Oh bananas, chocolate and peanut butter, you have our whole heart! We salute you here on two carolines with not, 5, not 10, but literally dozens of recipes and we’re not even done yet! This is a wonderful mash up of 1.0’s famous banana peanut butter chocolate chip cake with my (2.0 duh) renowned peanut butter chocolate cake frosting – and trust me, it’s all that is right in the world to combine these two masterful recipes into one dessert. Grab those spotty bananas and buy a big bag of pow sug because these are going to need to be added to your summer bucket list STAT! -CK 2.0
For the cupcakes:
4 very ripe bananas
2 large eggs
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1 ½ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. ground cinnamon
3/4 cup peanut butter (use creamy or crunchy according to texture preference, but probably creamy, and not the kind you have to stir)
2 cups chocolate chips
For the frosting:
10 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1 stick (4 ounces or 1/2 cup) unsalted butter, at room temperature
5 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
2/3 cup smooth peanut butter, preferably a commercial brand like Jiff or Skippy
Set oven to 350. Line two muffin tins and spray just a touch of cooking spray (I use coconut for most bakes) into the bottom of each one.
In a medium mixing bowl, mash the bananas well with a fork or potato masher. Add the eggs and vanilla, and stir well to combine. In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, baking soda, and cinnamon—then add to the banana mixture.
Add the peanut butter and when that is combined, add the chocolate chips.
Pour the batter into your lined muffin tin up to 3/4 full then bake one at a time for about 17-19 minutes (you know your oven, check for doneness with a toothpick).
For the frosting -In a large bowl with an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese and butter until light and fluffy. Gradually add the confectioners’ sugar 1 cup at a time, mixing thoroughly after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl often. Continue to beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the peanut butter and beat until thoroughly blended.
Put a large star tip (I use all of these large tips regularly for cupcakes, macaroons and all manner of sweets) into a big piping bag and seal the end with plastic wrap or a clamp then drape your bag on a very tall glass or I always use a vase. Fill your piping bag with frosting then pipe a cute swirl of PB frosting onto each cupcake, once they’ve cooled. This frosting and cake keep fine at room temperature but keep them in a sealed container for freshness. If you don’t have a piping bag and tips just spread it on top of your cupcakes however you want.
I often bake with my daughters, and when they get to choose, it’s ALWAYS chocolate cake, which is one of the reasons there are so many chocolate cake recipes on our site. This one is super delicious, it’s got rich dark chocolate flavor and I decided to make it in a cupcake instead of a cake so we could freeze what we didn’t eat the day we made it and have fresh cake anyday. I did find, as I do with many cakes from scratch, that they dry out a little on day two, so it’s best to make it for a crowd or freeze your leftovers. I am a pretty loyal devotee to traditional buttercream frosting, but I decided to try whipped ganache, and I must say, it’s poppin off some serious chocolate flavor, fun for a change and for sure a very rich chocolatey experience. I doubled the frosting because you use a lot more for cupcakes, but other than that, I stayed pretty close to the recipe. Hope you enjoy them as much as we have!
2 cups cake flour
2/3 cup natural cocoa powder
1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup buttermilk
1/3 cup water
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter at room temperature
1 3/4 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
14 ounces bittersweet or semi-sweet chocolate chopped
1 cup heavy cream
6 tablespoons unsalted butter at room temperature
Prepare 2 muffin tins with cupcake liners, lightly spray the bottoms. Preheat oven to 350.
For the cake – Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt into a large bowl until light and fluffy. Add the sugar and beat for 3 minutes, or until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla. Reduce speed to low and add the cocoa mixture alternately with the buttermilk mixture in 3 batches, beating until well blended. Transfer the batter to cupcake liners filling only 3/4 the way. If you choose to make a cake this works great in two 9 inch round pans or one 9×13. Just be sure to check for doneness and not bake times, bake time below is for cupcakes.
Bake for 19-22 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool in the pan for 5-10 minutes until turning out to cool completely on a cooling rack.
To make the frosting, slowly melt the chocolate with the cream in a heatproof medium bowl and whisk until smooth. Add the butter and whisk until smooth. Let cool to room temperature, then refrigerate, covered, for 15 minutes.
Beat the frosting with an electric mixer on medium high speed for about 8 minutes until thick enough to spread.
Either frost cupcakes with a knife or put frosting into a piping bag fitted with a large tip and twirl pretty frosting mountains on top of your cooled cupcakes. Add chocolate sprinkles for an extra pretty touch!
Ya’ll knew that we would never give up our love for our favorite combination, PB&C—and throwing in banana with that is always ideal. There’s the great cookbook from some of my favorite baking pros, called Baked Elements. I love how they organize each section by flavor, and since I tend to be mood oriented with what I feel like baking or even listening to, this concept couldn’t be more perfect for me. I loved their Bananas Cake recipe, but unlike 2.0 (who is the yin to my yang) I am more of a lazy baker and wanted to try the idea with cupcakes instead of a three layer cake. This is a delicious hodgepodge of their cake, a thicker version of their ganache and a Peanut Butter Buttercream frosting. I would have to say, (sorry not sorry) it’s bananas.
3 cups cake flour
1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 oz. butter, at room temperature, cut into pieces
1/2 cup Crisco
1 3/4 cups plus 1 tablespoon sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 large very ripe bananas, mashed
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon buttermilk
Peanut Butter Frosting:
1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 heaping cup creamy peanut butter
2.5 cups powdered sugar
pinch of salt
8 ounces semisweet chocolate chips
6 ounces butter
1 tablespoon light corn syrup
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line 2 cupcake sheets with 24 liners and spray liners to prepare them. (There will be some leftover batter to make a mini loaf, if you have a pan—prepare with butter or cooking spray.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the cake flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt and set aside.
Beat butter, shortening on medium speed until light and fluffy. Add the sugar and beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 5 more minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing for 10 to 15 seconds after each addition, until the egg is incorporated into the mixture. Then turn the mixer to low, add the vanilla and bananas and beat until well mixed. Add the flour mixture in three parts, alternating with the buttermilk, beginning and ending with the flour mixture until all ingredients are incorporated.
Divide batter evenly between cupcake liners (and possible extra mini loaf).
Bake for 20 minutes, until cake springs back when you gently touch it.
Let cool completely before frosting.
Peanut Butter Frosting:
Cream together the peanut butter and butter for 2-3 minutes—until the color lightens a shade or two.
Add the powdered sugar and salt, scrape the sides of the bowl and mix until well-combined.
Set aside until ready to top cupcakes.
When ready to frost, divide frosting evenly and dome the frosting as much as possible.
Chocolate Ganache Topping:
Place the chocolate, butter and corn syrup in a small saucepan on low heat.
Using a rubber spatula, stir until chocolate mixture is completely melted.
Let cool to room temp.
Put in refrigerator for 5 minutes, this will cool the sauce enough that when you mix it, it thickens enough to top the domed peanut butter frosting.