Chocolate Peanut Butter Cupcakes
I can’t imagine it will take much for me to convince you of how wonderful these cupcakes are. First of all, there’s the obvious – that ever-winning combo of chocolate and peanut butter. The cake is a wonderfully dense chocolate cake with a thick creamy batter that bakes up beautifully. The filling is essentially a buckeye candy without the chocolate coating. And the frosting – ooooh, the frosting. It is to die for. It will now be my standard peanut butter frosting. The peanut butter flavor is intense, and the texture is silky smooth. These were (not surprisingly) very, very popular with the coworkers.
I do wish the peanut butter balls inside the cupcakes had been a little less dense – next time I may try adding a bit more butter or a little less powdered sugar. I also needed to make extra filling balls because the original quantity was not enough for me to fill all the cupcakes. I’ve indicated my changes below. I say it’s better to end up with a few extra than not have enough. You could even make them into buckeyes – that is, if your husband doesn’t wander in to the kitchen and polish them off ;)
Yield: 24 cupcakes
For the filling:
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
¾ cup creamy peanut butter
4 tbsp. unsalted butter, at room temperature
½ tsp. vanilla extract
For the cake:
1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. salt
1 cup sour cream
2 tbsp. milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract
8 tbsp. unsalted butter, at room temperature
1½ cups sugar
2 large eggs
For the frosting:
8 oz. cream cheese, at room temperature
4 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
½ cup creamy peanut butter
3¼ cups confectioners’ sugar
1 cup frozen whipped topping, thawed
Preheat the oven to 350° F. Line two cupcake pans with paper liners.
To make the filling, combine the confectioners’ sugar, peanut butter, butter and vanilla extract in a bowl. Beat with an electric mixer on medium speed until well combined. Roll the mixture into 1-inch balls (at least 24) and set aside on a baking sheet.
To make the cake batter, combine the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl; whisk together and set aside. In a liquid measuring cup, stir together the sour cream, milk and vanilla extract. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the butter and sugar, and beat on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Beat in the eggs one at a time, scraping down the bowl as needed. With the mixer on low speed, alternately add the dry ingredients and the sour cream mixture, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients. Mix just until incorporated.
Spoon a tablespoon or two of batter into the bottom of each cupcake liner. Place a ball of the peanut butter filling in each cupcake well and top with the remaining batter so that all the cups are filled. Bake for 18-22 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool in the pan for 5-10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
To make the frosting, in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the cream cheese, butter and peanut butter until smooth. Slowly mix in the confectioners’ sugar, beating until smooth and well blended. Mix in the whipped topping until smooth and fluffy. Frost cooled cupcakes as desired.