Midnight Craving Cupcakes

by Allison @ Alli 'n Son on June 16, 2011

A few weekends ago Hubs and I planned a weekend together. A final mini vacation before the craziness of life with a newborn and preschooler sets in. We had Grams-care lined up for two nights. We had a hotel booked and travel plans made. We had no plans other than to eat our hearts out and just walk and be together.

We however had no plans for the dogs. Friday night arrived, the night before we were set to leave, and it dawned on me that someone would have to care for the dogs while we were gone. Two dogs, left alone in the house for more than 24 hours. Yea, not gonna happen.

I begged Hubs to call a work friend, hoping against hope that he would be free and would be willing to drive over a few times to feed, water, and give the dogs a potty break. He wasn’t able to. But…his fiance was. Thankyouthankyouthankyouthankyou.

It has become a tradition that whenever we ask for help from friends or family that we repay their kindness with baked goods. Remember the peanut butter cup caramel bars? Those were born from the same thing. So we asked our friends, what are you favorite dessert ingredients? They replied with: chocolate, peanut butter, Pepsi and Ruffles potato chips.

Yes I’m serious.

My first solution was going to be peanut butter potato chip cookies with chocolate chips and a can of Pepsi. Delicious don’t you think? It would have been, except it kind of felt like I wasn’t living up to the challenge. I had to find a way to use the Pepsi in the final goodie. I would not be defeated!

So I scoured the internets and after much soul searching, came up with the perfect idea. Chocolate Pepsi cupcakes with peanut butter frosting, topped by crushed potato chips. It’s brilliant I tell you.

Midnight Craving Cupcakes

It’s the perfect late-night-craving cupcake. A little bit salty, and lot bit sweet.

You know what? This would make a pretty fantastic Father’s Day treat as well.

Midnight Craving Cupcakes

Midnight Craving Cupcakes

Yield: 12 cupcakes

Midnight Craving Cupcakes


    Chocolate Cola Cupcakes
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1-1/2 cups small marshmallows
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 canola oil
  • 3 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1 cup Pepsi or Coke (not diet)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk or 1/2 tablespoon lemon juice plus enough milk to make 1/2 cup
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Peanut Butter Frosting
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup milk plus more as needed
  • Potato Chip Sprinkles
  • 2-4 handfuls of crushed potato chips plus a few smaller chips


    Chocolate Cola Cupcakes
  1. Preheat the oven to 350º F. Line 24 muffin tins with muffin liners (I love my Silicone 3-Inch Reusable Baking Cups).
  2. In a mixing bowl combing the sugar and flour. Mix together. Add the mini marshmallows.
  3. In a medium sauce pan mix the butter, oil, cocoa powder and Pepsi. Bring to a boil then immediately and pour over the dry ingredients. Mix on low speed until the marshmallows have completely disolved.
  4. Dissolve the baking soda in the buttermilk, add to the batter along with the eggs and vanilla extract. Mix well on low speed. Note: the batter is rather thin.
  5. Fill lined muffin tins 2/3 full. Bake for 15-18 minutes or until tooth inserted into the middle of one comes out clean. Cool completely, then frost.
  6. Peanut Butter Frosting
  7. Mix the powdered sugar and peanut butter in an electric mixer on low speed. Add in the vanilla and milk.
  8. Gradually add more milk as needed to make the frosting smooth and spreadable. If the frosting is too thick, add in more milk, a few drops at a time. If the foisting becomes too thing add in a small amount of powdered sugar. Makes 1-3/4 cups, enough to frost 24 cupcakes and a few licks of the spatula.
  9. Once the cupcakes are frosted, sprinkle the broken chips on top. Add one larger chip. Let the frosting set.
  10. Serve immediately. The cupcakes can be stored in an air tight container, but the chips will soften the longer they sit.
  11. Enjoy at midnight, with a warm glass of milk.


Cupcakes adapted from Cola Cupcakes
Frosting from Betty Crocker's Cookbook: Bridal Edition


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{ 53 comments… read them below or add one }

1 katie June 16, 2011 at 7:04 pm

I just found your party today and just so happen to be the first one to link up! Thank you for hosting!


2 Allison June 17, 2011 at 1:53 pm

Welcome Katie! Your recipe sounds amazing! I hope to see you again next week.


3 Dorothy @ Crazy for Crust June 16, 2011 at 7:17 pm

I love the idea of potato chips and peanut butter. I’m intrigued by the pepsi! These sound really good. :) Thanks for hosting!


4 Allison June 17, 2011 at 1:54 pm

The Pepsi doesn’t have a real strong flavor, but you can tell that it’s sweetened by something other than sugar. They are surprisingly good.


5 Martha June 16, 2011 at 9:02 pm

Thanks for hosting and good job on the cupcakes. Interesting ingredient combo.


6 Allison June 17, 2011 at 1:56 pm

Thanks Martha! I love a good challenge, especially when chocolate is involved.


7 Ali June 16, 2011 at 9:05 pm

Thank you so much for hosting for us Alli! You would be perfect for those top chef quick fire challenges where they give you wild ingredients to use in one dish. :)


8 Allison June 17, 2011 at 1:56 pm

How fun would that be! I just need a computer at my side, so I can do my research first. 😉


9 Jenn - The Cake Dish June 16, 2011 at 9:38 pm

I love that you lived up to the challenge!!! Looks yummy!


10 Allison June 17, 2011 at 1:57 pm

Thanks Jenn! I couldn’t believe that all of the ingredients actually worked together.


11 Robin June 16, 2011 at 10:06 pm

This sounds awesome….and so creative!


12 Allison June 17, 2011 at 1:58 pm

Thank you Robin!


13 Jerri June 16, 2011 at 11:38 pm

The cupcakes look yummy! Thanks for hosting!


14 Allison June 17, 2011 at 1:58 pm

Thanks Jerri! And thanks for linking up.


15 Chels June 17, 2011 at 12:17 am

Those cupcakes look so good! I think everything should be in cupcake form, they are always so cute!


16 Allison June 17, 2011 at 1:59 pm

I agree! I love cupcakes.


17 Sinful Southern Sweets June 17, 2011 at 4:39 am

Absolutely the best looking cupcake I have seen in a loooong time! Love it!


18 Allison June 17, 2011 at 1:59 pm

Thank you!!!


19 Katie @ This Chick Cooks June 17, 2011 at 6:13 am

Thanks for hosting, Alli!


20 Allison June 17, 2011 at 2:00 pm

Of course! Thanks for linking up Katie.


21 Sabrina June 17, 2011 at 6:31 am

Well done!!!! These are hilarious! They look pretty awesome too! Have fun this weekend!


22 Allison June 17, 2011 at 2:01 pm

Hilarious, but oh so tasty!


23 Sabrina June 17, 2011 at 7:28 pm

Oh i bet!!! I love the name too its perfect!


24 Cares and Mimi June 17, 2011 at 7:30 am

Amazing! Every craving I am having at this moment could be satisfied with this cupcake. Glorious! – Cares


25 Allison June 17, 2011 at 2:02 pm

That’s the brilliance behind it, isn’t it?


26 amber June 17, 2011 at 7:54 am

Oh lordy, I am DROOLING over here. I would gladly watch your dogs if it would earn me some of those cupcakes…too bad we’re in different states!


27 Allison June 17, 2011 at 2:03 pm

Ah man! If only we lived closer, I would totally take you upon that. 😉


28 Michele June 17, 2011 at 8:04 am

Wow, what a great cupcake! Those would definitely satisfy my midnight craving.


29 Allison June 17, 2011 at 2:04 pm

Thanks Michele!


30 Brenda @ a farmgirl's dabbles June 17, 2011 at 8:49 am

What an interesting cupcake. I’d sure love to have one!


31 Allison June 17, 2011 at 2:05 pm

Thanks Brenda!


32 teri@thefreshmancook June 17, 2011 at 10:13 am

What a great midnight snack! I can’t make these-I would eat them all!! The recipe sounds interesting. I will definitely be trying it soon. Thanks!


33 Allison June 17, 2011 at 2:13 pm

I’m the same way! I always try to give away half of what I make, it keeps my hips happy.


34 Andrea (Andreas Kitchen) June 17, 2011 at 1:27 pm

Happy Friday Alli!
I shared my recipe for Dairy Free Carrot Cake Ice Cream. This recipe uses carrot juice as part of the base as well as pineapple, shredded carrots and raisins. There is no dairy and no added sugar. I think it is a pretty amazing recipe and it is actually really healthy for a dessert!
Thanks for hosting!


35 Allison June 17, 2011 at 2:13 pm

Happy Friday Andrea! I love your healthy dessert recipes. Thanks for linking up.


36 Jen June 17, 2011 at 2:23 pm

Those look amazingly yummy! You are so creative for getting all their favorite things in one dessert. Thanks for inviting me to take part in your party!


37 Liz June 17, 2011 at 8:19 pm

Fabulous looking cupcakes…and I bet they taste wonderful! Thanks for inviting me to link up this week :)


38 fatima arcaro June 17, 2011 at 11:21 pm

this looks great cant wait to try yumo


39 Julie June 18, 2011 at 7:01 am

What fun cupcakes! I am sure your friends are happy to dog sit for baked goods :)


40 MrsFoxsSweets June 18, 2011 at 9:35 am

These sound amazing! Such an interesting flavor combo!


41 Jackie @ Jackie's Kitchen June 18, 2011 at 11:33 am

Thanks so much for the invite Alli! I’m honored to be among such greatness! :-)


42 megan @ whatmegansmaking June 20, 2011 at 9:27 am

Thanks so much for letting me know about this! I missed it last week, but hopefully can link up in the future. :) Love finding new blogs like this! :)


43 Lisa @ Sweet as Sugar Cookies June 20, 2011 at 10:41 am

I’m a little late since I was out of town on Friday, but still glad that I could link up my King Arthur Flour Chocolate Chip Cookies. Those Midnight Cupcakes would satisfy my craving for sure.


44 Bibi June 21, 2011 at 8:55 am

My goodness…..these cupcakes are out f this world.

Thank you for the invite. I linked up.


45 Amanda June 21, 2011 at 9:15 am

Love the pepsi and peanut butter! Very unique!


46 jamie creative cupcakes June 22, 2011 at 7:22 pm

My nickname is PepsiJay. I love this recipe. I think the potatoe chips on top will make this cupcake so tasty. Can;t wait to try them. Thanks for sharing a great recipe.


47 Mom Photographer June 22, 2011 at 8:52 pm

That’s the weirdest cupcake I have ever seen so far… I am not sure if I would want to make it for my family, not that I care about the pepsi, potato chips and stuff, but I know my husband – and I know I won’t be able to eat all of them myself 😉
but if there was somebody from my friends willing to make it I would definitely try it.


48 Claudia June 23, 2011 at 10:10 am

Found this on Paisley Passions and with a picture like that I just had to click on it!
I actually saw a similar recipe to this on Cupcake Wars – FoodNetworkChannel but I think its a bit too american for me!
By the way, I love love love your font/design/colours in the box linking you to your facebook,twitter etc


49 Vanessa June 25, 2011 at 4:07 pm

Hmm.. These look delicious!!
Thank you so much for linking to {nifty thrifty things} last week!
I hope to see you again tomorrow!


50 Tracy July 3, 2011 at 1:55 pm

Yum! I’d have a craving for this 24/7!! Pepsi and buttermilk? I bet that makes these cupcakes super moist.

I’d love for you to link this and any other cupcake post you have at the month long Cupcake Link Party!



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