Surprise, surprise, surprise

Oftentimes I get together with all my family on Sunday for dinner, and I always volunteer to make the dessert. No, I’m not a super sweet daughter or fabulous “souper” mom because I offer to do some of the cooking. The truth of the matter is, I LOVE sweets, and dessert is my favorite part of the meal to make. If anyone was to win a prize for the biggest sweet tooth in the whole wide world, it would be me. My sister might argue that and say she would win, but I’m older and bigger so it would be me!

Today’s recipe, Chocolate Surprise Cupcakes, is a long-time favorite of mine. I go way back with this one since it was one of the most requested desserts of my sister and me for our birthdays. Who wanted cake when Mom would make her world famous (well, almost) chocolate surprise cupcakes! We thought they were Mom’s until years later she told the truth and owned up to finding this recipe in one of her cookbooks. But this didn’t burst the bubble about Mom or the cupcakes because we still love both! They might as well have been world famous though, because all the kids in the neighborhood and down the street and around the corner and into the next town begged for them. The neighborhood kids would come running when they smelled that delicious chocolate scent seeping through the doors and windows of our house.

This delicious recipe almost did not make it with me into adulthood. Tear. Sigh. Yes, you probably thought I would have memorized it, but I admit I was too busy eating these mouth-watering treats while studying algebra in homeschool to commit this recipe to memory. As I stated in my About page, I was brought up on a lot of health food (much to my liking), and treats like this one were few and far between. At one point Mom did not make the cupcakes for a while, and I thought the recipe was lost forever. Tear. Sigh. Again. I went searching on the Internet for a similar dessert and found there were many versions of it, so these Chocolate Surprise Cupcakes may not be a real “surprise” for you.  After my tedious searching, I actually found the recipe Mom had in one of her books, and my life was saved! Needless to say, I made a dozen copies of it to ensure it would never get lost again. As I share this wonderful and special treat with you today, I recommend you make lots of copies to save and share too.

I tweaked the recipe just a little bit when it came to the vinegar, and I had an itty-bitty ounce of guilt using regular full-fat cream cheese so I substituted Organic Valley’s Neufchatel, which contains a third less fat than regular cream cheese without sacrificing taste. It is actually a lighter and creamier cream cheese, and I highly recommend you try it. Note: I am not getting any endorsements from Organic Valley. I just like the stuff! You don’t have to use organic either. I believe there are non-organic versions in the grocery store.

So, what recipe of your family’s was almost world famous?

Chocolate Surprise Cupcakes


3 cups flour

2 cups sugar

1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

2 teaspoons baking soda

2/3 cup oil

2 cups water

1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

2 teaspoons vanilla


1   8 oz. package cream cheese, softened

1 egg

1/3 cup sugar

1 cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Fill two 12-count cupcake tins with paper cupcake liners.

For the cupcakes, combine flour, sugar, cocoa, and baking soda in a large mixing bowl. In another mixing bowl, combine oil, water, vinegar and vanilla. Mix the wet ingredients with the dry and stir until well combined. Spoon mixture into cupcake tins filling the paper liners only two-thirds full. In another mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese, egg and sugar until well combined. Stir in chocolate chips. Drop heaping teaspoons into the middle of the chocolate cupcakes. Bake for 25 minutes. Allow to cool on a rack before serving. Refrigerate whatever cupcakes are not devoured, though, I doubt you will have to do this even if you are the only one eating them!! Enjoy!

If you looked at this picture and did the math, you would know by now that there obviously aren’t 24 cupcakes presented here. A few were already eaten and a few were shared. See, they couldn’t even last long enough out of the oven for me to get a picture of all of them!

About soupermomskitchen

My day begins and ends in the kitchen, and I believe all moms have a little (or a lot) of Super Woman in them.
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12 Responses to Surprise, surprise, surprise

  1. Maria says:

    In our family, we make a Slavic dish called strookla. As kids, we would do just about anything to get it! Sounds like this is the case in your family with this dessert! I really enjoy your posts! Keep up the good work, Jacqie!

  2. Belle says:

    I feel guilty I didn’t make them for a while! What a monster mother!!! I do remember Sara loving them. Has she responded to your blog yet?

    You’re doing a great job, Jacqie. Just love it all! Go, go, go!

  3. Berna says:

    Jacqie!!! You have no idea how much fun I have reading your blog– you go, girl! This little insight into your kitchen and heart is just delightful. Thank you for these fabulous inspirations so far, and please keep them coming. You are my hero!

    • Thanks, Berna, dear. I am so glad you like it. I knew I could count on you. You always give me such encouragement. I’m having a lot of fun with it, and I hope you continue to enjoy. Glad to be someone’s hero! HAHAHA.

  4. critterditter says:

    Mmmmm- these look magical….So can’t wait to make and eat! And I so love that breakfast and desserts are your #1’s- yippee! Are you my twin??

  5. Anne says:

    I have a few questions about this recipe…so I thought I’d post it here in case someone else might be wondering the same things 🙂 I am going to be making these delicious looking cupcakes today for my twins birthday! They will be 6 on Wednesday…I don’t know where the time has gone…but it has been a fun/challenging road! My questions are:
    How far ahead of time can you make these?
    Should they be stored in the refrigerator?
    Can they be frozen?
    Thanks so much…I don’t know if I will be able to wait until Wednesday to try one…:)

    • You can make the cupcakes a day ahead of time, just keep them in the refrigerator until you are ready to serve them. They will need to be stored in the refrigerator in general because of the cream cheese filling, but they taste best when brought to room temperature. I have not tried freezing them because they are usually devoured within days, and I don’t have to think about storing them for later! However, I am one of those people that believe you can freeze anything so I’d say give it a whirl! If you don’t need all 24 cupcakes, you could half the ingredients and just make 12. I hope you like them and they turn out to be a success. Please let me know if you have any other questions. Hope this helps.

  6. Amanda says:

    I have a recipe very similar to this one, and I make them into mini cupcakes at Christmas and frost them. I usually decorate them with red and green sprinkles. They are always my most requested cupcake!

  7. Pingback: You Won’t Believe What’s In Here! | Souper Mom in the Kitchen

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