These cookies are more like tiny cakes with a dollop of fluffy peanut butter frosting on top. The frosting alone is worth making as a topping for other baked goods, or as my mom does, on graham cracker sandwiches.
Peanut Butter Cup Cookies
Chocolate Cake Cookies
3/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/3 cup butter, softened to nearly melted
2 large eggs
1/2 cup milk
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 (18.25 ounce) box chocolate cake mix, any kind
1 recipe Fluffy Peanut Butter Frosting, below
1 (12 ounce) bag Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups Miniatures, cut in half
1. Line two cookie sheets with parchment and preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
2. Place all the ingredients except the cake mix in a mixing bowl and beat well to combine. Add the cake mix and mix just until incorporated. Scoop with a standard (size 50) cookie scoop 2 inches apart onto parchment. Bake for 9 to 10 minutes or until no longer wet looking. Rest on the cookie sheet for a couple minutes and then move to a cooling rack.
3. Once cool pipe with Peanut Butter Frosting, garnish top with half a peanut butter cup.
Fluffy Peanut Butter Frosting
This stuff is so good you might as well just skip the cookies and dig into the frosting.
3/4 cup Jiff Creamy Peanut Butter
1 stick (1/2 cup) butter, softened
1/3 and up to 1/2 cup whole milk
½ teaspoon real vanilla extract
1 pound powdered sugar
Beat the ingredients together with a mixer starting with 1/3 cup milk. Mix well and add more milk if needed. Beat on high speed for 4 more minutes until fluffy.
Makes about 52 cookies
Recipe and photograph by Laura Flowers.