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What a trio of flavors! These are super-moist banana chocolate chip cupcakes topped with milk chocolate and peanut butter swirled frosting. They’re just as moist and flavorful as banana bread, but not quite as dense.

banana chocolate chip cupcakes topped with chocolate peanut butter swirl frosting on a blue plate

You may recognize this banana cupcake recipe from when we topped them with strawberry cream cheese frosting. (I beg you – please try that combo!) Or maybe you noticed these cupcakes topped with Nutella frosting in Sally’s Baking Addiction on page 136? We even used this banana chocolate chip cupcake batter to make a Banana Chocolate Chip Layer Cake on page 69. Topped with milk chocolate frosting, of course.

Tell Me About These Banana Cupcakes

  • Flavor: Even without the frosting, these cupcakes are full of flavor. (Think of them as cakey banana chocolate chip muffins!) Ripe brown spotted bananas are key and what I recommend in our banana cake recipe, too. Plus, we add cinnamon and sweeten them with brown sugar. What you may love most, though, is the combination of peanut butter and milk chocolate frostings– tastes like a peanut butter cup.
  • Texture: These cupcakes are soft and springy– much lighter in texture than dense banana bread. Ripe bananas, brown sugar, and buttermilk keep them extra moist, even by day 2. 
  • Ease: The cupcake recipe is pretty straightforward and simple. The hardest part, if we can even call it that, is swirling the frostings together. But you get the hang of it quickly as you go.

banana chocolate chip cupcakes topped with chocolate peanut butter swirl frosting on a white plate

banana chocolate chip cupcake batter in a cupcake pan before baking

Let’s Discuss the Frostings

The frosting swirl. Learning to swirl two types of frosting together takes practice. Like any sport, instrument, or hobby, the more you do it, the more you’ll get comfortable with it. 

Let me briefly explain how to do this– and it’s exactly how we made two-toned frosting roses. You need a piping bag and tip. Spoon some of the peanut butter frosting into one side of your piping bag and spoon some of the milk chocolate frosting into the other side. Then pipe onto cupcakes. We use Wilton 1M star tip and pipe the frosting in a tall swirl. If you’re interested, here’s a piping tips tutorial.

  • Please note: if you decide to only use 1 frosting, you’ll have to double the frosting recipe to guarantee there’s enough for all 18 cupcakes.

Getting the frosting flavor right. Both frosting recipes are simple: add more or less cream to adjust your frostings’ thickness. Find them too sweet? Add a pinch of salt to tone down the sweetness.

banana chocolate chip cupcakes topped with chocolate peanut butter swirl frosting

More Favorite Recipes with Bananas

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banana chocolate chip cupcakes topped with chocolate peanut butter swirl frosting on a white plate

Banana Cupcakes with Chocolate Peanut Butter Frosting

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 18 minutes
  • Total Time: 3 hours, 50 minutes
  • Yield: 18 cupcakes 1x
  • Category: Cupcakes
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American


The ultimate trio of your favorite flavors! Super-moist banana chocolate chip cupcakes topped with milk chocolate and peanut butter swirled frosting.




  • 1/2 cup (115g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1/2 cup (100g) packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup (150g) granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 and 1/2 cups mashed banana (about 3 large very ripe bananas)
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups (250g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) buttermilk*
  • 1 cup (180g) mini or regular semi-sweet chocolate chips

Milk Chocolate Frosting

  • 1 and 3/4 cups (210g) confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/4 cup (21g) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup (115g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 2 Tablespoons (30ml) heavy cream or half-and-half*
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • salt, to taste

Peanut Butter Frosting

  • 3/4 cup (185g) creamy peanut butter
  • 4 Tablespoons (60g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 3/4 cup (90g) confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3 Tablespoons (45ml) heavy cream or half-and-half*


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line two 12-count muffin pans with 18 cupcake liners. Set aside.
  2. Make the cupcakes: Using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar together in a large bowl on medium speed until creamed. About 2-3 minutes. With the mixer running on low speed, add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the mashed bananas and vanilla, beating on low speed for about 1 minute.
  3. Whisk the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt together in a medium bowl. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients in 3 additions, stirring by hand after each addition.  Add the milk and stir until combined.  The batter will be lumpy.  Fold in the chocolate chips.
  4. Spoon the batter evenly into 18 cupcake liners. Fill the unused cups one-third full with water to prevent warping. Bake each batch for 17-19 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of a cupcake comes out clean. Allow to cool completely before frosting.
  5. Make the chocolate frosting: Sift together the confectioners’ sugar and cocoa powder to assure there are no lumps. Set aside. With a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium speed until creamy – about 2 minutes. Gradually add the sifted sugar/cocoa powder alternately with the heavy cream and vanilla. Beat on low speed after each addition. Once all added, beat on high speed until creamy and combined for at least 2 minutes. Add a pinch of salt if frosting is too sweet.
  6. Make the peanut butter frosting: With a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the peanut butter and butter on medium speed until creamy and completely smooth – about 3 minutes. Add the confectioners’ sugar and vanilla. Mix on medium until combined. Add the cream and mix on high until creamy, at least 2 minutes. Add a pinch of salt if frosting is too sweet.
  7. Frost cooled cupcakes with a knife or with a piping bag/tip. If you’d like to just make 1 kind of frosting and not both, make sure you double the frosting recipe of your choice to make sure there is enough for all cupcakes. To swirl the two frostings like I did, here is how I made the swirl frosting. There may be leftover frosting depending how much you use on each cupcake. Decorate with banana slices and/or more chocolate chips if desired. Store cupcakes in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 days and in the refrigerator up to 5.


  1. Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: Prepare cupcakes and frosting 1 day in advance. Keep cupcakes covered tightly at room temperature and the frosting covered tightly in the refrigerator. Unfrosted cupcakes can be frozen up to 2 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and bring to room temperature before frosting and serving.
  2. Buttermilk: Buttermilk is required for this recipe. You can make your own DIY version of buttermilk if needed. Add 1 teaspoon of white vinegar or lemon juice to a liquid measuring cup. Then add enough whole milk to the same measuring cup until it reaches 1/2 cup. (In a pinch, lower fat or nondairy milks work for this soured milk, but the cupcakes won’t taste as moist or rich.) Stir it around and let sit for 5 minutes. The homemade “buttermilk” will be somewhat curdled and ready to use in the recipe.
  3. Heavy Cream: For the frosting, heavy cream or half-and-half will give your frostings the creamiest texture. You may use milk instead, keeping in mind the frostings won’t be as creamy.

Keywords: banana cupcakes, banana cupcakes with chocolate peanut butter frosting

Reader Questions and Reviews

  1. These look sooooo amazing! Question: Could you use frozen super ripe bananas or would you recommend not frozen?

  2. I just whipped a batch of these beauties up. Very good! I will definitely learn how to frost them with a tip. Thanks for the great recipe. The guys love you!

  3. I just made these and they turned out great! Very moist cupcake and easy to make. These frostings are amazing!! They look great swirled and they taste incredible. This is the best peanut butter frosting recipe I have come across, I could eat it by the spoonful! Or on top of oreos lol. Thanks for such a great recipe and a great tutorial on how to swirl the frostings. I wish I could post my pic here to show you how they turned out 🙂

  4. I just thought of something! Some of my family members don’t like peanut butter very much and my cousin’s allergic to peanuts so I though these cupcakes would go very well with your cinnamon frosting and instead of the mini snickerdoodle, a slice of fresh banana!

  5. Goodness. Gracious. I used this cake recipe to make the base for Banana Dream Cupcakes today, inspired by TooJay’s Banana Dream Cake — Your cake recipe filled with a banana cream cheese filling and topped with a fudgy chocolate frosting. They turned out so well that I think I’m going to have to make them for Mother’s Day! Thanks for a great cake recipe, it’s going on my list of “go to’s”! 🙂

  6. Theese cupcakes were super good. I tryed the chocolate icing and it was pefect with the cupcakes not too sweet but just the right amount. I like how you have so many pictures of each recipe! I am looking forward to try out more recipes.

  7. Is there a way to combine the two frostings? Could I make both the PB and chocolate frosting recipes in one bowl, or would that taste weird? These look absolutely delicious and I just so happen to have some ripe bananas right now! 🙂

    1. The combined frosting would be delicious, Rachel – not weird at all. Just make both separately and then beat them together. Let me know if you try it!

  8. Today I made these cakes without the chocolate chips, used your peanut butter frosting as the filling, and made a chocolate ganache for on top. They were delicious! Thanjs for the recipes. I could put that peanut butter frosting on just about anything!

  9. Hi! I want to make the frosting(s) for a filling instead of on top of my cupcakes. Will it ruin the taste if I sub a little bit of the butter for shortening to help stabilize it? With it being a creamier frosting I want to make sure it doesn’t buckle in between. (Its only going to be an 8 inch (2 layer) 1-tiered cake)

  10. The frosting together taste like Reese’s and the Cupcakes are so perfect, moist and delicious! Thank you so much for sharing this amazing recipe!

  11. Made these yesterday! The cupcakes were GREAT! The chocolate frosting was GREAT! The peanut butter frosting ….. was a big blob of greasy ick. Twice. Not sure what happened. I’m not a professional baker but I know my way around the kitchen and have done my share of baking. I used my kitchen scale to be sure my measurements matched yours, butter was softened on the counter for a few hours (not melted), etc. My only guess was I used a weird brand of peanut butter or something. Oh well – ended up making a second batch of the chocolate frosting to finish them off and everyone raved! 🙂

  12. hi Sally! I would like to prepare those irresistibile cupcakes, but I would like to substitute butter with oil, or margarine.. Could it be ok?

    1. Due to taste and texture, I never recommend oil or margarine as a sub for creamed butter.

  13. These might taste good if I could get them out of the liners. First time I’ve ever had a baked item bond with the paper 🙁 So disappointed.

  14. Made these exactly as shown today…awesome! Sally, your recipes are the best!

  15. When you mentioned filling the rest of the cupcake cups with water to prevemt warping, what do you mean by that?

    1. Standard cupcake pans bake 12 cupcakes. This recipe makes 18 cupcakes, so there will be 2 batches. There will be 6 empty cupcake holders. Fill them with water, as heat can warp the tray if there is nothing inside of it.

  16. Hi Sally, just wondering if I could leave out the chocolate chips in this cupcake recipe (and the banana cake recipe in your first cookbook) to make plain banana cupcakes with the frostings, or do you think the cupcakes/cake are missing something without those chocolate chips? 

    1. You can definitely leave them out! The cake/cupcakes are still so flavorful without their addition.

  17. I made these for my son’s curious George birthday party. They turned out soo cute and tasty. Thanks for the recipe. 

  18. I just made this recipe and they turned out quite well. I loved the chocolate frosting. For the peanut butter frosting, I used just one tablespoon of cream and it turned out great so if you’re having trouble with that one, cut down on the liquid.

  19. Hi Sally! 

    I absolutely love this recipe, I’ve made them many times and they are delicious!! I want to make them into mini cupcakes this time though, how long should i bake them for?


  20. These look BANANAS!! So excited to whip these up for our Disney’s The Jungle Book themed Relay for Life team this year. Each team makes cupcakes for judging and these cupcakes are dessert for our honored cancer survivors in the survivorship dinner. I need to make 24 cupcakes, should I just double your recipe? What do you suggest? Thank you for your time and help!

    1. That sounds so much fun and what a wonderful cause! I suggest making two separate batches as doubling increases the risk of over or under-mixing.

  21. These were DELICIOUS, but were more like banana bread in texture than a cake. Is that typical of this batter, or did I do something wrong? They will definitely get eaten regardless… but I’m just curious about the texture!

  22. I made these today. They turned out very well. The swirled frosting was easy and very good.  My only quasi negative comment is that these are really muffins not cupcakes.  The texture and crumb is that of banana bread, not a cake.  They’re very tasty though.

  23. Hi Sally, I cant wait to try this cupcake out! Im not a fan of banana and chocolate chip (I’m crazy lol). Can I just leave the chips out from the batter? should I still follow this recipe minus the chips or should I follow your banana cupcakes with cinnamon cream cheese recipe? Im planing on making a cream cheese peanut butter butter cream frosting (wow what a mouth full lol). Thanks!

    1. You can leave the chocolate chips out of this without changing anything else. Enjoy!

  24. Looking to make this recipe into a 6-inch layer cake for my toddler’s bday. Would it make 3 or 4 layers since it yields 18 cupcakes? The banana layer cake recipe is for 3 9 inch cake pans if I’m not mistaken and I do not want that much leftover cake! Would the PB/chocolate frosting be enough to cover said cake? Thanks!

      1. Thanks Sally! I do have more questions if you don’t mind….I have since asking my last question purchased a cake topper and it’s bigger than I had planned originally. If I do an 8inch cake pan would the cake or cupcake recipe convert better? Would it be 3 thin layers with the cupcake recipe and 3 very thick layers with the cake recipe? I also only have one pan, can the batter sit at room temp while each layer bakes?

      2. Hi Kristin! In that case, I recommend using this banana cake recipe and dividing the batter between 3 cake pans. Use a toothpick to test cakes for doneness.

  25. Wow! You never disappoint. Banana cupcake is excellent, but the peanut butter frosting is simply out of this world! So light, so creamy and not overly sweet. Perfection. Thank you for sharing the recipe with us.

  26. Thanks for this very yummy recipe! I am very new to baking and your recipes and baking tips helped me a lot to nail all my baked goodies. Some of my friends even ask me how I was able to perfect my desserts so I always recommend to check on your website. Thank you so much for sharing all these wonderful recipes! By the way, this recipe makes the best banana cupcakes that I’ve ever tasted. Even my family and friends loved it! You are the best Sally!

  27. I love these muffins. I originally made them with peanut butter frosting, but it was too much. I added raw sugar on top to a batch…it left a crunchy sweet top, which I loved. Today I made them with no topping, but folded in large pieces of walnut. Delicious as well. The 1st batch didn’t raise great, but I read what you said about the process of making them and have since had no issues. Thanks for this recipe. I love it and they freeze great. I take them out of the freezer and either let them defrost or pit them in the microwave for 30 seconds. I then put them in a 375° oven for about 5 minutes. They taste like I just baked them!

  28. Is there really enough frosting, as the recipe is written, to frost 18 cupcakes? There are only 2.5 cups of powdered sugar total. Your other buttercream recipes have 3.5-4 cups of powdered sugar for 14 cupcakes. I made the peanut butter frosting as directed, but the quantity (along with the chocolate frosting) seemed too little to frost 18-20 cupcakes. So I beat in more powdered sugar and cream to increase the volume. The peanut butter one became less creamy, but it worked fine, and my coworkers devoured them. I just didn’t have faith that I had enough for all the banana cupcakes with out the additional sugar and cream.

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