These Reese’s Peanut Butter Cupcakes are always a crowd favorite! Chocolate cupcakes with peanut butter frosting and a Reese’s chocolate baked in the center.

Chocolate cupcakes with peanut butter frosting and chopped Reese's peanut butter cups on top.

It’s been really difficult writing this post, editing the pictures and getting it ready to share with you guys. It’s been a constant reminder that ALL I WANT is another one! Or two. Or three.

I’ve been dreaming of them ever since I made them.  Chocolate Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Frosting and a mini Reese’s chocolate baked in the center. BEST CUPCAKES EVER! You can never, ever go wrong with chocolate and peanut butter.

A cupcake pan with liners filled with chocolate cupcake batter and a mini Reese's chocolate in the center of each cupcake, ready to bake.

 

Use a standard muffin pan and place a muffin liner in each muffin cup. Fill with chocolate cupcake batter until each liner is half full. Place a Reese’s peanut butter cup in the center of each cup filled with batter. Now your cupcakes are ready to bake! Be sure to allow them to cool completely before frosting.

When your guests are ready to eat one they’ll find a happy suprise in the center: a Reese’s chocolate!

A chocolate cupcake with peanut butter frosting that has been cut in half to reveal a Reese's chocolate candy in the center of the cupcake.

The peanut butter frosting is the really winner with these cupcakes and it couldn’t be easier to make.

How to make peanut butter frosting:

My biggest tip for making peanut butter frosting is to use a commercial brand of peanut butter, NOT natural or homemade peanut butter! I recommend Skippy of Jif. If you use a different kind of peanut butter you may experience separating, oily or texture issues.

Start by using an electric mixer to mix together the butter and peanut butter until completely smooth.

A clear mixing bowl with two sticks of butter and one and a half cups of peanut butter, next to another photo of the same mixing bowl with the butter and peanut butter mixed together until smooth.

 

Add the powdered sugar, vanilla and milk and mix again until smooth. The butter/powdered sugar/milk ratio here always yields a perfect thick and smooth frosting for me. If you’d like it a little thicker add a bit more powdered sugar, or if you’d like it thinner, add an extra splash of milk.

Powdered sugar added to a clear mixing bowl with creamed butter and peanut butter next to another photo of the same mixing bowl with the powdered sugar mixed in to make peanut butter frosting.

Once the cupcakes have cooled, frost them with the peanut butter frosting.  I used a Wilton 1M decorating tip and an Ateco decorating bag to frost these cupcakes, but you could even use a plastic ziplock bag with a small hole snipped from the corner to pipe the frosting on.

Three side-by-side process photos for adding peanut butter frosting to a chocolate cupcake.

*Disclaimer….these cupcakes are made using a cake mix (gasp!). Here’s the honest truth. As much as I totally believe in cooking everything from scratch (here’s my favorite homemade chocolate cupcakes recipe) I believe there is a time and a place for boxed cake mixes. I “doctor” cake mixes all the time–I change the add-in’s so that the end result tastes like they’re from scratch!

Chocolate cupcakes with peanut butter frosting and a mini Reese's peanut butter cup placed on top, served on a white marble board.

Sometimes you only have 5 minutes to throw together a treat, and the batter for these cupcakes only takes that long! And the best part is no one will ever guess (or care) that you used a cake mix!

Try my other popular cupcake recipes:

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Recipe

Prep 20 mins
Cook 20 mins
Total 45 mins
Add to Meal Plan

Ingredients
 
 

For the Chocolate Cupcakes*

  • 1 box chocolate cake mix
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup oil (vegetable or canola oil)
  • 2 heaping Tablespoons plain Greek yogurts
  • 30 mini Reese's Peanut Butter Cups , divided

For the Peanut Butter Frosting:

  • 1/2 cup butter , room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups creamy peanut butter
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2-3 Tablespoons milk

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 regular muffin tins with cupcake liners. 
  • Mix together the cake mix, milk, eggs, oil and Greek yogurt until smooth. Spoon batter into cupcake pans, filling the liners ½ full. 
  • Place a Reese's PB cup into the center of the batter in each cup (it's okay if the the tops of the Reese's are showing, like photo above). 
  • Bake cupcakes for 16-20 minutes or until done. Allow to cool completely before frosting.

For the Peanut Butter Frosting

  • Beat together butter, and peanut butter and mix until smooth. 
  • Add powdered sugar and vanilla and beat again until combined. 
  • Add milk and mix until light and fluffy. (Add more milk or powdered sugar if needed to make the frosting thicker or thinner). 
  • Frost cupcakes (I used a wilton 1M tip in the photos above). 
  • Chop up the remaining pieces of Reese's and gently press into frosting. 
  • Store leftover cupcakes, covered, in the fridge for 3-4 days.

Notes

*Chocolate Cupcake From Scratch: These cupcakes are made using a cake mix (gasp!). Here's the honest truth. As much as I totally believe in cooking everything from scratch, I believe there is a time and a place for boxed cake mixes. I "doctor" cake mixes all the time--I change the add-in's so that the end result tastes like they're from scratch! If you prefer a "from scratch" version, follow this recipe!
Make Ahead Instructions: The cupcakes and the frosting can both be made ahead of time. Allow cupcakes to cool completely, then place in an airtight container and keep at room temperature for up to one day.
Freezing Instructions: Allow cupcakes to cool completely, then store unfrosted cupcakes in a freezer-safe container for up to 2 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and bring them to room temperature before frosting and serving.

Nutrition

Calories: 378kcalCarbohydrates: 36gProtein: 7gFat: 24gSaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 42mgSodium: 334mgPotassium: 218mgFiber: 1gSugar: 27gVitamin A: 285IUCalcium: 60mgIron: 1.3mg

Did You Make This Recipe?

Tag @TastesBetterFromScratch on Instagram with #TastesBetterFromScratch!

Have you tried this recipe?!

RATE and COMMENT below! I would love to hear your experience.

 

*I originally shared this recipe April 2015. Updated June 2018.

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Lauren Allen

Welcome! I’m Lauren, a mom of four and lover of good food. Here you’ll find easy recipes and weeknight meal ideas made with real ingredients, with step-by-step photos and videos.

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Comments

  1. Hi, I’m curious if the frosting for this recipe can be frozen or not. I’ve already made and frozen the cupcakes for Thanksgiving, so I would like to know if the frosting could be made ahead of time as well.

  2. Should the peanut butter cups be frozen prior to putting into the batter before baking? I made two batches of cupcakes where the PB cups melted and made the cupcakes gooey. I was unable to get them out of the pan without the bottom collapsing. What do you do to get the frosting light and whipped? I followed the directions exactly and the frosting seemed more like a buttercream and a big gritty.

  3. I have had so many raves on these cupcakes & frosting but we all can’t get enough of the peanut butter frosting!! So good!!!

  4. Love this frosting recipe. This is my son’s new favorite and I am making it for the second time by request. I used a gluten free cake mix because of allergies and it was a hit. Thank you!

    1. 5 stars
      SOOO I tried a second time and it came out perfect. I neglected to mix the butter with the peanut butter as instructed and I had to start over. Once I followed direction it came out fantastic!

  5. 5 stars
    Made this yesterday for my husband’s birthday (he loves Reese’s pb cups) they turned out amazing! So delicious! Thanks for the recipe!

  6. 1 1/2 cups of peanut butter made my icing extremely thick and tasted too much like pbutter. I added more powdered sugar but couldn’t get the consistency of frosting. And it certainly was dark like pnut butter. Certainly not like the picture. I added the vanilla and milk and was very thick and pnut buttery..

  7. 5 stars
    Wow!!! Thank you so much for this fantastic recipe. What a crowd pleaser and delicious to boot😊 I used a “devils food” cake mix as the base but man the frosting is the best peanut butter frosting ever!

  8. 5 stars
    We really enjoyed this recipe, but my Reese’s sank to the bottom of the cupcake and stuck to the paper. How can I fix this???

  9. How do you keep the Reese’s miniature cup to stay in the middle of the cupcake instead of on the bottom?

    Thank you.

    1. Not sure if this will work for this recipe but in the past, I’ve tossed chocolate chips in a flour before adding them so they don’t sink to the bottom of the cake. Maybe this may work here?

  10. 5 stars
    Delicious cupcakes! They have a great peanut butter/chocolate flavor. Very easy to make and sp tasty! I will be making these again and again! Thanks for a great recipe!

      1. I have made the homemade version but it’s so thin would it really work with the peanut butter cups… wouldn’t they sent to the bottom?

  11. 5 stars
    The groom’s cake at my wedding (one year ago today) was a decadent Reece’s peanut butter cake. We moved recently and weren’t able to bring the cake top layer for our anniversary so I used your recipe for our anniversary celebration, complete with the chocolate cake from scratch. We couldn’t wait to try it so we each ate one warm with peanut butter frosting on top. Absolutely delicious! I will definitely make these again!!!

  12. 5 stars
    Only made the frosting for my mayo chocolate cake instead of the usual chocolate fudge frosting.
    My grandson loves peanut butter so this was perfect flavors together. The frosting is light and fluffy not too sweet and is perfect with chocolate.

    1. I can’t seem to get the frosting to be light a fluffy like the picture. I used creamy jiff and done it completely the way the instructions stated. The texture is more grainy not fluffy. What am I doing wrong? Any suggestions??

  13. I’m going to make these for a Halloween event at work. Just wondering – what role does the Greek yogurt play in the cake mix? Is it necessary and are there any substitutes? Thanks!

  14. 4 stars
    These cupcakes were delicious! However, I think you need to update the frosting recipe to say 2 sticks of butter. You used 2 sticks of butter in your video and I had to add a 2nd stick in order to get the right consistency.

  15. Bummed… I baked at 335 in the middle of my oven for 18 minutes and they were dry with the Reese cup sinking to the bottom and kind of burnt tasting…. icing was amazing… but too embarrassed to send them for my daughter in law for her birthday:(

    1. That’s so strange–have you had problems baking with a cake mix in the past? I’m so sorry they didn’t work for you.

      1. 3 stars
        I had hoped to love these cupcakes, but mine too were a bit dry. I baked at 350 for 16 min. and had followed recipe exactly- so I’m not sure what happened. I personally think they would have been better without the mini Reese’s in the batter, but just added as topping to the icing. Thank you so much for sharing the recipe.

  16. I need to make a birthday cake. Would there be enough of the frosting to cover a two-layer cake?
    thanks!

      1. I’m also planning on making a cake, is the batter going to be enough? And should I change the temp or cooking time??

        1. Yes, the batter would be enough for a 9×13 inch cake or two layer cake. I’m not sure about cook time–I would check it around 25-30 minutes.

  17. I want to make these for my grandchildren but am using gluten free cake mix by Betty Crocker. Will they turn out ok with all the add ins?

  18. 5 stars
    OMG! These cupcakes are simply amazing! The Peanut Butter frosting is so delicious and the cake is nice and moist! These cupcakes went so fast in our house because they were so scrumptious. We definitely will be making these again!

  19. The frosting recipe just says milk, but reading the comments I’m seeing evaporated milk or heavy cream. Can I just use reg milk

  20. 5 stars
    I made them last night and they were great I used your made from scratch cake recipe amazing cupcakes thank you for Sharing them

  21. 5 stars
    Hey there. I JUST made these! Wonderful recipe! But I have a problem.. I’m not a baker… More of a cook? Baking is more like a science. So I had all the ingredients except with the frosting. I also did the mixing out of order! I mix all the ingredients at the same time with a mixer. Not one at a time. One: I searched a few recommend alternatives for powder suger;, everyone said cornstarch with granulated sugar. Followed that. Also, I didn’t have an vanilla extract. If it’s anything like cooking, a teaspoon off won’t matter. wrong?! Also, I only had half a stick of butter. (Lol) ALSO, The milk I used was Silk Almond Milk. I’ve substitute many recipes with that milk and I know it will taste different, but my outcome in this particular recipe is the texture. I mixed and mixed and there’s still little pieces of sugar!!!! It’s like eating sand, it’s sandy! Any idea what to do?? Is it because I mixed it all together instead of separate? How do I fix it? It’s covered in the fridge for now. Thanks for your help….

    Monica

    1. Hi Monica, I would definitely recommend sticking to the recipe next time and I know you’ll have better results 🙂 Granulated sugar in place of powdered sugar in the frosting wont work–that’s were you’re getting that sandy texture from.

  22. 5 stars
    I make these chocolate peanut butter cupcakes alot..but I have problems with the frosting sliding off the cupcakes.What can I do different to keep the frosting on the cupcakes..I’m making some for a wedding so need to know what I’m doing wrong?.thank you

    1. Hi Sandy, I’m so glad you’ve enjoyed them! The only thing I could think that’s causing the frosting to slide is if the cupcakes are not completely cool.

  23. 5 stars
    I made the scratch recipe and will say absolutely delicious. My cupcakes were amazing and the frosting is out of this world. My only problem I had is when I took the wrapped off the cupcake, the reeses peanut butter cup tended to stick to the paper and as you pull it away would tear the cupcake. Is there a trick at adding the peanut butter cup and not having it stick?

    1. Hi Sage, I’m so glad you liked them! Next time you could lightly spray the bottom of your liners. Or you could toss the peanut butter cups in a little bit of flour to try and help them not sink to the bottom. Hopefully one of those would help 🙂

  24. 5 stars
    OMG I am in love! I made these for a work potluck and they were the gone in the first 10 minutes. They are so good and a perfect combination of peanut butter and chocolate! Will definitely be making again.

  25. 5 stars
    Made these for the first time. I used your chocolate cupcake recipe. My daughter gave it 2 thumbs up and she is an honest critic. The recipe is easy to follow and the final result is beautiful

    1. Sure! Bake in a 9×13” but adjust the baking time. Check it starting around 25 minutes. Enjoy!

  26. 5 stars
    Would you recommend freezing the reeses cups first, to help keep their shape while baking?

    1. Hi Melissa,
      It wouldn’t hut to freeze them but I don’t think it’s necessary. Hope they turn out great!

  27. How many cupcakes can you frost with the frosting recipe? It looks like the recipe makes 24 cupcakes. Should I double the frosting recipe to be able to frost them all?

    1. Hi Anna,
      The recipe makes about 20-24 cupcakes and the frosting does not need to be doubled! It should be enough to frost all of them! I hope you enjoyed them.

    1. You can use either. If you use unsalted butter for the frosting, you could add a tiny pinch of salt, if you want. 🙂

  28. 5 stars
    My wife made these for a family party and they were a huge hit. Everyone asked for the recipe. Thank you!

  29. I made the Reese’s Peanut Butter Cupcakes and had a problem with the frosting. It was entirely too oily from the 1 1/2 cups of smooth peanut butter and the 1 stick of butter. I did use evaporated milk. It actually never got a light and creamy consistency to it like in the picture. I added more powdered sugar and continued to whip it but it still was separated. I finally patted it between my hands to apply it to a cupcake, like I would fondant. My hands were very oily. It did have a great taste. Please advise. Thank you.

    1. I had exactly the same problem. I am using homemade peanut butter (just peanuts in my Blendtec) without sugar added, followed the recipe amounts for the powdered sugar and the evaporated milk but had exactly the same experience. Help!

      1. 2 stars
        I also had the exact same issue – made two batches and both were terribly oily and unusable. Ended up googling a peanut butter frosting recipe and using that instead

        1. Hi Catie, what type of peanut butter did you use? If it was natural peanut butter or a homemade peanut butter like the comments above then it wont turn out the same.

    1. Hi Lola, I’m so sorry, my site had a some technical problems this morning for a short window of time. It should be fixed now! Let me know if you need anything else! Hope you enjoy the cupcakes!

  30. If I make these the day before do I need to refrigerate them or can they stay loosely covered at room temperature overnight?

    1. Either way is fine! I usually refrigerate mine, but room temperature is fine to. You could place a big tupperware or bowl over them so that the frosting doesn’t get smashed. Good luck!

  31. I tried these and the candy sunk to the bottom and when taking the cupcake out of the paper the candy stuck to the paper. Not good. Will not make again!

    1. I greased my cupcake liners and before placing the peanut butter cup into the batter I dipped the bottom in a bit of flour. This keeps the candy from sinking completely to the bottom.

  32. These look so yummy!! I want to make them for my sons birthday party, which is tonight. Can I substitute the Greek yogurt with sour cream?

  33. I am pretty upset with myself for using this recipe right now. They are for my sons Valentines Day party today, and the cake part is AWFUL. Cardboard dry. I followed this recipe to a T. I am a dessert caterer, I KNOW better than to follow a recipe, but was pimched for time. Will not ever use this “cake” recipe again. Grrrrr….

    1. Hi Erin, I’m really sorry you had a bad experience with the cake recipe. I really don’t know how they could turn out dry–this recipe is just a “doctored” cake mix. Do boxed cake mixes usually turn out dry for you? What altitude are you?

  34. These look so good and i’m so excited to make them!!!
    Question: How long do these last?? And the frosting?? Like if I put frosted cupcakes in a box how long will the last? Or would they last longer if I had them kept seperately from the frosting?
    Thanks!

    1. Hi Natalia, If you put the cupcakes in a box and they were well covered (like a bakery cupcake box) you could refrigerate them and they’d be great for about 1-3 days. If you have to store them at room temperature they would really be best the same day, possibly the next day. Another option would be to make the frosting and store it in the fridge for several days in an airtight container. Then make the cupcakes and store them in a ziplock freezer bag for several days. On the day you are ready to serve them, remove the frosting from the fridge a few hours in advance to let it come to room temperature. Then frost them. 🙂 Hope that helps!

        1. Hi Shellie, the frosting will last for at least 1-2 weeks, refrigerated in an air-tight container.

    1. I’ve never tried it but it should work fine 🙂 –It may be more difficult to pie the frosting on (if you were planing on that)….

  35. These look sooo good! Question though….why is your site called “tastes better from scratch” when these are clearly not made from scratch. A box cake? Really? Not really from scratch but if you say so…

    1. Hi Jennifer, you must have missed my “disclaimer” right above the recipe. I address why I’m using a doctored cake mix, AND I have a link to my favorite homemade chocolate cupcakes recipe if you want to make them from scratch.

  36. I can’t wait to try these! I am wondering if I should keep the cupcakes refrigerated before serving them?

    1. Hi Sylvia, They would do well, covered, in the fridge, before you serve them. Let them sit at room temp for at least 10 minutes or so to allow the frosting to soften before you serve them 🙂 Hope you love them!

  37. Nothing beats the combination of chocolate and peanut butter. Thanks for giving me just another excuse to enjoy it with these Reese’s cupcakes!