Peanut Butter Cake with Chocolate Cream Cheese Icing

Peanut Butter Cake with Chocolate Cream Cheese Icing

Here’s a real winner if you love peanut butter and chocolate. In a cake. Honestly, who doesn’t?  This cake is amazing and delicious and rich and creamy and buttery and toothache sweet and just absolutely perfect. But, what else would you expect from Ree Drummond? She’s The Pioneer Woman and she can cook like nobody’s business.

Copyright, Doug Kapustin Photography, 2014

You’ll see. And you’ll agree after this recipe. Although I had watched Drummond’s show on Food Network from time to time, it was my Aunt Bettye who introduced me to her recipes. (Note: I always trust Bettye’s suggestions because, well, this lady can cook “like nobody’s business” too! Thanks Bettye!)

For Mother’s Day, my daughter just bought me the book The Pioneer Woman Cooks which I highly and strongly recommend. You’ll find recipes for everything from salsa to adult coffee to Mountain Dew fruit cobbler. Also for Mother’s Day, my stepdaughter bought me this lovely cake stand and glass lid, specially designed for tall cakes. Naturally, I use it every single day for showcasing family desserts and for tempting all passers-by. It works and I love it. The two combined gifts could not have been better suited to me, and another plus for me is that The Pioneer Woman has Basset Hounds too! Even if you don’t buy her book, you must check out her website http://thepioneerwoman.com .

So, back to the peanut butter cake– I modified the original recipe slightly, and the information about that can be found after the recipe, with links to the originals. 

Try this one as soon as you can; you’ll be glad you did. 

Peanut Butter Cake with Chocolate Cream Cheese Icing 

2 cups All-purpose Flour
2 cups Sugar
¼ teaspoons Salt
½ cups Buttermilk
2 whole Eggs
1 teaspoon Baking Soda
1 teaspoon Vanilla
1¾ stick Butter
½ cups Peanut Butter
1 cup Boiling Water

16 ounces cream cheese, softened
8 tablespoons (1 stick) butter, softened
6 tablespoons whole milk
6 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
1- 1/3 cups cocoa powder
¼ teaspoon salt
3 teaspoons vanilla extract


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 

In a large bowl, stir together flour, sugar, and salt. Set aside. 

In a small bowl, whisk together buttermilk, eggs, baking soda, and vanilla. Set aside.
In a medium saucepan, melt 1¾  sticks butter. Stir in peanut butter until smooth. Add boiling water, let the mixture bubble up for about 10 seconds, then remove from heat.

Pour the peanut butter mixture over the flour/sugar mixture and stir until halfway combined. Pour in the buttermilk mixture and stir gently until the batter is smooth. Pour the batter into 2-9 inch cake round cake pans and smooth the surface. Bake for about 20-25 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center comes clean, then remove it from the oven. Cool cake completely before layering and icing (see icing recipe below). 
In a medium bowl, using a mixer set at medium speed, beat the cream cheese, butter, and milk together until smooth. Add the sugar, cocoa, and salt and continue to beat until blended.
Reduce mixer speed to low, add the vanilla, and beat until smooth. Cover and chill for at least 30 minutes before using. 

Important Notes: 
Original cake recipe from Ree Drummond’s The Pioneer Woman Cooks and also at the following link:  http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2013/11/peanut-butter-cake-with-chocolate-icing/

My version of Ree’s recipe was modified only by using two round cake pans instead of a sheet or jelly roll pan, and I changed the icing since it’s a layer cake. It is sooo worth noting that I have tried her original recipe too, with her icing, and it is absolutely scrumptious—perfect for family desserts. I like changing the format and layering the cake for get-togethers just because the transport is easier and presentation is a bit fancier. 

My go-to chocolate cream cheese icing recipe is an old standby from Country Living magazine that can also be accessed below:

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