There are those flavors that just work together naturally. Peanut butter and chocolate is one of these perfect pairings. I love the colors as well as the flavors. How classically beautiful is a caramel color paired with a deep, dark brown. On the artist’s palette this translates as raw sienna and burnt umber. When I squeeze these two colors onto my palette, it looks just like chocolate and caramel sauce!

When the style magazine Jalouse asked for a favorite cupcake recipe to accompany my interview, this was my choice: a gooey, chocolate-y comfort food cupcake!

More dense  peanut butter brownie than cake, and topped with a  large dollop of peanut butter flavored buttercream and a chocolate cherry, it’s a perfectly sweet way to pair these two favorite flavors and colors. And don’t be tempted to overlook those chocolate dipped cherries. You may want to make extras. I do.  This gives me an excuse to  eat the ones that aren’t perfect! I love this fun recipe so much, I created the recipe again,  in The Cardboard Kitchen!

Peanut Butter Brownie Cupcakes

Makes 16

For the cupcakes:

1/4 cup unsalted butter 1 package semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/4 tsp salt
3 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 cup sugar
1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder

Preheat oven to 350°

Line muffin tins with baking cups.

In medium bowl, blend sugar, flour and baking powder gently with a whisk until blended. Set aside

Melt butter and chocolate chips in a 2 quart saucepan over low heat, stirring frequently.

Remove from heat and stir in peanut butter until well incorporated.

Beat eggs  into chocolate mixture one at a time until smooth, using a spoon.

Stir in vanilla.

Beat in sugar/flour mix until smooth. Dough will be stiff.

Divide batter into cups, filling 3/4.

Bake 25 to 30 min, or until the tops appear dry. A toothpick inserted will still have a few crumbs sticking to it. The brownies will set as they cool. Spread or Pipe Peanut butter buttercream. Top with chocolate dipped cherry.

Peanut Butter Buttercream

1/4 cups unsalted butter
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
1 1/2 cups confectioners sugar sifted
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp vanilla
cream or milk to desired consistency.

Beat all ingredients in a medium bowl with electric mixer on medium speed until smooth.

If piping the buttercream, double the above recipe for 16 cupcakes.

Chocolate Dipped Cherries

12 cherries in syrup
12 oz dark chocolate
1 tablespoon butter
Remove cherries from syrup and pat dry.

Melt butter and chocolate in a double boiler over low heat, stirring until smooth and to prevent sticking.

Dip cherry and place on parchment to set.

Place  cherry on top!