peanut butter cup cupcakeWhat do I want for Mother's Day this year?

These cupcakes. That's it. These Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Cupcakes, on a big tray, preferably in my bed. (Don't even ask me to share!)

That's not asking too much, is it?

A batch of these drool-worthy creations all to myself?

Look, if it were any other day of the year, you could just buy some plain old cupcakes and smash up some peanut butter cups on top and I'd probably be fine, but for Mother's Day?

Only. These. Cupcakes. Will. Do. 

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Cupcakes

1 cup all purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
6 tbsp (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup smooth peanut butter, room temp
1 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup milk


Preheat oven to 350F. Line muffin tin cups with paper cupcake liners.

Sift flour, baking powder, and salt into a medium bowl and set aside.

In a large bowl, using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the butter, peanut butter, and brown sugar until smoothly blended and lightened in color, about 1 minute. Stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed during mixing. Mix in egg. Add vanilla and beat for 1 minute or until batter smooth.

On low speed, add the flour mixture in 3 additions and the milk in 2 additions, beginning and ending with the flour mixture and mixing until the flour is incorporated and the batter looks smooth.

Fill each liner with a generous 1/4 cup of batter, to about 1/3 inch below the top of the liner. Bake just until the tops feel firm and are lightly browned and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 22 minutes. There will be cracks on the top. Cool cupcakes for 10 minutes in the pan on wire rack.

When cool, double-dip cupcakes into chocolate ganache (recipe follows) and top each with a peanut. When the ganache is set, place each cupcake into a chocolate peanut butter shell (recipe follows) to finish. Store cupcakes in refrigerator.

Ganache Filling:


8 ounces bittersweet chocolate
2/3 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons butter, room temperature

Chop the chocolate and transfer it to a heatproof bowl. Heat the cream until simmering and pour it over the chocolate. Let it sit for one minute and then stir until smooth. (If this has not sufficiently melted the chocolate, you can return it to a double-boiler to gently melt what remains. 20 seconds in the microwave, watching carefully, will also work.) Add the butter and stir until combined.

Peanut Butter Cups:

For the chocolate:
1 1/2 cups chopped semisweet chocolate
2 tablespoons natural peanut butter
Pinch salt

For the filling:
12 tablespoons natural peanut butter
1/3 cup evaporated cane juice or light brown sugar or powdered sugar
2 tablespoons graham cracker crumbs, optional
Pinch salt

Prepare a standard muffin tin with 12 paper liners.

Combine chocolate, peanut butter, and salt in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave in 1-minute increments, keeping a close eye to avoid burning, and stirring often. Using a double boiler is also an option.

Place 2 teaspoons melted chocolate in each cupcake liner and carefully spread it with the back of a spoon at the bottom and only 1/4 of the way up the liner. Repeat with all 12 liners.

Place the chocolate-covered liners onto a plate in the fridge to firm up, for about 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare the filling: Stir together peanut butter, sugar, optional crumbs, and salt.

The chocolate should be hard by now, so divide peanut butter paste into all 12 liners, about 1 heaping tablespoon per liner, pressing down gently to make sure the paste goes everywhere. Place in fridge to firm up, for about 20 minutes.

Top with 2 teaspoons melted chocolate, spreading carefully so that none of the peanut butter can be seen.

Let cups firm up in fridge for at least one hour before enjoying. Store in fridge or freezer.