Chocolate Peanut Butter Filled Cupcakes Dipped in Dark Chocolate Ganache

Everyone has their own opinions on where is the best place to get a great cupcake here in LA. Some people say Sprinkles, others say Magnolia, maybe Susie Cakes, I could keep listing them but you won’t believe where I’ve found a great cupcake. Recently, I caved when I walked past the dessert section of Trader Joe’s and snuck a 4 pack of these Dark Chocolate Cupcakes with a Peanut Butter Filling into the cart. Normally, I do not participate in store bought cookies, cakes, or any dessert for that matter. I know that I will generally still uphold this rule, but I now have a MAJOR exception for these cupcakes.

Trader Joe's Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Filled Cupcakes

Trader Joe’s made the best cupcake that I have had in months. I KNOW. It’s absolutely absurd. Totally insane. You’re probably asking yourself how many drinks I had before tasting this cupcake, but no alcohol was involved.

The problem with so many cupcake shops is that the cake is boring and the frosting is overly sweet to try and balance it out.

These cupcakes are the perfect balance of a great cake and instead of a sugary frosting, it has a dark chocolate ganache instead which is so rich and delicious. Oh, and don’t forget this peanut butter filling which is basically slightly sweetened peanut butter, A.K.A Heaven.

Like the rest of the desserts I see in stores, I said to myself “I have to remake this”, and oh did I.

TNB Chocolate Peanut Butter Filled Cupcakes

There are no more words. This is THE cupcake.

TNB Chocolate Peanut Butter Filled CupcakesI know…

 

Salted Pretzel Slim Peanut Butter Bites

Sometimes I am genuinely worried that I have a sugar addiction. I think that is a thing, right? But if it is a thing, I really just don’t want to know.

I try and not let myself think about this for too long of a period of time because then I start thinking crazy things like “hey, maybe you should start making sauteed vegetables as a late night snack instead of 8 oreos”…..sigh…

During an average day, I must consume a ridiculous amount of sugar because when I eat healthy for a day I get these crazy sugar cravings. And when I say crazy…I’m talking wait until everyone is sleeping and take 6 cupcakes into my room, close the door and devour.

But that’s normal!

And if you’re normal addicted to sugar like me, then you’ll enjoy these little pretzel bites. They’re the perfect grab-and-run-away salty sugar fix.

Oh, and better yet, you don’t have to turn the oven on! I don’t know about you guys, but it’s been 95+ degrees for the past 2 weeks, hitting up to 106 a few days. So the thought of turning the oven on has been a little horrifying.

 

Peanut Butter Cookies

Tuesday night, the music was up loud, the kitchen was warm from the long hot day, and there I was…dancing and singing into a cookie scoop. Part of me wishes that I had a video blog just so I could share a glimpse of how hilarious it was…but then I think about a camera following me around the kitchen and I’m like….no thanks!

Everyone is always surprised to hear that I get shy when it comes to public speaking and being on camera. Probably because I’m very loud and chatty (in the most elegant way of course) when I am with my friends. Every time I imagine being on camera, all I can think about is making an instructional video on how to make a quesadilla in spanish for a class. Unfortunately, or fortunately, I have no idea what happened to that video, but the memories are definitely still there. It was bad. And not even in that, oh look at those cute girls making a quesadilla…it was more of a oh god look at those girls speaking in valley girl spanish. Baaaaaad.

As for the public speaking bit…I’m in a speech class right now, and let me tell you, I feel like I’m going to pass out every time I go up there and speak. After my 5 minutes of torture are up I go and sit down and I literally could not tell you what I had just said. It’s like I black out, give a speech, and then come back to life. And I know what you’re thinking “the more you get up there the easier it will get.”

My response to that? I don’t believe you. It’s painful every time I go up there.

So until I get over my irrational fears of public speaking and being on camera, you’re stuck with me here folks!

In honor of trying new things, I branched out from my usual peanut butter cookie recipe and tried out Joanne Chang’s recipe from her amazing cookbook Flour. What I like about this recipe is that is just a straight up peanut butter cookie. The ingredients are wholesome and simple…ie: no extra trip to the store. My other recipe uses half butter and half shortening…I know, shortening, yuck – but trust me they’re pretty damn tasty too.

Why did I chose such a weird looking cookie to take a picture of? To show you guys how a real cookie should look, like a human made it. When I see perfect cookies it just makes me question what the heck they’re doing in their kitchen, because I use a cookie scoop and I still get gems like this guy. Either they are robots or I’m really sloppy. (Don’t answer that)

It’s rustic. That’s a thing, I swear.

Also, with the amount of peanut butter in this recipe, I will allow this an acceptable form of breakfast. I mean seriously, if you think about it the amount of protein you’re getting…it’s probably better for you than the cereal you’re eating! Okay, maybe not, but cookies for breakfast!!

Enjoy,

Madeline

Homemade Tagalong Girl Scout Cookies

Once upon a time, I was a Girl Scout. I was a smiley, loud, bow in the hair, Girl Scout. I started out as a Brownie and even made it up to a Cadette. One of my favorite parts of being a Girl Scout though, hands down, had to be cookie season. There was nothing more exciting than having cases of Tagalongs, Thin Mints, and Samoas in your garage.

Unlike the Girl Scouts I see today, eight year old Madeline & friends sold these cookies. And when I say sold, I mean that chick in the picture went door to door, counted money, made change – the whole shabang. So I found myself a little sad when I came out of the grocery store and saw that table full of cookies, only to find those adorable little Brownies off to the side talking about Justin Bieber and making their Mom count the change for my three boxes of Tagalongs.

As much as I’m a little disheartened with how Girl Scouts may not be as wholesome and girl empowering as it was when I was in it, I still have really fond memories that make me glad I was a part of it.

For one of our badges, we had to cook a meal. Yeah, yeah, yeah, this isn’t Boy Scouts people, we learned how to cook, clean, set tables and act like a lady. My future husband will thank me, and so will you when you come over for a dinner party. Your welcome.

Always posing for pictures

After that one encounter with the Justin Bieber GS cookie girls, I did not see one GS cookie stand ANYWHERE! I even downloaded the official Girl Scout Cookie Finder App for my phone. It had alerts for when cookies were near you – genius. But alas, here we are and I don’t have any cookies.

So instead of being depressed that I didn’t get to buy 15 more boxes of Tagalongs, I set out to make my own.

No more longing for tagalongs in mid September. I could not be more thankful for Jessica at The Novice Chef for posting about these. I think I may have been lost without them.

Which Girl Scout cookies are your favorite?

Enjoy!

Madeline

National Peanut Butter Day!

If you haven’t already heard, today is National Peanut Butter Day! In honor of such a glorious day, I thought I’d round up some of my favorite recipes using such a gloriously creamy spread. Maybe you’ll celebrate by grabbing a spoon and eating a nice spoonful of peanut butter straight off the spoon. Maybe you’ll be adventurous and add some chocolate chips to it. Or maybe you’ll be so crazy and bake something! In that case, here are some of the recipes I have made, and some that I have bookmarked because I’m dying to make them.

Chocolate Cupcakes with a Peanut Butter Frosting

This is one of my favorite cupcakes now. The frosting really is the perfect compliment to the rich chocolate cake.

Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies with a Milk Chocolate Filling

Mini little peanut butter and chocolate sandwich cookies! Seriously, these disappeared so fast there weren’t any left to take pictures later on. They’re quite addictive too, so beware!

Tagalongs — The Novice Chef 

Source: Novice Chef Blog

Tagalongs are my absolute FAVORITE Girl Scout cookie. Every year I buy about 6 boxes and hide them from myself so I can savor them, otherwise I will literally eat a box a day until they’re gone and I’m licking the packaging. Finding this recipe on Jessica’s blog was like a dream come true! Tagalongs year round? Uhh, yes please.

Peanut Butter Mini Cheesecake — Bake or Break

Source: Bake or Break

Do I even need to say anything about this picture? I don’t think so either.

Peanut Butter Filled Chocolate Donuts — Stan’s Donuts, Westwood Village, CA.

Lastly, if you’re on the Westside (Los Angeles Westside that is) you should take a detour and stop into Stan’s Donuts and get a Peanut Butter Filled Chocolate Donut. If you don’t have time to bake something up yourself, this really is the ultimate PB Celebration in your mouth.

Go enjoy some Peanut Butter!

Madeline

#48 Chocolate & Peanut Butter Cupcakes


Happy One Year Anniversary to Thursday Night Baking Blog!! 

I can’t believe it was a year ago today that I decided to start on this crazy adventure! The positive feed back I have received from all of you has been beyond humbling. I love this blog, I love you guys. In the past year I’ve gone from a spare time Wordpress blog to having my own domain name and making it on to FoodGawker and TasteSpotting. I smile so big just thinking about it. Thanks for being so awesome! Cheers to going strong! ::clink::

In honor of this fabulous day (although it’s raining here in So.Cal) I thought I would share with you these absolutely delicious cupcakes! Chocolate and Peanut Butter is the ultimate combination for me. I could bake just Chocolate and Peanut Butter goodies for the rest of my time and be quite happy. But imagine Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, or Tagalongs if you’re a Girl Scout Cookie eater (so good…). This is a moist chocolate cupcake with a silky smooth Peanut Butter Frosting. It’s heaven in your mouth, I kid you not. I’m considering making this frosting and keeping it on hand to put on oreo’s when I am too tired to bake – it’s that good.

 

Featured Food: Stan’s Donuts

This post is going to be a little bit different than the others, but I promise you’ll like it. I’ve been coming across yummy foods that are absolutely amazing and I feel like I must share with you guys! I’ve decided that this donut is so delicious that you all must know about it.

There is this little donut shop in Westwood Village, CA called Stan’s Donuts. You would never know that it’s delicious unless you’re from the area or you’ve heard about it from a friend. Guess what,  I’m going to be that friend!

My boyfriend had been raving about these Chocolate donuts with a Peanut Butter filling for a while and I was finally privileged enough to eat one. Let me tell you friends, best donut of my life, and soon to be yours. I’m sure this donut without the Peanut Butter filling would be fabulous, but the peanut butter filling takes the donut to a whole different level. Usually, when ever I have donuts I feel overwhelmed by sugar for a while, but that Peanut Butter fixes the problem. I dont know if I want to eat any  other donut again!

So delicious...

So, next time you are on the Westside, stuck in traffic on the 405, you have to go try this donut.

Stan’s Donuts
10948 Weyburn Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90024

Enjoy,

Madeline

#39 Chocolate Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Frosting

First off, welcome to my new blog! I worked really hard to personalize it and make it very “me”, so I hope you like it. :)! Make sure if you are subscribed to my old blog that you re-subscribe to this one!

Now to the food…

Chocolate + Peanut Butter = The Best Ever.

Delicious

Honestly, it is one of my favorite combinations, so when I saw these cupcakes online I knew I had to try it. These cupcakes are a basic chocolate cupcake with a smooth peanut butter inside, topped with silky peanut butter cream cheese frosting. Not only was I baking my favorite combination, I was also baking with one of my favorite people, Danielle!

This is Danielle. You’ve seen her before 

Chocolate cupcake with a little ball of peanut butter goodness baked in the center

Me frosting

Chocolate Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Frosting

Recipe from Annie’s Eats.

Ingredients:
For the filling:
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
¾ cup creamy peanut butter
4 tbsp. unsalted butter, at room temperature
½ tsp. vanilla extract

For the cake:
1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. salt
1 cup sour cream
2 tbsp. milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract
8 tbsp. unsalted butter, at room temperature
1½ cups sugar
2 large eggs

For the frosting:
8 oz. cream cheese, at room temperature
4 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
½ cup creamy peanut butter
3¼ cups confectioners’ sugar
1 cup frozen whipped topping, thawed

Directions:
Preheat the oven to 350° F.  Line two cupcake pans with paper liners.

For the filling, combine the confectioners’ sugar, peanut butter, butter and vanilla extract in a bowl.  Beat with an electric mixer on medium speed until well combined.  Roll the mixture into 1-inch balls (at least 24) and set aside on a baking sheet.

For the cake batter, combine the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl; whisk together and set aside.  In a liquid measuring cup, stir together the sour cream, milk and vanilla extract.  In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the butter and sugar, and beat on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.  Beat in the eggs one at a time, scraping down the bowl as needed.  With the mixer on low speed, alternately add the dry ingredients and the sour cream mixture, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients.  Mix just until incorporated.

Spoon about a tablespoon or so of batter into each of the cupcake liners.  Then, place a ball of the peanut butter filling in each cupcake liner and top with the remaining batter so that all the cups are filled, 3/4 full.  Bake for 18-22 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Allow to cool in the pan for 5-10 minutes, then transfer out of pans to let cool completely.

For the frosting, in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the cream cheese, butter and peanut butter until smooth.  Slowly mix in the confectioners’ sugar, beating until smooth and well blended.  Mix in the whipped topping until smooth and fluffy.

 

Enjoy,

 

Madeline