Peanut Butter Mousse Torte

Cooking and baking are dangerous hobbies.  One, because there are actually a lot of pointy and sharp things in my kitchen.  I don't do well with pointy things.  I actually passed out after cutting my thumb in sculpture class once.  The wound required no more than a band-aid, but in my head I was convinced I was down a digit for sure. While unconscious I hallucinated about colorful monkeys and eventually came to in my very alarmed teacher's lap.  So....not good with pointy things. There's that.  There's also the deliciousness. There are things out there full of flour, sugar, and butter and they are fun to make and fun to eat.  But if you eat as your hobby you have to rename your website Egg & Reinforced Iron Crossbeam.  And that doesn't have the same ring, does it?

My husband is blessed with one of those (unfair) amazing metabolisms that allows him to look like a cross country runner no matter what he eats.  Now, between the two of us, he is the one more likely to be mistaken for a rabbit for his affection for fresh garden produce, so it's not really like he overindulges his sweet tooth anyway.  But when I bring out a dessert like this one I often get the question, "how does your husband stay so thin?"  This question assumes that I make stuff like this for our family all the time.  But I don't--as much as I love to bake, these desserts are usually special occasion treats to be shared among many.  This particular one I've been wanting to make ever since I first received Baking: From My Home to Yours as a Christmas gift a few years ago, and my sweet friend's 40th birthday provided the perfect opportunity.  Without further ado, meet Dorie Greenspan's Peanut Butter Torte:

Oreo crust, fluffy peanut butter mousse filling studded with spiced peanuts and chocolate chips, bittersweet ganache topping and a sprinkling of peanuts.  Oh yes. I had a blast making it and a blast enjoying it with some great people.

Though it does have cream cheese in the filling, this felt lighter to me than a cheesecake (though still very rich).  I think I prefer it to Peanut Butter Cup Cheesecake for that reason.  This recipe has several chilling steps, so make sure to allow enough time for those.  I made a few changes to the original recipe, substituting my own favorite ganache for the topping and increasing the cookie crust to suit my pan size.  Enjoy--the next tasty recipe I'm posting features this year's first garden vegetables and not even a little bit of chocolate. ;)

Peanut Butter Mousse Torte (adapted from Baking: From My Home to Yours) 

For the crust:

  • 30 chocolate sandwich cookies, finely crumbled or ground in a food processor
  • 5 T. unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • small pinch of salt

For the filling:

  • 3/4 c. finely chopped salted peanuts
  • 2 tsp. sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. instant espresso powder
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • pinch of nutmeg
  • 1/2 c. mini chocolate chips
  • 2 c. heavy cream
  • 1 1/4 c. confectioners' sugar, sifted
  • 12 oz. cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 c. peanut butter (not natural--I used Jif)
  • 2 T. whole or 2% milk

For the ganache topping:

  • 1/2 c. heavy cream
  • 5 oz. bittersweet chocolate chips
  • 1/4 c. roughly chopped salted peanuts

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Butter a 9 1/2-inch springform pan.
  2. Toss 1/2 c. chopped peanuts, 2 tsp. sugar, espresso powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, and chocolate chips together in a bowl and set aside.
  3. Put the cookie crumbs, melted butter, and salt into another bowl and mix with a fork until the crumbs are moistened.  Press the crumbs evenly over the bottom and up 2" on the sides of the springform pan. Freeze the crust for 10 minutes.
  4. Place the crust on a baking sheet (to catch drips) and bake on center rack for 10 minutes.  Allow to cool completely.
  5. In the bowl of a stand mixer, whip 2 c. cream until it holds medium peaks.  Beat in 1/4 c. confectioners' sugar and whip until the cream holds medium-firm peaks.  Scrape the cream into another bowl or container and refrigerate.
  6. Wipe out the mixer bowl and beat the cream cheese with remaining 1 c. confectioners' sugar until satiny smooth.  Beat in peanut butter, remaining 1/4 c. of the finely chopped peanuts, and milk.
  7. Using a large rubber spatula, gently fold in about one quarter of the whipped cream to lighten the mousse.  Stir in the spiced peanut mixture, then gently fold in in the remaining whipped cream.  
  8. Scrape the mousse into the crust, smooth the top, and refrigerate at least 4 hours, but preferably overnight.
  9. For the ganache topping:  Place chocolate in a heatproof bowl.  Bring 1/2 cream to a boil.  Pour over chocolate chips, allow to sit for 30 seconds, then stir until smooth and glossy.  Allow to cool for a few minutes, then pour and spread over the top of the chilled torte, and sprinkle with chopped peanuts.  
  10. Remove springform pan sides when ganache is firm, and refrigerate until ready to serve.
Participating in:

Made By You Mondays
Made With Love Mondays
Melt in Your Mouth Monday
Amaze Me Monday
Motivate Me Monday
Just Something I Whipped Up
Market Yourself Monday

Tempt My Tummy Tuesday
Tasty Tuesday @ FTLOB
Delectable Tuesday
Tasty Tuesday @ 33 Shades of Green

These Chicks Cooked


Thank you, this cake is luciuos! My hubby's almost like yours, no matter what he eats...lately I see a little belly cause he works all day at the computer, but really, he goes on vacation and losses weight!! Me, not sooo lucky! Just dropped from Amaze Me Monday. Hugs, Fabby
Jane said…
Yum! Peanut butter and favorite!

Thanks for sharing this on Melt in Your Mouth Monday!
Tadka Pasta said…
Oh my! It looks so decadent, I could polish off several slices. My hubby is like that too, humph!
Chocolate and peanut butter, the best flavor combination in the world! Would love for you to share the recipe on my July 4th link party at!
Katy said…
Haha, my husband is the same way. He works in food service and HAS to "graze" all day (he's responsible to make sure that everything tastes good before it's served). You would never know it though.

This looks sooooo good! I'll definitely tuck it away for a special occasion because I know if I made it now, I would eat half of it ;)
OH, my! Be still my heart! This looks absolutely divine!
This looks SOOO good!

If you get a chance, I'd lvoe to have you link this recipe to my Menu Mondays recipe link up:
annies home said…
this sounds like a delicious recipe one that will make a special treat come see what I shared at
How yummy! That torte sounds so tasty and I just love your pictures :) Every Wednesday I host a recipe swap and I'd love for you to come by and show off your gorgeous torte. Have a blessed day!
oh my goodness! This looks delicious! and the pictures look amazing! Thanks for the recipe! I found your blog through a link party and LOVE it! I love finding blogs with great recipes! I am your newest follower and would love it if you would check out my blog and follow me too! Thanks!
Yum! Peanut butter mousse torte= heaven! Great photos! ALl your recipes look fantastic! I'm your newest blog follower!
Anonymous said…
This looks awesome. Would come over and share some of your recipes at my link party Cast Party Wednesday tomorrow?
I hope to see you there!
cookieandclaire said…
You had me at oreo crust! This looks so great! Maybe this will be my dessert for the fourth!
I'm new to following your blog and look forward to all things you will share.
Would love a "follow- back" Come by and see me at
Have a great day
Sue said…
Your torte looks rich, delicious and gorgeous! I have the same cookbook, but somehow missed this!?! A must-make!
BTW, your post made me chuckle:)
Sarah said…
Oh my goodness. It's one in the morning, and I should be going to bed, but instead I'm looking at your delicious food and my stomach is grumbling - because, well, there's NOTHING better than chocolate! I (surprisingly!) have all the ingredients for this, and will totally be making it in the morning!
Anonymous said…
I love desserts with peanut butter and chocolate. Never tried this one, but it looks YUMMY! Thanks for sharing the recipe because it looks like a great one.

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