Peanut Butter and Jelly Cupcakes (take two…)

For those of you who have been following me from the beginning (thank you), you may remember my first post was about Peanut Butter and Jelly Cupcakes. I love pb&j, so I was excited to make those cupcakes, but ended up being a little disappointed with the result. They were OK, but I found them to be a little salty. I vowed to try again someday.

That someday was yesterday.

I have a student who has been obsessed with the idea of peanut butter and jelly cupcakes ever since I casually mentioned to my class that I had made them once. I’m pretty sure he has talked about them every day since. Because this is the last week of our semester, I figured I’d surprise him and bring him some. He’s going. To lose. His mind.

The recipe I tried was a different one. I found it here, and I was much more pleased with the results this time around. They tasted just like a soft peanut butter cookie, if said cookie was topped with a dollop of jelly and a generous helping of sweet, peanutty frosting. Sounds like my kind of cookie, by the way.

These cupcakes would surely be a hit at a kid’s birthday or school party- what kid doesn’t like pb&j? Or, just make them “just because.” They’re sure to bring out the kid in you.

Peanut Butter and Jelly Cupcakes
makes 24 cupcakes

Cupcake Ingredients:
1 3/4 cups flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
1 1/3 cups sugar
2/3 cup creamy peanut butter
3 large eggs, room temperature
1/2 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 cup buttermilk
Grape or strawberry jam or jelly( for the filling and topping)

Frosting Ingredients:
2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
2/3 cup creamy peanut butter
3 cups powdered sugar, sifted
pinch of salt
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
2 tablespoons heavy cream

Directions:
To make the cupcakes: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line muffin tins with cupcake liners and set aside. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a bowl and whisk to blend. In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the butter and sugar and beat on medium-high speed until light and fluffy. Blend in peanut butter. Beat in eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Blend in the sour cream and vanilla. With the mixer on low speed, add half of the dry ingredients, mixing just until incorporated. Mix in the buttermilk and the remaining dry ingredients, mixing after each addition until just combined.
Fill the liners about 2/3 full and bake for 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean, rotating about halfway through. Let cool in the pans for a few minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

To fill the cupcakes, hollow out the middle, using either a paring knife or an apple corer (save the pieces). Fill the cupcake holes with the jam or jelly and replace the tops, pressing down gently to make sure it is flush with the top of the cupcake.

To make the frosting: combine the butter and peanut butter in the bowl of an electric mixer. Beat on medium-high speed until smooth. Mix in the salt and the powdered sugar (I added about 1/2 cup at a time, mixing well after each addition). With the mixer on low speed, mix in the vanilla and the cream just until incorporated. Increase the mixer speed to medium-high and beat until light and very fluffy, about 4 minutes. Pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes, and top with another dollop of jelly, if desired.

And yes, you can consider it lunch. It’s practically healthy.

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