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This chocolate peanut butter cupcake recipe is easy to make and the cupcakes are so cute! A box of devil’s food chocolate cake mix is the starting point for your chocolate ganache cupcake batter and they are decorated with peanut butter frosting and then pretzels or potato chips on top for a unique look. If a chocolate cake recipe sounds good to you, you’ll love these chocolate peanut butter kitchen sink cupcakes!

Chocolate kitchen sink cupcakes with pretzels on a plate.

These chocolate peanut butter cupcake treats are ideal for game day. The blend of sweet chocolate flavor cake and salty chips and pretzels makes them irresistible.

Consider trying out other fun treats such as Funfetti Birthday Cheesecake and Disney cookies with cream cheese sprinkle dip. Or whip up some Cream Cheese Brownies for a rich treat.

A person holding a kitchen sink cupcake with pretzels on top.

Why You’ll Love These

Easy: This is a simple recipe with no complicated steps. Even the frosting and garnishes are easy to add on top, so you don’t have to be an experienced baker to get these just right! Also you don’t need to buy typical cake ingredients like flour, baking soda or baking powder, as the cake mix has this covered already.
Delicious: You can tell just by looking at these chocolate cupcakes how tasty they’re going to be with their chocolate chips and chocolate flavor, as well as the vanilla extract. They’re light, fluffy and so good!
Customizable: Feel free to use a different flavor of boxed cake mix, a different frosting in place of the peanut butter buttercream or even different decorations on top.

A piece of chocolate cupcake with pretzels on a plate, also known as kitchen sink cupcakes.

Key Ingredients for Chocolate Kitchen Sink Cupcakes

A complete list of ingredients and amounts can be found in the recipe card below.

Devil’s food chocolate cake mix: The basis of the recipe. Swap for another flavor if you want or even make your own chocolate cake batter.
Chocolate instant pudding: Another shortcut ingredient. Again, you can sub another flavor. Don’t use regular (not instant) pudding mix – it won’t work the same.
Greek yogurt: For adding moisture and a tangy flavor. Sour cream works too.
Peanut butter: Don’t use the 100% natural peanut butter because it’s too oily.
Unsalted butter: To get the frosting creamy. If you only have salted, that’s fine – just omit the sea salt.
Powdered sugar: To sweeten the frosting. Don’t use regular sugar, or else it will be grainy.
Vanilla extract: Contrasts with the chocolate flavor. Don’t use vanilla essence (which is synthetic).
Heavy cream: To add creaminess to the frosting. If your frosting is too thick, you can add a splash extra.

A delectable concoction of chocolate and pretzel flavors come together in this irresistible cookie recipe.

How to Make Chocolate Devil’s Food Cupcakes

For more detailed instructions with weights and measurements, jump to the printable recipe card.

Make the cake batter: Beat the cake batter ingredients until smooth, then divide between muffin tin holes with baking liners.
Cook the chocolate cupcakes: Bake in a preheated oven until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean, the cool completely on a wire rack.
Make the frosting: Beat the butter, then beat in the peanut butter, before mixing in the cream, half the powdered sugar, and the salt and vanilla extract.
Decorate the cooled cupcakes: Pipe the frosting on top of the cooled cupcakes and then decorate with pretzels and chips.

St Patrick's Day cupcakes with pretzels, chocolate peanut butter frosting, and a plate.

Substitutions and Variations

Greek yogurt: Replace this ingredient with sour cream if you like.
Unsalted butter: You can use salted butter but if you do then don’t add any extra salt.
Gluten free version: Sub a gluten free cake mix for the regular one and use a gluten free pudding mix (such as the Simply Delish brand) if you want to make this completely gluten free.

Chocolate pretzel cupcakes with peanut butter frosting and pretzels on top.

Serving Suggestions

These delicious cupcakes are great paired with other game day recipes and appetizers, or you can enjoy them with a drink. Here are some more ideas:

Appetizers: Contrasting appetizers such as hot Italian sliders or nut brittle would be good served with these chocolate cupcakes. Or perhaps you want to try one of these air fryer appetizers.
Drinks: Pair them with any drink you like, such as a cinnamon dolce latte (just like the Starbucks version!) or even mint julep slushies if you want something completely different!

St. Patrick's Day cupcakes with pretzels and a twist of kitchen sink cupcakes

How to Store These Game Day Cupcakes

Store: Keep these in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. The toppings will soften but the cupcakes will still taste good!
Freeze: You can freeze these unfrosted if you like. To do so, put them in a freezer-safe container or Ziploc bag and use within 3 months.
Thaw: Thaw as many as you need in the refrigerator overnight and then frost and decorate.

Game day cupcakes featuring pretzel cupcakes with chocolate frosting and pretzels.

Top Tips

Let them cool: If you try to frost the cupcakes before they’re cool, the frosting will melt and become messy, so allow the cupcakes to cool completely first!
Change the flavor: If you want to swap the cake mix and instant pudding mix for different flavors, go ahead – you might end up discovering a brand new favorite cupcake recipe!
Check when they’re done: As ovens vary, you will need to check your cupcakes for doneness with a toothpick. They typically take anywhere from 15 to 18 minutes to cook through.

Chocolate pretzel cupcakes with chocolate frosting and pretzels.

Easy Chocolate Cupcakes Recipe FAQs

Why do some people call these chocolate cupcakes a kitchen sink cupcakes recipe?

This comes from the phrase everything but the kitchen sink meaning all kinds of delicious add-ins are in the cupcake batter – peanut butter, chocolate, vanilla, instant pudding mix… pretty much everything except the kitchen sink!

Do you need a piping bag to frost them?

If you’re comfortable piping frosting using a piping bag, go ahead. If you don’t have one or you don’t want to use one, simply use a butter knife to spread the frosting on top before adding the toppings.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Kitchen Sink Cupcakes with pretzels.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cupcake Recipe

5 from 54 votes

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cupcakes

By: Bella Bucchiotti
These chocolate peanut butter kitchen sink cupcakes are delicious. The blend of sweet chocolate flavor cake and salty chips and pretzels makes them irresistible for game day.
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 18

Ingredients 

Cupcakes:

  • 1 Box chocolate cake mix, devil’s food, 15 ounces
  • 1 Box chocolate instant pudding, 3.9 Ounces, dry
  • 4 eggs
  • ¾ Cup vegetable oil
  • 1 Cup Greek yogurt, plain
  • 2 Teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 Cup whole milk

Peanut Butter Frosting:

  • 1 Cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 Cup creamy peanut butter
  • ½ Teaspoon sea salt, finely ground
  • 2 Teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 4 Tablespoons heavy cream
  • 3 Cups powdered sugar

To Decorate:

  • Pretzels
  • Wavy potato chips

Instructions 

Cupcakes:

  • Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F and line a muffin tin with baking liners. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl, mix together all the batter ingredients and beat with a hand mixer until batter is smooth and all ingredients are incorporated.
  • Fill baking cups with batter until they are ¾ full. Make sure not to overfill!
  • Bake for 15 to 18 minutes on the middle rack of the oven.
  • If a toothpick or cake tester comes out clean, the cupcakes are ready.
  • Immediately transfer to a wire cooling rack to help the cupcakes cool before you frost.

Peanut Butter Frosting:

  • In a large bowl, beat butter until smooth and free of lumps.
  • Add in your peanut butter and beat until smooth.
  • Add in half of the powdered sugar, salt, and vanilla extract.
  • Mix until smooth then add in the remaining powdered sugar and heavy cream and mix again.
  • If your frosting is too thin, add more powdered sugar, a tablespoon at a time, until you reach your desired consistency.
  • If the frosting is too thick, add in more heavy cream, a tablespoon at a time, until you reach your desired consistency.
  • Pipe the frosting onto your cooled cupcakes then garnish with pretzels and potato chips.

Nutrition

Calories: 395kcal | Carbohydrates: 42g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Trans Fat: 0.4g | Cholesterol: 69mg | Sodium: 349mg | Potassium: 207mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 31g | Vitamin A: 429IU | Vitamin C: 0.02mg | Calcium: 75mg | Iron: 2mg
Like this recipe? Rate and comment below!

You’re going to love these chocolate cupcakes with peanut butter frosting. They’re a great sweet treat for game day or any occasion really. These cupcakes are rich and delicious with vanilla and chocolate flavor in every bite, plus of course the delicious peanut butter frosting on top. This isn’t a difficult chocolate cake recipe and it comes out so well! So, give this peanut butter chocolate cupcakes recipe a try and you might find it’s your new favorite cupcake recipe!

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Bella Bucchiotti

Bella Bucchiotti is a Canadian-based syndicated food, travel, and lifestyle writer, photographer, and creator at xoxoBella. She founded xoxoBella in 2015, where she shares her love for food, dogs, sustainability, fitness, crafts, outdoor adventures, travel, and philanthropy to encourage others to run the extra mile, try new recipes, visit unfamiliar places, and stand for a cause. Bella creates stress-free and family-friendly recipes for weeknight dinners and festive feasts.

 

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