Peanut Cupcakes with Nougat-Chocolate Frosting

  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 1 hr 30 min
  • Prep: 58 min
  • Inactive: 10 min
  • Cook: 22 min
  • Yield: 24 servings
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Ingredients

For the Cupcakes:

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

2 1/4 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

3 large eggs, at room temperature

3/4 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup packed light brown sugar

10 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

3/4 cup whole milk

2 cups chopped salted roasted peanuts, plus more for garnish

For the Nougat Frosting:

4 cups marshmallow creme (about 2 (7-ounce) jars)*

1/2 cup creamy peanut butter

Pinch of salt

For the Chocolate Frosting:

6 ounces milk chocolate, chopped

4 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped

2 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar

1/4 cup whole milk

1 stick unsalted butter, softened

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon salt

Directions

  1. Make the cupcakes: Position a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees F. Line two 12-cup muffin pans with paper liners. Whisk the flour, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl. 
  2. In another bowl, beat the eggs and both sugars with a mixer until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Gradually beat in the melted butter and vanilla. With the mixer on low speed, add half of the flour mixture, the milk and then the remaining flour. Fold in the peanuts but don't overmix. 
  3. Divide the batter evenly among the prepared cups, filling each about halfway. Bake until a toothpick inserted into a cupcake comes out clean, 20 to 22 minutes. Let cool in the pans 10 minutes, then transfer to racks to cool completely. 
  4. Make the nougat frosting: Beat the marshmallow creme, peanut butter and salt with a mixer until smooth; set aside. Make the chocolate frosting: Put both chocolates in a large microwave-safe bowl and microwave on 50 percent power until soft, about 1 minute. Stir, then continue to microwave until melted, 1 to 2 more minutes. Add the confectioners' sugar, milk, butter, vanilla and salt and beat with a mixer until smooth and creamy. 
  5. Spread nougat frosting over each cupcake, then top with chocolate frosting, leaving some of the nougat exposed. Garnish with peanuts.

Cook’s Note

From the Test Kitchens: After reading your comments, we corrected a confusing measurement for the fluff topping. For the nougat you need 4 cups fluff (about 1 13-ounce jar or 2 7.5-ounce jars). Accurate measuring: This is often the cause of a dry or uneven result with when baking. Always use a dry measuring cup for flour. We use the spoon and level method for measuring flour, which avoids over-packing this key ingredient into the cup. Measuring or working with fluff: Lightly brush or spray the measuring cup with nonstick spray before using. The mixture will be sticky and taffy-like. It's best to work with this ingredient at room temperature. Oven temp: Make sure you have a good oven thermometer and a working timer. Always check at the low end of the baking range. Over-baking can ruin even the moistest cupcakes.

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