Peanut Butter Cups are by far the very best candy around. There is nothing that can top the smooth, melt-in-your mouth interior of the peanut butter when combined with the first solid, and then gooey ridges of the chocolate. In an effort to recreate the iconic candy in cake form, I experimented with making a peanut butter frosting.
About 98% of the recipes I encounter for vegan frosting include ingredients such as non-hydrogenated vegan margarine, such as Earth Balance. While this may have the same consistency of butter, I think using butter-substitutes is cheating. My theory about vegan eating is eliminating the unnecessary chemicals and animal products from a diet. Who wants to eat something that is processed and definitely not found in nature?
The cake itself is very vegan, very chocolate, and very tasty. I apologize for the lack of picture, but I smoothed the frosting on only the top of the cake when it was completely cooled, and sprinkled it with slivered almonds. It looked gorgeous if I don't say so myself!
Peanut Butter Cup Cake
1 cup cold water
1 1/2 cups flour
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup olive oil
1 tablespoon vinegar
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Whisk the dry ingredients except sugar together. Combine the wet ingredients including sugar in another bowl. Add both mixtures together and stir.
Bake for around 30 minutes in a round cake pan. This time will be 15 minutes if you are making cupcakes.
1 cup of smooth peanut butter
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
equal parts oil and water
Combine the peanut butter, sugar and vanilla extract together. Add equal parts oil and water in small increments to the mixture until the consistency is smooth but will hold.
When the cake is completely cooled, spread the peanut butter frosting on only the top of the cake, sprinkle with slivered almonds. Crushed peanut butter cups would be delicious also, but keep in mind that they are not vegan.