Do you have a favorite food that rekindles childhood memories? Is it the peanut butter and jelly sandwich (aka PB&J)? Perhaps the mention of such a concoction makes you want to run for the hills. But for me, I still believe the peanut butter and jelly sandwich is one of the best pairings on Earth! Not only did I have them in my school lunchbox growing up, but it was also the first meal my parents taught me how to make, and the first meal we taught our children how to prepare. In my opinion, it is the best comfort food out there, and is perfect anytime, anywhere. So for all my PB&J lovers out there, I present to you a sweet rendition of this beloved classic...PB&J cupcakes!
The PB&J is our family's go-to sandwich. Our children will often make it when they get home from school because it is quick, easy, and satisfying. But PB&J cupcakes? Would that push my kiddos over their culinary boundaries? I had never thought of making them until recently, but I had to give it a try and surprise my children with this delicious treat. Instead of preparing these cupcakes identical to their nostalgic counterpart (with grape or strawberry jam), I opted for our Cherry Butter Spread and Blackberry Preserves (any of our butter spreads and preserves would be just as delicious). I used white cupcakes that I adapted from Glorious Treats and added peanut butter to my sister's buttercream icing recipe.
Friends, let me tell you something...you will be transported back to your childhood with these heavenly cupcakes! They turned out perfectly, as they were fluffy, fruity, and peanutty, just like a PB&J sandwich! My son liked them so much, he insisted on using this recipe for his upcoming Cupcake Wars school fundraiser. You need to add this tasty recipe to your arsenal today!
Comment below, as we would love to know how they turn out on your end, and which butter spread or preserve you decided to use! Or, use #cherchies_gourmet on Instagram or Twitter, or upload a photo of your concoction to our Facebook page. Or email it to me! Have fun and thank you for visiting!
Ingredients- "Perfect Vanilla Cupcakes"- Recipe adapted from Glorious Treats
Yields- 15-16 cupcakes
1 1/4 cups cake flour*
3/4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 egg whites
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup oil (vegetable or canola oil)
1/3 cup milk (whole or low fat, but avoid fat free)
1/3 cup sour cream (full fat or light, but avoid fat free)
15-16 cherries (optional for garnish)
*Note- if do not have cake flour, use this simple substitution, for every cup of flour, remove 2 Tablespoons (Tbsp) of flour and substitute with cornstarch and sift together, several times.
Ingredients for Icing
1/2 cup butter flavored shortening
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
1/4 teaspoon (tsp.) almond extract
1/2 teaspoon (tsp.) vanilla
4 Tablespoons half & half (milk is fine too)
1 lb. powdered sugar
1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
Preheat oven to 325*F.
Prepare the icing. Cream together shortening, butter, peanut butter, extracts and milk. Gradually add powdered sugar. Mix until blended. Set aside.
Preparation for cupcakes- In a medium bowl, add cake flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Sift the ingredients together and set aside.
In another bowl, mix the egg whites, sugar, vanilla and oil with an electric mixer and mix for about a minute.
Reduce mixer speed to low and slowly add about half of the flour mixture. Add the milk, then the rest of the flour and the sour cream. Beat until just combined. Scrape down the side of the bowl and make sure no lumps left at the bottom of the bowl. Do not over mix.
The batter will be slightly thick. Line muffin tins with cupcake liners. Fill liners about 2/3 full, so as not to spill over the sides. Bake at 325 degrees for 15-18 minutes, checking them at 15 minutes. Insert a toothpick or a cake tester to check for doneness. If toothpick or cake tester come out clean, cupcake is done. If not, give it another minute or so until done. You do not want to overcook the cupcakes. Slightly under cooking is best, as the cupcakes will continue to cook when removed from the oven.
Allow cupcakes to cool on a wire rack for about five minutes. With a paring knife, cut a small "cone" in the middle of the cupcake, cutting off the end of the cone, and discarding the end. Do this with each cupcake. Fill each cupcake with about one spoonful (about 1 Tablespoon) of Cherchies® Cherry Butter Spread or Cherchies® Blackberry Preserves. I added Cherry Butter to half of the batch and Blackberry Preserves to the other half. If I had our other preserves on hand, I would have made more variations. I guess I will have to make more cupcakes:).
Replace cupcake "lid" over preserves. Ice cupcakes with the buttercream icing, using a 1M tip, or your favorite tip. Garnish with a cherry.
Note: The cupcakes and frosting can be made ahead 1 day in advance. Make sure to cover tightly and store them in the refrigerator. Unfrosted cupcakes can be frozen up to 2-3 months, but thaw overnight in the refrigerator when ready to use.- Cooking tip from Sally's Baking addiction.
Serve and enjoy!