Banana Cupcakes with Chocolate Chips or Walnuts






My mom, Genny Kozusko, is awesome.  She is a dynamic Director of Athletics, coach, teacher, community member, and church volunteer.  She is beloved by many.  She is a woman with iron-clad willpower, particularly with regard to the consumption of sweets.  Sundays are Genny’s treat days, and since tomorrow is Mother’s Day, I decided to bake the banana walnut version for her; she doesn’t eat chocolate, so the cupcakes with the chocolate chips are really for Mike and his coworkers.

I began with a plain banana cupcake recipe and split it in half, then added semi-sweet chocolate chips to one half and toasted chopped walnuts to the other.  You could certainly add both chocolate chips and walnuts to the batter for banana chocolate chip walnut cupcakes (hmm…maybe next time).  The banana walnut cupcakes are frosted with traditional cream cheese frosting, while the banana chocolate chip cupcakes are frosted with peanut butter cream cheese frosting.



  • 2 1/2 cups cake flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups mashed bananas (from about four medium bananas)
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 12 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, plus more for garnish
  • 1/2 cup toasted chopped walnuts, plus more for garnish


Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Line two 12-cup muffin tins with paper liners; you may need a few additional liners, as my batter yielded 27 cupcakes.

In a medium bowl, sift together cake flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; set aside.

In another medium bowl, combine mashed bananas, buttermilk, and vanilla; set aside.

In a mixing bowl, cream together butter and sugar until fluffy.

Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each.

Add the flour mixture and banana mixture in thirds, alternatively, beating after each addition until just incorporated.

Divide batter in half.

Toss chocolate chips with a dash of cake flour to lightly coat and prevent them from sinking to the bottom of the cupcakes during baking.

Add chocolate chips to one half of the batter, then add walnuts to the other half of the batter.

Bake for 18-20 minutes, until golden brown at the edges and tops and a cake tester comes out clean.

Cool on a wire rack completely before frosting.

Peanut Butter Cream Cheese Frosting


  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1 1/4 cup powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract


In a mixing bowl, cream together peanut butter and cream cheese.

Gradually add powdered sugar and beat until smooth.

Beat in vanilla until incorporated.

Frost cupcakes and top with two or three chocolate chips for garnish.

Cream Cheese Frosting (half-recipe for 12 cupcakes)


  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 4 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract


In a mixing bowl, cream together cream cheese and butter.

Gradually add powdered sugar and beat until smooth.

Beat in vanilla.

Frost cupcakes and garnish with toasted chopped walnuts if desired.

Once cupcakes are frosted, store in the refrigerator.  Bring to room temperature before serving.