grapefruit poppy seed muffins on cake stand

So. These were not the muffins I intended to post. The ones I intended? They were healthy. They were made with 100% whole wheat flour and Greek yogurt and less sugar and topped with a sprinkling of turbinado sugar.

And those muffins, when they came out of the oven, looked like craggy rocks and tasted like cardboard. Boo hiss.

Instead, I give you these glazed grapefruit poppy seed muffins! The final product. The BETTER product, trust. The product that still has some whole wheat flour in it and less sugar and reduced fat milk but also, all the yums (like that grapefruit glaze, yeahhhhh). Which is really what I was going for all along.

sliced grapefruit halves

The recipe for these muffins is a variation on the orange almond poppy seed bread from my eCookbook, Quick Bread Love, except with a few changes:

1) Muffins instead of a loaf, obviously.
2) Grapefruit zest and juice instead of orange zest and juice.
3) A fraction of the sugar.
4) Some of the all-purpose flour swapped for some whole wheat pastry flour.

mixing grapefruit poppy seed muffin batter in bowl

I just couldn’t get the idea of the grapefruit/poppy seed combo out of my head when I passed by a bin full of glorious grapefruit at Target (I mean really, where else would I be this time of year when it’s a -22 degree wind chill out besides in my house, employing the human burrito blanket situation + cozy slippers with a space heater in my face). And then, suddenly, I had a hankering for carbs (you’re shocked, I know). And carbs soon narrowed down to muffins. But I kinda wanted some healthy-ish muffins, because of that whole intentional eating thing I’m trying to do. And so I procured said grapefruit, jotted down some notes on healthy swaps for the muffins and got to work.

grapefruit poppy seed muffins on cooling rack

And that’s when those ish cardboard muffins happened. And that’s the last time I shall speak of them so we can talk about happier things, like round two of muffins that taste way more amazing. And are still kinda healthy, too, holla!

So here’s what you need to do: Go get some grapefruit (seriously, it’s so super delicious right now I can’t even deal). Stir the zest and juice into a muffin batter along with poppy seeds and all the other good stuff. Scoop them into muffin tins. Bake. Cool. MAKE DAT GLAZE. Dip cooled muffins into the grapefruit glaze, let the glaze set, lick the glaze bowl clean while you let the glaze set. Finally, eat a muffin. Or five. You can eat more because they’re healthy — that’s how it works, right?

grapefruit poppy seed muffins on cake stand

Tangy + tart + citrusy + sweet + fluffy + glaze-y. These are a few of my favorite things.

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grapefruit poppy seed muffins

Glazed Grapefruit Poppy Seed Muffins

  • Author: Girl Versus Dough
  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
  • Total Time: 35 mins
  • Yield: 14 muffins 1x



For the muffins:

  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon grapefruit zest (from about 1 large grapefruit)
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup poppy seeds
  • 2 teaspoons grapefruit juice
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour (I used the Bob’s Red Mill variety)
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 cups 2% milk

For the glaze:

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 1/4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons grapefruit juice


  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease 2 regular-size muffin tins with baking spray or line 14 muffin cups with paper baking cups.
  2. In a large bowl or bowl of a stand mixer, rub sugar and grapefruit zest together with fingers until well-combined and fragrant. Add oil, poppy seeds, grapefruit juice, vanilla and egg. Beat on low speed until just combined.
  3. In a separate large bowl, whisk together flours, baking powder and salt.
  4. To grapefruit-poppy seed mixture, alternately stir in flour mixture and milk, beginning and ending with flour mixture, until just combined. Pour batter into prepared muffin tins. Bake 20 minutes until a toothpick inserted in center of a muffin comes out clean. Transfer muffins to a cooling rack to cool completely.
  5. In a small bowl, combine ingredients for glaze, adding more grapefruit juice or powdered sugar as needed to achieve desired consistency. Dip top of each muffin in glaze, then return to cooling rack (or a sheet of parchment paper) so glaze can drip and set.

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