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Friday, January 18, 2013

the guide to the best chocolate peanut butter cupcake {recipe}

When I was working in Los Angeles, our executive team often came down for meetings with the movie studios, television networks and record labels. We would often bring something to the meetings like Sprinkles Cupcakes,  divine lovely little decadent treats that made people swoon. Often on my way to the airport heading home I would make a stop at Sprinkles to bring home one Red Velvet cupcake for my husband, L.. These sweets were just so good that it was worth hand carrying one cupcake 976 miles home.

Later today I'm heading to an executive women's retreat and I wanted to leave something for L. that would make him happy. So, this morning I made cupcakes that would rival even Sprinkles: the chocolate peanut butter cupcake.

There really are some tastes that just belong together: peanut butter & jelly, peanut butter & chocolate, peanut butter & bacon (really). . .These cupcakes (bacon-free) are literally the perfect combination of sweet, dense dark chocolate and smooth, light, peanut butter frosting.

I followed this Martha Stewart chocolate cake recipe (or use a box mix like Duncan Hines Dark Chocolate) and then prepared this easy peanut butter frosting recipe. Once you find out how easy it is to make homemade frosting, you will never use canned frosting again. Homemade frosting is fresh and creamy without that greasy/salty/artificial aftertaste that you get from canned frosting. Try this. It's easy. I promise.

Peanut Butter Frosting

(for 12 cupcakes)

1 cup smooth peanut butter (I like Jif)
1 stick of unsalted butter (softened to room temperature or microwave for 10 seconds)
2 cups confectioners (powdered) sugar
3 to 4 tablespoons half & half


Add butter and peanut butter to a bowl. Using an electric hand mixer, whip the butter and peanut butter together until incorporated. Mix in 2 cups of confectioners sugar and slowly add the half & half, starting with 3 tablespoons. If it's still a little too thick, add more half & half one tablespoon at a time. 

Frost cupcakes. 

Lick the spoon. Close your eyes. Heavenly. 

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