If you need a frosting that tastes like the inside of a peanut butter cup but with more fluff, this Peanut Butter Frosting is just the thing. Pile it on cupcakes, spread it on a sheet cake, or smush it between two cookies for a cookie sandwich. There's nothing this creamy peanut butter buttercream can't do!
When I think about the last bite of food I want to eat on earth, it might be these chocolate cupcakes with a huge pile of peanut butter frosting on top. Cupcakes are the perfect vehicle for this frosting, but I have been known to spread it between two chocolate chip cookies without eggs to make a quick cookie sandwich for the freezer.
I will cover exactly how to make it, how to use it, and how to store it for future desserts. But first, let's go over all the ways we could incorporate a bowl of this into our kitchen.
Ways to Use Peanut Butter Frosting:
- In the photos, I'm using my Eggless Chocolate Cupcakes as the base, because peanut butter and chocolate go together so well!
- Make my mini chocolate cake for two, and then use this peanut butter frosting instead of the ganache the recipe calls for. I have a small vanilla cake, if you think vanilla and peanut butter go together!
- I would love to see my maple bacon cupcakes get a twist with this buttercream on top! What's not to love--candied bacon, maple cupcake with a touch of bacon grease and peanut butter?
- Make a few cookie sandwiches using my chocolate chippers cookies as the sandwich. My brown sugar chocolate chip cookies would be great, too, because the extra molasses in the brown sugar would make such a good flavor combination.
- Spread this on my banana sheet cake, and enjoy the incredible blend of peanut butter and bananas!
- If you want to tuck a layer of this in the middle of my cookie dough cake layers, everyone would love it!
- If you want to spread this on my small batch brownies for two, it would be so good!
This recipe contains all the usual suspects, except we're using heavy cream to make it extra fluffy when whipped. And also, this recipe might have less butter than you expect for a frosting recipe, but remember the peanut butter is taking the place of most of it.
- Unsalted Butter. Yes, we really only need a few tablespoons of butter for this recipe. The peanut butter is taking care of the rest of the creaminess and fat we need in a frosting.
- Peanut Butter. I really don't recommend a 'natural style' peanut butter here. And definitely do not use one that requires stirring or one that has the oil separated out, or else it will separate out in the frosting. Use a sweetened, classic jar of peanut butter here.
- Powdered Sugar. Also called confectioners' sugar.
- Heavy Cream. A small splash of heavy cream provides enough fat so that the frosting whips into something even fluffier and lighter, but it still holds its shape when piped.
- Vanilla. The vanilla gently bumps up the sweetness here.
- Salt. The smallest pinch of salt, considering the peanut butter probably has some.
This recipe is so simple, and it only requires one bowl, a hand mixer and a few minutes to whip up. I especially love that this recipe only calls for a few tablespoons of butter, because it softens so quickly and then you're ready to begin!
This recipe makes 2 heaping cups of frosting, you can cut it back by one-third if you only need enough to frost 4 cupcakes. As written, it will frost 12 cupcakes, or an 8 or 9-inch two layer cake.
Combine all ingredients (the softened butter, peanut butter, powdered sugar, heavy cream, vanilla and salt in a bowl.
Use an electric hand mixer to whip until light and fluffy. Give it a taste, and add more salt, if needed.
Scrape the mixture into a piping bag, if you prefer. You can always just use a butter knife to frost cupcakes, too!
Make pretty swirls and mounds of frosting on top using a star tip (or any tip you like).
I use my hand-held electric mixer for this recipe. It makes quick work of it, and it's absolutely necessary to beat the cream properly.
Check out all of my frosting recipes here.
How to Store Peanut Butter Frosting / Make Ahead Tips:
You can make this frosting ahead of time and store it in the fridge until needed. Keep in mind that it might need another quick whip with the hand mixer, just in case it separates.
You can decorate a cake with this frosting, and then refrigerate it until needed. I would let the cake rest on the counter for about 15 minutes before serving, just to take the chill off, however.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Be sure to use sifted powdered sugar. You can also add a splash more heavy cream and continue beating to take away the grainy texture. Be sure you didn't use chunky peanut butter, also!
If your peanut butter frosting curdled, it's probably because your peanut butter separated. Ensure that you use non-natural, fully homogenized peanut butter (not one that requires stirring!)
You can take my recipe for whipped cream cream cheese frosting and reduce the cream cheese to 4-6 ounces (depending on how tangy you like it) and add ½ cup of peanut butter. It is delicious!
If you're out of butter, you can use a bit more peanut butter here, and you shouldn't notice too much of a difference. If it seems too thick, add another small splash of heavy cream and beat again.
- 3 tablespoon (42 grams) unsalted butter, softened
- ¾ cup (210 grams) creamy peanut butter
- ¾ cup (75 grams) powdered sugar
- 6 tablespoons (90 mL) heavy cream
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Pinch of salt
- In a medium bowl, add the the butter, peanut butter, powdered sugar, heavy cream, vanilla and salt.
- Using an electric hand mixer on low speed, beat the frosting together until smooth and creamy.
- Scoop the mixture into a piping bag, or simple use a knife to spread this frosting on anything you like.
Make ahead: You can make this frosting ahead of time and store it in the fridge until needed. Keep in mind that it might need another quick whip with the hand mixer, just in case it separates.
Storage: You can decorate a cake with this frosting, and then refrigerate it until needed. Let the cake rest on the counter for about 15 minutes before serving, just to take the chill off of it.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 180Total Fat: 18gSaturated Fat: 11gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 49mgSodium: 95mgCarbohydrates: 2gFiber: 0gSugar: 2gProtein: 2g