If you love chocolate and peanut butter – then these Chocolate Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Frosting are for you. They start with super moist chocolate cupcakes that have a soft cupcake crumb and rich chocolate flavor. Then they’re topped with fluffy peanut butter frosting.
**This post was updated March 24, 2020 with a slightly adapted recipe, new photos and new recipe tips**
My 3 favorite things to eat are chocolate, peanut butter and frosting. So these chocolate cupcakes with peanut butter frosting are heaven for my taste buds. The chocolate cupcake is moist, fudgy and tender in the middle. But for me, the frosting is the star of the show. It’s creamy, peanut buttery, not too sweet, and extremely fluffy – almost like a peanut butter soft-serve ice cream.
For the Chocolate Cupcakes
The chocolate cupcakes are fluffy and moist without being the least bit oily. The recipe is adapted from my recipe for double chocolate cupcakes – but here’s the run down on the important ingredients:
- We’re using just the right amount of oil, sour cream & buttermilk for the ultimate texture and zero dry cupcake crumbs.
- We’re replacing some of the white sugar with brown sugar to up the flavor & moisture level.
- Then a hefty dose of cocoa creates the perfect chocolate taste. I like to use Dutch process cocoa for a richer chocolate flavor.
At the end of the day, you get chocolate cupcakes with a delicious chocolate flavor that are soft, moist & fluffy.
Make sure that you only fill your cupcake liners 1/2 full – otherwise, your cupcakes can end up sinking in the middle.
And Now for the Peanut Butter Frosting
To make this peanut butter heaven, it’s very similar to making traditional buttercream – only we’re substituting some of the butter with peanut butter. Because the peanut butter is so thick, you don’t actually need as much powdered sugar, so the frosting isn’t overly sweet either.
Note: Make sure that you use regular, smooth peanut butter – such as Jiffy, Skip or Kraft. Do not use natural, whipped or homemade peanut butter as it can separate and make the frosting chunky or oily.
The recipe will make enough frosting to pipe each cupcake with a generous portion, but feel free to frost the cupcakes by simply swirling on the buttercream using a flat-edge knife.
You can decorate your chocolate peanut butter cupcakes with chocolate sprinkles, mini chocolate chips, Reese’s Pieces or plain jane style with no decorations would be just perfect too.
These chocolate cupcakes with peanut butter frosting are the perfect combination of chocolate and peanut butter. And if peanut butter cups call to you – make sure to try these other treats:
- Peanut Butter Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Frosting
- Peanut Butter Cookie Pizza
- Reese’s Peanut Butter Cookies
Chocolate Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Frosting
For the Cupcakes
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 2/3 cup cocoa powder
- 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 3 large eggs* room temperature
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 1/4 cup sour cream*
- 1/2 cup buttermilk* room temperature*
For the Peanut Butter Buttercream
- 1 cup unsalted butter softened to room temperature
- 3/4 cup peanut butter do not use natural, homemade or whipped
- 3 cups powdered sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2-4 tablespoons whipping cream*
- peanut butter cups, peanuts or sprinkles for decorating
- Preheat the oven to 365F degrees and line 2 muffin tins with cupcake liners. You will get 18-20 cupcakes in total.
- In a large bowl whisk together the flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
- In a separate bowl - whisk together the oil, sugars, eggs and vanilla.
- Scrape down the sides of the bowl and stir in the sour cream.
- Whisk in about 1/2 of the flour mixture, followed by 1/2 of the buttermilk. Repeat the process with the rest of the flour & buttermilk.
- Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin pan, filling each about 1/2 full.* You should get 18-20 cupcakes total.
- Bake 1 pan at a time in the middle rack of the preheated oven for 17-20 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Cool in the muffin pan for at least 10 minutes, then remove and continue cooling on a wire rack.
Peanut Butter Frosting
- In a large bowl, beat the butter until soft.
- Then add in the peanut butter and continue beating until until evenly combined.
- Add in the 2 cups powdered sugar, the vanilla extract and salt and carefully beat them in with the mixer on low speed.
- Beat in the rest of the powdered sugar about 1/2 cup at a time, alternating with the whipping cream until the desired sweetness and thickness is reached.
- Frost the cupcakes using a piping bag or with the flat-edge of a knife. I frosted mine using a 1M Wilton tip.
- Buttermilk, eggs and sour cream should be room temperature before making the cupcake batter.
- If you don't have buttermilk, add 1 teaspoon distilled vinegar to a liquid measuring cup. Add in 1/2 cup milk (1% or 2%) and stir the mixture. Let it stand for 5 minutes before using.
- Do not fill the cupcake liners more than 1/2 - 2/3 full. If you end up with 14-16 cupcakes, then they are likely too full. Otherwise, they can sink in the middle.
- Make-ahead Tips: Cupcakes can be made 1 day ahead, cooled fully, and then stored in an airtight container overnight at room temperature. Frost the cupcakes the day you plan to serve. Unfrosted cupcakes can be frozen for up to 2 months in an airtight container, then thaw in the fridge and bring to room temperature before frosting and serving. Store leftovers in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 days, or in the fridge for up to 4 days.
- Nutrition information is based on 1 cupcake, with the recipe yielding 20 cupcakes