you soon!

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