Vegan Lemon Poppy Seed Cake

I spent the last four Thursdays taking a beginners sewing class. I’ve sewn a few things in my lifetime (quilts, pajama pants, a purse) but I’ve never actually made anything 100% on my own. My mom was always by my side, fixing or finishing things up when I would get frustrated. I’m a big girl now, so I figured it was time to review the basics and get comfortable with the sewing machine again in hopes to do a few projects that I can call my own.

My sewing class was filled with three women, similar to me in that they had a bit of background but just wanted to get more comfortable actually hemming or making something completely on their own. Cutting fabric is scary if you don’t know what you are doing!

During every sewing class, our teacher, Lily, would serve us some delicious green tea. We asked her where she bought it in hopes to buy some for ourselves, but her tea was all the way from her dad’s tea shop in China. Our conversation then turned further away from sewing class, onto Chinese tea exports, which then blossomed into opium exports, which then got us talking about poppies. Talk about poppies and opium reminded me of the Seinfeld episode where Elaine fails her drug test for her new job, and it was all because she ate too many poppyseed muffins. The ladies hadn’t seen the episode, but this conversation left me with an unexplainable longing for a poppy seed baked good. Straight from class, I headed to the store so I could fulfill this weird craving.

See how my mind works? I can always relate anything I’m doing back to food. Because food is always top of mind, even in sewing class. 

This is going to be a new staple in my sweet breads repertoire because it’s easy, delicious, and vegan. Combine wet ingredients, dry ingredients, and then combine wet and dry. Bake. So easy. 

 Vegan lemon poppy seed cake. Or bread. Whatever you want to call it is fine by me. 

Elaine probably won’t be passing her drug test again after a loaf of this bad boy. 

Vegan Lemon Poppy Seed Cake
Vegan Lemon Poppy Seed Cake is great for breakfast, snack or dessert!

Serves 12

Prep Time- 15 min

Cook Time- 35 min

Total Time- 50 min


  1. 1 cup rice milk
  2. 3 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  3. lemon zest from 1 large lemon (or 2 if you like more lemon flavor)
  4. ¼ cup unsweetened applesauce
  5. ¼ cup vegetable oil (or melted coconut oil)
  6. 2 cups all-purpose flour
  7. ¾ cup granulated sugar
  8. 2 ½ tablespoons poppy seeds
  9. 1 tablespoon baking powder
  10. ¼ tablespoon salt


  1. Preheat the oven to 375F or 190C. In a medium bowl, combine the rice milk and lemon juice. Let sit for 5-10 minutes to create a “buttermilk”.
  2. While the milk and lemon mixture is resting, combine the flour, sugar, poppy seeds, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. Make a small well in the flour mixture.
  3. After the 5-10 minutes, stir in the lemon zest, applesauce, and oil to the lemon milk mixture. Pour the wet ingredients into the well. Lightly stir the ingredients together until combined.
  4. Pour the batter into your bread loaf pan. Bake for 30-40 minutes, or until a toothpick is inserted to the center of the bread and comes out clean. Let cool on a wire cooling rack for 10-15 minutes before serving.


  1. These can easily be made into muffins, but remember to cut the bake time down to 15-20 minutes.

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