Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake with Chocolate Ganache

I was struck with inspiration when thinking about what I wanted to do for my boyfriend’s birthday. Should I buy a cake or make a cake?  Buying a cake is an easy way out, even though it is a nice gesture, but premade cakes at bakeries can get pricey. Whereas making a cake shows you’ve put work in. I think it means a lot more and it’s a lot cheaper to make your own cake than to buy one.  With the back and fourth in my head, I finally decided on making a cake.  The only golden rule I went by was the cake base had to be chocolate because that’s my boyfriend’s favorite.  The rest was up to me to get creative with … and I ran with that creativity.
Lately we’ve both been on a peanut butter kick. So I thought, why not bring two delicious worlds together? Peanut butter and chocolate? I decided on making a peanut butter cream cheese frosting … but that in itself wasn’t enough, so I decided to make a chocolate ganache for the top of the cake to help draw together the whole cake and to cut on the sweetness of the frosting.
The end result was a delicious, perfect harmony. The cake was moist and delicious, the frosting was spectacular and the chocolate ganache truly held it all together and kept it from being sickeningly sweet.  We had family and friends over for dinner and all were equally impressed with the cake and I even got a few “you made that?!”
If you’re a peanut butter and chocolate fan … I highly suggest you give this a try. It’s quite simple to pull together!
8 Points Plus Values. Serves 12.
Ingredients:
  • 1 box, Betty Crocker Super Moist Chocolate Fudge Cake Mix
  • 12 oz can Diet Coke (or Diet Pepsi or any diet clear colored soda of your choice)
  • 8 oz. 1/3 Less Fat Philadelphia Cream Cheese, room temperature
  • 9 TBSP PB2 (Powdered Peanut Butter)
  • 1 1/3 cup powder sugar
  • ¼ cup fat free skim milk & 1 TBSP
  • 3 oz. semi sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup water
  • Non-stick cooking spray
Allow cream cheese to warm to room temperature.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees (or per box directions based on your cooking pan coloring).
In a large bowl combine cake mix and can of diet coke. Mix well until all combined.
Spray two cake pans with non-stick cooking spray. Distribute combined batter to each cake pan as evenly as possible.  Place pans into oven and bake per box directions.  When cakes are done allow them to cool completely.
In a large bowl combine cream cheese, powder sugar, vanilla and 1 tablespoon of milk. With an electric mixer blend until smooth. Frosting will be very thick so begin to add the 1/3 cup of water 1 tablespoon at a time. The frosting should be thick, but smooth and not runny.
Transfer frosting to a bowl, cover with a lid and let it sit in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes to “harden” up a bit.
When cakes are cool, smear roughly 1 tsp of frosting to the bottom of a cake dish to hold the bottom layer cake. Place cake cooked side up face down and smear top of cake with roughly ¼ of the frosting.
Remove additional cake from pan and invert. Place bottom of cake to the frosted cake – then frost top and sides with remaining frosting.
In a medium bowl add in semi sweet chocolate chips and ¼ cup milk and place into the microwave for 20 seconds. Remove from microwave, blend chocolate and milk together and return to the microwave in 20 second increments until the mixture is smooth.
Allow the chocolate mixture to cool for roughly 2 minutes, until almost luke warm then begin to smooth onto the cake. Start at the center and gently blend outward. Don’t go all the way to the edge of the cake. Continue gently smoothing until all chocolate is spread to the top of the cake.
Cover the cake and allow to sit in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes (I left mine in the fridge almost 24-hrs) before serving.
Cut into 12 equal pieces and enjoy!