Sultan Chocolate Cupcakes

When cupcakes were riding the wave of popularity several years ago, it seemed as though every town and city had a store or food truck packed with a plethora of flavor options. In our local community, we loyally made weekly visits to our cupcake store and often, devoured a whole box of these frost-filled treats before we got home.

One cupcake we never encountered was one made without frosting. While schmoozing with the proprietor of our local cupcake store, we had mentioned how we’ve been making chocolate cupcakes in which the vanilla frosting (dotted with chocolates chips) filled up the inside. Intrigued, the owner asked if she could have the recipe, so she could include it in her repertoire of sweet treats. Calling it “The Sultan Chocolate Cupcake” after our last name, it became one of her most popular flavors. Here’s how to indulge like a Sultan.

Sultan Chocolate Cupcake Recipe

Serves 18 cupcakes

Frosting (Filling) Ingredients:

  • 8 ounces of soft cream cheese
  • *1/3 cup of sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/8 tsp of salt
  • 1 cup of high quality semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips

Cake Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ cups of all purpose flour
  • ¼ cup of unsweetened cocoa powder (high quality brand)
  • 1 tsp of baking soda
  • ½  tsp of salt
  • *1 cup of sugar
  • 1 cup of water
  • ⅓ cup of vegetable oil or canola oil
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 TBS of cider vinegar or fresh lemon juice
  • *1 tsp of vanilla extract
  • cupcake liners for muffin tins or Silicone muffin cups

* Feel free to replace with DIY vanilla bean sugar and vanilla extract.


  1. Preheat oven to 350°. If using a rimmed cookie sheet, place parchment paper on top and put silicone cups over the parchment paper.
  2. For the filling or frosting, add cream cheese, sugar, egg, and salt and beat just until completely mixed and blended using an electric mixer. Stir in the chocolate chips and set aside.
  3. For the cake batter, sift flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl. Add sugar and whisk dry ingredients together. In a smaller bowl, combine water, oil, egg, vinegar (or lemon juice), and vanilla extract. Blend ingredients. Gradually add liquid ingredients to the flour mixture stirring just until it is smooth. The batter will be liquidy.
  4. Spoon batter into each cup, filling cups half or two-thirds. Add a heaping tablespoon of filling/frosting in the center and on top of the cake batter. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes or until cupcakes springs back when lightly touched. To avoid burnt chocolate, watch and monitor carefully when approaching the end of the cooking process. Remove from the oven and let cool for about 10-15 minutes, then gently remove cupcakes from cups.

Roll out the red carpet for an intensely rich, soft cupcake befitting for a Sultan!

sultan cupcake split open

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