Banana Cupcakes with Chocolate Peanut Butter Frosting

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

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

Today’s recipe was inspired by my recent 10pm snack of banana slices drizzled with melted dark chocolate. I arranged the slices nicely on a fancy plate, made myself a cup of tea, and was planning to slowly enjoy my snack as I finished up some photo edits for the evening.

I inhaled it all in about 5 second flat. I don’t even think I came up for air. Anyone who has self control around the combination of chocolate and banana – I applaud you.

banana chocolate chip cupcakes topped with chocolate peanut butter swirl frosting and a banana slice

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

The next day, I used the rest of my ripe bananas to make these banana chocolate chip cupcakes to bring to my friend Kristen’s house. Ultra ripe bananas are key to the cupcake’s flavor. Brown, heavily spotted bananas will make the very best banana cupcakes.

The cupcakes are the moistest cupcakes I’ve ever made. They’re soft and light, unlike a dense, tight-crumbed slice of banana bread. Even on day 2 – these banana cupcakes are still incredibly moist and soft. If you make cupcakes for a living, then you know finding a cupcake recipe that remains this way past day 1 is a major feat! You have the bananas, brown sugar, and buttermilk to thank for their moist texture.

Even without the frosting, these cupcakes are full of flavor. Complementary to their sweet banana flavor are the flavors of cinnamon and brown sugar. I can’t eat a banana baked good without brown sugar and cinnamon being present.

banana chocolate chip cupcake batter in a cupcake pan before baking

You may recognize this banana cupcake recipe from last year when I 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 my cookbook on page 136? I 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.

Photos of all three:

collage of 3 images of cupcakes and cakes

2 images of peanut butter frosting in an orange bowl and chocolate frosting in a white bowl

Let’s discuss the frostings. The peanut butter and milk chocolate frostings that – when combined – taste like a peanut butter cup! Oh my lanta, get ready for something amazing.

Learning to swirl two types of frosting together takes practice. It’s ok, I wasn’t a pro when I first tried my hand at it last year. Like any sport, instrument, or hobby – the more you do it, the more you’ll get comfortable with it.

I have a very detailed page about How to Make Swirled Frosting. Use this tutorial as your guide. You’ll need a piping bag and Wilton 1M swirl tip. I bought my piping bag from Michael’s, a craft store. They sell them everywhere, even online. I use a reusable piping bag, but you can also find disposable bags. The piping tip I use for swirled frosting is the Wilton 1M swirl (I also purchased this at Michaels). I love this piping tip because it makes frosting look like soft-serve ice cream.

All you do to swirl the frostings on top is spoon some peanut butter frosting into one side of your piping bag and milk chocolate frosting into the other side. Then, pipe onto cupcakes in a swirl pattern:

banana chocolate chip cupcakes topped with chocolate peanut butter swirl frosting

Again, here’s a page with more visuals to help guide you with the chocolate peanut butter swirl frosting.

I also include how I use the Wilton 1M swirl piping tip. If you’re ever curious about how I frost my cupcakes, that’s a handy page to read!

If you do not have a piping tip and bag, or are not yet comfortable using them – then just frost the banana chocolate chip cupcakes however you’d like. Frost them all with the milk chocolate frosting or with the peanut butter frosting using a knife.

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

banana chocolate chip cupcakes topped with chocolate peanut butter swirl frosting with a bite taken from one showing the inside

Today’s recipe is a breeze to make if you just take your time with it.

Give yourself a solid 15 minutes to mix up the cupcake batter and as the cupcakes are cooling, spend some time making the frostings. 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. I must say – I’m a huge fan of the slightly salty/sweet peanut butter frosting. I often use this peanut butter frosting to frost my brownie cupcakes.

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

Peanut butter, chocolate, and banana are the ultimate trio of flavors when it comes to dessert. These cupcakes have got to be one of the best cupcake recipes I’ve ever made.

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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
  • 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


Comments are closed.

  1. Breanna Lee Bennett says:

    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.

  2. 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!

  3. 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.

  4. Melinda hinggo says:

    Very delecios

  5. Natalie Rocheleau says:

    Can I use non-dairy milk, such as rice milk?

    1. Rice milk would be ok for this recipe.

  6. Hi sally can i make this as a cake ?I am looking for a banana chocolate chip cake recipe 🙂 . Your baking has been an inspiration for me here in Kenya – your recipes have never Failed and are a HIT everytime ideliver, Thank you very much ,i hope to meet you one day during my travels to your country. I am your greatest FAN.

    1. I suggest making my banana cake or banana layer cake (same recipe!) and adding chocolate chips 🙂

  7. Joshua Hadwiger says:

    So you fill the unlined cups of the tin 1/3 full? What will warp if you dont do this step? Just curious because im kind of confused because this is the first time ive seen this in your instructions im pretty sure

  8. 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!

  9. Kristin Bell says:

    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. Hi Kristin! This cupcake recipe has enough batter to make a 4 layer 6 inch cake.

      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.

  10. I will do that then (with chocolate chips of course).Thank you! So excited to do this cake.

  11. 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.

  12. 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!

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I’m Sally, a cookbook author, photographer, and blogger. My goal is to give you the confidence and knowledge to cook and bake from scratch while providing quality recipes and plenty of pictures. Grab a cookie, take a seat, and have fun exploring! more about Sally