Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake is rich and creamy, made with cocoa powder and peanut butter, ready in under 60 minutes!

We’re always baking in this kitchen, and if you love this Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake you’ll also love our Classic Yellow Cake, Red Velvet Cake, and Easy Chocolate Cake!

Peanut Butter Frosting with Chocolate Cake
CHOCOLATE PEANUT BUTTER CAKE

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake is the PERFECT combo of creamy peanut butter and rich chocolate cake, and my go-to for most holidays. The coffee in this cake recipe really brings out all of the chocolate flavor, and it’s always a hit when we serve it at parties!

This dessert is also totally kid friendly, because they love the peanut butter flavor, and helping to decorate. I like to set out peanut butter cups, chocolate pieces, or crushed peanuts to top this cake. Plus it’s ready in under 60 minutes, so you can make it the morning of!

HOW DO YOU STORE CHOCOLATE PEANUT BUTTER CAKE?

This chocolate cake should be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container. The peanut butter frosting contains milk and butter, basically like a buttercream, and as a general rule I like to keep dairy-based frostings in the refrigerator. This cake will keep for about a week.

You can also follow the cake recipe and omit the peanut butter buttercream until you’re ready to serve it, and store the cake wrapped tightly in plastic wrap on the counter for 3-4 days.

CAN YOU FREEZE CHOCOLATE PEANUT BUTTER CAKE?

You can make this cake completely and freeze it for about an hour, then take it out of the freezer and wrap it tightly with plastic wrap and tinfoil and place it back in the freezer. This method prevents the peanut butter buttercream from getting dented, so it will still look freshly-made when you pull it out. This will keep for 6-8 months frozen.

WHAT CAN YOU USE TO DECORATE CHOCOLATE PEANUT BUTTER CAKE?

  • Marshmallows
  • Powdered sugar
  • Chocolate shavings
  • Caramel sauce
  • Semisweet chocolate chips
  • Peanut butter candies (like peanut butter cups or butterfinger)
  • Chocolate ganache

Chocolate Cake with Peanut Butter Frosting

MORE CAKE RECIPES

TIPS FOR MAKING PEANUT BUTTER CAKE

  • You can bake this cake using chocolate cake mix, and just make the peanut butter frosting from scratch if you’re short on time.
  • You can use round cake pans to make cake layers, or a sheet cake pan if you’re feeding a larger crowd. Double the cake recipe if you want more than a two tiered layer cake.
  • Bake this peanut butter chocolate cake recipe in a bundt pan, then add a layer of peanut butter buttercream frosting and dust the top of the cake lightly with powdered sugar for decoration.
  • Make sure you measure your all-purpose flour exactly, using a knife to level the measuring cup. Too much all purpose flour can cause your cake’s texture to turn out dry.
  • Make sure you bring your cake to room temperature before serving it. The peanut butter and the cake itself may harden slightly when it’s cold, and be mistaken for stale, while it’ll taste fine at room temperature.
  • Use a toothpick to see if your dessert is baked all the way through. If it comes out clean, the cake is done.
  • If you drizzle the finished cake with caramel sauce, I also like to add a teaspoon salt (the flaky kind) for a chocolate-peanut salted caramel version. I also like to use a spatula to create a fun pattern on top of the cake. You can also do this with chocolate sauce.
  • Try topping this cake with colorful granulated sugar for holidays. You can also try melting chocolate chips in a microwave-safe bowl (or in a double boiler over medium-high heat), and drizzling the chocolate in a decorative pattern over the cake.
  • You can use regular chocolate or dark chocolate cocoa powder for a richer flavor with the peanut butter.
  • For more flavor variation, try use a teaspoon vanilla extract instead of a tablespoon, plus one teaspoon of almond extract.
  • You can dust your cake pans or line them with parchment paper to make sure they don’t stick.
  • I like to make this dessert in the stand mixer but you can use an electric mixer if that’s what you have.
  • You can add ½ cup of sour cream to help make this peanut butter cake even more moist.
  • Serve this on a dessert table along with my chocolate covered bananas and white chocolate puppy chow!
  • If you’re making the peanut butter buttercream frosting from scratch, make sure you use creamy peanut butter and unsalted butter. You can top this cake with fresh chopped peanuts for extra crunch at the end.
  • I also recommend using regular peanut butter, and not natural peanut butter. Natural peanut butter tends to separate and won’t set properly.
  • If you’re making a layer cake, cut a thin piece off of the very top of the bottom cake layer. This will help make it flatter so the layers will stay together more easily.
  • For an even better texture, replace the milk with buttermilk, which reacts with the flour to make the cake even more fluffy.
  • Use this recipe to make cupcakes, then pipe the peanut butter buttercream frosting into the center of the cupcake and either dust with powdered sugar, or add more peanut butter buttercream frosting on top.

Chocolate Cake with Peanut Butter Frosting

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Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake is rich and creamy, made with cocoa powder and peanut butter, ready in under 60 minutes!
Yield 12 servings
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Author Sabrina Snyder

Ingredients
 

  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 3/4 cups flour
  • 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup hot coffee (boiling water is ok too)
  • Peanut Butter Frosting

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and butter and dust with cocoa powder two 9" cake pans.
  • In a stand mixer on low speed add together the sugar, flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  • In a medium bowl combine the eggs, milk, oil and vanilla and add to the stand mixer on just until just combined (or it will make a dense cake) and finally add in the boiling water carefully and stir it in with a spatula or large spool until just combined (do not use the mixer, water is very hot).
  • Pour batter into the pans and bake for 30-35 minutes then remove letting them cool completely before frosting with the peanut butter frosting.

Nutrition

Calories: 391kcal | Carbohydrates: 65g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Cholesterol: 29mg | Sodium: 387mg | Potassium: 263mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 45g | Vitamin A: 73IU | Calcium: 62mg | Iron: 2mg
Keyword: Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake

Cake with Chocolate and Peanut Butter

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the upcoming cookbook: Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients which is being published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

Dinner, then Dessert, Inc. owns the copyright on all images and text and does not allow for its original recipes and pictures to be reproduced anywhere other than at this site unless authorization is given. If you enjoyed the recipe and would like to publish it on your own site, please re-write it in your own words, and link back to my site and recipe page. Read my disclosure and copyright policy. This post may contain affiliate links.

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Comments

  1. I want to make this cake, but I don’t own a stand up mixer. I do have an electric handheld mixer, will that work okay? Thank you!

  2. My 15 and 13 year old daughters made this cake for their Dad’s birthday. He and I both thought it was the best cake we’ve ever eaten. That’s a huge compliment because my mom makes an absolutely incredible Red Velvet Cake. We are down to one slice left and have asked the girls to please make another cake. Thanks so much for the recipe.

  3. I made this cake and it was AMAZING. Thank you!!
    How long should the bake time be if I make these as cupcakes (standard muffin tin)?

    1. If you’re using all the batter, these will be thicker cakes so you’ll need to lower the temperature to 325 and start checking for doneness around the 40-45 minute mark. Hope this helps.

  4. If I make this in 2 9-inch cake pans instead, will I need to cut the recipe at all? Also how long do you recommend I bake it for? Thank you!

  5. I am wanting to make this cake but only have almond milk. Will it work substituting that for whole milk?

  6. I believe I followed the directions exactly in 2 round pans but they stuck to the pan and came out a mess . Still tastes delicious though.

    1. I checked the cakes after 30 minutes – toothpick came out clean – however the cake did not want to come out of the pan after cooling – stuck it back in the oven for 10 more minutes and with a little bit of work they eventually came out (some still stuck to pan)
      but it was quite tasty!

    2. If it stuck to the pan it might be that you didn’t butter enough but my recommendation is how I make my carrot cake. I butter the bottom and sides, dust /flour (this recipe is cocoa powder) but put down wax paper at bottom and butter before you put in bottom and then butter over the wax paper then dust w/cocoa powder. This truly helps the cake release.

    1. You’ll want to use a 10 inch bundt pan for this recipe. It might take 45 minutes to bake but I would suggest checking it around the 30-35 minute marker and go from there. Good luck!

  7. Do I have to do anything different to the recipe if I want to add peanut butter, chocolate chips, or reeces’s pieces to the batter? Thanks!

    1. I used two round 9 inch pans to make a two-tiered cake. If you want more than 2 tiers, you’ll need to double the recipe.

  8. Can I just use lactose free milk for the frosting? I always have to buy that for household use anyways and I wanna be able to enjoy my man’s birthday cake with more comfort lol and I’m already gonna be using sour cream in the cake so the whole milk would be overkill. I know it may not have the ideal texture but I’ve done it in the past with other recipes and never had complaints.

    1. I haven’t tested it yet, my only fear is that it will affect the texture of it. If you decide to try it, I’d love to know how it turns out.

  9. Re: Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake…..your write up states that the cake is made with cocoa powder and peanut butter, yet peanut butter is not listed in the ingredients nor instructions. However, It is listed for the frosting. So, it appears that this is actually a chocolate cake with peanut butter frosting, right? Or is your ingredient list wrong? It would help if you made corrections to the cake name or the ingredient list to reflect it accurately. I came looking for a chocolate peanut butter cake, hoping I had found one like my mom used to make, and although I’m sure it’s delicious, it’s a real disappointment to find this is not what I expected.

  10. I don’t know what went wrong but the cakes came out soupy even after 35 min. Then the middle sank. Tastes fine. Texture seems okay. Guess I’ll never know.

    1. Not sure why it would be soupy after 35 minutes. Hmm, usually the middle sinks from the oven temperature being too high or having to adjust from opening the door while it’s baking. That might have been that issue. So glad you were still able to enjoy it.

  11. There is nothing better than peanut butter and chocolate! This dessert is sure to disappear fast!