Peanut Butter Belly-Bombs

I have a little bit of a reputation in our church as The Cupcake Lady. At least, it often seems that way to me. I get inquiries about “Those cupcakes you were going to bring to {event} that ending up getting canceled due to {weather event}?” Yeah. Not kidding.

There are a few big events of the “church year”, the first of which is “Homecoming”. It essentially coincides with the beginning of the region’s school year, so our various and sundry members are usually back from their summer travels and ready to catch up with everyone else. The kids go and bomb each other with water balloons outside while the adults sit through service, and then everyone eats and plays games. This year, those games included a cupcake walk. And these peanut-butter cupcakes were gone lickity-split.

Have you ever seen an un-photogenic cupcake? Me neither. And when you walk in with a tray of these babies, you’ll be hailed as the Cupcake God and all shall bow down and worship you.

Okay, maybe not quite that drastic. But you’ll get some gushing compliments and maybe some fangirl squeals. It’s funny to watch faces if they don’t realize there’s a giant cookie hiding in waiting, ready to explode in their mouths.

In all seriousness, though:

These require a little assembly, but they’re WORTH IT. I usually measure out the dry ingredients (flour, cocoa, baking soda and powder, salt, and espresso powder) for the cupcakes in a quart-sized jar for easy sifting. And that way, I have sort of an “instant” cupcake mix.

You’ll have a little leftover batter and leftover cookie dough. I usually just press some cookie dough into the bottom of a 4″ springform and let it bake for 10 minutes, then add the leftover cupcake batter to the top and bake until that is set. You can frost it with any leftover icing for an inside-out Reese’s cup!

When I say “beat” in this recipe. I really mean “whisk vigorously by hand”. I never use electric beaters when working with flour for a product that should be tender and fluffy. Maybe it’s just my electric beaters that are super-juiced, but even beating something at the lowest setting with them will make the finished product really gross. I have yet to experiment with the hand-cranked “egg”-beaters, but that might be a viable option.

The peanut butter frosting has a great depth of flavor to it, thanks to the blackstrap molasses. You can use regular molasses, but I feel that it’s not as yummy as the blackstrap! Really go for some good peanut butter. If you have access to a high-speed blender, make your own. Whole Foods and Fresh Market have nut-butter grinders in their stores as well, so that would be a great indulgence.

I wish I could claim total credit for the insanity, but the cupcake batter and frosting recipes are adapted from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World.

PB Cookie Center

  • 1C peanut butter
  • 1C firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1 flaxseed egg (1T ground flax + 3T warm water)

Mix “egg” and set aside. Mix together the peanut butter and sugar, then stir in the “egg”. Cover and refrigerate.

Chocolate Cupcake Batter

  • 1 C full-fat coconut milk
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 3/4C sugar
  • 1/3C canola oil
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1C AP flour
  • 1/3C extra-dark cocoa
  • 2 tsp instant espresso powder
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt

Preheat the oven to 350F and line a 12-ct cupcake tin. Whisk together milk and vinegar and set aside. In a large bowl, beat sugar, oil, and vanilla until combined. Add the milk mixture and beat until foamy.

Sift together flour, cocoa, espresso powder, baking powder and soda, and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the wet in two batches, beating so no large lumps remain.

Fill liners 2/3 full (I use a 3T scoop). Drop a small (1T) ball of cookie dough in the center of each cup. Bake 18-22 minutes. Allow to cool completely before frosting.

PB Frosting

  • 1/4 C margarine, softened
  • 2 T shortening
  • 1/3 C creamy natural peanut butter
  • 1 T blackstrap molasses
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 1/4 – 2 C powdered sugar
  • 1-2 T coconut milk
  • Cream together margarine, shortening, and vanilla until fluffy. Add PB and molasses and beat until very smooth. Beat in sugar 1/2 C at a time. The mixture will be quite stiff, so thin it with coconut milk to reach the desired consistency.

    For frosting these, you can simply slather your sugary goodness on top. If you’re a little more motivated, mound on the frosting by piping it on in a swirl. My favorite tips for these are the Wilton 1M, 2D, or Ateco 805. I then usually dust them with a little cocoa powder and top with a vegan chip.

    If you’re feeling super fancy and motivated, make peanut butter “blossoms”. I piped these on with an Ateco 127.

    There are some great tutorials on YouTube about how to use decorating tips or even a Ziploc bag to pipe frosting.

    Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to wear either serious-pants OR fancy-pants to make and decorate these. I did it all in pajama-pants. Because that’s how I roll.


    4 thoughts on “Peanut Butter Belly-Bombs

    1. Seriously drooling here! I didn’t know that even beating with an electric mixer on low speed makes the dough tough.Maybe that’s why my mini donuts are never quite right.Will go back to old-fashioned elbow grease for the next batch šŸ™‚

    2. Pingback: Samoa Cupcakes | The Vegan Virtuoso

    3. Pingback: Craziness, Cookies, and Cupcakes | The Vegan Virtuoso

    Leave a Reply

    Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

    You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

    Google+ photo

    You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

    Twitter picture

    You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

    Facebook photo

    You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

    Connecting to %s