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Saturday, September 20, 2014

Tender Peanut Butter Cupcakes with Figgy Frosting

Cupcake connoisseurs will find these tender cupcakes a delightful departure from the norm.  Filled to the brim, their delicate peanut butter flavor and mildly spiced, sweet figgy frosting just seem to beckon Autumn.

I developed this recipe after I recently spotted a jar of fig preserves in the store and knew immediately that I wanted to pair the preserves with peanut butter!

                                            Figs And Peanut Butter...
                                         A Warm Welcome To Autumn!

(The Peanut Butter Cupcakes are adapted from a recipe for Peanut Butter Cake from my vintage Woman's Day Encyclopedia of Cookery, Vol. 8, 1966.  The Figgy Frosting is my creation.)
Makes approx. 18 cupcakes


The Cupcakes
  • 2 1/4 c. sifted all-purpose flour (I used White Lily)
  • 1 1/2 c. white sugar
  • 1 TB baking powder
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/3 c. room-temperature salted butter
  • 1/3 c. smooth or chunk-style peanut butter (I used smooth)
  • 1 c. whole or 2% reduced fat milk, divided* (I used 2% reduced fat)
  • 2 large, room-temperature eggs
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
The Frosting**
  • 2 lbs. powdered sugar
  • 4 TB cornstarch
  • 2/3 tsp. ground allspice
  • 1/8th tsp. ground mace spice
  • 3/4 c. room-temperature, cubed salted butter
  • 1/4 c., plus 2 TB room-temperature cream cheese or Neufchatel cheese (I used Neufchatel)
  • 3/4 c. fig preserves
  • 1 TB pure vanilla extract
  • Non-stick baking spray for utensils used with the peanut butter
  • 18 ea. standard-size cupcake papers


The Cupcakes
  1. Line standard-size cupcake pans with the paper liners.
  2. Sift the dry ingredients into a medium bowl and set aside.
  3. Cream the butter in your mixer until light and fluffy and mix in the sifted dry ingredients.
  4. Add the peanut butter and 2/3 c.* of the milk.  Mix until all of the dry ingredients are dampened.
  5. Preheat the oven to 375º.
  6. Beat the mixture for 2 minutes on low speed.  Scrape the bowl.
  7. Add the remaining 1/3 c.* of milk, eggs and vanilla and beat for 2 more minutes on medium-low.
  8. Distribute the batter evenly between the lined cupcake pans.
  9. Bake about 25 minutes (check after 20 minutes), or until a toothpick inserted into the middle of a couple of cupcakes comes out clean and the cakes spring back when lightly touched with the finger.  (The cupcakes will rise above the top of the pans.)
  10. Cool the cakes for 5 minutes in the pans, then release and cool completely before frosting.
The Frosting**
  1. Sift the dry ingredients together into your mixer.  Add the butter with the cheese and beat well.  
  2. Beat in the fig preserves and the vanilla extract until well combined and creamy.  
  3. Frost the cupcakes:  To frost as in the above photo (I used an Ateco 1/2" #6 pastry tip):  Begin on the outside edge of the top of each cupcake (leaving some of the cupcake revealed) and pipe a circle with the frosting continuing toward the center of the cupcake until the piped circle is filled.  Bring the frosting to a peak and release the decorating tip.
  4. Keep refrigerated (up to one week) until ready to serve.   Freezes well.
  • If the frosting needs to be thickened a little, add a very small amount of cornstarch (or powdered sugar) a little at a time to achieve the consistency you want.
  • If the frosting needs to be a little creamier, add about a tablespoon or two more of the fig preserves.
  • You also may want to refrigerate the frosting until workable.

Fig and peanut butter aficionados will enjoy ushering in Fall with these scrumptious cupcakes!

Printable Recipe


  1. Yum! I'm drooling over here! That's a gorgeous flavor combination! :) Love it <3

  2. Although not a fig fan, the cupcakes sound great and was thinking about doing some cookies with peanut butter this week myself. Love fall being here finally and looking forward to being in the kitchen with cooler temps! These would be great treats for Halloween!