Peanut Butter Cake — complete with a surprise inside ((oh, and it’s in a jar))
This cake recipe is another twist on my favorite White Almond Sheet Cake ((aka White Texas Sheet Cake)). I have made several versions of this recipe over the last few years, and truthfully each one is as good as the next. There is something about stove top cake batter and stove top buttercream. They just never will disappoint. Well, that is IF you don’t leave out a key ingredient.
I have been known to leave out sour cream more times than I like to admit – and adding to my distress, it has been witnessed by those I am trying to teach… also more than once. EEK. Without going into all of the MESSY details, let me just emphasize, don’t forget the sour cream. Especially don’t remember it one minute into the baking time, decide the cake hasn’t really started baking and then attempt to pour the batter off of the HOT pan, back into the mixing bowl, leaving half of the batter on the counter, floor and oven mitt. It will not work out very well.
Okay, true confessions are over; moving on to peanut butter.
This recipe starts out just like all of the yummy versions that precede it. With the exception of one added ingredient :: peanut butter. I think it is important to use the all natural peanut butter for consistency in duplicating this recipe.
To start off, simply add ½ cup of peanut butter to the butter & water.
Once the mixture comes to a boil, add sugar – stirring until it is dissolved and then remove the pot from the flame.
Add the flour, salt & baking soda mixture & beaten eggs in thirds (alternating); stirring between each addition. AND don’t forget the SOUR CREAM ((eek)).
Using a ½ cup dispenser, place batter into 24 prepared 4 oz jars.
Place the jars on a lined baking sheet and bake at 350° for 15-17 minutes. The 2 minute variation in baking time is the difference between a “firm in the middle” cake verses a “gooey centered cake”. I don’t think you can go wrong with either!
The above jars were baked for 15 minutes & as they cooled, the center sunk in a bit creating the most useful “pocket”.
These jar cakes baked for 17 minutes – the result is a moist, dense cake. Still perfect for scooping out of the jar and straight into your mouth AFTER topping with peanut butter buttercream. Speaking of buttercream…
This buttercream needs ½ cup of peanut butter, milk ((or cream)) and a reduction in the amount of butter called for in the original recipe.
Once those ingredients come to a low boil, stir in powdered sugar ((and additional milk if needed to reach the desired consistency)).
Once the warm buttercream is ready, you have a decision to make – “to fill or not to fill”.
Two cups of milk chocolate chips and 2-3 teaspoons of coconut oil, melted will create the most delicious filling – that is if your cups of cake formed a pocket while cooling. If you didn’t get a pocket, don’t despair! Simply pour the chocolate atop the buttercream!
Or, if you are like me – put a little scoop of chocolate in the pocket and a spoonful on top. Can you really have too much chocolate when it comes to peanut butter cake?! And, don’t go worrying about calories and fat, these little 4 oz babies have built in portion control. (Let’s not discuss that you have 24 of them on your hands)
After the 24 jars of cake were made, I had enough batter and buttercream leftover to make a dinette-sized cake (9″x7″) that we enjoyed as an after dinner treat. The jars were sealed up with lids and saved for Brody’s 12th birthday party. They traveled perfectly and were a great addition to our outdoor celebration. All that was needed was a spoon and a few gallons of milk. ((I forgot the milk – and ooh how this cake needs to be washed down with a nice cold glass of milk. I won’t forget it next time!!))
- 1 c salted butter (2 sticks)
- ½ c natural peanut butter
- 1 ½ c water
- 3 c sugar
- 3 c flour
- 1 ½ t baking soda
- 1 ½ t kosher salt
- 2 t vanilla
- ¾ c sour cream
- 3 eggs, beaten
- 3 T salted butter
- ½ c cream
- 1 t kosher salt
- ½ c peanut butter
- 1 t vanilla
- 4 ½ c powdered sugar
- ½ c milk
- 2 c milk chocolate chips
- 2-3 t coconut oil
- Preheat oven to 350°. Spray 28-30 4 oz. jars with nonstick cooking spray & place on 2 parchment lined baking sheets.
- In a medium saucepan over medium-high flame, bring butter, peanut butter & water to a low boil. Stir frequently. Once the mixture is combined and boiling, add sugar, stirring until dissolved and then remove from flame.
- Combine flour, baking powder & salt in a medium mixing bowl. Add flour & whisked egg to the water peanut butter/sugar mixture in thirds, alternating between the 2 and stirring to incorporate. Add vanilla & sour cream, stirring again to combine.
- Using a ½ c scoop, place approximately 1 scoop into each jar. I found filling to the first thread (bottom-most) of the glass jar is just the right amount of filling. Bake, in the preheated oven, for 15-17 minutes depending on desired doneness. I preferred 15 minutes, which leaves a little "peanut butter cake" goo in the center.
- While the cakes are baking, prepare the buttercream by combining butter, cream, salt & peanut butter in a medium saucepan over medium-high flame. Once the mixture comes to a boil, remove from flame, add vanilla, powdered sugar & additional milk (incrementally), stirring until the desired consistency is reached.
- Once cakes are done baking, remove them from the oven and allow to cool for 10-15 minutes while finishing up the buttercream and making the chocolate sauce.
- To make the chocolate sauce, combine chips and coconut oil in a medium glass (microwavable) mixing bowl. Microwave for 30 seconds on HIGH, stir and continue microwaving for 15 seconds and stirring in-between until the chocolate is melted.
- Spoon one teaspoon of chocolate sauce into the pocket (or hole) of each cake, then top with peanut butter buttercream. if you have extra chocolate sauce (like I did), spoon another small scoop of sauce over the warm buttercream.
- Allow to cool for 15 additional minutes before covering with the lid or serve immediately. Can be stored up to a week in the fridge before serving if covered with a lid.
- makes 30 4 oz cakes.