Chocolate Cake with Fluffy Peanut Butter Frosting

My husband is to thank for this Chocolate Cake with Fluffy Peanut Butter Frosting. Blake is a chocolate and peanut butter fan through and through. So it just didn’t seem right to make him a birthday cake that was anything but.

The cake is a mish-mash of a few of my favorite recipes. The chocolate cake Mom always made for birthdays growing up, my favorite fluffy peanut butter frosting, and a silky fudgy glaze of chocolate frosting on top – there is no way this cake could disappoint someone so devoted to the chocolate and PB combo!

Layering up this cake is a fun ordeal. I love the thick stripe of peanut butter frosting running through the cake’s belly. Then the glossy chocolate frosting swirled onto the top adds a bit of shine, plus another texture and flavor of chocolate. When I piped the peanut butter frosting circles onto the top, I was at first disappointed in their crackly appearance. But then those little imperfections became endearing to me, reminding me of an old fashioned peanut butter cookie. So I topped them off with little peanut butter cups, and that was that!

Blake, 4 years old

When I ran across this picture, I couldn’t help but think of our youngest daughter, who is 4 years old right now. Do you have any idea how many times I hear how much she looks like her daddy?! ;)

Happy, Happy Birthday, dear Blake!


Chocolate Cake with Fluffy Peanut Butter Frosting
(print recipe)

Chocolate “Wacky Cake”

3 c. all-purpose flour
6 T. cocoa
1 tsp. salt
2 c. sugar
2 tsp. baking soda
2/3 c. vegetable oil
2 T. vinegar
2 c. cold water
2 tsp. vanilla

Preheat oven to 350°.

Prepare two 9″ round cake pans. Grease the pans well, making sure you cover the entire interior surface. Cut two pieces of wax paper and fit one inside of each pan. Set aside.

Measure all dry ingredients into bowl and whisk to combine. Make 3 large holes in the dry ingredients. In a separate bowl, combine salad oil and vinegar. Pour this into the 3 holes. Pour the water over entire mixture. Mix with a fork. Add vanilla and stir. Divide evenly into the two cake pans. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, removing from the oven as soon as a toothpick comes out clean. Let cakes cool in their pans on a cooling rack for 5 to 10 minutes. Then run a thin knife around the edge of each pan and invert the cakes onto your rack to cool. Let cool completely before assembling cake.

Source:  Mom’s recipe box

Fluffy Peanut Butter Frosting

1-1/2 c. creamy peanut butter
8 T. unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 c. heavy whipping cream
1-1/2  tsp. vanilla
2-1/4 c. powdered sugar

Place the peanut butter, butter, and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer. Beat on medium-low speed, just until thoroughly combined. Add the remaining ingredients and combine again. Then turn the speed up to high and beat for 2 to 3 more minutes, until frosting is light, airy, and fluffy.

Source: a farmgirl’s dabbles, inspired by a creamier peanut butter recipe from Mom

Chocolate Frosting

1/4 c. milk
1/2 c. sugar
3 T. unsalted butter
1 c. good quality semisweet chocolate chips (I like Guittard!)

Mix milk and sugar in small saucepan. Add butter. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and then remove pan from heat. Add chocolate chips to the pan. Using wire whisk, mix until smooth. If frosting is too thick or grainy, add up to 1 teaspoon of hot coffee.

Source: adapted from the Famous Turtle Cake at Cafe Latte in St. Paul, MN. I shared this fabulous cake here.

To Assemble The Cake

additional ingredient needed: 10 to 12 small peanut butter cups (I used Trader Joe’s brand)

Place one layer of chocolate cake on a plate or serving platter.

Fit a pastry bag with a large plain tip (I used Ateco #808) and fill with Fluffy Peanut Butter Frosting. Pipe a thick line of frosting around the top perimeter of the cake layer on your plate. You want the frosting line to be somewhat hefty, and to bulge just slightly outside of the cake’s perimeter. Then fill the inside of the frosting circle with peanut butter frosting from your pastry bag. Smooth out the frosting with an offset spatula or knife, being careful to not push the frosting out over the edge of the cake.

Place the second layer of chocolate cake on top of the layer of peanut butter frosting. If needed, fill in the frosting gap between the cake layers with an additional piping of frosting, somewhat “smooshing” it in as you go around the cake, to give a flattened look. If you already have enough frosting bulging out from between the cake layers, simply “flatten” it out by running the long side of an offset spatula or knife carefully around the cake’s side, flattening the frosting as you go.

Give your Chocolate Frosting a good whisking, making sure that it’s smooth and spreadable. You want your frosting to be a bit warm so it has the right consistency for spreading. If it’s too hot, it will spread too quickly, and possibly run off the sides of your cake, so let it cool a bit. Pour the frosting onto the center of the cake and then gently swirl it to the outside perimeter. Let the chocolate frosting set for about 30 minutes before adding the peanut butter circles on top.

Once the chocolate frosting is set, pipe 10 to 12 circles of peanut butter frosting onto the top perimeter of the cake. I used the same Ateco #808 tip for this. Then top each circle with a small peanut butter cup.

Source: cake concept and Fluffy Peanut Butter Frosting from a farmgirl’s dabbles

I’m linking up with the following:

Cheryl at TidyMom for I’m Lovin’ It (E-Mealz Giveaway)
Allison at Alli ‘n Son for Sweet Tooth Friday (Midnight Craving Cupcakes)
Robyn at Add a Pinch for Mingle Monday (Father’s Day)
Rachel at A Southern Fairytale for Mouthwatering Monday (Coffee Shake Surprise)


93 Responses to “Chocolate Cake with Fluffy Peanut Butter Frosting”

  1. #
    Laurie Jesch-Kulseth @ Relishing It — June 16, 2011 at 7:56 am

    That cake looks gorgeous, Brenda! I was craving peanut butter cups yesterday, hmmm…. Happy birthday to your husband!

    • farmgirl replied on June 16th, 2011 at 9:01 pm

      Thanks, Laurie!

  2. #
    Ria — June 16, 2011 at 8:20 am

    Happy Birthday, Blake!

    Brenda, that’s such a pretty cake! How could/did you cut into it? ;)

    • farmgirl replied on June 16th, 2011 at 9:03 pm

      Thanks, Ria. Ohhhhh, it wasn’t hard to cut into at all!

  3. #
    Harriet — June 16, 2011 at 9:10 am

    Wow that cake looks fabulous! Very calorific though!

    • farmgirl replied on June 16th, 2011 at 9:04 pm

      That’s why you invite people over to share it! Thanks, Harriet.

      • Harriet replied on June 17th, 2011 at 1:52 pm

        True! If I invited my lot over it’d be gone within minutes!

  4. #
    Jill H — June 16, 2011 at 9:40 am

    What a lovely cake! My husband would adore this – I think I might need to make it for his next birthday!!

    • farmgirl replied on June 16th, 2011 at 9:05 pm

      Thanks, Jill. It was fun to make and definitely fun to eat!

  5. #
    Andrea @ Simple Organized Livin — June 16, 2011 at 11:31 am

    Stunning Brenda — when should I expect my cake in the mail?? Remember, you promised me a cake too — LOL!

    Glad to share a birthday with your hubby!

    • farmgirl replied on June 16th, 2011 at 9:06 pm

      Thanks, Andrea. And happy birthday to you, too! It would be so fun to share some cake. I hope we can someday!

  6. #
    Alyssa — June 16, 2011 at 11:49 am

    Truly, I need to stop reading your blog because all of the things you make (and the pictures you post) look absolutely delicious and are making me so hungry… but somehow I just can’t tear myself away! :) I think I’m definitely going to have to try making this recipe!

    • farmgirl replied on June 16th, 2011 at 9:07 pm

      Great to hear from you, Alyssa. And I’m happy to hear you’re still reading – thank you!

  7. #
    Cassie — June 16, 2011 at 11:50 am

    Oh my gosh! That looks delicious and so pretty! This is going on my must make list!

    • farmgirl replied on June 16th, 2011 at 9:07 pm

      Thanks, Cassie – nice to hear from you!

  8. #
    Kelli — June 16, 2011 at 12:50 pm

    Wow! Gorgeous cake. Happy Birthday to Blake!! He is a lucky man.

    • farmgirl replied on June 16th, 2011 at 9:08 pm

      Thank you, dear Kelli!

  9. #
    9 — June 16, 2011 at 1:07 pm

    Wow, that cake is quite the masterpiece!!! Your husband is one lucky boy having such a great wife that makes peanut butter cakes like this! Looks delicious!
    Star Hughes Living

    • farmgirl replied on June 16th, 2011 at 9:09 pm

      Thank you, Star!

  10. #
    Carolyn — June 16, 2011 at 1:18 pm

    This cake looks sooooooooo yummy and decadent.

    Carolyn/A Southerners Notebook

    • farmgirl replied on June 16th, 2011 at 9:09 pm

      Hi Carolyn – thanks so much!

  11. #
    Paula — June 16, 2011 at 4:24 pm

    I thought those were peanut butter cookies on top of the cake! Absolutely beautiful dessert. Happy birthday to your husband. I’m sure he’s counting his blessings for having married you…everyday…not just his on the days when you make him amazing cakes like this!

    P.S. My husband loves peanut butter too. One of his favourite sandwiches is peanut butter and sliced cheese! I know…..don’t gag! LOL

    • farmgirl replied on June 16th, 2011 at 9:12 pm

      Hmmmm…not sure about that flavor combo of your husband’s, Paula. Always wonderful to hear from you – thanks! – and have a great weekend!

  12. #
    Patsy — June 16, 2011 at 4:34 pm

    What a wonderful cake!! Love Blake’s picture too!

    • farmgirl replied on June 16th, 2011 at 9:12 pm

      Thanks, Patsy. See you real soon!!

  13. #
    Wenderly — June 16, 2011 at 5:52 pm

    My hubby’s birthday is tomorrow! How funny! Wish I would have seen this scrumptious cake earlier, he would have *loved* it!!!!

    • farmgirl replied on June 16th, 2011 at 9:14 pm

      Well, that’s great to know. Happy birthday to yours! Have a great weekend!

  14. #
    Sylvie @ Gourmande in the Kitchen — June 17, 2011 at 4:51 am

    Oh be still my heart! Does your husband know what lucky lucky man he is to have such an outstanding baker for his wife?!

  15. #
    Allison @ Alli 'n Son — June 17, 2011 at 12:24 pm

    Happy birthday to your husband! This cake is beautiful. Thanks for sharing it on Sweet Tooth Friday.

  16. #
    Beverly — June 17, 2011 at 4:30 pm

    oh man, this is my kind of cake.

  17. #
    TidyMom — June 18, 2011 at 9:03 am

    My hubby would LOOOOVE this for a birthday cake!!!

    Thanks for linking up Brenda! I featured your post in my wrap up!

    • farmgirl replied on June 19th, 2011 at 8:27 pm

      Thanks, Cheryl! And thank you SO MUCH for featuring this cake in your wrap-up. :)

  18. #
    Cindy — June 19, 2011 at 7:02 am

    OHHHHH my ~ I am going to make this for my hubby’s birthday ~ he LOVES chocolate and peanut butter. Thank you !

    • farmgirl replied on June 19th, 2011 at 8:28 pm

      Thank you, Cindy – so nice to hear from you!

  19. #
    Ginny — June 19, 2011 at 2:14 pm

    My son’s mission farewell party is next week on Saturday…this cake will be the center of the table I’m certain! I can hardly wait to interupt my Atkins diet for a slice of this deliciousness! Thanks for the post!!

    • farmgirl replied on June 19th, 2011 at 8:29 pm

      Wonderful to hear from you, Ginny. What a great cake to celebrate with, and definitely worth interrupting a diet for. ;)

  20. #
    The Farm Girl Recipes — June 20, 2011 at 11:03 am

    Oh I am so in love! My son’s birthday is coming up and I think I just found THE cake. Thanks!

    • farmgirl replied on June 22nd, 2011 at 9:53 am

      Wonderful! Please let me know what you think of it. Have a great day!

  21. #
    Tiffany — June 21, 2011 at 4:03 am

    Thanks so much for sharing this recipe! Just made it over the weekend for my daughter’s 16th birthday and it turned out terrific!

    • farmgirl replied on June 22nd, 2011 at 9:52 am

      Hi Tiffany! Thank you SO MUCH for writing to let me know. You just completely made my day!! :)

  22. #
    Amanda — June 21, 2011 at 8:17 am

    Love, love this cake! Beautiful and yummy looking!

    • farmgirl replied on June 22nd, 2011 at 9:53 am

      Thanks, Amanda!

  23. #
    megan @ whatmegansmaking — June 22, 2011 at 12:40 pm

    WOW!! I seriously can’t wait to try this. That frosting…looks AMAZING!

  24. #
    Kirstin — June 23, 2011 at 9:36 pm

    Oh my word!! I love PB and chocolate…this looks amazing

  25. #
    Jessica — October 27, 2011 at 7:46 pm

    this was the best whipped peanut butter icing ever! It was so light and fluffy and everything i ever dreamed of. Thank you for sharing, it was amazing!

    • farmgirl replied on October 28th, 2011 at 9:29 pm

      Wonderful! Thanks for letting me know, Jessica! :)

  26. #
    Kim — November 30, 2011 at 7:32 pm

    I was skeptical…. no eggs? Vinegar? This was for my husband’s birthday….he hates vinegar! But it looked yummy so I trusted the farm girl. No competition….one of the best cakes we’ve ever had! Thanks! I will make it again!

    • farmgirl replied on December 1st, 2011 at 9:53 pm

      Your comment made me laugh! Thank you so much for letting me know you all liked the cake. It has been “the” birthday cake in my family for as long as I can remember. :)

  27. #
    Chomelwangi — December 6, 2011 at 2:51 am

    Hello Brenda, I am from Sungai Buloh, Selangor, Malaysia. Thank you for sharing us the reciipe. I am baking your beautiful cake this thursday.

    • farmgirl replied on December 10th, 2011 at 7:24 am

      Hello – so nice to hear from you! I hope you liked the cake! :)

  28. #
    Susan — December 10, 2011 at 7:21 pm

    What a masterpiece! I was searching for a chocolate and PB cake for my son’s 37th birthday (whoa!) and I have found it. He’s loves PB & Chocolate. I can’t wait to make this. Thank you. It looks delicious.

    • farmgirl replied on December 11th, 2011 at 9:34 pm

      Wonderful, Susan! I hope your son likes this cake!

      • Susan replied on July 1st, 2012 at 9:57 am


        Finally updating you on my success with this cake for my son’s birthday. Everyone loved, loved, loved it. Not quite as beautiful as yours, but pretty impressive I must admit! Thank you.

        • Brenda replied on July 2nd, 2012 at 12:46 pm

          Yay! Thank you so much for coming back to let me know, Susan. :)

  29. #
    Chomelwangi — December 13, 2011 at 2:20 am

    Hi Brenda,
    I have baked it and it is so delicous. I am baking it again for a friend. Thank you, you have a kind heart.

    • farmgirl replied on December 13th, 2011 at 8:44 pm

      Wonderful!! So glad you liked this! :)

  30. #
    CHARLES E. NITTI — January 18, 2012 at 1:12 pm

    You should go to jail for this cake.I had to make 2 of these just to keep everyone happy.And one of the cakes i did Elvis style…i put a sliced banana between the cake,and peanut butter filling…holy…

    • Brenda replied on January 18th, 2012 at 7:38 pm

      :) So glad you liked it! I love the idea of adding bananas – yum!!

      • CHARLES E. NITTI replied on January 19th, 2012 at 12:55 am

        And remember,you don’t have to BE bananas,to LOVE bananas…

  31. #
    JUNE MEGONIGAL — April 2, 2012 at 2:36 pm

    I loved the cake but thought the icing had a little too much peanut butter in it. Would it do just as well if I cut back a little on the peanut butter so it wouldn’t be so rich tasting? I don’t want it to be runny so hope I can make this ajustment for the grandchildren loved it but couldn’t eat much for it was a little rich for them.

    • Brenda replied on April 2nd, 2012 at 5:35 pm

      Everyone has their own taste preferences…feel free to play around with the PB!

  32. #
    claudia — May 7, 2012 at 7:25 am

    Hi Breda!
    My husband is also a PB cup lover and funny enough his middle name is Blake. I will definitely make this one for his next birthday. Could you please clarify what you mean by salad oil? Can I use regular vegetable oil instead? Thanks for sharing your recipes. I will be following your blog from now on. I’m a foodcoholic. Love making it and sampling it too!

  33. #
    Sarah — June 17, 2012 at 9:59 pm

    I made this cake early this morning for Father’s Day. I absolutely LOVED it, being the peanut butter/chocolate lover I am! While I was making the peanut butter frosting, I couldn’t stop tasting it. It was delicious! The frosting is also superb. My family enjoyed it but the peanut butter frosting was a bit too strong for them. Guess it’s just not their type of dessert, but it was great! Definitely recommend for those who love peanut butter chocolate desserts. Thanks for this :)

    • Brenda replied on June 25th, 2012 at 11:12 pm

      Thank you so much for taking the time to come back and comment. Yes, it’s definitely PB-rich. So delicious. I’m so happy you liked it!

  34. #
    Vivian — August 23, 2012 at 4:33 pm

    Hi Breda!

    This cake looks so good that I have to try to make it this weekend. I just hope that it looks and taste as good as your .

  35. #
    Stephanie — September 21, 2012 at 9:24 pm

    just made this!!!! it looks awesome. LOVE how the cake scraps from shaving the top tatses exactly like a devil dog! took the left over whipping cream, made whippped cream and my hubby and i had a very nice pre-birthday snack. the real cake is for his birthday dinner tomorrow night.

  36. #
    Chloe — September 27, 2012 at 4:48 pm

    I just made this cake for my hubby’s birthday and it is AMAZING!! So glad I found this while searching! Thank-you :D

  37. #
    Sara O — November 19, 2012 at 8:58 pm

    I made this cake for my boyfriend’s birthday… so many compliments!! the chocolate cake is fantastic… i will keep this as my go-to for future chocolate cake experiments. thank you so much for sharing!!

    • Brenda replied on November 26th, 2012 at 12:57 pm

      I’m so happy you liked it! Thanks for coming back to let me know.

  38. #
    Mandy — September 3, 2013 at 10:43 am

    Wow! This cake turned out just like the picture–the frosting was amazing the cake was super chocolatey and moist! I’ll be making this again and again. Thanks for the best cake recipe ever!

    • Brenda replied on September 3rd, 2013 at 6:40 pm

      I’m so happy you liked this cake, Mandy! Thanks for coming back to let me know!

  39. #
    Kyrie — February 23, 2014 at 9:59 am

    I made this cake for my boyfriend and it turned out amazing! thank you! super delicious, sweet, and moist!

  40. #
    Tamarae — June 22, 2014 at 2:15 pm

    have made this twice already and today I am making cupcakes with this recipe. Always a hit and always delicious. This coming from someone who doesn’t like peanut butter!!

  41. #
    Angel — October 13, 2014 at 2:10 pm

    Hi there! I made the peanut butter frosting and it was great. It had a great texture. Almost to sweet for me, which sounds kinda crazy from someone who lives for all things sweet. Lol I have some leftover and always hate to waste sweet goodness! How long do you think the filling will last in the fridge. I think most frostings will last like ten days, right? Thank you!

    • Brenda replied on October 16th, 2014 at 10:36 am

      You should definitely be fine with keeping it in the fridge that long. So glad you liked it! :)

  42. #
    Holly — July 19, 2015 at 11:59 pm

    This cake looks delicious….I was just wondering what you mean by “salad oil”. Would that be referring to vegetable oil? I can’t wait to make it!

    • Brenda replied on July 21st, 2015 at 8:14 am

      Yes, Holly, that is correct.


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