Winter for Food Trucks, or…What We’ve Learned This Season (Short of Escaping to Costa Rica)

Winter is absolutely horrid. If you curse the Gods every morning that you have to scrape the snow off of your car, you should consider yourself lucky that you don’t have to stand in an icy death box for a few hours. Now, don’t get me wrong, I absolutely am grateful for my business, but coming close to frostbitten toe amputation just doesn’t do it for me. Thus, here are a few real gems about what winter feels like when you own a food truck, and perhaps a few tips that will ensure your own safety:

1. Winterizing Your Truck Is No Joke


Unless you’re independently wealthy/parents have cash/have a few connections and own a store front, your ENTIRE business is right there with you on the road. Thus, if your truck suffers from winter related damage, your entire business is affected. Why take that risk? You spent your last dollars on those water tanks, wouldn’t it be a shame to watch them explode from expanding ice? Here is a great article about how to prepare your truck for winter weather from the good folks at FoodTruckr: 9 Ways to Winterize Your Food Truck

2. Give Up On Looking Cute, You Might Lose Extremities

2014-11-01 10.44.35

Though we aren’t the vainest of creatures at Wonderland, we do make an effort to look a certain way whilst vending. While our products do the talking, we do feel as though appearance and aesthetics play a part in overall brand marketing, recognition, and overall attractiveness of the business. With that being said, vanity totally goes out the window during the winter. We’ve done some recent events in the midst of winter, and have looked like giant marshmallows (though that may be appealing to some). Layering like pros now, there’s no shame in our game: boots, 3 pairs of socks, leggings on leggings,¬† beater, long sleeve shirt, hoodie, jacket, scarf tucked in, hat, gloves. Oh, the gloves! Whilst Nicole handles money and customers, I usually package/drizzle/handle the food, which means I wear service gloves. In the winter, that means my poor fingers become stiff and semi-arthritic, longing for moments between switching gloves, when I can shove them in my coat pockets! Lessons to be learned: Layering is a must, bringing some blankets can be a lifesaver, switching from Red Bull to huge coffees will give you the same meth-like energy whilst keeping you warmer, and huddling with your best friend for body heat is surprisingly a means of great bonding.

3. Make Sure You Have Enough Cash Flow to Account For All Accidents!


Here at Wonderland, we swear that some superstitions are real. For example, on this loveliest of Friday the 13th (Feb 13, 2015), our truck was involved in what I can only call a freeeeeaaak accident. After a particularly wonderful and non-dramatic day, we were leaving our vending site, and made a left turn onto City Ave (a pretty congested street, for all of you out-of-towners). We were in the right lane, when all of a sudden, our service window flew open (the same one that we lock and double check every single time). The awning flew up to full service mode, and before I had a chance to even react or stop, it hit a post immediately, ripping the entire thing off its hinges (see photo above of what was left). After some tears and hyperventilating, I got myself together and began the process of re-ordering the custom awning we had. While I’m certainly grateful and thankful that no one was injured, and that the awning didn’t hit any cars on its way down, the cost factor certainly stings a little. When you’re flush with money in the middle of event season, set backs and accidents can feel a little easier to swallow, but when you’re limited to mostly catering gigs and cakes, every unforseen expense can become a heavy burden. Lesson: Set up an emergency fund for your business, so that even in the slower months, you can feel safe and secure. Bad things will happen. They always do. This way, you can move on.

The good thing about winter? It has a definitive ending. Event season is just around the corner, and Philadelphia is beyond ready to rejoice with outdoor festivals, beer gardens, and all sorts of activities that make the food truck industry thrive. I’ll be looking forward to the first blooms, and possibly damning all groundhogs for eternity.



Wonderland Cakes

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Through Thick and Thin

Partners in crime..and exhaustive work.

Partners in crime..and exhaustive work.

Now that Wonderland Cakes has been hustling on the mean Philly streets for a while, its safe to say that things have been absolutely crazy. From good things (like selling out and getting our products into the first grocery store), to the bad things (broken freezers ruining our entire batches of ice pops), to the mundane (7 thousand hours of cleaning), Nicole and I have certainly earned a few stripes.

We’ve had some amazing fun running around the city, but we’ve also had some disappointments, some falls from grace, and certainly a lot of aggravations. What I’m truly thankful for, however, is having a partner and best friend who can take those negative things, and share them together, instead of turning on each other. Whenever Nicole or I have a bad day, or something completely out of the blue happens (ask us about the time we were attacked by bees at the winery!), we have a great way of realizing that we can be mad at the entire world, but we can’t be mad at each other. In fact, we physically say that mantra out loud sometimes! No matter what, we are all that we have, and we always try our best to protect that.

The other little magical thing that happens is that we know when to step in and take the lead in situations that we BOTH don’t want to be in. Case in point, if Nicole cuts herself, I play nurse, even though I don’t necessarily love blood. If a very confused customer asks if we sell cheeseburgers (mmhmm, it has happened), Nicole very calmly talks to them, saving me from raving like a lunatic.

Wedding Cake Competition

Wedding Cake Competition

The truth is, when I first made the choice to sacrifice my entire life to start a business, I always thought I would do it alone. I’m not exactly a sociopath, but the notion of making it through this incredibly difficult journey with another human being just felt impossible. Then, I met Nicole, and it has been the most rewarding, worthwhile experience to share our journey together. As we both busted our asses (sometimes literally), working 2 jobs, finishing pastry school during nights and weekends, and scraped by on a poverty-level budget, we always kept the end game in mind, and actually accomplished everything that we set out to accomplish.

We even won a Food Truck Competition at Chaddsford Winery!

We even won a Food Truck Competition at Chaddsford Winery!

What does the future look like for Wonderland Cakes? Well, we’ve certainly got dreams beyond our means at this point, but that’s the point. Everything was beyond reasonable at some point, but here we are. So, we’re taking Wonderland the wholesale route, and would love to be featured in more grocery/specialty stores. Our love of creating custom cakes continues, and we never want to stop making that a priority. In the future, there will be a storefront on the horizon, and perhaps a crazy turn into the savory world. You never know with usūüôā

As for Nicole and I? Well, that’s just a given. We lived happily ever after!



Wonderland Cakes



One Step Forward, Two Steps Back

Recently, Craig LaBan reviewed a few new gourmet food trucks, and the article ended up in various places all over the internet. While I was a little salty that he forgot to stop by Wonderland (still waiting for you, Craig!), I was incredibly proud of my peers for receiving such accolades, and for the growing field of gourmet food truck businesses. You see, we are all entrepreneurs with a lot to lose. We have all sacrificed our time, money, and energy to be able to serve gourmet food to people in the city, for a smaller initial investment than a brick and mortar. For some of us, myself included, owning a food truck is a huge success already, one that absolutely must pan out positively in order for me to keep a (tiny) roof over my head.

This is why I was so incredibly agitated reading the outdated/ignorant comments on the article, following the reviews. Here’s a little sampling, along with the actual truth. As you see, I’ve chosen to leave names out, with the original comments being italicized, and my responses in bold. Enjoy.

“what a bunch of princesses. I’ve worked in loads of restaurants. if you had any idea what goes on behind those kitchen doors you’d be just as much of a priss about eating inside a building.” –¬†I have also worked in many restaurants, and sanitation/cleanliness generally does vary greatly. Here’s the thing, though, that many people fail to understand. Food trucks (or, “roach coaches”) have been perusing the city for years, selling hot dogs and snacks. That is now what we are talking about. What we are protecting, endorsing, and participating in is a new movement of passionate professional chefs who are entrepreneurs, abiding my many stricter rules than our brick and mortar counterparts, selling high quality meals on the go. I am part of a wonderful kitchen commissary, sharing a large space with about 9 other food truck owners. The kitchen space itself is brand spanking new, visited by various inspectors multiple times throughout the year, and cleaned meticulously by every single food truck owner or operator after use. Furthermore, each and every food truck owner at this kitchen is proud of the work that they do, proud to be a chef, and an incredibly hard worker. While it may be easy to throw words around behind a computer based on speculation and past stereotyping, I CHALLENGE anyone to come to the kitchen and then maintain the same opinion.

“Ever since a saw a street vendor man peeing then serving unwrapped pretzels in Philadelphia 15 years ago I never bought from street food vendors, even if they are in a truck.” –I’m sure you did see this, and I am very sorry that you did, not because it was visually unappealing, but because one person obviously impacted your judgment about a huge industry for the next two generations. Again, people, within the previous few years, the entire culture of mobile food vending has changed dramatically (for the better), so holding on to outdated notions does nothing to propel this movement forward. Speaking of peeing, let’s get real here. With the exception of festivals, most trucks vend on the street only in increments of 3 hours. I always manage to hold it for 3 hours. Come on, your grandpa with a prostate the size of a watermelon is not working the truck. In festival situations, catering, or other on-site adventures, the organizers behind these events are always more than willing to hook us up with bathroom facilities. Whether it be a winery allowing us to use their staff bathrooms, or a local bar allowing us the same privilege without even having to buy beer, I ALWAYS manage to use appropriate facilities. Then, I wash my hands in their bathroom. Then, I wash my hands in MY truck sink (which, btw, has a beautiful hot water heater and NSF stainless sink), and finish off with a Bath and Body Works¬†sanitizer¬†before slipping on my¬†disposable¬†gloves.

“I Just don’t understand how people buy food off those trucks. No running water, they take your cash then touch your food, money is so dirty, its makes me throw up, gross.”-¬†My partner and I build our truck from scratch, so we are quite familiar with the EXTENSIVE rules (more like hoops) that the Health Dept makes you adhere to. From the size of the waste water tank relative to fresh water tanks (there are percentages!), to the compound from which its made, to the water pressure and temperature output needed from your hot water heater, the Health Dept absolutely ensures that each inspected truck now adheres to the strictest standards regarding pretty much every aspect of sanitation. As for the handling of cash/food, my partner and I have a system. She takes orders and cash/credit cards, and I prep/package food. This is the case with most food trucks.

“pmfa a founder ,Did you know that it takes water at 160 to kill germs???? So raw chicken on the one cutting board comes in contact with any thing like tomatoes, or bread or hamburger, oh no food poison.”Oh no, where to even begin? Refer to my explanation of commissary kitchens. Also, keep in mind that each food truck is REQUIRED (and this is checked as part of all yearly and random Health Dept inspections that occur literally every few months) to have at least 1 owner/staffer on board at ALL times who is ServSafe certified. So you don’t need to worry about your raw chicken being slung around with tomatoes.

“Another hipster wannabe NY fad. It to shall pass.”-¬†California. No.

“The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health provided information from 45,611 inspections of food trucks, carts and restaurants that took place between 2009 and July 2012. According to the data, food trucks, mobile carts and hot dog stands received fewer violations than restaurants. Trucks averaged 3.6 violations; restaurants averaged 7.8.”-¬†Yes.

Listen, I understand that there are exceptions to every rule. I’m sure there are a few nasty “roach coaches” that will continue to give the industry a bad name, just like there are a few brick and mortar restaurants that have mice eating more of their food than the customers. In many cities, people have been welcoming the new generations of food truck owners, proud men and women who put their entire livelihoods into this business. I happen to be one of those people, and I happen to truly believe that gourmet food trucks provide excellent service, cleanliness, and food that is gourmet and comparable to any restaurant.¬†

I challenge any skeptic to try their next meal from a gourmet food truck, and then comment.





The Wonderful and Sometimes Unglamourous Truth About Starting a Food Business

Recently, I stumbled upon Richard Myrick’s article on Mobile-Cuisine entitled “10 Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Start a Food Truck Business” (, and obviously was intrigued. After finding myself agreeing quietly with his take on the realities of the business, it got me thinking about the incredible journey I have encountered since making the sharp right on the road less traveled, and into the dark forest of the unknown.

While the Wonderland Cakes truck is in its final legs of outfitting, I can’t help but to get a little sentimental. See, it may appear as though Wonderland is a brand new company, as we are just now hitting the road full time with a truck, but the truth is, this has been my baby for about 2 years now, from its humble beginnings selling out of Kentucky butter cakes at farmers’ markets, to catering weddings, and sharing the limelight with other businesses I respect.

So, here are a few truths I can attest to without hesitation:

-Don’t Underestimate the Benefits of Formal Education

Can you teach yourself how to make the perfect vegan chocolate tart via Youtube videos? Sure. Can you comprehend how proteins bond to create gluten, what role that “pinch of salt” plays in all of this, and what that means for bread making by self-motivated research? Sure. If you’re passionate about pastry, or any art for that matter, and you aren’t a moron, you can certainly amass the technical knowledge needed to create an appropriate finished project. However, there’s something to be said for the benefits of being engaged in the formal learning environment, to receive tutelage from Chefs with impressive resumes, and the technical competencies that you gain by hustling your ass on 1/4 of a table next to 20 other students with a sharp deadline looming above you. After graduating from the Pastry Arts program at the Art Institute of Philadelphia (at number 1, if I may add without sounding too much like an asshole), they gave me an award, but not my diploma, since I still owe the school about $6,000. With that said, I very much value the confidence, technical skills, relationships, and everything else I gained within pastry school.

-Money. It’s Not Important Until It’s Important

In full disclosure, I’m poor. I’ve always been poor, and the concept of amassing great wealth just doesn’t appeal to me. I don’t give a shit about Louis Vuitton purses and jewelry, but here’s the deal. Money doesn’t matter in the grand scheme of your life, until you need it for your business. Working on an extremely tight budget, sometimes you literally have to lie, steal, and cheat in order to get things done. Between licenses, permits, parking tickets (damn you, PPA!), food costs, kitchen space, and the mountains of unforeseeable expenses, starting a business is unbelievably costly, even if you remain thrifty and smart about where your money goes. Unless you rely on the Bank of Mom and Dad, or are independently wealthy (in which case, fuck you), you’ll have to make some sacrifices. For example, I sold my car (the only new thing I’ve ever had), got rid of cable/internet (ask me about stealing the neighbors’ internet, and streaming tv via laptop), and basically have survived on Ramen (and the food my awesome peers feed me) throughout the previous two years, in addition to countless other money-saving considerations. Is it all worth it? Yes. The minute that I began to comprehend that the beautiful truck getting its window installed is OWNED by ME, everything I’ve ever struggled for became worth it. Hands down.

-The Mobile Food Community Is Awesome

While the occasional douchebag exists in every field, I can’t tell you how wonderful my welcome has been into the mobile food community. From the very beginning, as Nicole (more on her later) and I were just two clueless girls scratching and clawing our way into this overwhelming “entrepreneurship”, almost everyone that we encountered has been incredibly helpful, gracious, supportive, understanding, and selfless in regard to helping another fledgling business. I can’t tell you how many questions I’ve had, how many things I’ve had to learn the hard way, and how many technical issues I’ve thrown at my fellow food truck owners (How the hell do you calculate total generator wattage needed?), only to have them all kindly answer my questions, and not only that, but make me feel as though I can actually succeed in doing all of these tasks. I have a very strong feeling that not all industries operate like a close knit family, but I’m so incredibly glad that this one does. I am so grateful for the help, camaraderie, inclusion, and ¬†general support from this community, and I can only hope to be the source of such support to the next new kid on the block with a dream and a passion.

-You Must Multi-Task, and Rely On Caffeine (Or Crack)

There was a particular point in my career that I will never forget. I worked as a mental health case manager (insanely stressful) on a full time basis, and was in pastry school on a full time basis, whilst still growing the business. After working an 8 hour shift until 4:30pm, I ran over to school until 11:00pm, baked 600 mini pies for a catering order completely over night, went to work 8:00am until 4:30pm, then back to school until 11:00pm. When I finally got home close to midnight, everything ached. I was delirious, exhausted, dehydrated, smelly, and had crusted buttercream in my hair. I was also so incredibly happy and proud to be doing this. You can’t take shortcuts in this field, and it is time consuming. You have to be on top of 300 things simultaneously, and you can’t let the ball drop on anything. Thus, may I suggest a functional crack addiction? Or at least excessive coffee?

-Partners Make The World Go Round

I asked Nicole to be my partner in business while we were still in pastry school, which we attended together. We worked incredibly well in extremely confined spaces, our abilities and skills were complimentary, our thoughts and view were similar, and at the end of the day, we made a really great friendship. We have worked together under pressure, we have experienced setbacks and hardships together, we have shared joys and ambitions, and we have churned out products that we both are proud of . There isn’t a single other human being with whom I would like to embark on this business journey with. Sharing everything with another person not only makes things technically easier, but it is also a reminder of the personal aspect of business. After all, it is hospitality. Of course, you have to be careful with the “who” part, but if you’re lucky enough to find a real partner, you’ll know. It’s kind of like the elusive love story soul mate, except without violins and Leonardo DiCaprio.

-You Have To Be The Jack Of All Trades (And Master of Some)

Again, this kind of comes down to the monetary situation. Unless you have a trunk full of stacks, you’ll need to take an extremely hands-on approach to most things. Nicole and I have had to be the CEO, attorney, PR executive, marketing guru, electrician, carpenter, accountant and pastry chef for Wonderland Cakes. You know what? We wouldn’t trade that for the world. From tearing down wooden cabinetry in the truck, to figuring out what the hell an S-Corp even means, there’s something to be said for putting your OWN blood, sweat, and tears into your business.

-Funny Shit Happens. Enjoy The Adventure

As nerve racking, stressful, and complicated as starting a business from the ground up may be, it’s also one hell of an adventure! From running away from a possibly rabid rat, to spilling garbage juice on oneself, to tripping mercilessly, these are our memories. These are adventures. There’s so much laughter, ridiculousness, and comedy that happens between Nicole and I, and it is absolutely crucial to take a step back and enjoy that. Also, we’re very much open to the Food Network/Cooking Channel cameras to follow us for a highly entertaining show about the real world of culinary business. Hear that, Bobby Flay?

With the initial process winding down extremely quickly, Nicole and I have experienced an amazing roller coaster, and are so excited to be a part of this field. For good measure, here are a few “before” photos of the truck..with the final result coming very soon. Better than seeing it online, though, how about you run over and see us in person? Not in Philly? You probably should be, because we’re awesome!

truckback truckotherside truckside




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Coolest Holiday Cookie Recipes and Ideas

Tis the season for hipsters in tragically ironic ugly sweaters (which Target has now begun selling for a serious price?), yelling hello at your great-aunt Myrtle eighty times, and having to dodge holiday shoppers pillaging through every store, hyped on Red Bull and “savings”.

But hey, the holiday season is all about a few good things as well. People actually help each other out in dire situations, the occasional snow amounts to a day off, and best of all..HOLIDAY DESSERT!

This holiday season, be sure to enjoy the Wonderland Cakes Holiday Specials (available in the upcoming few days), and take advantage of our delivery system within the Philadelphia region.

After you’re finished ordering your special artisan desserts, its time to consider another holiday tradition, baking cookies. Are you confused about your cookies? Do you have to make 6 dozen something-or-others for your office party? Are you trying to show up Susie Homemaker next door? Well, we’ve done the leg work for you this holiday season. We’ve compiled an extensive listing of non-intimidating yet aesthetically awesome holiday treats for even a novice baker to create. Here are some links:

Martha Stewart's rum balls, reposted on

Martha Stewart’s rum balls, reposted on

1. Rum Balls- courtesy of Martha Stewart, these decadent treats were reposted on, where you can find the foolproof recipe. These decadent treats are an amazing combination of brownies, and booze..which is the perfect combination for the holidays.

Lemon Zest sandwich cookies

Lemon Zest sandwich cookies

2. Glittering Lemon Sandwich Cookies- the French macaron’s less attractive little brother, this darling dessert is portable, and flavors/colors can be customized to your particular need.

Shortbread Cookies from the Food Network

Shortbread Cookies from the Food Network

3. Shortbread Cookies – from the Food Network, this shortbread recipe only has 5 ingredients(one of them being your own wildcard), and can be flavored in any way. Personally, we love using a strongly scented chai tea, or cardamom and lemon for cookies.

Chocolate Mint Cookies

Chocolate Mint Cookies from Food and Wine Magazine

4. Chocolate Mint Cookies – Taken from Food and Wine Magazine’s “10 Best Holiday Cookes” article, these cookies may not be loaded with sugar and sprinkles, but they’re perfect for winter. There’s something magical about mint in winter, and hey, they might even freshen your breath for mistletoe kisses.

Eggnog Chai Cookies

Eggnog Chai Cookies

5. Eggnog Chai Cookies- from are a fabulous alternative to the usual sugar cookie. For 27 years, we have been attempting to figure out whether or not we like drinking eggnog, but we sure do love it in cookie form! These cookies are the perfect snack for sharing under a blanket, in pajamas, watching a good movie, and they’re easy to make!


We hope you enjoyed our suggestions, and please feel free to send us photographs and feedback of your attempts at creating these holiday treats! If you are looking for a specific recipe that you have not found here, please feel free to email/call/snail mail/carrier pigeon us, and we will do our best to point you in the right direction. Hell, we might even give you a personal Wonderland recipe, if you promise to guard it with your life.

From the Wonderland family, we sincerely wish everyone a happy, warm, safe, and special holiday season.


Klaudia Rodzen and Nicole Mazzoni

Wonderland Cakes

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Thanksgiving Pie Specials + Tips For Entertaining, The Modern Way

Ahh yes, the holidays are just a hop and a skip away. Did you promise to bring the pie, yet conveniently forget that you aren’t the world’s best baker? Have no fear, we ARE, and better yet, WE DELIVER. Please take a look at our Thanksgiving pie specials, and place your order asap. If you’re hosting Thanksgiving dinner at your home, our handcrafted artisan pies are the perfect accompaniment to your feast. Our pies receive individual love and attention, from each hand rolled flaky crust, to our made-from-scratch and never canned fillings. This holiday season, let us help you celebrate without stress:

Thanksgiving Pie Specials

Thanksgiving Pie Specials












If you are the gracious host of a Thanksgiving party this year, make sure to also follow the Wonderland Tips for Modern Hosting. Emily Post would be proud.

Centerpieces: When done correctly, they add an element of formality to any celebration. Does that mean they have to be expensive? No. Here’s an example of a cool centerpiece idea that you can accomplish, DIY style:

DIY Centerpiece

DIY Centerpiece












Now, you probably already have a bowl for candles (or use an old fish bowl), and you can very easily scour the backyard for some pine cones and small twigs. If you live in the city, check out the arboretum, or perhaps any of the gazillions of parks in Philadelphia. If you can’t find pine cones, look for other cool natural gifts, like small nuts and pretty leaves. Throw in some votives, and bada-bing, bada-boom, you look like Susie Homemaker.

Ambiance: Give your guests some mood lighting by avoiding harsh light bulbs, and make sure to play some low key music to avoid silence, and maintain an uptempo. In other words, make your guests feel slightly more attractive by creating a soft glow, and give the drunkards something to sing along to.

Here’s a great resource of sample playlists based on the type of ambiance you are going for. If it was up to us, we would spin Paloma Faith all night and wear a glitter turkey on our heads. Perhaps you’re going for something a little more…subdued? Check out what the Huff Post has to say:¬†

Table Prep: You have all year to eat Lean Cuisines in front of the television, using your coffee table as your dinner table. Thus, once a year, why not go all out and put a table cloth on your otherwise abandoned dining room table? If you’re a rustic kind of person, there’s no need to pretend to be someone you’re not. You can still achieve a beautiful, inviting aesthetic without having to sacrifice your personal style. Here are some table settings to pique your interest:

Thanksgiving table ideas

Thanksgiving table ideas

Rustic but beautiful table spread

Rustic but beautiful table spread























Need some help with the DIY aspect of table decor? The queen has you covered. Here are links to Martha’s Thanksgiving decorating pages:¬†and¬†

Alcohol: When you’re busy playing hostess and chef, the last hat you want to wear is bartender. Thus, Bon Appetit magazine (which I swear by), has created 3 perfect holiday cocktails that you can make ahead of time, served in pitchers, that your guests can very easily help themselves to. Ch-ch-check it out here:¬†

In addition to cocktails, every good party needs wine, and lots of it. If you’re not a wino, don’t be afraid. Sommeliers might make the process of pairing wines appear intimidating, but that is merely because they have passion and bravado for their chosen profession. To take the guess work out of wine pairing for Thanksgiving, check out the easy guide from Food and Wine, which features all wine under $15 (but no one has to know!):¬†

If all else fails, download this helpful app from Bon Appetit to help you with ALL aspects of party planning for Thanksgiving. Its the bitchy assistant you wish you had:

Bottom Line: Enjoy these tips, have a great holiday, and RELAX! If the little details aren’t exactly perfect…who cares? You’re alive, you’re with loved ones, you put out the fire, and you have plenty of wine!

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Pumpkin Super Spice Cheesecake Recipe and How-To’s

Fall is undoubtedly a foodie’s best friend. The smells, the spices, the textures..everything just feels richer, deeper, and more complex. ¬†Yet, fall and winter tend to be overlooked, as most people reminisce about their summer vacations, tans, and margaritas. Being pasty as all hell (I prefer to call it “porcelain”), I will always be the one to remind you about the wonderful aspects of fall and winter. With that said, let’s get to baking. What are we preparing today? Wonderland’s Pumpkin Super Spice Cheesecake.

This recipe yields approx. 8 servings (Or 1 if you’re me).

Ingredients For Crust:

  • 14oz (1 3/4 cups) graham cracker crumbs
  • 1.5oz (3 Tbs) light brown sugar
  • 4oz (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted

Ingredients For Filling:

  • 24oz (3 standard packages) cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 15oz unsweetened pumpkin puree
  • 3 eggs, large
  • 1 egg yolk, large
  • 2oz sour cream (or Greek yogurt)
  • 0.16oz (1 tsp) vanilla extract
  • 12oz (1 1/2 cups) sugar
  • 1oz (2 Tbs) all-purpose flour, sifted
  • 0.16oz (1 tsp) ground cinnamon
  • 0.08 (1/2 tsp) ground nutmeg
  • 0.08 (1/2 tsp) ground cloves
  • TT salt

Procedure and Tips:

cheesecake crust

cheesecake crust








1. Prepare the crust. First, combine your graham cracker crumbs with sugar in a bowl. Next, melt your butter over low/medium heat in a non-stick pan. In case you have ever wondered, you CAN burn butter. Which part actually burns? The milk solids in butter are first to burn. In order to prevent this, keep some movement in the pot with a wooden spoon. After you have melted your butter, pour it into the crumb/sugar mixture, creating crust. Place down crust on a 9″ springform pan (used to make removal easier and neater). Make sure to press the crust down firmly and evenly, then place aside.














2. Mix your cream cheese and sugar with a paddle attachment, on a medium speed, until smooth. Be sure to scrape sides and bottom of bowl, as well as attachment to ensure smoothness.

Mixing/Adding Spices

Mixing/Adding Spices












3. Incorporate pumpkin puree, continuing to mix with paddle attachment, and scraping bowl as needed. Add eggs, yolk, sour cream, and vanilla, continuing to mix and scrape as needed. As mentioned, you can substitute sour cream with Greek yogurt, providing a more tangy taste experience. ¬†Finally, incorporate flour, and all spices. As everyone’s taste is different, feel free to pile on the spices! Personally, I believe that a spicier cheesecake works fabulously with the soft texture, and combined with the subtlety of the crust.

poured cheesecake

poured cheesecake








4. Pour cheesecake into your prepared pan evenly. It should flow smoothly, and make you want to just eat it raw. Bake at 350F in a deck oven, and 325F in a convection oven, for roughly 1 hour. As EVERY oven has a hot spot/other kinks, please never rely exactly on times posted on ANY recipe. The best method is to utilize your senses. Look for a nice golden or amber color, smell the fragrant spices, and make sure to rotate half way. As a general rule of thumb, aim for an hour, but as I’ve mentioned, make sure to utilize your senses to judge timing according to your particular oven.


6. Remove from oven, cool for roughly 15 minutes, and cover in plastic wrap. Set to retard in your refrigerator for roughly 4 hours, and go take a walk outside! At this juncture, you may be wondering why there are no photographs of the finished product. Well, in this particular case, fingers/spoons/forks went right into the cheesecake, straight from the oven! It is just that delicious!

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Welcome to Wonderland

Welcome all!

Thank you for viewing the official website for Wonderland Cakes, a newly launched artisan specialty cake boutique.  Here are some of the easiest ways to reach us:



Twitter: @w0nderlandcakes

As our company grows, this blog, along with Twitter, will be your premiere source for all updates related to Wonderland Cakes. From company news, to recipes and how-to’s, I aim to inspire everyone to view their dessert as art; a tangible expression of personality, taste, and design. ¬†It is my hope that you will all join me throughout this wild journey, from the inception of Wonderland Cakes, to its’ takeover (hopefully)!


Klaudia Rodzen

Owner/Pastry Chef


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