Oats are nutritious, affordable, and shelf-stable; what not to love? However, neither of my kids eats oatmeal, so I try to add them to baked goods. These lemon oat muffins are fluffy and sweet with a hint of tartness. Both of my kids gave thumbs up, and my husband devoured them every time I made a batch during recipe testing. Last time, he told me not to change a thing in the recipe and that it was perfect as is.
Don’t omit the lemon zest.
Zest is the outermost layer (yellow part) of the peel. You might be tempted to skip the lemon zest, but it contains so much flavor. These muffins without lemon zest are not the same.
Whenever I’m using zest, I make sure to wash the citrus fruit very well with vegetable/fruit wash. Then using a microplane, lightly grate the zest without going into the bitter white part. I highly recommend getting one if you don’t have a microplane in your kitchen! It’s great for zesting, grating parmesan cheese on pasta, mincing ginger, and so much more!
Add-ins to these lemon oat muffins
These muffins go well with berries and poppy seeds. I like to use frozen berries since fresh berries can be pretty pricy. Toss the frozen berries with a tablespoon of flour to prevent the muffins from getting soggy. I add the berries to the batter without defrosting, and they turn out fine.
Add 2 tbsp of poppy seeds to the batter to make these muffins into lemon poppy seed muffins! To bring out the poppy seeds flavor, you should toast the seeds before adding them to your baked goods. When I get a new bottle of poppy seeds, I toast them in a dry pan for 2~3 minutes until fragrant. Then I store them in an airtight container and keep them in the fridge.
Also, check out Oat Cookies, the healthy way.
Lemon Oat Muffins
These lemon oat muffins are fluffy and sweet with a hint of tartness.
- 1 1/4 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
- 1 cup plain yogurt
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 2 tbsp honey
- 1/3 cup neutral-tasting oil ex. avocado oil
- 1 egg beaten
- zest and juice from 1 large lemon
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- optional 1 cup of frozen berries + 1 tbsp of flour
Position rack in the middle and preheat oven to 400 F.
In a bowl, mix oats, yogurt, sugar, honey, oil, egg, lemon zest and juice, and vanilla extract. Let the mixture sit for 5 minutes for the oats to hydrate. When zesting a lemon, lightly zest the yellow part using a micro pane. The white part of the lemon can be bitter, so don’t go too deep.
In a separate bowl, mix flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Pour the dry mixture into the oat mixture and mix until just combined.
(Optional) Mix 1 tbsp of flour with frozen berries. Add to the batter and gently combine.
Line a muffin tin with paper cups. Distribute the batter to each cup.
Bake for 10 minutes at 400 F. Then lower the temperature to 350 F and bake for additional 12 minutes.
Let the muffins sit for 5 minutes in the tin to firm up a bit. Transfer to a wire rack and cool the muffins before serving. Muffins will continue to firm up while cooling.