Update – the recipe is now posted at the end of this post
Today I am guest posting over at The Spiffy Cookie! When I first stumbled upon Erin’s blog, she had a link to her chocolate and peanut butter pinterest board. I knew we were going to be great friends after that. When Erin asked me to guest post, I knew I had to do something with chocolate and peanut butter. I love cake, but I rarely make them because I hate decorating them. I finally got the art of cupcake piping down. Just pipe and swirl. I even tried my hand at decorating a mini ice cream cake, which didn’t turn out *too* bad. But decorate a regular cake? Let’s just say I’m glad my family doesn’t care what they look like, as long as they taste good. Ever watch Food Network Challenge where all of these talented cake decorators sculpt cake into Disney characters or haunted houses? Yup, that is totally not me. What I can do is make a cake look like a cake. Take this Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Texas Sheet Cake for example. Frost the top of the cake and sprinkle on peanut butter cups. Fancy, I know. I should win a blue ribbon for this.
Is a Texas sheet cake really from Texas? Nobody knows for sure. Some say yes. Others say it’s named after their friendly hospitality since this is a made-to-share cake. I say it’s the easiest cake ever. You both bake and serve it from the cake pan, making it the ideal travel companion. That also means you only need to frost the top. My mom unknowingly has been making sheet cakes for years and years and years for birthday cakes. She just makes a cake in a pan, frosts the top, and sticks a candle in it. Even Murray got a sheet cake:
Don’t worry. He didn’t actually eat it since it’s chocolate.
This Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Texas Sheet Cake is very rich and sinful. That decadent chocolate cake. That fluffy peanut butter frosting. You’re going to need a glass of milk (or coffee, since I hate drinking milk). I have a secret ingredient in the cake that makes it very chocolatey and moist, even after a few days – espresso powder! It’s used more as an enhancer rather than as a flavor because it adds more depth to the chocolate, so your cake will not taste like coffee. You can substitute instant coffee or regular liquid coffee. Leave it out if you must, but you will be missing that extra layer of flavor.
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 3/4 cups flour
- 3/4 cup cocoa powder
- 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup milk
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 1 cup boiling water*
- 2 tsp espresso powder or instant coffee*
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
- Pinch of salt
- 1/2 cup peanut butter
- 2 Tbsp milk
- 1 1/2 cups chopped peanut butter cups
- Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a 13×9 pan and set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, mix together the sugar, flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. In the same bowl, add the eggs, milk, oil, and vanilla. Beat on low for one minute then increase the speed to medium and beat until smooth.
- Dissolve the espresso powder or instant coffee in the boiling water. Stir the coffee into the batter. The batter will be really thin.
- Pour batter into the prepared pan. Bake 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean (the top of the cake will be sticky to the touch). Cool cake completely.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer with the whisk attachment (you can use a hand mixer instead), beat together on medium-high speed the sugar, butter, and salt until smooth and creamy, about 2-3 minutes. Add peanut butter and milk. Beat on high speed until light and fluffy, another 2-3 minutes. Spread on top of the cooled cake. Sprinkle peanut butter cups on top.
*If you don't want to use coffee, just use 1 cup water.
Sources: Cake adapted from Hershey’s Make It Chocolate; Frosting adapted from 125 Best Cupcake Recipes