Peanut Butter Cup Cupcakes

Like I said previously, I had a few desserts to make for our block party this Saturday.  It turned out great!  If anyone needs recommendations for a balloon artist, face painter, reasonable priced bounce house (most places were twice the cost!) or catering company, I have a whole list (for the St. Louis area)!  They all did great.

But back to the cupcakes.  I had already put Snickers in a Snickers Cupcake.  So why not everyone’s beloved Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup?  These were sooooo moist and delicious with just the right amount of peanut butter flavor in the frosting.  This doctored up mix is the best.  I originally saw it on allrecipes.com where it has like 1000 good reviews.

Peanut Butter Cup Cupcakes
yields 30 cupcakes

1 (18.25 oz.) Devil’s Food Cake mix
1 (5.9 oz.) instant chocolate pudding (the BIG box!)
1 cup sour cream
1 cup vegetable or canola oil
4 eggs, lightly beaten
2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 cup room temp. strong coffee (take twice the amount of coffee grounds you normally would use and put 1/2 cup water through)
1 bag Reese’s Miniature Peanut Butter Cups, frozen (Recommend unpeeling them first and put into a bowl to freeze)

Frosting:
2 sticks of unsalted butter, room temperature
2/3 cup smooth, creamy peanut butter (I like Skippy Natural)
1 1/2 lbs. powdered sugar, sifted (if you forget to sift it isn’t the end of the world, just not as smooth of a frosting)
1 1/2 Tbs. vanilla extract
5 Tbs. heavy cream
1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Use non-stick spray in your muffin tin or line a muffin tin with cupcake liners.
2.  In a large bowl, on medium speed beat together: cake mix, pudding mix, sour cream, oil, eggs, vanilla and coffee.  Mix for 2 minutes or so until thoroughly combined.
3.  Evenly distribute the batter between the cupcakes.  You can try to fit them all into 24 cupcakes.  When I used my large cookie scoop/3 Tbs. scoop, this made 30 cupcakes for me.  Afterwards, press one frozen peanut butter cup into the batter but not all the way to the bottom.
4.  Bake 18-22 minutes.  Cool 10 minutes on cooling racks.  Remove from muffin tins and cool completely.
5.  While cupcakes are cooling, in a large bowl on medium speed cream the butter and peanut butter for about 1-2 minutes (or fluffy).  Switch to low speed and gradually add in your powdered sugar little by little until all combined.
6.  Add vanilla extract and slowly add in cream.  Switch mixer to high speed and whip until fluffy.
7.  Using a piping bag or plastic bag with a hole cut on one corner, pipe frosting onto the cooled cupcakes.
8.  For optional decoration:  I had about 4-5 peanut butter cups left (after some had also been eaten by family members so don’t take stock in my numbers and how many you have left), and chopped them up into eighths.  I used the small pieces as decoration for the cupcakes.

I frosted the cupcakes using Wilton’s 1M tip.

**Make Ahead Tip***:  I usually make the frosting first the night before the cupcakes are needed.  So if I need cupcakes on Saturday, I will make the frosting some time on Friday.  Refrigerate the frosting (if it is a buttercream frosting) overnight then take it out 3 hours or so before you will need to use it.

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