Peanut Butter Cupcakes (Cake Mix Recipe)

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Today we are sharing a delicious, easy recipe for Peanut Butter Cupcakes!

These tender cupcakes are super moist, can be whipped up in no time, and taste amazing with our peanut butter buttercream (which we used a filling also)!

This delicious recipe could be used to make a peanut butter layer cake as well, but today we are in cupcake mode!

Peanut Butter Cupcakes on a Cake Platter, topped with Reese's Cups.

We've made many recipes based on doctored cake mixes over the years-- they are not only delicious, but so consistent and convenient!

As an added bonus, the additional ingredients in today's peanut butter cupcake recipe (including sugar, peanut butter, and flour) give us enough cake batter for 5 bonus cupcakes. Plenty for taste testing ;0)

How to Make Peanut Butter Cupcakes

You can find the full, printable recipe card for these cupcakes further down in this post. Here is a quick rundown of our steps!

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line wells of cupcake pan with cupcake liners. Here are the ingredients we are working with today.
Ingredients for Peanut Butter Cupcakes
  • Add all ingredients to mixing bowl: yellow cake mix, all purpose flour, water, vegetable oil, creamy peanut butter, sugar, eggs, and vanilla extract.
Bowl of ingredients
  • Using an electric mixer, mix on low speed using a hand mixer or stand mixer (with paddle attachment) for 30 seconds until incorporated. Then, increase speed to medium and continue mixing the cake batter for two minutes.
Peanut Butter Cake Batter
  • Next, scoop or spoon the peanut butter cupcake batter into the liners.
  • Fill the paper liners approximately ⅔-3/4 full. (This is about ¼ cup cake batter per cupcake.)
  • Place into the preheated oven.
  • Bake at 350 for 17 minutes or when the tops of the cupcakes spring back when lightly touched or when a toothpick can be inserted and removed with just a few moist crumbs attached.
Peanut Butter Cupcakes in pans, freshly baked
  • Pop the cupcakes out of the cake pan soon after removing from the oven- we usually wait just a few minutes.

Peanut Butter Buttercream

This creamy peanut butter frosting recipe is one of our favorites!

It has wonderful peanut flavor, pipes perfectly, and comes together in no time! The frosting is a simple combination of butter, creamy peanut butter, powdered sugar, a bit of vanilla extract, milk, and a pinch of salt.

Keep this recipe in mind the next time you're making a peanut butter cake, chocolate cake, chocolate cupcakes, and more!

Pro Tip! We recommend using creamy Jif peanut butter (or similar brand) rather than using all natural peanut butter or crunchy peanut butter. The consistency is creamier!

Bowl of Peanut Butter Buttercream

We have another delicious option for these cupcakes! Our Peanut Butter Cream Cheese Frosting is heavenly! If you love cream cheese frostings, these peanut butter cupcakes are a perfect match.

Assembling & Decorating the Peanut Butter Cupcakes

Once the cupcakes have completely cooled, it is time to add the filling and frosting!

We love to add fillings to our cupcakes for an added flavor boost.

While the peanut butter flavor of the cupcakes is unmistakeable, it is still fairly light. That's where the peanut butter frosting comes in!

Dress these cupcakes in swirls of peanut butter frosting and you'll have an amazing peanut buttery cupcake!

Injecting peanut butter frosting into the center takes the peanut butter flavor over the top!

How to Fill a Cupcake

  • Using a disposable piping bag with the tip snipped away (or if you prefer a piping tip- a round tip 12 is a good one)- fill the bag with the peanut butter frosting.
  • Insert the tip of the filled piping bag into the cupcake, about halfway down, and give it a squeeze for a couple of seconds, then remove. A good test is to do this on a plate first, squeeze the bag, for 2-3 seconds to get an idea of how much frosting you are filling your cupcakes with. Then adjust to your liking.
Injecting cupcakes with peanut butter buttercream
  • This recipe makes 29 cupcakes and so if you have one to spare, you can slice it in half to see how much filling you are putting in.)
Filled Peanut Butter Cupcake on a plate, sliced in half
  • Fill all of the cupcakes, then it is time to frost!

Decorating the Cupcakes

Decorate your peanut butter cupcakes however you like! We used a 2D piping tip to swirl on top of our cupcakes, starting on the outer edge and spiraling inward.

If you'd like to learn more about decorating cupcakes, don't miss our quick free video tutorial on Cupcake Basics!

Swirling Peanut Butter Cupcakes with Frosting

We decorated the top of the cupcakes with Reese's Cups, sliced in half!

Plate of sliced miniature Reese's Cups

Here are our finished cupcakes. I just love how they came out!

Keep these easy peanut butter cupcakes in mind for all of the peanut butter lovers in your life.

They are the perfect cupcakes for birthday parties, get togethers, or just for a quick dessert!

Platter of Peanut Butter Cupcakes, topped with Reese's Cup

Recipe FAQs

You can refrigerate if you would like, but these cupcakes are fine to sit at room temperature for 2-3 days (in an airtight container or under a cake dome).

If you do refrigerate, we recommend removing the cupcakes from the refrigerator a couple of hours before serving so that the cake and frosting can warm and soften. 

Yes, just as with most of our cupcake recipes(from vanilla cupcakes to strawberry cupcakes, caramel cupcakes and more) you can bake the peanut butter cupcakes in advance and freeze them for up to three months!

After baking the cupcakes, allow them to cool on a cooling rack before lining them up on a cake cardboard or something similar. Layer the cupcakes with a couple of sheets of plastic wrap, then follow that with aluminum foil. Move to the freezer.

To thaw, move the cupcakes, still wrapped, to the kitchen counter. Allow to thaw for about 30 minutes before unwrapping and continuing to thaw. Decorate as usual.

Aside from our Peanut Butter Buttercream, another popular choice is peanut butter cream cheese frosting.

Another great option is chocolate buttercream frosting.

More Peanut Butter Cakes

We have made many peanut butter cakes over the years!

Some of our most popular have been our Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Pound Cake, Peanut Butter Cake from scratch, and Peanut Butter & Chocolate Cake from cake mix.

Platter of Peanut Butter Cupcakes, topped with Reese's Cup

Peanut Butter Cupcakes (Cake Mix)

These delicious peanut butter cupcakes are so easy to make from cake mix. They bake up with a nice dome and we love to fill and frost them with peanut butter buttercream. (Our Peanut Butter cream cheese frosting is a great option too!)
Prep Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Cook Time: 17 minutes
Course: Dessert
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Ingredients

  • 1 (15.25) box Yellow Cake Mix We used Duncan Hines, Classic Yellow
  • 1 cup granulated sugar 200g
  • 1 cup All Purpose Flour 121g
  • 1 cup Creamy Peanut Butter- We used Jif brand full-fat (255g)
  • 1 ½ cups water 360g
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla 8g
  • ¼ Cup (54g) Canola Oil
  • 3 whole eggs

For the Peanut Butter Buttercream (Filling & Frosting)

  • *Since I used this as a filling as well I have increased our usual recipe by half
  • 3 sticks (339g) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 ½ cups (382g) Creamy Peanut Butter ("All Natural" Versions have a consistency that doesn't work as well. We recommend Jif or another similar brand).
  • 6 cups (690g) Confectioners Sugar
  • cup (120g) milk (Increase amount little by little as needed for desired consistency.)
  • 2 teaspoons (8g) vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt

Decoration

  • Miniature Reese's Cups sliced in half

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line wells of cupcake pan with cupcake liners.
  • Add all ingredients to mixing bowl. Mix on low speed (stand or hand mixer) for 30 seconds until incorporated.
  • Increase speed to medium and mix for 2 minutes.
  • Fill the cupcake liners with batter, filling them approximately ⅔-3/4 full. (About ¼ cup batter per cupcake.)
  • Bake at 350 for 17 minutes or until the center springs back when lightly touched or when a toothpick can be inserted and removed with. just a few crumbs attached.
  • Pop the cupcakes out of the cake pan soon after removing from the oven- we usually wait just a few minutes.
  • This recipe makes about 29 cupcakes.
  • For the Peanut Butter Buttercream
  • In the bowl of your mixer add the butter and mix on medium speed until the butter is softened and smooth. Add the peanut butter and mix until blended.
  • Gradually add the powdered sugar alternately with the milk. Add vanilla. Mix on medium speed 4 to 5 minutes until smooth.
  • Filling and Frosting
  • Once the cupcakes have completely cooled, it is time to fill and frost!
  • For the filling: Using a disposable piping bag with the tip snipped away (or if you prefer a piping tip- a round tip 12 is a good one)- fill the bag with buttercream.
  • Insert the tip of the filled piping bag into the cupcake, about halfway down, and give it a squeeze for a couple of seconds, then remove. A good test is to do this on a plate first, squeeze the bag, for 2-3 seconds to get an idea of how much frosting you are filling your cupcakes with. Then adjust to your liking. (This recipe makes 29 cupcakes and so if you have one to spare, you can slice it in half to see how much filling you are putting in.)
  • Fill all of the cupcakes, then frost. Decorate however you like! I frosted my cupcakes by adding a swirl with a 2D piping tip (1M gives a very similar look). I made a circle of piping close to the outer edge of the cupcake, and then spiraled inward.
  • I topped my cupcakes with miniature Reese's cups, sliced in half.

Notes

*If you do not want to fill your cupcakes, and instead will just be frosting the tops, you can use our usual peanut butter frosting recipe which makes a bit less.
Make sure to wait until the cupcakes are completely cool before adding the filling and frosting.

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4 Comments

  1. Another yummy recipe! These are so good, light and fluffy! this was my first time filling a cupcake and it turned out great! I had two cups of frosting left over which I'll freeze for another day. Thank you for the excellent recipes and instructions.