Glazed Lemon Poppy Seed Donuts

Prep 10 mins
Cook 6 mins
Add'l 10 mins
Total 26 mins

Glazed Lemon Poppy Seed Donuts are delicious mini donuts that are speckled with poppy seeds and covered in a tangy lemon glaze. These homemade baked donuts are so easy to make in a mini donut maker, and they’re perfect for a sweet breakfast!

If you love mini donuts as much as I do, be sure to also try these Confetti Cake Mini Donuts and these Mini Powdered Sugar Doughnuts.

Two stacks of glazed lemon poppy seed donuts.

Easy Baked Lemon Poppy Seed Donuts

I already have a huge love for everything lemon, but when you add in those darling blue poppy seeds too, my cravings go crazy. Now, there are a lot of lemon poppy seed dessert/breakfast recipes in existence. (Cakes, breads, muffins, etc.) And those are all great, but I have been looking for an opportunity to use my mini donut maker again… so prepare yourself for some Glazed Lemon Poppy Seed Donuts!

These easy donuts are baked – not fried! – and while they’re not anyone’s definition of healthy, they’re at least healthier than your average donut. In my (and my sweet tooth’s) book, that’s a win.

These mini poppy seed donuts are also perfectly fluffy and cakey, filled with tangy lemon flavor, and they make the best quick breakfast on busy mornings!

Lastly, before I forget, you can also use a mini donut pan to make these in the oven, or even a large donut pan, instead of a donut maker. Just make sure to double dip your donuts in the lemon glaze, and it won’t matter what size/format you choose in the end!

What You’ll Need

Is your homemade donut obsession developing yet? Good, join the party!

Here are the ingredients we’ll need to round up to make these lemon poppy seed donuts happen:

  • Whole Milk: Using whole milk ensures that your donuts are super moist, but you can also use 1 or 2% milk in this recipe.
  • Sour Cream: This also helps with creating moist, cake-like donuts.
  • Flour: I typically just use all purpose flour.
  • Baking Powder: To help your donuts rise while baking.
  • Salt: To balance the flavors and enhance the sweetness.
  • Unsalted Butter: Make sure this reaches room temperature before starting.
  • Sugar: Regular granulated sugar is the main source of sweetness for these donuts.
  • Egg: To bind your donut batter together.
  • Lemon: You’ll need zest for the donut batter and juice for the glaze.
  • Poppy Seeds: You can adjust the amount to find your preferred ratio, but I find that 1 tbsp is perfect.
  • Powdered Sugar: This will be the other component to your lemon-y icing.
Stacks of mini Poppy Seed Donuts on a plate.

How to Make Lemon Poppy Seed Donuts

Making your own donuts from scratch probably sounds like a lot of work, but it actually doesn’t take much longer than baking a simple batch of cookies! It takes me just over 25 minutes to bake and glaze these lemon poppy seed donuts.

Here’s how I do it:

Preheat: Preheat your electric donut maker.

Mix Milk and Sour Cream: In a small bowl, whisk together milk and sour cream. Set aside.

Mix Dry Ingredients: In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.

Cream Butter and Sugar: In a large bowl, or stand mixer, cream together butter and sugar, until light and fluffy – about 1 minute. Add egg, lemon zest, and poppy seeds. Beat for 30 seconds, scraping down the bowl as needed.

Mix All Ingredients Together: Then alternating flour mixture and milk mixture, combine all ingredients until just combined. Do not over mix. Transfer batter into a piping bag, or a ziplock bag with the tip cut off.

Bake the Donuts in Your Electric Donut Maker: Fill each donut indentation 3/4 full. Bake according to the manufacturer’s instructions, or until the donuts are slightly browned and spring back when touched. Remove from the oven, transfer to a cooling rack, and cool completely.

Tips for Success

Pretty quick and simple, no? I mentioned that these donuts are great for busy morning breakfasts, but they’re also a big hit at weekend brunches if you ever find yourself wondering what to bring to one!

Check out these brief tips and tricks before you get started for the best results with your mini poppy seed donuts:

  • If Using Mini Donut Pans: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, grease the donut pans, and mix the batter together as described. Then, fill each donut indentation 1/2 full. Bake for 6-8 minutes, or until the donuts are slightly browned and spring back when touched. Remove from the oven, transfer to a cooling rack, and cool completely. Then proceed with the icing!
  • Use Fresh Lemon Juice: This might seem obvious because you need lemon zest for the batter, but I just want to emphasize that the tangiest, best flavor comes from super fresh lemons/lemon juice!
  • Do I Have to Pipe the Batter? No, you could also spoon it into the donut indentations/pans. I like to use a piping bag, though, because the batter can be thick and thus a little tricky to work with.
  • If the Glaze is Too Thick: If you find the glaze to be too thick for your liking, add a tbsp of milk at a time until it thins out a little.

How to Glaze a Donut

Okay, now that you’ve got your baked lemon poppy seed donuts ready, it’s time to add another delicious layer of lemon flavor – the glaze! Adding glaze to your donuts is ridiculously easy:

  • Place wax paper under a wire rack to collect drippings for an easy clean up.
  • Then, in a medium bowl, whisk together the lemon juice and powdered sugar until smooth. Dip the top of each donut into the glaze and transfer to a wire rack to dry. Let them set for 10 minutes, then serve!

I actually like to dip my donuts in the glaze twice to make sure they’re good and lemon-y, but that extra step is totally up to you!

Stack of lemon poppy seed donuts on a plate.

How to Store Homemade Donuts

These lemon poppy seed donuts will keep for a day or two in an airtight container at room temperature, but they are at their best when fresh! If you want to save them for a longer period of time, you could try freezing them for up to a month in an airtight container.

Yield: 24 mini donuts

Glazed Lemon Poppy Seed Donuts

Baked Lemon Donuts Recipe

Glazed Lemon Poppy Seed Donuts are delicious mini donuts that are speckled with poppy seeds and covered in a tangy lemon glaze. These homemade baked donuts are so easy to make in a mini donut maker, and they're perfect for a sweet breakfast!

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 6 minutes
Additional Time 10 minutes
Total Time 26 minutes

Ingredients

Donuts

  • 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon whole milk
  • 2 tablespoons sour cream
  • 1 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon poppy seeds

Icing

  • juice of 1 lemon (about 2 tablespoons)
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar

Instructions

If using electric donut maker, preheat. If using donut pans, preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease donut pans.

In a small bowl, whisk together milk and sour cream. Set aside.

In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.

In large bowl, or stand mixer, cream together butter and sugar, until light and fluffy - about 1 minute. Add egg, lemon zest, and poppy seeds. Beat for 30 seconds, scraping down the bowl as needed.

Then alternating flour mixture and milk mixture, combine all ingredients until just combined. Do not over mix.

Transfer batter into a piping bag, or a ziplock bag with the tip cut off.

If using mini donut pans: Fill each donut indentation 1/2 full. Bake for 6-8 minutes, or until the donuts are slightly browned and spring back when touched. Remove from oven, transfer to a cooling rack, and cool completely.

If using the electric donut maker: Fill each donut indentation 3/4 full. Bake according to manufactures instructions, or until the donuts are slightly browned and spring back when touched. Remove from oven, transfer to a cooling rack, and cool completely.

For the icing: Place wax paper under a wire rack to collect drippings for an easy clean up.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the lemon juice and powdered sugar until smooth. Dip the top of each donut into the glaze and transfer to a wire rack to dry. Let set for 10 minutes and serve!

Will keep for a day or two in an airtight container, but are better fresh!

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Nutrition Information:

Yield:

12

Serving Size:

2

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 212Total Fat: 7gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 32mgSodium: 158mgCarbohydrates: 35gFiber: 1gSugar: 22gProtein: 3g

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Comments

55 Responses
  1. Megan

    Just wanted to thank you for this amazing recipe! I have just (to my utter delight) brought a midi donut pan and these have come out as my first ever attempt at home made donuts a treat! Flesh is soft and surprisingly donuty and with that wonderful lemony kick from the icing. Thanks so much for sharing

  2. Colleen

    Hi! I was just wondering, if you dont have a donut pan, would you be able to make doughnut holes with them if you piped them into hot oil? I dont have a doughnut pan, so I was just trying to make do with what I had. Thanks in advance!

    1. Jessica

      I think it would work ok! I can’t be positive since I haven’t tried it myself, but I don’t see why not. Just make sure and keep your oil at an even temp. Hate when the outside cooks to fast and you get undercooked donuts. 😉

  3. Erin

    These look amazing and I cannot wait to make some! I found you on Pinterest and I live in Jacksonville also, what a small world 🙂 Thanks for all of these great recipes.

  4. Laura *You Stir Me*

    oh my goodness, you were the most badass kid around! Definitely would have tried to be your friend if you lived on my block;) And these yummy doughnuts looks amazing! So glad I just found your blog – I love it!

  5. Kim - Liv Life

    Saw these beauties on Pinterest…. not only gorgeous photos, but a wonderful springtime recipe!! I’m SO ready for spring!

  6. sarah c

    Cake doughnuts definitely can be deep fried. I don’t know if this particular recipe will work that way, but there are lots of cake doughnut recipes that are fried. If this is a dough that can be rolled and cut, I bet you could fry it. If it’s more of a batter than pours, probably not.

    1. Jessica

      Thanks for the info Sarah!

      But this cake batter is definitely more of a pourable batter. To make, you have to pipe it into the cake pan with a ziplock bag or piping bag. It is not a dough that can be rolled and cut.

  7. Suzanne

    I tried this recipe out tonight on my mini donut pan and they were fabulous, I didn’t use poppy seeds tho, I chopped up dried blueberries and they were so good, kind of like the blueberry cake donuts at a donut shop 🙂 Thanks for the recipe.

    1. Jessica

      Oh fun! I love the idea of doing blueberries instead! ….and now I am thinking up ideas for topping them….what about a brown sugar crumble for on top? YUM!

  8. Sarah

    They look great, and I’d like to try them, but I don’t have a doughnut pan. Can I deep fry them? Or is that a fool question that exposes me as a Brooklyn grrrl?

    1. Jessica

      These are cake donuts, so I have never heard of them being fried. But maybe they can be? But I think the outside would burn before you would be able to cook the outside. 🙁

  9. Jeane

    There is NO better combination than poppy seeds and lemon!!! While blueberry and lemons come close, the poppy seeds are my absolute favorite! I will be making these this weekend!!!!

  10. Brooke (Baking with Basil)

    I’ve been looking for a recipe to finally use the mini donut pan I bought back in the spring! Love these!! You and that dress are too cute!!

  11. Stefanie

    Gorgeous! And my bathing suits all have polka dots 🙂 These look absolutely delicious. Love the lemon poppy seed combo in a donut!!

  12. Tracy

    These look so amazingly good. I have a large doughnut pan, and will definitely be making these in it. Also, I’m glad your kitty is feeling better – what a cutie! 🙂

  13. Melissa // thefauxmartha

    These look absolutely perfect! My mom always made lemon poppyseed muffins growing up. From a box. I forgave her 🙂

  14. Joanne

    Hmm maybe my polka dot obsession does also explain my love of lemon poppy seed anything! I think you’re onto something.

  15. nicole {sweet peony}

    so are you saying that it’s a problem that i’m still obsessed with sparkles, sequins and polka dots??

    btw, i’m totally jealous that you had a barbie corvette & slightly even more jealous that your sister had the old-school barbie equivalent of a hemi engine! haha

    i am obsessed with these donuts. i want them now! so pretty & cute 🙂

  16. The Mrs @ Success Along the Weigh

    I almost wee’d myself over the lawn mower battery. That’s hardcare yo but what else would befit such a bad ass dress?

    I’d better get a dang donut pan for Christmas!

  17. Jennifer @ Mother Thyme

    I have been totally obsessed with donuts lately and these look fabulous! Looking forward to giving these a try soon! 🙂

  18. Emily ~So Domesticated~

    Jealous!!!…. I so wanted one of those cars growing up!

    Very pretty photos…. your donuts look scrumptious!

  19. Laura

    OMG, I was just thinking about making some lemon poppyseed cake. This looks so much better! Also, for the record – I <3 polka dots too.

  20. Cassie @ bake your day

    I TOTALLY had that same car. No joking. That picture just took me waaaaay back. Love these donuts…love them even more after I saw your cat all over them last night. I’m still not over polka dots and sparkles…no shame at all!

  21. DessertForTwo

    Didn’t we discover that you’re Czech too? Poppy seeds are so Czech! Love this!!

    And bring on the old pictures! Love ’em!

  22. Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga

    oh it’s awesome to know you made these in a babycakes maker! let me tell you that I have the babycakes donut maker, donut hole maker, and real donut pans in both full size and mini size. Needless to say, Ive gone on a serious donut lovi’ bonanza the past few months and i love that this recipe works in the makers!

    Do you find that you can use the same recipe in regular ole donut pans vs. the electric makers? I find that sometimes it works, other times not as well…

  23. Julie @ Table for Two

    hey gurrrl, sweet car, can i get a ride? haha, polka dots are fab, i LOVE them 🙂 you’re so cute! these donuts — lemon & poppy seed..a great combo if i ever saw one! so, i’ll trade you chicken pot pie fillings for a couple of these? 😉

  24. Priyanka

    I love doughnut…..I literally survived my college life on them… however I miss them now
    Thanks for sharing….now I can make and have them always.
    The photos are stunning as always 🙂

  25. Kathryn

    Polka dots are pretty much the best thing ever. I hadn’t even thought about baking with them though but these are so darn cute.

  26. Chung-Ah @ Damn Delicious

    Thank you for posting the recipe. When I read the post about your adorable cat, I couldn’t find the recipe and I didn’t want to be overbearing and ask about because these magic donuts made your cat feel better!

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Jessica
I'm a trial & error, self taught, sugar addict who thankfully learned how to survive in the kitchen! I am also a wife, mama of 3.
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