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. 

Peanut Butter Chocolate Banana Cupcakes - the ultimate trio of your favorite flavors! @sallybakeblog

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.

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

Banana Cupcakes with Chocolate Peanut Butter Swirl Frosting. Super-moist and all your favorite flavors in one!

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.

Remember: don’t leave out that buttermilk!

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.

Sally's Baking Addiction Banana Chocolate Chip Cupcakes

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:

Sally's Baking Addiction Recipes

After today’s banana chocolate chip cupcakes cooled, I got out all of the ingredients to make some milk chocolate frosting. Before I started mixing, Kevin stopped me and suggested peanut butter frosting instead. I knew I loved this man for a reason.

So you can thank Kevin for this recipe. Though when it was time to clean up after frosting all the cupcakes, Kevin disappeared and I was left with all the dishes.

Funny how that worked, huh?

I whipped up my favorite peanut butter frosting along with my favorite milk chocolate frosting. Swirled them together and the rest is delicious history. Surely you’re a wild fan of the combination of peanut butter, chocolate, and banana – right?

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

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:

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

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

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.

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

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.

Follow me on Instagram and tag #sallysbakingaddiction so I can see all the SBA recipes you make. 

Go bananas for these other banana-filled treats: Homemade Banana Cream Pie, The Best Banana Cake I’ve Ever Had, Dark Chocolate Chip Raspberry Banana Bread, Banana Chocolate Chip Crumb Cake, Skinny Peanut Butter Banana Muffins, Banana Chocolate Chip Cinnamon Rolls, Banana Chocolate Chip Cupcakes with Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting, and Best-Ever Banana Bread with Cream Cheese Frosting

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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

Description

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


Ingredients

Cupcakes

  • 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
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ 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*

Instructions

  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.

Notes

  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: For the cupcakes, use buttermilk. You can sour your own milk at home to make DIY buttermilk. For this particular recipe, simply measure 1/2 Tablespoon of fresh lemon juice in a measuring cup/glass. Then fill the rest up with milk until you reach 1/2 cup. Stir it around, let sit for 5 minutes, and it will be ready to use in your cupcakes. (Alternatively, you could also use 1/2 Tablespoon of white vinegar.)
  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

A little treat on the side…

This past Friday marked the biggest day in my career so far. I was asked to visit the NPR’s (National Public Radio) studio for an interview with Michel Martin, host of Tell Me More. I sat down with Michel in the recording studio and, while shaking the entire time, talked with her about my cookbook and my love for baking.

What a rush! If you know me at all in real life, you know that I’m not shy in the slightest. But put me in a position where I have to public speak, let alone on national radio – and I completely freeze up! The producer and Michel herself were both so easy to talk to though.

Fact: I almost said “crap” twice because I was so nervous and lost my train of thought. I could’ve said much worse, right?! Whoops!

NPR Studio Visit March 7 2014

They asked me to bring a batch of Salted Caramel Dark Chocolate Cookies to munch on. This recipe is both on my blog and in my cookbook! It’s the recipe that won the Nestle baking contest last year. Tune in tomorrow, Monday March 10th 2014 to listen to the interview. It is also available online if you miss the interview or download the podcast.

Thank you everyone for helping me get to this point. I say it a lot and I’ll continue to say it forever: I wouldn’t have a blog without my readers. Thank you for supporting my blog and my new cookbook!

Peanut Butter Chocolate Banana Cupcakes - the ultimate trio of your favorite flavors! @sallybakeblog

215 Comments

  1. I’m having trouble coming up for air just reading this post! Bananas and chocolate and peanut butter sound like my kind of dessert. I know I say this every time, but your photos are just incredible. I don’t know how you do it every single time, but you do!

  2. I listened to your radio interview via facebook link…wonderful job! If you were nervous, you sure couldn’t tell it. Congratulations on your cookbook! I just keep re-reading it over and over. Hoping to have a chance to actually make something soon. My youngest will turn 14 on Thursday, so I’m searching for something to surprise him.

    1. Hi Kristin! Thanks for listening to my interview and for the congrats! How about the Mini Vanilla Cupcakes on page 139? That’s a great recipe. You could even top the cupcakes with the milk chocolate frosting used on page 69 if he prefers chocolate.

  3. Congrats on the radio interview! That is SO huge. You’re amazing girl! And so are these cupcakes. I have a super soft spot for Elvis flavors and these take the cupcake. 🙂

  4. Sally!!
    I am a huge fan of your blog and have made many recipes! You are an amazing food blogger and photographer!
    Just wanted to send you my appreciation. You did so well on the NPR interview. It was great to hear.
    Congratulations on everything. Very exciting, you deserve it!

    1. Thanks Paige, that means a lot. Considering how nervous I was! You couldn’t see my legs shaking or my palms sweating. Happy the interview turned out alright though. I appreciate the kind words!

  5. I always add chocolate chips to my banana bread so I already know I would LOVE these cupcakes! Such pretty frosting!

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

  7. Sally….these look delicious! Can’t wait to try this recipe Love your blog…just received your baking book today! Can’t wait to try EVERYTHING!! Love love love your Nutella banana granola…I added dark choc raisins and shredded coconut to it….yum,

  8. How exciting to be on the radio! Congrats! Bet you would have handled it better than me…I get so stage fright! And PB and Chocolate…..andddddd banana! Glad these are a breeze to make. I will definitely be making a second batch soon!

  9. These look incredible Sally!!! Oh my, the combination of banana, chocolate and pb? Heavenly! Love that swirled frosting too… I’ve attempted it a couple of times but it’s never come out completely perfect. Nice to know that you (probably the most competent baker I know!) started in the ‘slightly messy stage’ too 🙂
    Haha… I laughed at Kevin’s inspiration for the pb frosting. Aaron always disappears when the cleaning up happens too… then reappears when the baked treats exit the oven. Funny boys. Good thing we love ’em 😉 Thanks for another gorgeous recipe Sally. You rock! xx

    1. Yes, that’s exactly what Kevin does too. He senses I’m finished cleaning and asks for a taste of the baked good. Interesting.

      The most competent baker – thank you so much, Laura! To be honest, swirling the frosting takes practice. The first few of every batch aren’t always as pretty as the rest! At least for me.

  10. Hello Sally, thank u for the lovely delicious recipe.i just made it n my one n half year old loved it soooooo much.my husband who is on strict diet just couldn’t resist it.infact till now I have not even done the frosting but as u correctly mentioned it, it’s perfect without even any frosting also.i just love u n ur beautiful blog….u must be surprised to know tht we don’t eat eggs but still I make most of ur recipes using ORGAN Egg Replacer.love u.

  11. I have about as much self-control as you did with your chocolate/banana snack with PLAIN dark chocolate. Throw in bananas AND peanut butter, and oh goodness… I’d look just like my old dog did when he inhaled his 2 cups of dog food in 30 seconds flat! Your cupcakes look so pretty, and I actually thought the swirled frosting looked like ice cream too! If only there was a way to prevent ice cream from melting long enough to eat it on top of a cupcake…

    You sound SO sweet on radio, Sally!! Not nervous at all. I’m listening to it right now, and I just got to the point where your host was chewing on one of your $5000 cookies. Adorable! My mom loves NPR, so I’m forwarding her the link. Congratulations again, and I really hope this helps your success and cookbook sales skyrocket!

    1. Thanks so much Amy – for all the kind words about this recipe (inhaling like a dog, yes that will happen with these!) and about my interview. They edited out all of my nervousness. My legs were shaking, my face was red! Thanks for listening to it and making me feel better about it!

      1. You’re welcome Sally! I definitely couldn’t tell about your shaking legs and flushed cheeks — that’s the beauty of the radio! 😉 The entire segment sounded so smooth, like they did it in one take. And you sounded very cool and collected. I can’t wait to see if you’ll land a TV interview too!

  12. Oh man. Banana, chocolate and peanut butter is seriously my weakness. These are complete perfection, Sally!

  13. 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!

    1. The confectioners’ (icing) sugar is what makes a frosting nice and thick/stiff. You can always add a bit of salt to cut the sweetness. Unless you tried a meringue type frosting. I don’t have a recipe for one at the moment.

  14. Oh, oh, oh…these cupcakes are my idea of heaven. I would NEVER be able to get the frosting to look like that – it would be a big blob! Congrats on your NPR gig!

  15. Sally, I’ve only just learnt about your blog and I’m enjoying it so much. This post, it was just the name of those cupcakes that made me want to bake them, let alone the photos. Have scribbled the recipe down and ear marked for the weekend. Thank you

    Laura x

    1. Happy you found my blog and are enjoying it so far – hope you love these cupcakes! They’re absolutely a favorite.

  16. Hi Sally!

    A long overdue congratulations on your NPR interview – that is a major coup!

    Also, a big THANK YOU for this recipe – made these cupcakes last week (recipe made 12 regular and 6 jumbo cupcakes)….. brought them in to my volunteer job and you would have thought I served them to a bunch of turkeys – lots of GOBBLING going on! They were a huge success and extremely delicious and moist.

    You have a real talent, my friend!!!

    (still making your Pumpkin Streusel Coffee Cake and getting rave reviews)

    Take care….Trixie

    1. Thanks Trixie! I appreciate the congrats. Happy you made these cupcakes and that they were all very happy with them. Love that pumpkin cake – any time of year!

  17. Yummy! I baked the cupcakes 2 weeks ago because I had some brown bananas destined for either the garbage or for some baked goods. The cupcakes won out but I wasn’t ready to frost them yet so I put the cupcake pans, minus a few that were gobbled, in good plastic bags in the freezer. This morning was frosting time. I never swirled two frostings in a piping bag before but it came out great. The first few swirls were just chocolate but then the pb came swirling out also. They are quite impressive looking even though the peanut butter frosting is not as smooth and creamy as the chocolate one. Is it possible that it was overbeated? The two frosting are so rich and delicious that they almost overshadow the banana cupcakes. I can’t wait to try the chocolate/vanilla swirl frostings. I baked the cupcakes in disposable cupcake pans which are smaller than standard metal pans so the recipe yielded 24 cupcakes. Plenty to eat (with large glasses of milk!) and plenty to share. Best of luck with your new cookbook.

  18. First just let me say that I am very impressed with the fact that this recipe was inspired by a 10 pm snack. Wow. As for self control with banana and chocolate, you’re funny, especially when you add peanut butter. So looking forward to trying this.

  19. Saw this on the Tuesday recipe share and had to check it out! This looks like a great recipe! The flavor combinations sound out of this world! And the swirl frosting is simply beautiful! Thanks for sharing!!!

  20. 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 🙂

  21. Hi Sally,

    I just wanted to stop by and let you know that I loved these cupcakes so much that I decided to feature them in The Sunday Faviourates. Please feel free to stop by and grab a button.

  22. Sally, I have (3) frozen bananas in my freezer. Can I use those to make this cake, or should I get some bananas from the store and let them ripen on the counter instead? I only ask because when I let my bananas thaw out after freezing them, they’re pretty “liquidy”. I wasn’t sure if that would affect the results of the batter or not?

    1. Never mind about my question Sally. I was reading through the comments and saw someone already inquired about using frozen ripened bananas, and you said no, to use fresh. Off to the store to get some already browning bananas so I can make this for Saturday night Girl’s Night Out!!

      1. Whoops! I just answered your question before I saw this comment. Perfect – have fun on your girls night out this weekend!

    2. Hi Heather, that’s a great question. And to be honest, I have never had luck with my banana cupcakes doing that. The texture is always “off” – even if I try adding a little more flour to compensate for the added moisture. It’s best to use fresh, non-frozen ripe bananas.

  23. 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!

    1. Hey Jenn! You have just created a delicious sounding cupcake. Definitely try them. Heck, I need to try them now! Love that cinnamon frosting.

      1. Where can I find the cinnamon frosting recipe? I’m not sure about peanut butter frosting… would love to try the cinnamon frosting though… Can you post a link to it?

      2. Louise– here you go https://sallysbakingaddiction.com/2013/10/01/snickerdoodle-cupcakes-cinnamon-swirl-frosting/

  24. 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”! 🙂

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