Copycat Chocolate Peanut Butter Twinkies
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Hold the phone. Hold EVERYTHING. Chocolate peanut butter Twinkies are a thing, and they have taken over the internet. But don’t worry. If the forever-and-a-day shelf life of the commercial variety isn’t your speed, we’ve got a fantastic copycat recipe for you.
These sponge-like snack cakes have a delicate chocolate flavor which is perfectly complemented by a rich, Smooth Operator-and-marshmallow buttercream filling. It’s like a peanut butter cup and a Twinkie had a delicious baby! You’ll love every bite of these homemade treats.
Prep time: 40 minutes
Cook time: 14-18 mnutes
Total time: 1 hour
Yield: 12 cakes
For the snack cakes:
1/2 cup flour
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
5 large eggs, separated
2 tsps vanilla extract
1/2 cup granulated sugar, divided
For the filling:
1 1/2 cups mini marshmallows
1/4 cup cream, divided
2 tablespoons softened butter
1/2 cup Smooth Operator peanut butter
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
- 1. Before you bake, form molds for the Twinkies. Cut 12 pieces of aluminum foil approximately 12 inches wide by 14 inches long. Fold each piece in half lengthwise; then, fold it again, so that it is a rectangle roughly 6 inches by 7 inches. Repeat with the remaining pieces of foil. Form the foil into Twinkie-shaped molds: place a small cylindrical object such as a spice jar in the center of the piece of foil, which is aligned with the 7-inch sides vertically. Use the object to mold the sides into a rounded shape; form the ends into a seal, forming a sort of trough. Basically, you’re trying to create a Twinkie shape here. Repeat with the remaining pieces, then place them next to each other in a baking pan or pans.
- 2. Preheat the oven to 350 F.
- 3. Make the batter. In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder and salt. Set to the side.
- 4. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whisk the egg whites until soft peaks form. Pause mixing, and add 2 tablespoons of the sugar; resume mixing until firm peaks form. Transfer the mixture to a separate bowl.
- 5. Using the same stand mixer (no need to wash the bowl) fitted with the paddle attachment now, mix the egg yolks with the remaining 1/2 cup sugar until the mixture turns light lemon in color, 2-3 minutes on medium speed. Stir in the vanilla and the melted and cooled butter, stirring only long enough to combine.
- 6. Gently stir the flour mixture into the egg white mixture, only mixing until combined but no more.
- 7. Fold the egg white mixture in last, gently incorporating it into the batter until no streaks of white remain.
- 8. Spoon the batter into your molds, filling them roughly halfway full. Depending on how large your little troughs are, you may have up to 12 portions but possibly less. Bake in the preheated oven for 14-18 minutes, or until the tops of the cakes are matte and if you lightly touch the cake, it does not leave an imprint and feels springy. Remove from the oven, and after a few minutes, while the cakes are still quite warm but not burning, remove the foil (it will become more difficult to remove as the cakes cool). Let the cakes cool completely
- 9. While the cakes cool, make your filling. In a medium saucepan over low heat, melt the mini marshmallows with 2 tablespoons of the
cream. Once there are no pieces of marshmallow left, remove from heat and let cool to room temperature.
- 10. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and peanut butter until smooth, about 3 minutes on medium speed. Pause mixing, then add the marshmallow mixture and mix on low until combined. Add the confectioners’ sugar; if the mixture begins to look crumbly, add the remaining cream, mixing until the filling has a creamy and smooth texture. Load the mixture into either a piping bag fitted with a medium-sized, round tip or a plastic freezer bag with the end trimmed off.
- 11. Sorry to burst your bubble, but technically, the three holes in a classic Twinkie are not the best way to inject the most filling (and we want lots of filling, don’t we?). Personally, I like to make a hole from the end using a knife or chopstick, and pipe the filling in. Then, for looks, I make three holes on the bottom of the Twinkie and pipe a small dollop of the filling on top of them.
Enjoy your homemade Twinkies! These cakes will keep for 2-3 days, well wrapped, at room temperature.