Lemon Poppy Seed Biscotti

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4.93 from 14 votes

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Bright and sunny biscotti with the perfect amount of crunch on the outside and a tender, flavorful center.

lemon poppy seed biscotti on a platter

So the biscotti bug bit me pretty hard. Ever since I made my first ever batch of biscotti back in June, I have been itching to make another variety. Aaaaand I totally have one planned for the Christmas season, so stay tuned for that one!

I said it before and I’ll say it again, biscotti are not difficult, they’re just a bit time consuming and take a little planning ahead.

I think those two things are what always scared me away from trying my hand at this beloved cookie of mine, but when I realized the work wasn’t difficult, I found the time spent on the biscotti was more fun!

lemon poppy seed biscotti on a platter

And of course, as I said back in my funfetti biscotti post… It’s ALLLL about the dunk. Lemon poppy seed dunked in my coffee? Uhhhhmazing.

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lemon poppy seed biscotti on a platter

This recipe is almost identical to my funfetti biscotti recipe, which I used as a guide for these lemon poppy seed dunkers. I swapped out a few ingredients and rearranged the method a little bit to create the most lemony biscotti possible: before you do anything else with ingredients, you’re going to make sunshine, I mean lemon sugar.

This sounds way harder than it actually is and will take you no time at all. Before you juice your lemon, you’ll zest the whole thing right into your ½ cup of sugar. You should get about 2 teaspoons of zest from one medium size lemon.

From there, you’ll use your fingers to rub the zest into the sugar crystals. What this does is release the oils in the zest, allowing lemon flavor to really seep into the sugar. Would you get lemon flavor from simply adding lemon zest and calling it a day?

Of course!

But making this lemon sugar is super easy and gives the flavor a head start, maximizing the lemon tang of each biscotto. Can you argue with that??

Lemon sugar should be nice and yellow and fluffy!
↓↓↓

sugar and lemon zest in a bowl

After you’ve created the sunshiniest sugar in the world (lick your fingers before you wash your hands off– you’re welcome), you’ll create your wet ingredient team, combine it with your dry ingredient team, turn all of the dough out onto a lightly floured baking sheet, and form it into a rectangle.

HOW TO FORM BISCOTTI

Turn dough out onto lightly floured baking sheet and, with floured hands, pat dough into a rectangle about ½” thick. My rectangle was 6″ wide and 7 and ½” long (using a ruler or a ruled silicone baking mat is helpful here).

slab of lemon poppy seed biscotti dough

Make the egg wash using the remaining lemon juice (approximately 5-6 teaspoons) and brush onto the entire rectangle, being sure to get the egg wash on the sides of the dough as well.

brushing lemon poppy seed biscotti dough with an egg wash

Bake dough slab for 20-22 minutes, or until the top and sides of the slab are lightly browned. Remove from the oven, but do not turn off the heat. Place baking sheet on a wire rack and allow to cool for 10 minutes.

Once the dough is cool enough to touch, cut into 1″ thick slices using a sharp knife. Cut these 1″ slices in half, making a perpendicular slice down the entire slab.

slicing lemon poppy seed biscotti dough with a knife

Set slices cut sides up on the baking sheet. Return to the oven to bake for 8 minutes.

lemon poppy seed biscotti on a baking sheet

Remove from oven, turn biscotti over, and bake the other side for 8 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 3 minutes on the baking sheet (cookies will become crunchy as they cool).

lemon poppy seed biscotti on a baking sheet

Transfer biscotti to a wire rack to cool completely.

As far as the ingredients go, you’ll be working with only one tablespoon of butter which somehow, magically, brings such a buttery taste to each cookie. You’d think there was a whole stick of butter in this dough! But there’s not. Like I said: magic.

You’ll combine that butter with bit of vegetable oil which prevents the interior from getting dry, but also helps make the exterior a bit crunchy. Just one egg keeps the interior crumbly without being like sand, and a hefty dose of poppy seeds go so nicely with that bright citrus.

Seriously, who ever decided that citrus + poppy seed was such a wonderful combination?? I want to be besties with that person.

lemon poppy seed biscotti on a platter

Anywho… I decided to put an egg wash on these biscotti because I wanted a little bit of a shiny look. Also, the egg wash helps the edges brown a bit and gives them a nice golden color.

Although there is a ton of lemon in these biscotti, the yellow color doesn’t come through all that much. And despite how tasty biscotti are, they aren’t the most photogenic treat in the world. Let’s brighten up the surfaces as much as we can with a little golden shine! 1 egg + some lemon juice = shiny, lemony, crispy edged cookies.

Is your mouth watering yet?

bowl of egg wash with a pastry brush resting on it

What I love most about these biscotti are that they have the most crunchy, crispy exterior that gives you a wonderful texture to sink your teeth into. Inside that crunchified (yep, crunchified) exterior is a tender, buttery, undeniably lemony interior that is bursting with crunchy little poppy seeds.

lemon poppy seed biscotti on a platter

Like I said, not the most attractive treat I’ve ever made, but how much my tastebuds love them totally makes up for that.

Try your hand at this tasty little cookie, make another batch of these party-filled ones, and prepare yourself for a special holiday edition come December. You might just find yourself a biscotti aficionado. I’m totally trying to be one…

lemon poppy seed biscotti on a platter

…just kidding.

Kind of.

Lemon Poppy Seed Biscotti

Bright and sunny biscotti with the perfect amount of crunch on the outside and a tender, flavorful center.
Prep Time15 minutes
Bake Time40 minutes
Total Time55 minutes
Recipe Author Lynn April
Servings: 12 cookies

Ingredients

  • ½ cup (100g) granulated sugar
  • zest of two lemons approximately 4 teaspoons
  • 1 Tablespoon (14g) unsalted butter melted
  • 3 Tablespoons (42mL) vegetable or canola oil
  • 1 large egg room temperature
  • ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • juice of one lemon divided
  • 1 and ¾ cup + 1 Tablespoon (218g) all-purpose flour be sure to measure properly
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 and ½ Tablespoons poppy seeds
  • EGG WASH: 1 large egg beaten with lemon juice

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350ºF (177ºC). Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Lightly flour the baking sheet. Set aside.
  • Place the sugar in a medium size bowl and add the lemon zest. Using your fingers, rub the zest into the sugar until all of the zest has been incorporated and most if not all of the sugar is pale yellow. Whisk in the butter, oil, egg, vanilla extract, and 4 teaspoons of the lemon juice until combined. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl, toss together the flour, baking powder, salt, and poppy seeds. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and gently mix with a large wooden spoon or sturdy rubber spatula until everything starts to come together. Mixture will be crumbly. This is ok. It will come together in the next step.
  • Check out this Instagram reel to see how I make my biscotti. Turn dough out onto lightly floured baking sheet and, with floured hands, pat dough into a rectangle about ½" thick. My rectangle was 6" wide and 7 and ½" long (using a ruler or a ruled silicone baking mat is helpful here). Make the egg wash using the remaining lemon juice (approximately 5-6 teaspoons) and brush onto the entire rectangle, being sure to get the egg wash on the sides of the dough as well.
  • Bake dough slab for 22-24 minutes, or until the top and sides of the slab are lightly browned. Remove from the oven, but do not turn off the heat. Place baking sheet on a wire rack and allow to cool for 10 minutes.
  • Once the dough is cool enough to touch, cut into 1" thick slices using a sharp knife. Cut these 1" slices in half, making a perpendicular slice down the entire slab. Set slices cut sides up on the baking sheet.
  • Return to the oven to bake for 8 minutes. Remove from oven, turn biscotti over, and bake the other side for 8 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 3 minutes on the baking sheet (cookies will become crunchy as they cool). Transfer biscotti to a wire rack to cool completely. Store biscotti in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks. Baked biscotti may be frozen up to 3 months.

Notes

Adapted from Funfetti Biscotti
Did you make this recipe?Mention @freshaprilflours on Instagram or tag #freshaprilflours!

Nutrition Disclosure

All nutritional values are approximate and provided to the reader as a courtesy. Changing ingredients and/or quantities will alter the estimated nutritional calculations.

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48 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Huge biscotti fan and I have to say this lemon one is one of my favorites to make. Yum!!! Also, I love how well it freezes. We’ve made it several times and it’s always a hit.

  2. Do you have a video specific to the shaping of the lemon poppyseed biscotti. I watched the instagram reel but found it very very crumbly and just couldn’t get it to the shape and size of the recipe/instruction reel. Do you have any tips for tricks for getting it to come together a bit easier?

    1. Hi, Steph– all of my biscotti bases are exactly the same. It will be crumbly. Use your hands to pat it into a slab. It will come together, I promise.