Recipe by Sarah Phillips © 2006 Sarah Phillips CraftyBaking.com
Variations: Ultimate Butter Cake or UBC and Variations; Ultimate Chocolate Butter Cake or UCBC and Variations
Cake and photo by EagerBaker, Premium Member © Sarah Phillips The cake is filled with Strawberry Filling.
Cupcakes and photo by odetteganda, Premium Member © Sarah Phillips Ultimate Peanut Butter Cupcakes frosted with White Chocolate Strawberry Ganache
I created the Ultimate Peanut Butter Cake Recipe at the request of Mystie, Premium Member, from my Master Recipe, the Ultimate Butter Cake or UBC. I completely revised the recipe on 10-16-07 to add more peanut butter and make the flavor more intense. If you want to go peanuts all the way, frost and fill the cake with Easy Peanut Butter-Chocolate Frosting.
I use Smucker's Smooth (Creamy) Natural Peanut Butter for the recipe - you know you have the right kind because you will see that the oil separates from the peanut butter in the jar. Smucker's Brand is good to use because it is consistent. Before using, stir it really well to incorporate all of the oil into before measuring. Natural peanut butter in the jar contains zero trans fat as does butter.
CAKE RECIPE HELP
msbreez, Premium Member, Says: "This revised edition has an intense peanut butter flavor, it is very dense and moist. I imagine almost all butter cake recipes are more dense and moist than other types of cake recipes, so that probably goes without saying. But, the aroma of the peanut butter and the flavor almost makes you forget you are eating cake at all. It's almost like peanut butter fudge, actually, that's what I thought the batter reminded me of, creamy, yummy peanut butter fudge. If you're searching for a really peanut butter-y cake, make this one!"
4 cups unbleached all purpose flour; spoon into measuring cup and level to rim
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups whole or 2% milk, cold; does not have to be at room temperature
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks butter), cold; does not have to be at room temperature
1 cup natural smooth (creamy) peanut butter, Smucker's Brand in the jar (16 ounces; 1 jar yields 1 1/2 cups), well stirred; measure in dry measuring cup and level to rim
SARAH SAYS: Make sure you use the peanut butter that separates into peanut butter and oil in the jar, otherwise your recipe will turn out too dry or flavorless; do not use Skippy or Jiffy Brand peanut butter
1 cup sugar or superfine sugar
1 cup dark brown sugar, packed
3 large eggs, cold; does not have to be at room temperature
NOTE: Cake is mixed using a 325 watt KitchenAid Mixer. If you are using a more powerful one, adjust the mixing times downward or use the descriptions rather than mixing times with the instructions, otherwise the baked cake will fall apart and/or crumble or dome in the middle from overmixing.
SARAH SAYS: I store my brown sugar in the freezer, double wrapped in resealable plastic bags, where it keeps for about two years. It always stays soft and never gets hard. Just break off a piece to measure. It thaws really quickly. And, just throw the rest back in the freezer, time and time, again. I just frozen it one day to see if it would keep better than in the cabinet, and VIOLA, it did!
1. Position the oven shelf in the middle of the oven. Preheat the oven to 350 and grease two 9-inch, preferably light colored, heavy NOT nonstick pans. (If you use dark, nonstick baking pans or ovenproof, Pyrex glass pans, be sure to reduce the oven heat by 25 degrees F).
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside. Add the canola oil and vanilla to the milk and set aside.
3. Beat the butter until just softened with a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment on low. Then, add the peanut butter.
Add the sugar in a steady stream at the side of the bowl. Then, add the brown sugar in clumps. Increase speed to medium and beat for 2 minutes until the mixture lightens in color and is fluffy. Stop the mixer and scrape the side and bottom of the bowl with a large rubber spatula.
4. With the mixer on low, add the eggs one at a time and beat for 20 seconds after each addition. After the eggs have been added, increase the mixer speed to medium and beat the mixture for 2 minutes. (If the eggs are cold, the batter will curdle slightly. It's ok. It will come together as the batter warms from the beaters. ) Set the kitchen timer to help you keep track of the time. The mixture will become fluffy and aerated.
5. With the mixer on low, add the flour mixture in 3 equal portions, alternating with the milk mixture in 2 equal portions, beginning and ending with the flour. With the last addition of flour, add in the chopped peanuts, if using. (If the milk is cold, the batter will curdle slightly. It's ok. It will come together when you add the flour.)
Add the flour and liquid ingredients in increments quickly; do not wait in between additions too long as you don't want to overmix the batter.
After completing the last addition of flour, let the mixer run for 30 seconds on LOW. STOP the mixer. Do NOT overmix.
6. Remove the bowl. With a large rubber spatula, give the batter ONE or TWO quick folds to incorporate any stray flour or milk left at the sides and bottom of the bowl. Then, STOP!
7. Divide the batter in the prepared baking pans (should fill 1/2 full) and lightly smooth the tops. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes or until the top feels firm and gives slightly when touched and will shrink slightly from the side of the pan. The cake will be slightly browned. If you insert a toothpick in the middle and remove, there should be a few moist crumbs attached, but not batter. The cakes will have a slight dome and small cracks on top right when it comes from the oven, but as the cakes cool, they will flatten on top and the tiny cracks will disappear.
NOTE: The cake can be baked in a 9 x 13 x 2-inch, greased cake pan, taking 45 - 55 minutes to bake. Cupcakes take 20 - 30 minutes to bake.
8. Remove cakes to cool on wire racks for 10 to 15 minutes and then unmold onto wire cake racks to cool thoroughly. Be careful, the cakes are delicate when warm.
If not using the cake right away, it is best stored in the freezer, well wrapped. Peanut butter flavor dissipates quickly and no one knows why. The cake will keep for about 2 months or more.