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Lemon Poppy Seed Cake

Light, moist and zesty vegan lemon and poppy seed cake topped with a simple lemon icing. Packed with fresh lemon juice, zest and poppy seeds. 

Vegan Lemon Poppy Seed Cake #vegancake #lemon #poppyseed #recipe #cake

Lemon cake will always be one of my favourite flavours. It’s a british classic and I’ve grown up eating plenty of lemon drizzle cakes!

Vegan Lemon Poppy Seed Cake Mixture

I love pairing lemon in cakes, this lemon and elderflower cake is one of the most popular cake recipes on the blog. 

Adding poppy seed to cake means it’s automatically healthy right? They add a lovely nutty crunch and pair with the lemon perfectly. 

The best thing about loaf cakes is that you don’t have to worry about layering sponges.

Simply spoon the simple lemon icing on top and you’re good to go! 

Vegan Lemon Poppy Seed Cake Mixture

This is the perfect cake to have with an afternoon cup of tea. Or breakfast. Or for dessert. Of course having three slices in one day is totally acceptable! 

You wouldn’t be able to resist this lemon poppy seed loaf either, it never lasts long in my house! 

Vegan Lemon Poppy Seed Cake #vegancake #lemon #poppyseed #recipe #cake

How to make a vegan cake:

My favourite swaps for a vegan cake are using plant milk and a neutral flavoured oil. They make for super moist cakes and you won’t notice dairy or eggs are missing.

Making this lemon poppy seed cake is so simple. For your dry ingredients you’re going to mix together self raising flour, baking powder, caster sugar and poppy seeds. 

Vegan Lemon Poppy Seed Cake #vegancake #lemon #poppyseed #recipe #cake

In a separate bowl mix together your wet ingredients – rapeseed oil (or canola oil), unsweetened almond milk (or soy milk), lemon juice and lemon zest. 

Next, pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mixed until just combined. Pour into a lined loaf tin and pop in the oven for 45-55 minutes.

To make the simple lemon icing simply mix lemon juice with icing sugar and mix until a thick icing forms.

Once the cake has cooled, spoon over the top of the cake with the back of a spoon until some drips over the edges.

Vegan Lemon Poppy Seed Cake #vegancake #lemon #poppyseed #recipe #cake

Sprinkle some poppy seeds and lemon zest on top and voila! Dig straight in and enjoy with a cup of tea!

For more vegan cakes you may enjoy these:

Apple Cake with Maple Icing

Gin and Blackberry Cake

Upside-down pear and almond cake

Lemon and elderflower cake

As always if you make this vegan lemon poppyseed cake be sure to leave me a comment, rate this recipe and tag me on Instagram. I love seeing all your photos of my recipe recreations!

Don’t forget to follow along on FacebookPinterest and Instagram – I’d love to see you all there!


Vegan Lemon Poppy Seed Cake #lemon #poppyseed #cake #vegan
Vegan Lemon Poppy Seed Cake #vegancake #lemon #poppyseed #recipe #cake

Lemon Poppy Seed Drizzle Cake

Yield: 1 loaf
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes

Light, moist and zesty vegan lemon poppy seed cake. With a simple lemon icing this is the perfect cake to serve for afternoon tea!


  • 300g self raising flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 185g caster sugar
  • 2 tbsp poppy seeds
  • 120ml rapeseed/canola oil
  • 230ml unsweetened almond milk
  • Juice of 4 lemons (~125ml)
  • Zest of 3 lemons (~3 tbsp)
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence


  • 170g/3/4 cup icing sugar
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice


  1. Preheat oven to 180C/350F. Line and grease a 9x5" loaf tin.
  2. Sift flour and baking powder into a bowl. Add the sugar and poppy seeds and mix with a wooden spoon.
  3. In a separate bowl mix together the oil, milk, lemon juice, lemon zest and vanilla,
  4. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until just combined.
  5. Pour into the loaf tin and place in the oven for 45-55 minutes. It should be starting to turn golden brown on the edges. Do the toothpick test and once it comes out clean, its ready.
  6. Make the icing by mixing the icing sugar and lemon together until it forms a thick icing. Spoon onto the cake once cooled with the back of a spoon.
  7. Top with some poppy seeds and lemon zest ans serve! Will keep in an air tight container for 2-3 days.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 434Total Fat: 16gSaturated Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 14gSodium: 529mgCarbohydrates: 70gFiber: 3gSugar: 38gProtein: 5g

Did you make this recipe?

Let me know in the comments or tag me on Instagram @cupfulofkale


Monday 29th of May 2023

So today I tried this recipe and it turned out perfect. I love the taste and the poppy seeds make it look pretty. Great combination, thank you!


Tuesday 30th of May 2023

Hi Helena, thanks so much for your comment. I am so glad it turned out well, the combo is so good together, I must make a loaf again soon! Tamsin xo


Wednesday 30th of March 2022

This recipe is amazing! The cake comes out perfect and delicious! Thank you so much for sharing!


Friday 1st of April 2022

Hi Giuliana, so glad you enjoyed it so much! Thanks for your comment :) Tamsin xo


Monday 27th of September 2021

Hi! Can I make this recipe into a 4 layered cake? Would it hold the weight? Maybe double or triple the recipe? Thank you!


Monday 4th of October 2021

@Tamsin, Hi!!!! I baked this and made a smaller cake! It came out as a 4 layer cake and used a 6 inch. It was sooo good! With one piece it was perfect lol, the lemon taste was delicious and not so overpowering. I made a raspberry compote for the filling and a lemon cream cheese frosting. Thank you so much for this delicious recipe!


Tuesday 28th of September 2021

Hi Cristy, it should work yes but if you are doing more than two layers you will need to use dowels and cake boards for support. I would say that double the recipe would make two 8 inch layers, Tamsin xo


Saturday 5th of June 2021

I’ve made this cake twice now, my son is the only vegan in our house but we all love this cake, thank you for sharing the recipe


Monday 7th of June 2021

Hi Sharon, thank you so much for your comment! So glad you all enjoyed it :) Tamsin xo


Tuesday 11th of May 2021

Wow. This is the best lemon and poppyseed cake I've ever had (don't tell my granny)! I cooked in about double the size of the loaf tin and added a bit more baking powder and plain flour. I also only had vegan butter so subbed that for the oil. Cooked for an extra 5-10 mins and left in the tin outside the oven for 20 min before putting on cooling rack. So moist and somehow both light and dense. A new favourite that I'm sure I will be making again and again. Cheers!


Wednesday 12th of May 2021

Hi Leah, aww thanks so much for your comment, I'm so glad you enjoyed it!! Thanks for letting me know what subs you made and worked :) Hope you'll be enjoying it for years to come! Tamsin xo

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