Homemade peanut butter chocolate lava cakes are the ultimate dessert decadence. Each rich, fudgy, and warm chocolate cake is filled with melty peanut butter and topped with vanilla ice cream. You’ll be surprised at how quickly this indulgent dessert comes together!
Welcome to the best dessert on earth! I’m pretty sure we haven’t lived until we’ve all had a peanut butter chocolate lava cake. Today’s peanut butter version is just like my chocolate lava cakes recipe, only filled with peanut butter. The great news is that this recipe makes 4 individually sized peanut butter chocolate lava cakes and the bad news is that this recipe makes 4 individually sized peanut butter chocolate lava cakes. Let’s be honest here… self control fades fast when you have 4 chocolate lava cakes in the house.
These Peanut Butter Chocolate Lava Cakes Are:
- Rich and fudgy
- Easier than you think
- Made with only 7 ingredients
- Super quick—only 12 minutes in the oven
- Decadent and indulgent
- Gooey in the center
- Perfect for small dinner parties, date night, or as a Valentine’s Day treat
- Peanut butter + chocolate!!
I worked at Chili’s throughout college—I know a good molten lava cake when I see one. While the molten cakes came to the restaurant frozen, a quick zap in the microwave made that chocolate completely ooze out with the first bite. Molten cakes are obviously a crowd favorite, but believe me when I say this: they’re 78,439x better made fresh at home with pure chocolate and lots of butter.
Ingredients in Peanut Butter Chocolate Lava Cakes
You only need 7 basic ingredients for today’s peanut butter chocolate lava cakes. I adapted this recipe from Food and Wine. Let’s review:
- Chocolate: Pure chocolate is the base of these lava cakes. Use quality chocolate—no cheap varieties and absolutely no chocolate chips. You will be dreadfully disappointed if you use lower quality chocolate. I prefer Ghirardelli or Lindt.
- Butter: Butter is melted with the chocolate for incredible taste and decadence.
- Flour: We only use 1/4 cup of all-purpose flour for added structure—too much and the cakes would dry out.
- Confectioners’ Sugar: A little confectioners’ sugar sweetens the cake—don’t expect a super sweet chocolate cake. These are very rich as opposed to very sweet. In my recipe testing, I preferred confectioners’ sugar over granulated sugar. I found the cakes had a grainy texture with granulated.
- Salt: Salt adds flavor.
- Eggs: The most important ingredient! There are 2 whole eggs and 2 egg yolks in this recipe (2 egg whites and 4 egg yolks total)—an entire egg yolk in each cake. The egg yolks provide unique moisture and richness to each cake and the egg whites give structure, combining all the ingredients into one smooth batter and 4 sturdy cakes.
- Peanut Butter: Each lava cake is filled with creamy peanut butter. Do not use natural style peanut butter, crunchy peanut butter, or any other nut butter. The best, in my peanut butter lava cake experience, are commercial brands like creamy Jif or Skippy.
How to Make Peanut Butter Chocolate Lava Cakes
They may look fancy and complicated, but peanut butter chocolate lava cakes are incredibly simple to make. Let’s review the quick and easy steps:
- Prepare 4 ramekins.
- Make the chocolate cake batter.
- Spoon the batter evenly into each ramekin.
- Top each with peanut butter. Use a spoon to slightly press it down into the batter.
- Bake. The high oven temperature cooks the outside of the mini cakes but leaves the center slightly gooey. 12-14 minutes and they’re done! The tops may look slightly soft.
- Invert the ramekins. Carefully flip the freshly baked lava cakes upside down onto plates.
- Add toppings & enjoy! Top with melted peanut butter, chocolate ganache, ice cream, sprinkles, salted caramel, or whipped cream… choose your favorites 🙂
Best Ramekins to Use
I highly recommend using ramekins for these lava cakes. Here are the 6-ounce ramekins I use and suggest you pick up as well. They’re the perfect size for these lava cakes. Grease each ramekin with a little non-stick spray and a dusting of cocoa powder before filling with batter. This preparation helps the baked lava cake release seamlessly from the ramekin onto the plate for serving.
Conveniently, you can use the same ramekins for other recipes we have published like chocolate fudge cakes, chocolate soufflé, chocolate lava cakes, lemon pudding cakes, and upside down key lime pies.
If you don’t have ramekins, you can use a muffin pan: Grease 6 muffin pan cups and dust with cocoa powder to prevent the lava cakes from sticking. Your lava cakes will be slightly smaller– you’ll get 6 lava cakes instead of 4. Bake at 425°F (218°C) for 8-10 minutes. Use a spoon to release the cakes from the pan and place each upside down on plates.
I included this recipe over on my Valentine’s Day dessert recipes page, but they’re just as rich and tasty without a holiday on the calendar. 🙂
More Chocolate Peanut Butter Recipes
- Monster Cookies
- Peanut Butter Cupcakes
- No-Bake Peanut Butter Bars
- Peanut Butter Balls (Truffles)
- Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake Bars
- Peanut Butter Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies
Peanut Butter Chocolate Lava Cakes
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 12 minutes
- Total Time: 35 minutes
- Yield: 4 cakes
- Category: Cake
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: American
This easy recipe for peanut butter chocolate lava cakes is the ultimate dessert decadence!
- 6 ounces (170g) high quality semi-sweet chocolate, such as Ghirardelli or Lindt
- 1/2 cup (115g; 1 stick) unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup (31g) all-purpose flour (spooned & leveled)
- 1/2 cup (60g) confectioners’ sugar
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 2 large eggs
- 2 large egg yolks
- 8 teaspoons (42g) creamy peanut butter (about 2 teaspoons per cake)*
- optional for serving: ice cream, melted peanut butter and/or chocolate syrup for drizzling
- Spray each ramekin with nonstick cooking spray and dust with cocoa powder. This ensures the cakes will seamlessly come out of the ramekins when inverted onto a plate in step 6.
- Preheat oven to 425°F (218°C).
- Coarsely chop the chocolate. Place butter into a medium heat-proof bowl, then add chopped chocolate on top. Microwave on high in 10 second increments, stirring after each until completely smooth. Set aside.
- Whisk the flour, confectioners’ sugar, and salt together in a small bowl. Whisk the eggs and egg yolks together until combined in another small bowl. Pour the flour mixture and eggs into the bowl of chocolate. Slowly stir everything together using a rubber spatula or wooden spoon. If there are any lumps, gently use your whisk to rid them. The batter will be slightly thick.
- Spoon chocolate batter evenly into each prepared ramekin. Top with peanut butter and use a spoon to slightly press it down into the batter. Some may still be exposed– see photo above for a visual.
- Place ramekins onto a baking sheet and bake for 12-13 minutes until the sides appear solid and firm. The top may still look slightly soft. Allow to cool for 1 minute, then cover each with an inverted plate and turn over. Use an oven mitt because those ramekins are hot! The cakes should release easily from the ramekin. Top with ice cream and melted peanut butter and/or chocolate syrup for serving, if desired. Serve immediately.
- Make Ahead Instructions: This batter can be prepared through step 4 ahead of time. Cover tightly and keep in the refrigerator for up to 1 day. Allow to come to room temperature before continuing with step 5.
- Special Tools (affiliate links): 6-Ounce Ramekins | Glass Mixing Bowl | Whisk | Wooden Spoon or Spatula | Baking Sheet
- Peanut Butter: Do not use natural style peanut butter, do not use crunchy peanut butter, do not use any other nut butter like almond butter. The best for this recipe is commercial brand peanut butter like creamy Jif or Skippy. I use Jif creamy.
- Plain Lava Cakes: I’ve gotten some questions about making these plain, without peanut butter. Yes, it’s possible! No changes necessary, just don’t add the peanut butter and bake for only about 12-13 minutes.
- Ramekins: I like these 6 ounce oven-proof custard cups or these 6 ounce ramekins). I’m unsure about the bake time for ramekins any other size than 6 ounces. I highly suggest just buying the specified size if you do not own them already. The good news: this standard size is typical for other dessert recipes like custards, soufflés, creme brûlées, chocolate fudge cakes, and mousse.
- Adapted from Food and Wine.
Keywords: lava cakes, peanut butter chocolate lava cakes
Reader Comments & Reviews
Huge hit!! Very easy to make. Could easily make right after dinner but made batter early in day and refrigerated. Popped in microwave on defrost for 10 seconds to “unthicken” a bit. Turned out yummy and perfect!! Rave reviews. It’s a keeper. (BTW, used crunchy peanut butter because consistency of my creamy was too thin.)
Would love to post a picture here.
Would this recipe work with almond flour or coconut flour??
Hi Jo, we haven’t tested this recipe with either of those, so aren’t sure of the results. If you try it, please let us know how it turns out!
Thunkubg of making this for Mother’s day dessert. Can I sub the peanut butter for your salted caramel recipe?
I made these on Valentine’s Day for a friend who loves peanut butter. Turned out great!
This is probably the tenth recipe I have made from your website and like all the others this did not disappoint! I may have cooked it a little too long as it was hard to get it out but it was delicious! This is up at the top of the list of your recipes I love including the infamous pumpkin pie and the cream cheese french toast casserole! Your website has become my first place to look for new recipes.
I have made the chocolate lava cakes before, which were awesome. I’m making the PB ones for a Thanksgiving dinner. My question is, what is the best way to transport them? Just leave in the ramekins until I get there or take them out at home?
Thanks as always.
Hi Sheila, For the best results we recommend serving them immediately after baking. You can prepare the batter in advance, and fill the ramekins and bake them at your destination. See the recipe notes for details on the make ahead directions.
Thanks. Can these be frozen like the chocolate ones?
Hi Sheila, Yes, you can freeze the baked lava cakes for up to 3 months. Allow them to cool completely before freezing. Re-heat in the microwave.
Can i use steamer instead of oven?
Hi Czalei, we haven’t tried making these lava cakes in a steamer so we’re unsure of how they would turn out. If you have the option, we’d recommend sticking with an oven here.
These look great but I am curious about why you state that only commercial/processed/non-natural peanut butter should be used? It is a texture thing? I am about to make these and got stuck on this point!
Hi Tanyeem! Yes, it’s a texture thing. Processed peanut butter is much smoother and creamier (and not oily) – perfect for these lava cakes!
Help! I only have 8 oz ramekins, and already made the batter!
Any suggestions on baking time? Should I fill the ramekins completely and bake for longer (probably won’t get 4 full but that’s ok), or fill 4 ramekins evenly?
Hi Jennifer! You can still divide them evenly between 4 ramekins. They will be a little more shallow, so the bake time will be slightly shorter.
Will the custard cups you mentioned in the notes work for this recipe?
Is it possible to make 4 chocolate and 4 peanut butter chocolate by doubling the plain chocolate recipe and just adding peanut butter? Or do I have to make each one by one?
Hi Hailey, We don’t see any issues with that plan. Let us know how they go!
Its awesome! I added a bit of honey with the peanut butter…and it was great.
I’m getting ready to make this and I have a question.
What’s the best way to store leftover cakes and serve them? Do they reheat in the microwave ok? My husband and I will only eat two but I’d like to make the whole recipe to enjoy later.
Hi Tammy, absolutely – store covered in the refrigerator and reheat in the microwave to your liking. Enjoy!
I was so excited for these but unfortunately mine turned out quite greasy (butter bubbling up around the edges) and grainy. Only changes I made were halving the recipe and using a bittersweet chocolate bar. Could my eggs have been too cold and butter too warm?
Hi Michelle, I don’t think it was an issue with the eggs. It could have been some mix up when you halved the recipe, perhaps too much of 1 ingredient and not enough of another? I also wonder if they were under-baked, which is why they seemed greasy. If you try the recipe again, I recommend making it as written or you can try halving it again and reducing down to 3 Tablespoons of butter instead of 4 (1/4 cup).
Made these tonight for Valentine’s Day. So good and easy! Only difference I made was I spooned 2/3rd of the batter in each ramekin, added the peanut butter, and topped with remaining batter. We topped with vanilla bean ice cream and it was delicious! Will make again!
Awesome!! Made exactly to your recipe. Added a scoop of vanilla ice cream and a little melted chocolate. Absolutely delicious! Thank you . Have 2 leftover for tomorrow …can’t wait for dessert!!
Made these tonight. Fantastic. Next time I make them I will be more careful about the peanut butter. I had too much poking out of the top on two of them and when I flipped them the peanut butter had left a hole in the top and it all poured onto the plate when the baked part didn’t immediately fall out. Next time I think I will pour in about half the batter, spoon the peanut butter in, and then top with the remaining batter so it’s fully covered.
It’s my first time to bake lava cake. I didn’t adjust anything from the recipe, and it turned out GREAT! Thank you for this recipe!
My wife and I just made this. Used Bisquik baking mix as we were out Of flour and didn’t want to go to the store. Came out great!!
I liked how easy it was to substitute for non-pb! They were tasty and my husband loved it too!
Can the peanut butter be substituted with Nutella or something else?
Hi Carolina, I have not tested these with Nutella in the center but I think it should work. Let me know if you try it! You can also make my recipe for Chocolate Lave Cakes.
Gotta question. Suppose I wanted to “stuff” the Chocolate Lava Cake with white chocolate instead of Peanut Butter. Could I just put a chunk of say Godiva white chocolate in the batter and press it down and I am good? Will it melt? Or should I break it up some?
Absolutely! Or here is my regular chocolate lava cake recipe.
Made these already a few times an they turned out great. I had some batter left last time i made them and made a mug cake in the microwave – it works really well too :).
So excited to make these! I was wondering if I could use salted caramel instead of peanut butter? Thanks!!
Yes, definitely! Here is my recipe for salted caramel.
Yay! I have made your salted caramel recipe so many times I have it memorized! It is amazing!!! Thank you!❤️
Just made this lava cake tonight. OMG, is this dessert rich! I used 72% dark chocolate, and even though it was a touch bitter, it was still UN-BELIEVABLE! I have been on a search for good lava cake for the last year. Now I realize no restaurant can match what I have just created at home. Thank you so much for teaching me how to make this. I cannot wait to present one of these to my chocolate connoisseur sister.
Made these for my family and turned out perfectly! Lovely and running in the middle! Thank you for a great recipe 😀
Should the chocolate be cooking chocolate? or is it better to use normal chocolate?
Yep, cooking/baking chocolate– for example Ghirardelli (or Baker’s) baking bar.
What about using dark chocolate instead of semi sweet??
I will be baking 10 peanut butter lava cakes. Can I bake all of them at the same time?
Hi Debbie, that shouldn’t be an issue. We always recommend rotating pans half way through to avoid uneven baking.
Made these last night for my son in-laws 30th birthday dinner and they were perfect. Keeper–him and this recipe
I made these last night for our Valentine’s Day dessert and they were AWESOME!!! My husband was so impressed! Thank you so much for this recipe – I will definitely be making them again!!
Can I make a batch and the freeze them for later ?
Hi Jo! You can freeze the baked lava cakes for up to 3 months. Allow them to cool completely before freezing. Re-heat in the microwave.