I may have watched one too many episodes of cupcake wars. I’ve been in the baking mood lately—more specifically, the cupcake baking mood. I’m a fan of dark chocolate, and whenever I see a recipe that I can revamp from weak milk chocolate to REAL chocolaty chocolate 😉 I take the opportunity. The cupcake part of these are a dark chocolate cake with semi-sweet chocolate chips, and the frosting is a peanut butter butter cream frosting. Woah. That’s a mouthful. “Come and get ’em…some decadent dark chocolate peanut butter cup cupcakes with peanut butter butter cream frosting!.” Geez.
Anyways, we’re not a huge fan of desserts this sweet in our house, but after watching all of those bakers make these adorably decorated cupcakes, I felt like I needed to pipe frosting onto a little cupcake. So that’s what I did, after getting Greyson down for a nap. I looked at the clock and raced into the kitchen, because I knew I had about 40 minutes to get the cakes into the oven. Maybe. If I was lucky I could start the frosting.
Like I predicted these cupcakes were made in stages. The little man woke up right when I got the cakes into the oven. So I let them bake while we read some storybooks and had tummy time. When he fell back asleep about two hours later, I was able to make the frosting. Then Grey called and needed a ride. So I packed up the Greyson for a quick trip into town, leaving our cakes naked and our frosting in a big ‘ol bowl. When we all got back home Greyson played with his daddy while I frosted cupcakes, and enjoyed one…maybe two peanut butter cups. 😉 These cupcakes are light and fluffy and the frosting is creamy and sweet. I hope you enjoy them.
Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Cupcakes
for the cake:
2 cups boiling water
1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 ¾ cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup butter, softened
2 ¼ cups white sugar
1 ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
for the frosting:
3 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 cup creamy peanut butter
2 tablespoons vanilla extract
1.5 pounds (24 ounces or about 5.5 cups) confectioners’ sugar, sifted
6-8 tablespoons heavy cream (if using milk, amount will be less)
for the cake:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line cupcake pan with liners. In medium bowl, pour boiling water over cocoa, and whisk until smooth. Let mixture cool. Combine flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl; set aside. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs one at time, then stir in vanilla. Add the flour mixture alternately with the cocoa mixture. Fold in the chocolate chips. Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a cake comes our clean. Allow to cool before frosting.
for the frosting:
In a large bowl cream butter and peanut butter on medium speed until fluffy. Turn your mixer down to low speed and slowly add in the confectioner’s sugar, and continue mixing until well blended. Add vanilla and 4 tablespoons of heavy cream. Blend on low speed until moistened. Add an additional 1 to 4 tablespoons of heavy cream until you reach the desired consistency. Beat at high speed until frosting is smooth and fluffy. Pipe frosting onto cooled cupcakes and garnish with a Peanut Butter Cup.
Love, Grey & Brianna