These café-style blueberry and lemon muffins are impossible to resist! Extra soft, fluffy and moist muffin, packed with sweet and juicy blueberries and heaps of fresh lemon flavour. Each muffin has a topping of streusel crumble and sugary coating for an extra crunch, to create the unbelievably delicious experience.
It's an incredibly quick and easy recipe, where everything is simply mixed by hand, without any fancy equipment. Lemon and blueberry muffins stay soft and moist for days, and are perfect addition to a warm cup of tea or coffee!
This recipe is ideal whenever you fancy a quick and fuss-free treat that can be ready in under an hour. It is loosely based on my banana and blueberry muffins recipe, and it's just one of those recipes that is great to bake all year round.
Just like most of my muffin recipes, these blueberry muffins are made with the use of oil and buttermilk. This is what gives them that wonderful, soft and fluffy texture and allows them to stay moist, even days after they were baked. The streusel topping is optional, but highly recommended. It only takes a couple of minutes to prepare, and adds a lovely sweet, crunchy and buttery flavour.
Ingredients and substitutions
- Flour - I typically use the self-raising flour in all of mu muffins, but you could use plain/ all purpose flour instead. If you are going to use the plain flour, just remember to add 2 teaspoon of baking powder to it.
- Sugar - You will notice that there are three different types of sugar in this recipe: soft light brown sugar, caster sugar and demerara sugar. You don't necessarily have to use all three, as caster/ granulated sugar alone will do fine. Soft brown sugar adds more flavour, while the demerara sugar adds that fantastic crunch.
- Buttermilk - My go-to ingredient for most of my muffin recipes. Buttermilk is what makes these lemon blueberry muffins soft, fluffy and moist. You can also use plain yoghurt, sour cream or even crème fraiche instead (same amount). Or make your own buttermilk by milk with lemon juice or vinegar (check out the recipe notes for the instructions).
- Oil - I like to use mild-flavour vegetable oil, but rapeseed oi or olive oil will also work. Alternatively, you can replace the oil with melted butter, but it will alter the taste and the texture of this bake.
- Blueberries - I used fresh blueberries, but frozen ones are fine to use too. If frozen blueberries are your choice, there is no need to defrost them first.
- Lemons - This muffin recipe is calling for fresh lemon zest and lemon juice. Heaps of lemon zest is the secret to create the most wonderful, fragrant and delicious lemon flavour.
The topping for my easy blueberry and lemon muffins is made from plain flour, demerara sugar, cinnamon, salt and melted butter. I like to make my streusel with melted butter, but feel free to use your favourite crumble or streusel mix instead.
Scroll to the bottom of this post for the recipe card and the full list of the ingredients.
Start with the streusel/ crumble topping. Simply mix all of the ingredients in the small bowl and place it in the fridge, while you prepare the muffins.
Grab a couple of mixing bowls, one large for the dry ingredients and one medium for the wet ingredients.
Add the caster/ granulated sugar and lemon zest into the large bowl and use your fingers to rub the zest into the sugar briefly.
Mix in the rest of the dry ingredients and toss in the blueberries.
Hint: Rubbing the lemon zest into the sugar first will make sure that every last bit of the essential oil from the zest is released into the sugar. This will create more of that irresistibly bright scent and citrus flavour.
In a medium bowl, combine all of the wet ingredients.
Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ones and fold the mixture few times until it is just combined.
Hint: Try to use muffin cases, instead of the cupcake liners. Muffin cases are larger, and they will accommodate more batter in them. I like these tulip-style muffin cups as they yield beautifully tall muffins with perfect tops.
Divide the batter between muffin cups. Top each muffin with streusel mixture and sprinkle with some demerara sugar.
Bake the muffins for 25-30 minutes or until they are golden brown and springy to touch.
- Gluten free blueberry and lemon muffins - Swap the flour for gluten-free self-raising flour. Alternatively use the gluten-free plain flour, and add the baking powder and baking soda to it. Make sure that the raising agents are also gluten free. Swap the plain flour in the streusel topping (if using) for a gluten free version too.
- Extra ingredients - Feel free to add some extra nuts or chocolate chips to the muffin mix, if you'd like to experiment with some additional flavours and textures.
- Dairy- free muffins - Swap the buttermilk and soured cream for the coconut milk and cream. Use the dairy-free butter for the crumble topping. Eggs can be swapped for an apple sauce to turn this recipe into vegan version.
- Muffin tin - I normally make these blueberry muffins in my jumbo muffin tin. It's just a perfect size to create the bakery-style, bigger and taller muffins. You can also use a classic 12-hole muffin/ cupcake tin instead.
- Muffin cases - As mentioned above, I like to use tulip cases in this blueberry muffin recipe. Tulip cases are bigger and allow you to bake taller muffins with perfect tops. This recipe will make 12 muffins exactly, if using the tulip cases. If you are using the standard muffin wraps, you will get more muffins as they will not hold as much batter as the tulip ones do.
- Microplate or a fine grater - To make the lemon zest. I use my trusted microplate, as it makes the finest zest, but you can use box grater with fine holes side or the sharp grater teeth instead.
- Large ice cream scoop - To easily divide the muffin batter between the cases. When using the tulip cases, I fill each one of them with exactly one full scoop. For smaller muffin cases, I recommend filling them up to ⅔ full.
These easy, bakery style lemon blueberry muffins will keep well for up to 5 days. Store any leftovers in the airtight container at room temperature.
They are also suitable for freezing for up to 1 month. To freeze, wrap each muffin in a double layer of clingfilm and transfer to the freezer. Thaw at room temperature for a couple of hours.
As always, do not overmix the muffin batter. Few folds to combine the dry and the wet ingredients together will do. If there are some streaks of flour remaining, it is absolutely fine.
If you are using standard size muffin wrappers, I recommend filling the each case up to ⅔ full, with roughly about 2 tablespoons of batter, and baking them for 25-28 minutes.
For the bigger muffin cases (tulip-style), fill each with 4 tablespoons of batter (one large ice cream scoop) and bake for about 30 minutes or until springy to touch and golden brown.
Frequently asked questions
I wouldn't necessarily say these muffins are healthy, but they are definitely healthier than some other options out there. This recipe use the oil instead of butter, which makes the fat content slightly less. You can also make them healthier by reducing the sugar to your liking or even replacing it with the sweetener, and skipping the crumble topping.
Once the muffins are baked, allow them to cool in the muffin tin only for a couple of minutes or so. You basically want he tin to cool enough, so you can handle it. After that, immediately transfer the muffins from the tin into a cooling rack. Leaving the muffins to cool in the tin will trap the steam at the bottom of each muffin cup, which is what causes them to go soggy at the bottom.
Some muffin batters are very high in sugar, which can caramelize during the baking and stick to the liners or the muffin tin. If the batter is also low in fat, it tends to stick to the cases more than the muffin batters with higher fat content. This recipe is relatively low in sugar and it uses oil as well as buttermilk, the combination of which should not cause any problems with the batter sticking to the paper cases.
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If you try this recipe, or any other recipe on Anna Banana, please take a moment to rate the recipe and/ or leave me a comment. I love hearing from you, but it also helps other readers who are thinking of making the recipe.
Blueberry and Lemon Muffins
- muffin tin
- 12 muffin cases
- 2 mixing bowls
- large ice cream scoop optional
For the streusel topping (optional):
- 70 g plain flour
- 40 g demerara sugar
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 40 g butter melted
For the muffins:
- 140 g caster sugar
- 2 tablespoon lemon zest (from 3-4 large lemons)
- 70 g soft light brown sugar
- 300 g self- raising flour *see notes for the alternative
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 200 g blueberries
- 200 g buttermilk *see notes for the alternative
- 60 g soured cream
- 120 g vegetable oil
- 2 large eggs
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract optional
- 30 g demerara sugar optional
- Preheat the oven to 170°C and line the muffin tin with muffin cases. If using the tulip-style muffin cases, you should get exactly 12 muffins. If using smaller muffin cups, you will get roughly 15-17 muffins.
To make the crumble/ streusel topping:
- Mix all of the ingredients in a small bowl using a fork. Ideally you want a combination of small and larger clumps of the crumble. Transfer it to the fridge, while you prepare the muffin batter.70 g plain flour, 40 g demerara sugar, ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon, ¼ teaspoon salt, 40 g butter
- Add the caster sugar and lemon zest into a large bowl and use your fingers to rub the zest into the sugar briefly. Add the soft light brown sugar, flour, baking soda, salt and mix to combine. Add the blueberries and toss them briefly in the flour mixture.140 g caster sugar, 2 tablespoon lemon zest (from 3-4 large lemons), 70 g soft light brown sugar, 300 g self- raising flour, ½ teaspoon baking soda, ½ teaspoon salt, 200 g blueberries
- In a medium bowl or a jug, combine together the buttermilk, soured cream, oil, eggs, lemon juice and vanilla. Mix well to combine.200 g buttermilk, 60 g soured cream, 120 g vegetable oil, 2 large eggs, 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Add the wet ingredients into the bowl with the dry ingredients and using a spoon or a spatula, fold everything together until just combined. Few streaks of flour remaining are fine.
- Divide the batter between the muffin cases. Top each muffin with the crumble mixture and sprinkle with some extra demerara sugar (optional). Bake for 25-30 minutes until golden brown, springy to the touch and the toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool in the tin for a couple of minutes. Remove from the tin and transfer into a cooling rack to cool completely.
Please note that all my recipes are developed and tested in metric grams. I recommend that you use digital scales for a more accurate results. I have provided a conversion to US customary in the recipe but please note that I haven’t tested using this method.
- If using frozen blueberries, there is no need to defrost them first. Simply add them straight from the freezer to the dry ingredients.
- I recommend using a jumbo muffin tin in this recipe, if possible. Alternatively, a standard 12-hole muffin tin can also be used.
- Tulip-style muffin cases work best in this recipe. They can accommodate more muffin batter, resulting in bigger, taller, bakery-style muffins. If you are using standard muffin wrappers, fill them up to ⅔ full. Depending on the type of the muffin cases used, this recipe yields between 12-17 muffins.
- Self raising flour substitute: Mix 300g of plain/ all purpose flour with 2 teaspoon of baking powder and ½ teaspoon of baking soda.
- Make your own buttermilk: Mix 200g (200ml) of milk of choice with 1 tablespoon of lemon juice or vinegar and set aside for 5 minutes. The mixture should curdle and become a bit lumpy. Use as per the recipe instructions.
- The crumble/ streusel topping is optional, but will add a fantastic crunch and more delicious flavour to these muffins.
This recipe was originally published in July 2016. It has been updated with the new photos, video, revised recipe and tips in October 2022.