chocolate + peanut butter + cake

I love baking for friends who have the same taste in desserts as I do — which can be best described as “how can I fit more chocolate into this”.

Enter chocolate birthday cake with peanut butter frosting — a.k.a. what every Reese’s Cup would like to be reincarnated as in its next life.

Ta da!

chocolate peanut butter cake (uncut)

I made this cake for a friend’s birthday dinner, since he requested something “decadent” for dessert — and it was a huge hit. Even Matt, who doesn’t like cake, liked this cake.

I use my favorite chocolate cake recipe — which I’ve adapted over many, many tests. I took a basic recipe and lowered the amount of sugar, and added coffee to the batter to give it a richer, deeper flavor. The peanut butter frosting is whipped for nearly five minutes, giving it an extra fluffy texture.

While it makes for an impressive special occasion cake, I think this would make an equally nice sheet cake or cupcakes for everyday indulging.

Recipe is below. You’re so welcome.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake


  • 1-1/2 cups sugar
  • 1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup milk (I use almond)
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp espresso or dark roast instant coffee
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter (don’t use natural)
  • 3 tablespoons milk (still using almond here)
  • 1-1/2 to 2 cups confectioner’s sugar


  1. Heat oven to 350°F. Grease and dust two 9-inch round baking pans with cocoa.
  2. Stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in large bowl.
  3. Add eggs, milk, oil, and vanilla. Beat into dry mix on medium speed for 2 minutes.
  4. Stir in boiling water and coffee together and add to the batter. The batter will be thin, but that’s ok!
  5. Pour batter into prepared pans. Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
  6. Cool for about 10 minutes and remove from pans to wire racks. Let the cake cool completely.
  7. Place butter and peanut butter into a bowl and beat until well incorporated, about 2 minutes.
  8. Add in sugar and mix until it looks thick.
  9. Add in 1 tablespoon of milk at a time until your frosting looks spreadable.
  10. Beat for at least 3 more minutes to get it extra fluffy.
  11. Decorate your cake!

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