Lemon Poppy Seed Bread

I love the zesty, sweet, and vanilla flavor of this Lemon Poppy Seed Bread. Made with only plant-based ingredients and sweetened with dates, this Lemon Poppy Seed Bread is not only delicious, but healthy too. Like all of my quick bread recipes, I love to use oat flour as the base and sweetened with just dates- nature’s whole foods sweetener! 

Enjoy this Lemon Poppy Seed Bread served as a dessert,  snack,  or a tasty breakfast with your favorite fruits.

This recipe originally launched in 2019, and my family and I loved it. The bread was good as is, but I wanted to try a few tweaks to see if I could make it even better. And the results: instantly better! The bread was fluffier and not as dense. The flavor was still exceptionally great, but it resembled more of the “traditional” Lemon Poppy Seed Bread I knew growing up. So I bring to you- the new and improved Lemon Poppy Seed Bread, 2024 edition! 

vegan Lemon Poppy Seed Bread

A few notes before you get started:

OAT FLOUR: I have yet to try using store bought oat flour in my recipes. It’s so much cheaper to just make this at home and only takes a few minutes. I never used to sift the oat flour before using in my bread recipe, but now it’s the only way I will do this! Sifting the oat flour through a mesh strainer can help to be sure the flour is light and any clumps are removed. This will help to prevent over stirring and produce a fluffier bread. 

ICING: The topping make enough for about 2-3 loaves. Feel free to cut the recipe in half; however, I have just found it blends best when made in a larger batch. It’s nice to have a little extra cashew frosting on-hand for the bread, in case you want a bit more too. You can freeze the leftovers or use it for oatmeals, salads, or veggie dip! You can even blend it with more water and cocoa powder (and more dates, if desired) for a healthy hot cocoa. 

STORAGE: Store the bread in the fridge in an air-tight container once it’s done cooling down.

LEMON JUICE AND ZEST: The zest is key to making a really tasty lemon flavor in this bread. I used to wonder why other recipes only called for 2-3 tablespoons of lemon juice– well, a little lesson in baking chemistry! Baking soda needs a little acid to help it produce bubbles, which help with the rise.  I did a simple test at home with different ratios of vinegar (acid) to baking soda, and found the more acid used produced less bubbles! So I went back to the drawing board on this recipe, reducing the lemon juice (the acid in this recipe) and including lemon zest. P.s. vinegar with baking soda and a little soap are one of my fav ways to clean stains (or other stuck gunk)  on most dishes and cookware.

Vegan Lemon Poppy Seed Bread


vegan Lemon Poppy Seed Bread

Lemon Poppy Seed Bread

Kristina DeMuth, MPH, RD, LD
Zesty and sweet Lemon Poppy Seed Bread. Made with only plant-based ingredients and sweetened with dates. Enjoy this Lemon Poppy Seed Bread served as a dessert,  snack,  or a tasty breakfast with your favorite fruits.
Course Dessert


Lemon Poppy Seed Bread

  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 2 teaspoons aluminum-free baking powder (or 1 tablespoon sodium-free baking powder)
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon poppy seeds
  • ¾ cup pitted, soft dates (such as medjol)
  • 2-3 tablespoons lemon zest
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • cups unsweetened soymilk (or other plant-based milk)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Icing (makes enough for 2-3 loaves)

  • 1 cup raw cashews
  • ¾ cup water
  • ½ cup pitted, soft dates
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, or more to taste


  • Preheat the oven to 350F. Line a glass loaf pan with parchment paper and set aside.
  • In a high speed blender, blend the oats until fine like flour. Using a mesh strainer, sift the oat flour through the strainer into a bowl. Set aside any remaining oat flour clumps.
  • Stir the baking powder, baking soda, and poppy seeds into the oat flour. Set aside.
  • Pit the dates and zest the lemon, set aside.
  • In a small bowl, combine the soymilk and lemon juice. Set aside and allow to curdle for a few minutes.
  • Add the dates, lemon zest, lemon juice with soymilk, vanilla, and reserved oat flour clumps to a high speed blender. Blend the ingredients until smooth and creamy. Pour into a mixing bowl.
  • Add the oat flour to the wet ingredients. Fold the ingredients together until combined. Avoid over stirring.
  • Pour the batter into the lined loaf pan. Spread the batter out evenly.
  • Bake on the middle rack of the over for 40-45 minutes. At about 40 minutes, poke the bread with a toothpick and check to see if any dough is on it. If there is still dough, place the bread back into the oven for 5-10 minutes, and then check again. Once the toothpick comes clean, remove the bread from the oven and set aside to cool.


  • Combine all the icing ingredients together in a high speed blender. Blend until smooth and creamy.
  • Spread the cashew icing over the bread. For more of an icing look, spread the cashew cream on while the bread is warm. For more of a frosting look, wait to add until the bread is completely cooled. Feel free to top with some additional lemon zest. 
  • Once the bread is completely cooled, slice and enjoy! Store the bread in the fridge. Leftover cashew cream can be stored in the fridge or freezer.