The most flavorful peanut butter frosting recipe you will ever try! The secret ingredient truly enhances the flavor. Plus, it's creamy yet sturdy enough to be piped.
The best peanut butter frosting
This creamy peanut butter flavored buttercream is hands-down one of the best frostings I've ever tried. It contains so much peanut butter flavor, it's unreal.
This is especially important if you want to use the buttercream for piping work. It'll be smooth and creamy without becoming loose and soupy. And it'll actually hold its shape!
I experimented with using just the powder but then the frosting wasn't quite as silky as I wanted. This could have been counteracted with more butter but felt the results were best with both creamy peanut butter and powder.
I think you will pleasantly surprised by the creamy texture and rich flavor. It's perfect for any layer cake, sheet cake, cupcake... basically any dessert.
Why this frosting recipe works:
- Creaming very soft butter with peanut butter creates a light and fluffy base for the rest of the ingredients. Don't be afraid to it whip!
- Adding the powdered sugar in stages allows it fully dissolve in the creamed base. This eliminates any gritty feeling.
- Only a couple of tablespoons of peanut butter powder are added. It's concentrated with flavor and acts as a thickener to ensure the frosting remains sturdy.
The ingredients you need
Homemade buttercream requires only four ingredients. Then you need to add peanut butter and powder to create the most amazing peanut butter frosting ever!
- Butter: Unsalted butter works best! I like unsalted sweet cream butter. And it must be softened to room temperature.
- Peanut butter: Use a commercial brand like Jif or Skippy. Avoid natural peanut butter because the consistency isn't the same and could make the frosting too oily.
- Switch the recipe up by using chocolate peanut butter instead!
- Powdered sugar: Always look for cornstarch as an ingredient on the label. Some confectioners' sugar brands use different anticaking agents but the ones with cornstarch will work best in buttercream.
- Peanut butter powder: I haven't found that it makes a difference in which brand you use. I've tried PB Fit® and PB2®. They both work great.
- Salt: I always add a pinch to any frosting recipe. It balances the sweetness and ties the flavors together.
- Heavy cream: Heavy cream will make the frosting light and creamy. You can use milk also but you won't need as much of it.
I didn't add vanilla extract to this recipe. I honestly didn't think it needed it. But you can add a teaspoon or two if you wish.
How to make peanut butter frosting
The process of making this peanut butter buttercream recipe is exactly the same as if you were making a basic frosting.
Step 1: Cream the butter and peanut butter
It's important to use butter that is at room temperature. So let it sit out for about 30-45 minutes before you begin making the recipe.
Place the butter and peanut butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on medium-high speed for 1-2 minutes.
The mixture should be smooth and creamy.
Step 2: Add the sugar
Sift the powdered sugar before you add it to the butter mixture. This removes any clumps, allowing the sugar to incorporate more easily.
Add half the sugar then mix on medium-high speed for 1-2 minutes, until the sugar is fully mixed in.
Add the remaining sugar and mix one more on medium-high for 1-2 minutes.
Stop to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed.
Step 3: Add the peanut butter powder
Add the peanut butter powder and salt. Mix on medium-high speed for 1-2 minutes. Make sure the powder is fully mixed in before moving on to the next step.
Step 4: Add the cream
Turn the mixer to low speed and add the cream, one tablespoon at a time. You may not need all the cream. Add just enough to adjust the consistency of the frosting to your liking.
Once all the cream is added, turn the speed up to medium-high and mix for 1-2 minutes. The frosting should be light, fluffy, and creamy.
Important tip: Be sure to add the cream slowly. If you want a softer frosting, add all four tablespoons. If you need a stiffer frosting for piping, add only one to two tablespoons.
There are a few kitchen tools needed to make this incredible peanut butter frosting. Let's see what they are.
Silicone spatula: A large silicone spatula is also great for scraping down the sides of the bowl.
Piping tip: I used a Wilton 1M piping tip to pipe the frosting over cupcakes.
- Plan ahead. The butter must be softened slightly. This means it will need to sit at room temperature for 30-45 minutes to become soft enough to use.
- Use commercial peanut butter. Natural peanut butter is too oily and will not work with this recipe, even if it is stirred well.
- Use creamy peanut butter. I understand the desire to have a crunchy texture but please avoid using crunchy peanut butter. The crunchy bits make it difficult to get the ingredients well combined. You can always sprinkle chopped peanuts over the frosting once you've decorated your cake/cupcakes.
- Adjust the cream as needed. Using all 4 tablespoons of heavy cream will give you a light, fluffy frosting that is soft and silky. This may not be ideal if you plan to do intricate piping work. Use less cream for a sturdier frosting.
Ways to use peanut butter frosting
- It goes great with vanilla cake, chocolate cake, banana cake, vanilla cupcakes, or my favorite chocolate cupcake recipe.
- Spread it over brownies.
- Sandwich it between soft peanut butter cookies or macarons.
Peanut Butter Frosting
This Peanut Butter Frosting recipe is so easy and made completely from scratch. There's no lack of peanut butter flavor in this creamy buttercream! It goes wonderfully on cakes, cupcakes, brownies, and cookies.
Makes enough frosting to for 24 cupcakes or a two-layer 9-inch cake. Increase the recipe by 1.5x if you need extra frosting for piping details.
- 1 ⅓ cups unsalted butter (softened & cut into pieces1)
- ½ cup creamy peanut butter (2)
- 3 cups confectioners' sugar (sifted)
- 2 tablespoons peanut butter powder
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- 3-4 tablespoons heavy cream
- Using a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or handheld electric mixer, beat the butter and peanut butter on medium-high speed for 1-2 minutes, until smooth and creamy. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl.
- Add half of the sugar, the peanut butter powder, and the salt. Beat on medium-high speed for 1/2 minutes. (Turn the mixer up slowly or the sugar will fly everywhere.) Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl.
- Add the remaining sugar and beat for another 1-2 minutes. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl.
- With the mixture at low speed, add 1 tablespoon of cream at a time. Let the first addition mix in thoroughly before adding the next and stop to check the consistency before adding more. You may not need but 1 tablespoon of cream depending on how you wish to use the frosting.
- Once the cream is fully incorporated, turn the speed up to medium-high and beat for 1-2 minutes. The frosting should be light and fluffy.
Make ahead tip
- Frosting will keep for up to 2 weeks stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container. You must let the buttercream come to room temperature by setting it out on the counter for a couple hours before using, then beat it with an electric mixer if needed.
- Or it can be frozen for up to 3 months. When ready to use, place in the refrigerator overnight to thaw. Let stand at room temperature to soften before use.
- The butter must be properly softened. It should be soft enough to bend but not so soft that it looks oily.
- Use a commercial peanut butter like Jif or Skippy. Avoid natural peanut butter because the consistency isn’t the same and could make the frosting too oily.