Monday, March 12, 2012

Chocolate Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Buttercream Frosting

Chocolate cupcakes, made with sour cream and pudding, topped with a peanut butter buttercream frosting, and garnished with chopped honey roasted peanuts and chocolate sprinkles.
Chocolate cupcakes, made with sour cream and pudding, topped with a peanut butter buttercream frosting, and garnished with chopped honey roasted peanuts and chocolate sprinkles.

Chocolate Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Buttercream Frosting

Because I am a bit of a night owl, I tend to do most of my blog work late into the night, and often into the early morning hours, whether it's writing, editing, recipe development, and sometimes, yes, even cooking. That was the case this past Wednesday night when I decided to make cupcakes for my grandbabies. At 11:00 at night. Trouble is, I wanted to make them from scratch, and, considering I don't even have a single cupcake recipe on the site... I had to actually write a recipe!

Now... if you've been around here any length of time, you already know that I'm more of a savory gal than a lover of sweets, and though I have a few recipes up here, I lay no claim to being much of a baker. My apologies to those of you who are much better bakers than me. Armed with not much more than the desire and the knowledge of a basic scratch cake recipe I've had forever, I poked around in the pantry and fridge to see what else I had that needed to be used up. I found several packages of chocolate pudding in the pantry I needed to use, so decided that the pudding could take the place of cocoa and add a little moisture at the same time. I also had some sour cream leftover in the fridge, which makes an excellent addition to cakes. Sounds like a plan to me!

Truth is, I know exactly what got me in the mood for baking at 11:00 p.m. that night.

I had received earlier that very day, this new cookbook {imagine that, me and another cookbook} called The Back in the Day Bakery Cookbook and had been flipping through and drooling over it. This adorable couple and owners of Back in the Day Bakery, Cheryl and Griffith Day, had been on QVC recently, with a table filled with their goodies. The cookbook promptly sold out thousands of copies in minutes, and Cheryl was so overwhelmed that she actually cried when they told her the news. You know somebody has put their heart and soul into something when they get emotional about it. That authenticity, and the success of the bakery, located in Savannah, Georgia, tells me these folks know what they are doing.

Well, y'all know how I am about cookbooks, and being a baking amateur, I thought it would help to provide a bit of future baking inspiration to me. And, some sorely needed knowledge. So, I ordered it immediately from Amazon, where with my Prime membership, it was cheaper than QVC anyway, plus you can get a sneak peek preview right there on the Amazon site too. Finally picked up a basic cupcake kit too, so I can make those blog-worthy swirls on top of my cupcakes like everybody else, though there are way fancier kits available too, if you're so inclined.

While this recipe didn't come from the book, I did pick up a few tips from Back in the Day's Old Fashioned Cupcake recipe, like using the stand mixer to cut the butter into the dry ingredients, something akin to preparing a pastry. I guess you could certainly say these were inspired by the book. I'm happy to say that the cupcakes got the thumbs up from my daughter-in-law and the grands, and to me that is what counts. I think that they are absolutely delicious cupcakes and they certainly satisfied the sweet tooth I've been having for that favorite chocolate and peanut butter combination. Here's how to make them.

For more of my favorite cake recipes, visit my page on Pinterest!

If you make this or any of my recipes, I'd love to see your results! Just snap a photo and hashtag it #DeepSouthDish on social media or tag me @deepsouthdish on Instagram!

Recipe: Chocolate Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Buttercream Frosting

©From the Kitchen of Deep South Dish
Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 25 min

Total time: 35 min
Yield: About 24 cupcakes

  • 2-1/3 cups of all purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa (like Hershey's)
  • 3 teaspoons of baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt
  • 1-1/2 cups of granulated sugar
  • 1 (3.9 ounce) package of instant chocolate pudding
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened at room temperature and cubed
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the frosting:
  • 1/3 cup butter at room temperature
  • 1/3 cup of vegetable shortening (like Crisco)
  • 1 cup of peanut butter
  • 1 pound of powdered sugar (about 4 cup)
  • Pinch of kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 4 to 6 tablespoons milk
  • Garnish: Chopped peanuts and chocolate sprinkles, optional

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 24 cupcake cups with paper liners. In a mixing bowl, using the paddle attachment, add the first 6 ingredients and mix for 2 minutes on low. Add the cubed butter a few pieces at a time and mix another 2 minutes on low until mixture is sandy looking. Add the milk and sour cream, mix for 1 minute on low; add the eggs, one at a time, until fully incorporated, then add the vanilla. Mix on low speed for another minute. Do not over-beat. Scrape up any batter from the bottom of the bowl and incorporate into the mixture.

Use a large ice cream scoop to fill paper cups about 2/3rds full. Bake at 350 degrees F for about 20 to 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes back clean. Place pans on a rack and allow to cool for at least 30 minutes.

For the frosting, cream together the butter and shortening, then add the peanut butter. On medium speed, add the powdered sugar about 1/2 cup at a time. Mixture will be stiff. Add in the vanilla and then the milk, one tablespoon at a time while beating on medium, until frosting is fluffy and reaches the desired consistency. You may not need all of the milk.

Once completely cooled, spread or pipe frosting on top of the cupcakes and garnish immediately with chopped peanuts and/or sprinkles, if desired, before frosting sets. Serve immediately, store in a cool area, or refrigerate.

Cook's Notes: I piped the cupcakes above using a Wilton 1M star tip. For garnish, I used finely chopped honey roasted peanuts and chocolate sprinkles. Keep in a cool place or refrigerate if not serving right away, but let the cupcakes come to room temperature, uncovered, before serving. Both heat and condensation may cause frosting to slide off, especially when piped on.

Variations: Pour batter into 9 x 13 inch baking pan that has been buttered and floured. Bake in a preheated 350 degree F oven, for about 25 to 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes back clean. For a richer chocolate flavor, add in 1 to 2 tablespoons of cocoa. For a special treat, press one unwrapped, mini peanut butter cup into the center of each cupcake liner.


Requires Adobe Reader - download it free!
©Deep South Dish
Frosting adapted from Wilton
Are you on Facebook? If you haven't already, come and join the party! We have a lot of fun & there's always room for one more at the table.
Check These Recipes Out Too Y'all!

Old Fashioned Boiled Peanut Butter Icing
Texas Sheet Cake
Almond Joy Cake
German Chocolate Cake
Wilton Cupcake Kit

Posted by on March 12, 2012
Images and Full Post Content including Recipe ©Deep South Dish. Recipes are offered for your own personal use and while pinning and sharing links is welcomed and encouraged, please do not copy and paste to repost or republish elsewhere such as other Facebook pages, blogs, websites, or forums without explicit prior permission. All rights reserved.

Material Disclosure: Unless otherwise noted, you should assume that post links to the providers of goods and services mentioned, establish an affiliate relationship and/or other material connection and that I may be compensated when you purchase from a provider. You are never under any obligation to purchase anything when using my recipes and you should always perform due diligence before buying goods or services from anyone via the Internet or offline.
Bookmark and Share


  1. Your cupcakes look fantastic Mary; the piped frosting looks downright professional!
    I wish that I didn't have such a sweet tooth-I think there's a diet in my near future. :)

  2. these look beautiful! I was surprised to see a cupcake on your post :) and I love how you decorated them! anne

    1. LOL I bet you were!! You may see one or two more show up in the future since I now have THREE grandkids. Wow. I actually just said that LOL??!!

  3. What were your thoughts on the content in the cookbook? Is it one you would recommend? Lots of recipes or mostly stories and anecdotes?

    Your cupcakes look delicious!

    1. Hi Sabrina - I would! While there are stories as the intro to each chapter, it's mostly content/recipes. And they do look scrumptious. If you won't be passing a bookstore anytime soon, & you have a chance to get on a computer to preview it at Amazon, that should give you an idea as to the content. There are quite a few recipes in there I want to give a run for sure!

  4. Peanut butter buttercream frosting? Yum! I don't blame her for tearing up, like you said she'd put her heart and soul into it, so to get that immediate validation like that is a great thing.

    1. Yeah, it was the first cookbook they'd put out from their bakery & I guess to have that many people snatch it up in such a short time must've been heartwarming! Putting out a good cookbook takes a lot of work too, so I'm sure that was probably a little stress let out too!! You know, sort of that waiting to exhale kinda thing.

  5. See now this is why I stay away from your sweets section. Being a stay at home housewife with two grown children, I haven time on my hands and would make every single recipe here! Lol. Those cupcakes look very addictive and the icing is what my mother in law introduced me to and I absolutely fell in love with. By the way, my name is Esther.

    1. Hi Esther! I don't have a lot of sweets here - there's a very good reason for that!

  6. OMG this recipe is amazing , I made for my boyfriend and he loved it ! Awesome job !

  7. This is a pretty dense cake & the frosting is like trying to frost a cake with PB fudge but it's tasty! Thanks for sharing!

    1. Hi Carrol! Thanks for stopping back by to comment. This is not a dense cupcake at all, but it could have been created if you measured by scooping into the flour with your measuring cup. When you do that, you compact the flour & will actually use more flour than the recipe calls for, and that will indeed make for a denser cake. When you make any kind of cake, be sure to spoon the flour into your measuring cup, then level it off so that you don't over compact it and use too much flour!

      As to the frosting, it shouldn't be anything like fudge! Did you remember to add the milk? Once you cream together the butter and shortening, and then add the peanut butter and powdered sugar, this mixture will absolutely be stiff, but now you'll add in the vanilla and then the milk, one tablespoon at a time until the frosting is fluffy and reaches the desired consistency. You may need a little more milk or you may not need it all - you'll know when it gets fluffy like frosting, as shown in the photo. That photo is the actual frosting, I promise!


Thanks for taking the time to comment - I love hearing from readers and I read every single comment and try to respond to them right here on the site, so stop back by!

From time to time, anonymous restrictions and/or comment moderation may be activated due to comment spam. I also reserve the right to edit, delete or otherwise exercise total editorial discretion over any comments left on this blog. If your comment serves only to be snarky, mean-spirited or argumentative, it will be deleted. Please mind your manners.

Related Posts with Thumbnails