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Surprise baked goods are all the rage these days. And I’ve done my share – hiding a “birthday” in this cake for Noah.

But when challenged to create a unique, Easter-inspired recipe using M&M’S® Milk Chocolates and Starburst® Jelly Beans, I knew what my next “surprise” would be:

surprise cupcake baskets #ad

These cupcake baskets are a cute riff on candy-filled Easter baskets. You can start with store bought cupcakes or my favorite recipe, shared below.

surprise cupcake baskets #ad

Simply scoop out the center of each cooked and cooled cupcake and fill with your favorite candies. Frost the tops, pop in a pretty liner, and finish with a pipe cleaner handle and a few more candies (to hint at what’s hiding inside).

surprise cupcake baskets #ad

surprise cupcake baskets #ad

surprise cupcake baskets #ad

surprise cupcake baskets #ad

I got all my supplies at Walmart (including, to my white-chocolate-loving delight, new M&M’S® White Chocolate – a Walmart exclusive!). They had a great selection of charming spring-themed accessories, along with every manner of candy under the sun.

surprise cupcake baskets #ad

Even better? I’ve got a coupon to get you started:

I love the no-fuss way that these came together. And the variations on this theme are endless! Switch up the candies and trim to create “baskets” for Valentine’s Day, Halloween, birthday parties and more. These would also make adorable treats for a gender-reveal party, don’t you think?

surprise cupcake baskets #ad

surprise cupcake baskets #ad

Click here for more ideas; what candies will you use?

Surprise Cupcakes
cupcake recipe adapted from The Cake Bible

3 egg yolks, room temperature
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups flour
3/4 cup sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
1 batch vanilla buttercream (or 2 cans vanilla frosting)
green food coloring
4 teaspoons M&M® White Chocolate, plus extra for garnish
4 teaspoons M&M® Milk Chocolate, plus extra for garnish
4 teaspoons Starburst® Jelly Beans, plus extra for garnish

12 plain cupcake liners
12 decorative cupcake liners
6 pipe cleaners

Make the cupcakes: Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees – line a 12-cup muffin tin with the plain liners.

Whisk the yolks, vanilla and half the milk in a small bowl. Place the dry ingredients in your mixer and blend on low for a few seconds. Add the remaining milk and all of the butter and beat on low till dry ingredients are moistened. Increase speed to medium and beat for one minute. Add the yolk mixture in 2 additions.

Divide the batter evenly in your muffin tin and bake for 20 – 25 minutes, or till a toothpick tests clean. Cool cupcakes completely before proceeding.

Carefully slice off the tops of the cupcakes to create a level surface. Use a melon scoop or small paring knife to make a small opening in the centers. Fill with a few candies. Place the cupcakes in your decorative liners.

Tint the buttercream to your desired shade of green. Pipe a “nest” atop each cupcake by piping a spiral (starting in the center), building the sides up a bit higher than the middle. Chill to set.

Place a few candies (to match the candies inside) gently in the center of each cupcake. Cut the pipe cleaners in half, and cover the ends in a bit of plastic wrap. Form handles and insert into the cupcakes.

(print this recipe)

This delicious recipe brought to you by Sheri Silver

surprise cupcake baskets #ad


  1. Kelly on March 15, 2017 at 5:05 pm

    Super cute idea. The pastel candies look so cute inside the baskets. #client

  2. Kekai on March 20, 2017 at 6:14 am

    This is such a cute idea. I’ll use sour punch ropes for the handles, though. That way the whole thing is edible.

  3. sue woods on March 20, 2017 at 4:08 pm

    I will adapt for Christmas. I will make these to use as gifts instead of all cookies. Great idea. Thanks for sharing

    • sherisilver on March 20, 2017 at 4:28 pm

      I’d love to see a picture when you make these! 🙂

  4. Debbie on March 22, 2017 at 12:13 pm

    Do you frost the top and bottom together. How do you get the two pieces to stay together?

    • sherisilver on March 22, 2017 at 9:54 pm

      I think you’re referring to the picture with the sliced cupcake? You frost the top just like a regular cupcake, after you’ve scooped out an opening to put the candy in (make sure it’s cooled first). Hope that helps! 🙂

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