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Two Unique Touches Make This The Best Poppy Seed Bread Ever

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Last Modified: March 5, 2020
Published: March 5, 2020

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poppy seed bread

One Taste Of This Bread And It Will Be Loaf At First Bite

I got my first poppy seed bread recipe from my sister-in-law Margaret who is a fantastic cook. Long ago, she introduced me to this moist, indescribably yummy treat.

But this recipe? It's got an "it factor" with two special touches, a tangy lemon glaze and crunchy sliced almonds.

Right Now's A Good Time To Bake The Best Poppy Seed Bread Ever

There's something about spring. A zillion things, really. The way the lawns begin to blush green, the way the trees get fat, promising buds, and tulips and crocuses poke their noses up out of the dirt. New life! Hallelujah!

It also awakens taste buds that have slept through winter, satisfied with casseroles and oatmeal. Spring makes us hungry for greens! Hungry for fruit! Hungry for strawberries and LEMON!

Apparently, I've had a hankering for it, because a search in my spice drawer yielded THREE containers of poppy seed! I must have been wandering down the spice aisle thinking, "Oh boy, some lemon poppy seed bread sure sounds good." Then, I threw some poppy seeds in my cart. Three different times.

So today, I was determined to make this quick bread, a hall-of-fame recipe! The very best poppy seed bread ever!

Poppy Seed Bread Tastes Like It's Hard To Make But It's Not

This time around, I developed my own version. Some recipes call for orange juice instead of lemon juice. I'm sure they are both wonderful, but my love affair with lemon goes back for years. I get weak in the knees at the mention of lemon.

And almonds? I'm nuts about them, so I couldn't resist trying a crunchy, yummy topping, can you blame me?

Start with a charming speckled batter that mixes up quickly and has a consistency like cake batter. How fun are those freckles?

Then, pour it into bread pans, muffin tins, or mini loaf pans.

batter in pans

Like my battered old bread pans? I do, they have served me well for over 30 years.

This recipe makes two full-sized loaves, several mini loaves, or about 22 muffins. Just adjust the baking time. Grease only the bottom of the pans. This way, the batter can climb up the sides of the pan and get tall.

Wow These Loaves Are As Beautiful As They Are Delicious

poopy seed loaves before glazing

Honestly, it would still be fantastic bread if you skip the glaze. But why would you choose to miss out on more tangy lemon and crunchy almonds? Are you crazy? Here's a handy hint. Use a little cream pitcher or a glass measuring cup with a lip to pour on the glaze. It makes the job easier.

glazed poppy seed loaves

Glaze it right in the pan! One thin layer of glaze, then almonds, then another thin layer glues those crunchy babies right on top!

two poppy seed loaves

Let the glazed loaves cool completely before removing from pans. More hints can be found in the recipe that follows!

poppy seed bread

Isn't it byootifull??

Just look at those adorable speckles and tender crumb!

Yield: 32 slices

Poppy Seed Bread With Lemon Glaze and Almonds

poppy seed bread

A cake-like loaf with a moist crumb, a tangy lemon glaze with crunchy almonds, and an enticing marriage of flavors.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes


  • 3 cups flour
  • 2 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 3 Tbsp poppy seed
  • 1 1/2 tsp almond extract
  • 1 1/2 tsp butter flavoring
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 5-6 drops yellow food coloring (optional)
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp butter flavoring
  • 1/2 tsp almond extract
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2-3 Tbsp sliced almonds


  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease bottom only of two standard 9" x 5" loaf pans.
  2. Mix dry ingredients together, then add eggs, extracts, milk, and oil and stir together just until all ingredients are moistened, scraping down the sides of the bowl once or twice. If you use a mixer, use low speed. You do not want to over-mix. The mixture will have the consistency of cake batter.
  3. Pour in loaf pans and bake for approximately one hour until toothpick or cake tester comes out clean.
  4. Make the glaze while the bread is baking because you will put it on the bread while it's still pretty warm. I like to put the glaze in a small pitcher for easy, even pouring.
  5. When the bread comes out of the oven and while still in the pan, let it cool for 5 minutes, then poke holes in it with a skewer or fork with skinny tines and pour glaze over the top. If you want to garnish with sliced almonds, glaze lightly, add almonds and glaze again to make the almonds stick.
  6. Let cool completely in the pan. To remove from pan run knife along edges of the loaf to loosen and turn the pan on side, tap and remove.
  7. Makes 2 nice loaves that can be cut into 16 slices. Freezes well, in fact, freezing seems to enhance the flavors.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 152Total Fat: 2gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 19mgSodium: 148mgCarbohydrates: 31gFiber: 1gSugar: 21gProtein: 3g

P.S. If you have trouble finding butter-flavored extract, surprise, surprise! Menards carries Watkins products, and their butter flavoring is the best of the best!

This would be a perfect thing to serve at a spring tea or shower! The bunnies are a-comin'! Hop to it! What's your favorite quick bread recipe?

I have the cutest friend named Jean. She is an amazing cook and baker! She really made me giggle when she told me she always thought lemon desserts were only for Memorial Day and beyond. You know, sort of like wearing white. Don't waste another day. Bake it now!

If you enjoyed this recipe today, please share it on your social media accounts like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest. I’d really be tickled and ever so grateful, thank you! 

If you haven’t already, check out my Facebook page where I’ll be posting easy, delicious and family-friendly recipes every week!

Love, GB (Betty Streff)

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One comment on “Two Unique Touches Make This The Best Poppy Seed Bread Ever”

  1. […] you have a favorite quick bread you make in the spring? You might like my poppyseed bread recipe, loaded with a crunchy almond topping and a tangy lemon glaze! If you’ve got a favorite one, […]

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