Saturday, February 20, 2010

Easy Peasy Peanut Butter Cupcakes

Most kids love peanut butter. Peanut Butter used to last in my pantry for several years, but now that I have two little crumb-crunchers, we go through jars lickety-split. Here's a quick and easy cake mix recipe adapted from Ann Byrn's The CakeMix Doctor that will have your peanut butter lovers begging for more!

Easy Peanut Butter Cupcakes

1 package of yellow cake mix

1 1/3 cups water

1/2 cup peanut butter (chunky or smooth, use your favorite!)

1/3 cup vegetable oil

3 large eggs

1 tsp pure vanilla extract

Mini peanut butter cups, halved, for garnish

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease your cupcake cups and insert in muffin pan.

  2. Mix cake mix, water, peanut butter, oil, eggs and vanilla in a large bowl for 2 minutes; batter should be well blended.

  3. Spoon batter into cups about two thirds of the way full. Tip: cookie scoops work great for spooning batter into cups!

  4. Place the pans in the oven and bake 18-20 minutes. Remove from oven and place on wire racks to cool.

After they are cooled, you can do almost anything you like with them. If your peanut-butter lover also loves jelly, take a small medicine bottle approximately 1 1/4 inches in diameter and press into the center of each cooled cupcake to make an indentation approximately 3/4 inch deep. Spoon your favorite jam or jelly directly in the hole. You will then frost over the whole cupcake, hiding the indentation, and voila! Peanut butter and jelly cupcakes!

Frostings are subjective; you can use any flavor you love, but what I most love is a delicious, easy peanut butter buttercream. It's like peanut butter overload! Here's the recipe:

Peanut Butter Buttercream

1/4 cup butter at room temperature

1/4 cup peanut butter

3 cups powdered sugar, sifted

1 tsp. vanilla

2-4 Tbs. milk

In a large bowl, beat butter and peanut butter together until fluffy. Add the sugar, vanilla and milk and beat until all the sugar is dissolved and the frosting is creamy. If the frosting seems too stiff, add a little more milk, 1 Tbs. at a time.

Frost your cooled cupcake with the frosting and top with a half of a mini peanut butter cup. This cupcake practically begs for a glass of milk to go with it!


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