Lemon Poppy Seed Sugar Cookies





Happy Friday! I hope everyone has fun plans for the weekend (sitting inside watching movies all weekends counts as fun plans). We finally got a little break from the crazy heat wave, the only time I really enjoy when its 100 and humid is if I’m at the pool. Not when I have to run errands over my lunch break and the inside of my car is so uncomfortably hot. If I’m not surrounded by some area of water than I highly prefer it to be 70-80 with some breeze.

I didn’t really want to be around a hot oven, as outside was already as hot as an oven. But I just happened to have some beautiful fresh lemons sitting around, as well as a jar of poppy seeds, and flour, and butter, and sugar, well you get the point. I had to make these cookies, they were calling my name. Plus I live in an 1000 sq ft apartment, so it doesn’t take too long to cool down.

I think lemon flavored desserts are often fairly refreshing and lite, opposed to something that is full of chocolate and super decadent. Another reason why I had to make them! There is also just something about the combination of lemon and poppy seeds, they just work together! These cookies baked up super quick for me, but my first batch came out a little thin, which can result in hard, crunchy cookies.

So I recommend not flattening the cookies dough at all, and also pull the cookies out after about 10 minutes, now they might seem way to soft to even remove from the baking sheet. But let them cool 1-2 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack and they will be set up enough to hold their shape, but they will still be soft. Don’t bake the cookies until they are hard straight out of the oven!










Can I refrigerate my cookie dough?

Yes! You absolutely can, say you need to bake the cookies tomorrow, but you have more time to actually make the dough today. Make the dough the same way you would, form it into a ball and place it in a mixing bowl, cover the dough tight with plastic wrap and place in the fridge until you are ready to bake them. Once you are ready to bake, remove the dough from the fridge 25-30 minutes before baking, this allows the dough to soften enough to from. Bake as you normally would.

Or, you can prepare the baking sheet as you would, roll the prepared dough out into pre portioned balls and place evenly on the cookie sheet. Than wrap with plastic wrap and store in the fridge until read to bake, allow to sit at room temperature slightly before baking. Bake according the recipe as well.

Do I need to add lemon juice and lemon zest?

No, you do not have to add both. I would say if you are going to pick one or the other I would stick with the lemon juice so you get lemon flavor throughout the whole cookie. But I do really like adding in the zest as well, because one, you are already using the lemon, you might as well put the zest to good use. Also I love the little flecks of color the zest adds to the cookies and it gives an even stronger lemon taste.









Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F, line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside. In a small mixing bowl combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder , and salt, stir to combine. In a large mixing bowl using either a stand mixer or a hand mixer cream the butter and 3/4 cup of sugar. Cream until smooth, 2-3 minutes.

Add in the egg yolk, lemon juice, lemon zest, and vanilla and mix until combined. Slowly add in the dry ingredients, mix until combined, but do not over mix. Fold in the poppy seeds using a rubber spatula. Using a measuring spoon or a cookie scoop, scoop out even sized pieces of dough, about 1 1/2 inches.

Place them on the prepared baking sheets, evenly arranged about 2 inches apart. Bake at 350 degrees for 9-11. Refer to my note above about when to pull the cookies, out of the oven. They should be set and golden brown, but they will still be gooey. Allow to cool slightly on a cooling rack before eating. Store in an airtight container for up to 5 days.



Print Recipe
0 from 0 votes

Lemon Poppy Seed Sugar Cookies

Prep Time10 mins
Baking Time10 mins
Total Time20 mins
Course: Dessert
Servings: 12 Cookies


  • Hand or Stand Mixer
  • Cookie Scoop
  • Baking Sheet
  • Parchment Paper


  • 1 Stick of unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup Flour
  • 3/4 cup Sugar
  • 1 tbsp Brown sugar
  • 2 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp Lemon Juice
  • 1 Egg yolk
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1/4 tsp Baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp Baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • 3 tbsp Poppy Seeds
  • 1/4 cup Sugar, for rolling the cookie dough


  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  • In a small bowl, combine flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Whisk together to combine.
  • In a medium bowl, using a hand or stand mixer, cream the butter and 3/4 c sugar until light and fluffy, 2-3 minutes. Add in egg yolk, lemon zest, lemon juice, and vanilla, beat again until combined.
  • Slowly pour in the dry ingredients and beat just until combined, careful not to over mix. Gently fold in the poppy seeds using a rubber spatula. Using a measuring spoon or a cookie scoop, scoop the cookie dough into about 1 1/2 inch balls and roll into the remaining 1/4 cup sugar and place about 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheet.
  • Bake 9-11 minutes. They will be very soft at first but they will set up as they cool.
  • Store in an air tight container or freeze.

Leave a Reply