For how much I love cupcakes you'd think I'd post more pictures of them, right?! Unfotunately, I love them SO much I usually eat them before I can get a good picture. I'm pretty boring when it comes to making cupcakes. I'll make a chocolate cake (from a box) with my basic vanilla buttercream frosting. Last fall I wanted to treat some very special ladies I work with and thank them with cupcakes for all the hard work they do for me and my colleagues. I ventured out of my comfort zone and made Reece's Peanut Butter Cup Cupcakes. WOWZA! These.were.awesome!!!!
Since I am a lazy baker I always use a box cake mix...not to mention they always turn out moist and perfect! And let's be honest, the cake is really just a means to eat frosting anyways! I do spend the time making a homemade buttercream that will knock your socks off. Seriously, the buttercream is the star of this cupcake, hands down! Make these and then you can tell me how amazing this buttercream is!! No lie, I don't even like peanut butter buttercream and I pipe any remaining frosting right into my mouth with these puppies!
Reece's Peanut Butter Cup Cupcakes
1 box chocolate cake mix (and all ingredients needed to make the box cake mix)
1 bag of miniature Reece's Peanut Butter Cups, unwrapped
2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
4 cups confectioners sugar
1 tbsp merengue powder
1 tbsp peanut butter extract
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter (maybe a little more depending on flavor and color)
2-4 tbsp milk
1. Bake cake according to box directions. After 5 minutes of baking, drop a Reece's Peanut Butter Cup into the center of the cupcake. Let cool completely.
2. Put butter in a bowl and mix with a mixer or stand mixer (my KitchenAid is awesome for buttercreams). Beat butter until creamy. Add the peanut butter and cream together.
3. Add 2 cups of the confectioners sugar and the merengue powder and mix until incorporated. Add the remaining powdered sugar and mix until completely incorporated again.
4. Add the peanut butter extract and 2 tbsp of milk. I usually taste it and will either add more peanut butter or more peanut butter extract to get the flavor where I want it. I'll also add more milk if I want a creamier buttercream.
5. Chop about 5-8 mini peanut butter cups into small pieces. Frost cupcakes with buttercream. I pipe my frosting using a large star tip (I don't know what the number is). After I frost about 5-6 cupcakes I'll sprinkle some chopped peanut butter cups on top so that the frosting is still soft enough to grab hold to the candy.