lemon tea muffins

lemon tea muffins | movita beaucoup

My brother, Adopamop, along with Pumpkin and Turnip, arrived from France just over two weeks ago. My sister, Haddy, is here too. She brought Luke the Dog with her. They are all staying with Bill and Rosie Beaucoup. And they are all wearing me out.

French kids sleep in. They aren’t total a-holes like North American kids. They don’t get up at 4:30 am. Nope. They lay in bed in the morning, reading Le Monde, and want you to bring cappuccino and croissants to their rooms. But because French kids sleep in, it means they don’t go to bed until real late. After they’ve had wine and stuff. Grown-up game night doesn’t start until 9:30 or 10 pm – after the aforementioned wine, a dance party and some storybook reading. Honestly, at that time of night, Luke the Dog and I are ready for bed. And we’ve noticed that Haddy likes to take her time when planning her next Carcassonne move. So, I get home late at night. And wake with 2.0’s alarm. In case you don’t know – people in the construction industry get up very early. (Have I ever told you that 2.0’s official title is: Erections Specialist? NO LIE.)

lemon tea muffins | movita beaucoup

So, I’ve been burning the candle at both ends. I’ve had about three batches of these muffins in the past two weeks. Mostly because the original recipe had some… issues. I fixed them for you. And also? They are easy to make. Even if you are feeling tired and stupid. (That’s a side effect of fun.) These muffins have a nice balance of tart and sweet – like a little bit of sunshine in your mouth. They’ll get you going. But just so you know (and as the name implies), they would also be a perfect little afternoon tea cake. A soft, cakey muffin topped with a sugary, lemony glaze.

Also? Tomorrow night, I’m supposed to go to dinner with my brother and sister. Like, just us. We’ve never done this before. I’ve had dinner with my sister many times. And we’ve each dined with my brother. But all three of us together? This will be the first time. I’m feeling apprehensive about it. I mean, what if it turns out the only thing we have in common is… our parents? On the plus side, we’ll probably manage to sort out who gets what when Bill and Rosie Beaucoup head to that big bakery in the sky.

lemon tea muffins | movita beaucoup

. . .

Lemon Tea Muffins

adapted from a recipe found in rosie beaucoup’s collection

print and bake

Yields 12 muffins.

For the muffins:

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 heaping teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 cup melted butter, cooled slightly
  • 1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (2-3 lemons)
  • zest from one lemon
  • 2 large eggs

For the topping:

  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter

Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a standard sized muffin tin (12 muffin wells).

In a medium sized bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, sugar and baking powder. Set aside. In a small bowl, combine the melted butter, lemon juice, lemon zest and eggs. Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, mixing until just combined.

Divide the batter evenly between the greased muffin wells. (I use a 1/4 cup measure to make this easier.) Bake 12-16 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted into the centre of a muffin comes out clean. Allow to cool for a few minutes in the muffin tin, and then remove to cool on a wire rack. Cover with topping while still warm.

To make the topping, combine the sugar, lemon juice and melted butter in a small bowl. Mix until well combined and smooth. While muffins are still warm, spoon the topping over each, using back of spoon to spread over top. The topping will drip over the edges. Roll with it.

Allow to cool completely before serving.


  1. leaf (the indolent cook) on July 26, 2012 at 2:45 pm

    I could totally roll with a few batches of these muffins! Baked treats with lemon are my favourite.

  2. teri Byrne on July 26, 2012 at 2:46 pm

    LiFE is such a better place with you in it.
    Keep baking, eating + writing!!

  3. lorrielorrieb on July 26, 2012 at 2:59 pm

    Well I guess you’re lucky they live in France, sounds liked you’d be way too tired if say, they moved here. All that wine and dance parties……can wear a girl down! Luckily the lemon muffins are keeping your strength up!! I LOVE all things lemon! Cleanses the soul or something.

  4. Suparna Chaudhry on July 26, 2012 at 3:01 pm

    Just bought a bunch of lemons and was looking for around delicious desserts – these look delicious and easy! Can’t wait to try it out!

  5. Juls on July 26, 2012 at 3:25 pm

    The last time my brother, sister and I ate dinner together with no one else present at our table, it was in a psyche ward which probably was the best and safest possible surroundings for the occasion! I wish I was making this shizzle up. My six foot five beast of a rugby captain/army scholorship brother kept being harrassed by ladies that had been locked up so long they had forgotten what a man looked like and my sister was giving some Labour party campaign speech to me and I spiked her drink with an antipsychotic because she was boring me and now, four years later, she still refuses to take drinks from me and I don’t really blame her to be honest, especially since I then went on to drug my then-boyfriend with my medication because he had some wacked out sleep cycle and kept me awake and he was unconscious for three days and I thought he may have died.
    I should know when to stop talking.

    • movita beaucoup on August 1, 2012 at 9:30 am

      Juls, this comment? TOTALLY AWESOME. Also, a great cautionary tale. I was totally prepped for the Beaucoup Sibling dinner, and ate my body weight in sushi. (I had anti-psychotic drugs in my pocket. You know… just in case.)

      • Juls on August 1, 2012 at 9:41 am

        We need to get the word out about the necessity for carrying anti psychotics on one’s person. You never know when you’ll need to knock out a boring person. Glad to hear your dinner went without stress or duress and your joints will thank you dearly for all that sushi!

  6. Juls on July 26, 2012 at 3:26 pm

    In other news, I totally have a massive bag of lemons – it’s like a pretty, citrusy sign. I like that you worked hard to ‘tweak’ the recipe to perfection – it always instils confidence and makes the tweaker seem super wise.

  7. glutenfreezen on July 26, 2012 at 4:10 pm

    First of all, Luke the Dog is gorgeous! Second, I want to have French kids! Dangit, but it’s too late, because the thought of raising another teenager makes me want to jump off a cliff, French or not. Thirdly, I’m married to an Italian, so believe me, I know the title Erections Specialist, when I see it. (wink, wink)

    Your lemon muffins are gorgeous, as are all the things you make! I was just thinking about making lemon cupcakes this weekend…maybe I will switch it to muffins.

    Enjoy your family ~ April

  8. glutenfreezen on July 26, 2012 at 4:10 pm

    Hmm…I’m thinking thirdly should have been lastly…guess the title threw me off.

  9. frugalfeeding on July 26, 2012 at 4:32 pm

    I know how you feel, I’m totally worn out… These muffins look so nice and cute, Movita – perfection :D. That’s a really odd title :D. Yummy :). Also, I’ve always wanted to visit Carcassonne.

  10. Linda--There and Back Again on July 26, 2012 at 5:49 pm

    These little tea cakes sound lovely. And I have all the ingredients, so I think I’ll be taking a batch to my family this weekend. I hope you find time to relax and rest this summer–which is part of what a vacation is suppose to be about!

  11. cravingsofalunatic on July 26, 2012 at 7:15 pm

    I had to stop watching Dawson’s Creek long enough to re-read the part about the a-holes. Then I read it out loud to mini-me. There is nothing like a good guffaw. Hope you got your coffee in bed. With oodles of these muffins with it.

  12. Melissa on July 26, 2012 at 8:22 pm

    Oh, how I love Luke the Dog! He whimpered with happiness when last we met which always makes me want to wag my tail! Lemon treats and pictures of young Luke–that’s all a girl could
    ask for. Love and cupcakes. M

    • movita beaucoup on August 3, 2012 at 9:49 am

      Luke should be in your neighbourhood very soon! Also, friend, you need to send me your mailing address… so I can send you a wooly friend of your own! xox

  13. spree on July 26, 2012 at 8:43 pm

    You are flippin’ adorable. I can’t get quite enough! (Same would probably be true of your lovely lemony sweetly tart tea cakes. Yeah, I’m pretty sure.) you simply the best.

  14. musingmar on July 26, 2012 at 10:31 pm

    Such pretty and pretty tasty muffins! I’m on somewhat of a lemon kick myself. Last week it was cupcakes, and also I made some blueberry lemon muffins the other night that I’ll be writing about soon (once I’m done doing all kinds of stuff for my kids, thereby proving that even though they don’t live with, me they can’t live without me). Sounds like you’re having an absolute blast with your family – enjoy! Hope you have fun at the siblings dinner!

  15. Ann P on July 26, 2012 at 10:38 pm

    These tea muffins are so ladylike! Just like you!… *snort*


    • movita beaucoup on August 1, 2012 at 9:31 am

      I snorted just READING that comment.

  16. thekalechronicles on July 26, 2012 at 11:32 pm

    When life gives you house guests, bears, squirrels and lemons, make lemonade — or lemon muffins, in this case. Hell, make them anyway — life is short.

  17. Luciana on July 27, 2012 at 12:57 am

    Dear Rachael, your muffins are adorable! I love, love, love your photos!
    Lulu, xo

    • movita beaucoup on August 1, 2012 at 9:48 am

      Thanks, Lulu! That’s a real compliment coming from a photographer such as yourself… xox

  18. eatzybitzy on July 27, 2012 at 4:04 am

    such pretty muffins! I wanna make these for my kids. they will surely love it!

  19. emma on July 27, 2012 at 8:09 am

    Quite a few frightening comments here. Further mentions of Erection Specialists (shudder), tales of illicit drugging…. yikes.

    So… North American kids get up early, huh? I thought they were all fat lazy video gaming experts who stayed up late talking smack to each other online and then slept in until 11? I guess your French relatives have a few years until they reach that stage, though. They’re in the Le Monde / wine drinking stage right now.

  20. Savory Simple on July 27, 2012 at 8:41 am

    I hope things settle down for you soon! I’ve learned a valuable lesson. If I have kids, make sure they’re French kids. Oh and yummy muffins!

    • movita beaucoup on August 1, 2012 at 9:49 am

      Added bonus: very cute accents.

  21. Jennie on July 27, 2012 at 9:13 am

    Mmmm, these muffins look good. I’m so glad you fixed them for us. Sounds like you’re having a lovely time with the family. Enjoy your time off from teaching and dinner with the siblings.

  22. Ann from Sumptuous Spoonfuls on July 27, 2012 at 9:50 am

    I love these muffins! … but even more I loved your post … especially this part: “Even if you are feeling tired and stupid. (That’s a side effect of fun.)” and the part about the animals cuz I feel exactly the same way.

  23. Barbara Bamber | justasmidgen on July 27, 2012 at 12:49 pm

    Luke is adorable.. I’d let him jump into my bed and dig his paws into my back:D I hope your pillowy lemon bites of happiness help you sleep tonight!! And good luck with your siblings, they must be a bit like you.. so it will be fun!! xx

  24. Donkey Whisperer Farm on July 28, 2012 at 12:09 am

    Enjoyed your blog today! These muffins look wonderful I don’t cook much anymore but still enjoy food for sure.

  25. Mama's Gotta Bake on July 28, 2012 at 1:39 pm

    Movita, I like a little sunshine in my mouth, so I can’t wait to give these lovely little muffins a try!

  26. Eggton on July 28, 2012 at 5:32 pm

    OMG do you think it’s the same bear from your mom’s back yard–the one your mom said was a rabbit? He’s probably by the side of the road because he wants a lift back to the Beaucoups. He’s also probably looking for 2.0, since he almost ate him last time.

    The part about the french kids reading Le Monde and waiting in bed for their espressos was my absolute favorite part of this post, until I got to the part about the bakery in the sky. So funny.

    • movita beaucoup on August 1, 2012 at 9:33 am

      I think it was a different bear. This one was smaller, perhaps quite young. Probably in need of a soft bead and some company. But 2.0 (still upset after the last bear encounter), said that, “… for the last time! WE’RE NOT LETTING WILD ANIMALS SLEEP IN OUR BED.”

      He can be so stubborn.

  27. annewoodman on July 29, 2012 at 10:53 am

    Yum. I’ve got some lemon-loving fiends in my family. They will love these muffins.

    So true about those European kiddos. My husband and I would never last until late at night like that. The kids would be awake, and we’d turn in while they partied. Sad.

    Nice image of you rubbing your face in the bear’s fur. I would love to see that happen.

    • movita beaucoup on August 3, 2012 at 9:51 am

      Oh, it will happen. It. WILL. Happen.

  28. Emmalina on July 29, 2012 at 4:37 pm

    The sensations of exhaustion you describe actually has a name, Parenthood. This is basically how I’ve been feeling for about 7 1/2 years now which explains why people often look at me strangely and I nod off in the middle of meals.

    Please bring me muffins, I might fade away otherwise.

    • movita beaucoup on August 1, 2012 at 9:35 am

      Oh! THAT’S parenthood! I kept hearing rumours and stuff…

      I say we make your kids walk here to pick up the muffins. That outta keep ’em busy for, like, a day.

  29. Sherrie on July 30, 2012 at 6:56 am

    Yay! Done work – that’s awesome. Now you need to come down to visit us for some serious Carcassonne while you have a break. And other assorted awesome games. 🙂

    • movita beaucoup on August 3, 2012 at 9:52 am

      Deeeeelightful! We’re playing the Carcassonne extension this evening – with cathedrals, fairies and dragons. Yikes!

  30. Amy on July 31, 2012 at 9:06 pm

    Aw, so nice you get to spend time with your fam! Even if it involves a lot of driving. These muffins sound and look good…that one with the sunglasses looks particularly tasty.

  31. Vinita on August 1, 2012 at 5:25 pm

    Wow! I love how simple and delish this recipe is. I can almost taste the lemony sugar icing…cannot wait to bake it!

  32. Anonymous on August 2, 2012 at 2:10 pm

    This muffin looks absolutely delicious. Its now on my “to – make” list. Thank you

  33. Joan on August 2, 2012 at 2:12 pm

    Movita – this looks absolutely fabulous. Lemon is one of my favorites next to chocolate of course. Can’t wait to try this recipe.

    • movita beaucoup on August 3, 2012 at 9:48 am

      There will be some more chocolate treats heading across the street in the coming weeks… get ready!!

  34. Meenakshi on August 5, 2012 at 3:20 pm

    Oh you crack me up Movita! Lol. Love the bits about French children and their ways. And these lemon muffins are just darling! And such an easy recipe too. Little sunshiny cushions.

  35. shannon on August 5, 2012 at 5:21 pm

    these lemon tea muffins make me extremely happy. I should have said this before now, but my google reader also crazy. not nearly as crazy as yours, but crazy a little bit.

    also, now i’m wondering if my stella is french; she too sleeps in, and goes to bed around the same time as the wee frenchies. no cute accent, however. does she get french points for lazing about the house telling me what to do?

    i just noticed the baking school countdown calendar on the side of the website: this will be SO helpful, because i needed to know when to have my “homework” picked out.

  36. natalie on August 9, 2012 at 5:09 pm

    maybe it’s just summer talking, but i’ve been craving lemon like woah. these look absolutely perfect.

  37. maudiemaudie on August 21, 2012 at 7:40 am

    I made these yesterday and they were delish. I had to convert cups to grams and all but they still worked! I made big muffins not fancy little ones because here in France we like BIG! Thanks, another one for the file:)

  38. movita beaucoup on December 2, 2015 at 7:43 am

    Comments are now closed as this post was published in July 2012. Thanks for stopping by!