These double chocolate banana muffins are rich and fudgy, topped with mini chocolate chips, and have a swirl of creamy peanut butter inside. Perfect for breakfast, dessert, or snack time.
About This Recipe // Why You Should Try It
This recipe for double chocolate banana muffins with peanut butter filling came about because I wanted something new to do with my brown bananas.
I needed a brown banana recipe that wasn't banana bread.
The first few batches I tested were good, not great. They all felt like they were missing something.
The chocolate was great, the banana was great, but they just didn't feel like they were great together. Early batches tasted like you were eating two different muffins at once instead of one perfectly balanced, harmonious muffin.
Then, one day, Jimmy asked if he could try one my failed test muffins. Much to my annoyance, he split one in half and smeared it with peanut butter.
He knows it drives me bananas (lol) when he does this to my banana bread recipe. He doesn't like banana bread plain; he only likes it with peanut butter. (I don't get it.) It makes me feel like a chef watching someone add salt to the signature dish in their Michelin star restaurant. (The banana bread is good enough on its own!!!).
But in this one specific case, I'll have to admit, he was completely on to something with his insistence on peanut butter.
Peanut butter was exactly what the muffins were missing.
The creamy, nutty flavor paired perfectly with the chocolate and banana flavors. It's like the "accidentally handcuffed together" romcom trope — the peanut butter shows the bananas and chocolate just how well they get along.
I swirled a dollop of peanut butter into the center of the next batch of muffins and, well, not to belabor the metaphor, let's just say these muffins found their happily ever after. They were perfect. No changes needed.
Here are the ingredients you'll need to make these double chocolate banana peanut butter muffins! See recipe card for quantities.
- All-purpose flour - Standard all-purpose flour.
- Brown sugar - Adds flavor and helps keeps the muffins tender.
- Unsweetened cocoa powder - I use Ghirardelli 100% Natural Cocoa Powder but you can use the classic Hershey's box or Dutch process cocoa powder here just fine.
- Salt - I use Diamond Crystal Kosher Salt which is half as salty as other brands. If you use a different brand, cut the amount of salt in half.
- Baking powder - Double acting baking powder gives the muffins their rise. Baking powder is activated twice, first with liquid, then with heat. Letting the muffin batter rest before scooping gives you slightly taller muffins thanks to that first activation.
- Brown bananas - Just like the banana bread recipe that inspired this one, you'll want brown bananas for this. I used 2 large brown bananas, but have included a weight measurement in the recipe in case you can only have small ones.
- Large egg - See FAQ for how to quickly bring an egg to room temperature.
- Unsalted butter - Melted. If you only have salted butter, omit salt from the recipe.
- Whole fat Greek yogurt - This is what gives the muffins their fudgy, moist texture. You won't get the same results with fat-free (0%) Greek yogurt, but 2% or 5% will work fine if that's all your grocery store has.
- Mini chocolate chips - For sprinkling on top of the muffins. Use the back of a spoon to gently press them in to the muffin tops before baking.
- Creamy peanut butter - I use JIF Natural Creamy Peanut Butter, but any peanut butter that doesn't separate (e.g. gets that layer of oil on top) will work. You could even use other nut butters as long as they don't separate!
Instructions - Recipe Walkthrough
This is a really simple recipe. It follows the basic muffin process:
- Mix the dry ingredients.
- Mix the wet ingredients.
- Fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients just until combined.
For these double chocolate banana muffins the only difference is you'll add the dry ingredients in two batches.
Between those two additions you'll fold in a dollop of greek yogurt. This helps keep the muffins super moist and fudgy.
Fold the ingredients together gently with a spatula or a dough whisk in as few gentle movements as possible.
Stop mixing as soon as everything is combined. DO NOT OVER MIX. Overmixing leads to tough, dense muffins. Yuck.
How to "Fold" Muffin Batter
Hold the mixing bowl with one hand and your spatula in the other. Use the spatula to draw a line down the center of the bowl, then move it in a clockwise circle.
Rotate your wrist away from you when you get to 12 o'clock, folding the mixture over itself. Rotate the bowl and repeat.
Once the muffin batter is mixed together, cover it and let it rest for 30-45 minutes at room temperature before scooping.
Why Muffin Batter Needs to Rest
When you let the muffin batter rest, it gives the baking powder — this recipe's chemical leavener — a chance to activate before going into the oven.
Baking powder is double acting. It reacts first to the addition of moisture in the batter, then it reacts again in the heat of the oven.
These are fairly dense muffins, so we want to give the baking powder all the chances we can to help them rise.
Check out the difference in the muffin batter before and after resting in the photos above. You can see that baking powder at work!
Filling the Muffins with Peanut Butter
To get the peanut butter filling in the center of each muffin, first fill each muffin tin about ⅓ of the way full.
Use a toothpick to make sure the muffin batter completely covers the bottom of each tin. Then scoop the peanut butter into the center of each muffin and divide the remaining muffin batter between the tins to cover the peanut butter.
Use another toothpick to quickly swirl the top layer of peanut butter and chocolate muffin batter together.
Mostly you're trying to push the top layer of chocolate batter so that it covers the peanut butter, but you can do this with a quick swirl of the toothpick.
If you swirl too much the peanut butter will mix into the batter and you don't want that. So just a quick swirl to hide the peanut butter and then stop swirling.
Finish by topping each muffin generously with mini chocolate chips.
You want A LOT of mini chocolate chips on top so that when the muffin rises and the top expands there aren't a lot of gaps between them.
Store these muffins in airtight container so the muffins don't dry out. They are best eaten within 3-5 days of baking.
Practical Tips & Recipe Notes
- I used .75 oz scoop for the muffin batter and 1.5 teaspoon scoop for the peanut butter centers. The top layer of muffin batter you'll just have to eyeball for covering up the peanut butter. Use a toothpick to swirl the peanut butter at the end and hide it under the top layer of chocolate batter.
- I baked these double chocolate banana muffins in my USA Pan standard-sized 12-well muffin tin with these muffin liners.
- If you don't have brown bananas you can quickly brown them by popping them on a sheet pan in the oven at 300F for 20-30 minutes, until the peel turns black. Let cool briefly before peeling.
- How well you mash the bananas can really change the texture and flavor of your chocolate banana muffins! Bigger chunks = more banana flavor. Smaller chunks and a smoother mash = more subtle banana flavor.
This is a classic sign of over mixed muffin batter. When you're mixing the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients be gentle and stop as soon as there is no dry flour in the bowl or visible streaks of yogurt in the mix.
Pop the egg in a bowl of hot tap water while you get the rest of your ingredients ready (about 5-10 minutes).
Nope. Just make sure you grease the muffin pan well so they release easily. You may want to dust each muffin well with cocoa powder or hot cocoa mix to really help prevent sticking.
Skip it! You may want to stir ½ cup of mini chocolate chips into the batter in addition to sprinkling them on top though. They'll add a bit of extra texture to the muffins.
Because of the chocolate batter and peanut butter center you can't use browning or the toothpick test to tell when the muffins are done. The best way to be sure is if you insert an instant read thermometer down the side of the muffin, it should read between 190-200F.
Otherwise, as long as the tops look mostly set and the muffins don't jiggle when you shake the pan, they're done.
Yes — with caution. Even on the lowest speed, most mixers have enough power that you risk over mixing your muffin batter.
If you're goin to use a mixer, use the lowest speed and pause frequently to scrape the sides of the bowl down. You want to get the dry and wet ingredients combined with as few mixing motions as possible to avoid tough muffins.
Double Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Banana Muffins
- #20 cookie scoop (3 tablespoons)
- 50 grams unsalted butter (melted)
- 105 grams all-purpose flour
- 25 grams cocoa powder
- 2½ teaspoons baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon diamond crystal kosher salt (use half as much of another brand)
- 175 grams brown bananas (approx 2 large bananas, weighed after peeling)
- 1 large egg (room temperature)
- 100 grams brown sugar
- 50 grams whole fat plain greek yogurt
- ¾ cups mini chocolate chips (for topping)
- ⅓ cup creamy peanut butter (any brand, as long as its not the kind that separates)
- Melt butter in short 5-7 second bursts in the microwave. Set aside to cool slightly while you whisk the dry ingredients (flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, salt) together in a small mixing bowl. If the cocoa powder is lumpy, sift it into the other ingredients. Set the dry ingredients aside.
- In a larger mixing bowl, mash the banana, egg, and brown sugar with a fork until fairly smooth. Then whisk in the melted butter until well combined.
- Add half of the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and use a spatula to gently fold them together. Then, add the greek yogurt and continue folding until almost combined.
- Add the remaining dry ingredients and continue folding gently just until combined. Stop mixing as soon as no dry patches or streaks of yogurt or flour remain. Do not over mix. Cover and let rest 30-45 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 400°F. Arrange muffin liners in a 12-well muffin tin.
- Use a .75 oz (1½ tablespoon) cookie scoop to fill each lined muffin tin about ⅓ of the way full. Use a toothpick to spread the muffin batter out so it covers the bottom of each tin.
- Dollop creamy peanut butter into the center of each muffin using a .25 oz (1½) teaspoon scoop.
- Divide the remaining muffin batter between the muffin tins, covering the peanut butter. Use a toothpick to give each muffin a quick swirl to hide the peanut butter in the center. It's okay if some peanut butter is visible on top, you just want it mostly under the top layer of muffin batter.
- Top muffins generously with mini chocolate chips. Use the back of a spoon to press the chocolate chips into the batter.
- Bake 22-25 minutes at 400°F until muffins are no longer jiggly in the center. An instant read thermometer should read 190°-200°F.
- Let cool briefly in muffin tins, then transfer to wire rack to finish cooling.