Chocolate–Peanut Butter Layer Cake

If someone asks me for a cake, they sure as heck are going to get a cake. This is not one for the faint hearted (literally).

After a work buddy asked for a chocolate/peanut butter cake for his birthday I did my research and settled on a delightful looking recipe from Food & Wine. Their recipe had an extra layer of crunch beneath the peanut butter frosting, I wanted to keep things fairly simple though so I left that layer out.

This is, hands down, the best cake I’ve made. Moist, rich, delicious. MAKE IT, just for the slab of icing on top…

Here is the link to the original recipe here:

Here is what I did:

Crunchy Milk Chocolate–Peanut Butter Layer Cake



  1. 2 cups plus 2 tablespoons sugar
  2. 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  3. 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  4. 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  5. 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  6. 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  7. 2 large eggs
  8. 1 cup milk
  9. 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  10. 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  11. 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons boiling water


  1. 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
  2. 1 cup creamy peanut butter
  3. 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  4. 3 ounces milk chocolate, chopped


  1. 1 1/4 pounds milk chocolate, chopped
  2. 1 3/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons heavy cream, warmed
  1. MAKE THE CAKE Preheat the oven to 350°. Butter and flour a 9-by-13-inch cake pan. In a large bowl, whisk the sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs, milk, oil and vanilla. Whisk the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Whisk in the boiling water. Pour the batter (it will be thin) into the prepared pan and bake for about 50 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool.
  2. Invert the cake onto a work surface. Working carefully, slice the cake horizontally.
  3. MAKE THE FILLING          In a medium bowl set in a saucepan of simmering water, heat the peanut butter with the butter and milk chocolate, stirring constantly, until smooth and melted.
  4. MAKE THE GANACHE In a medium bowl set in a saucepan of simmering water, melt the chocolate. Whisk in the cream until smooth. Remove from the heat and refrigerate for 1 hour, whisking occasionally, until thick enough to spread.
  5. ASSEMBLE THE CAKE Place the bottom cake layer cut side up on a large board. Spread one-third of the ganache over the cake. Spread the filling ontop of the ganache. Spread half of the remaining ganache over the filling, then top with the second cake layer. Refrigerate until firm, at least 1 hour. Using a serrated knife, trim the edges. Spread the remaining ganache over the top and sides of the cake and refrigerate to set. Cut and serve.
  1. d said:

    Om nom nom nom nom nom nom nom

  2. Christine said:

    Great photos – will try and get the same results as you – will let you know

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