I love chocolate and peanut butter, so naturally I love Reese's®. The new unwrapped minis are my favorite! They're just so cute. So when I saw a recipe for Peanut Butter Cup Chocolate Cake Mix Cookies, I knew I needed to try them. As much as I love baking made-from-scratch cookies, sometimes a mix is just easier. (I admit, as far as cakes go, I think cake mix cakes taste better than made-from-scratch, but that's just me.)
Anyhow, you'll need the following ingredients. Also, don't forget to preheat the oven to 350ᵒF.
1 (18.25 oz.) box of your favorite chocolate cake mix
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1-2 Tablespoons milk (water probably works just as well)
1/4 cup peanut butter (creamy or crunchy, however you like it!)
1 (8 oz.) bag of Reese's® Minis
Combine the cake mix, oil, eggs, milk, and peanut butter in your mixing bowl and mix it well. You'll have a thick cookie dough.
Add the Reese's® Minis.
Turn the mixer on low and watch the Reese's® Minis carefully. You'll want to mix them in well and have them break up a little so you have chunks of candy throughout the dough, but you also don't want to pulverize them. The dough will look something like this.
Now it's time to scoop the cookie dough onto baking sheets covered in parchment paper. I like to use a small ice cream scoop (also marketed as "cookie scoops") to make the cookies uniform; this not only makes them pretty, but it ensures they all bake at the same rate. (Plus you don't have to get your hands dirty!)
Bake at 350ᵒF for about 9 minutes. When you take the baking sheet out of the oven, the cookies will look a little underdone, but they'll firm up as they sit on the warm pan. This will take a few minutes. Then transfer the cookies to a cooling rack (or to your mouth), and voila!
As you can see, I did make some changes to the original recipe that I found. I thought that there wouldn't be enough peanut butter flavor for my taste, so I added 1/4 cup of creamy peanut butter. However, after I had the dough all mixed up, it seemed a little crumbly. That's where the milk came in to the rescue.
I do have to say that I wish I had gone with a lighter chocolate cake mix. I thought maybe the dark chocolate mix would kind of balance out the sweetness of the milk chocolate in the candy, but I think that was a bit of a miscalculation. The dark chocolate actually kind of overwhelms the Reese's® and peanut butter flavors; I'm thinking next time I would use a milk chocolate or devil's food cake mix instead. I also wonder if more peanut butter (perhaps 1/3 cup?) would have resulted in a more flavorful cookie. It may also be helpful to zap the peanut butter in the microwave for a few seconds so that it can mix more easily into the dough. Of course, this is all speculation. Clearly I'll have to try again someday. ;)
If you happen to try this recipe, please let me know how yours turns out!