Spiderweb Pumpkin Cheesecake | Reader's Digest

Spiderweb Pumpkin Cheesecake

Halloween desserts don't get any better than this creamy cheesecake crawling with melt-in-your-mouth spiders.

Spiderweb Pumpkin Cheesecake Spiderweb Pumpkin Cheesecake

Quick look

  • prep 35 min    cook 60 min
  • serves 12

“This spiced cheesecake makes an appearance on my Halloween table every year. Folks get a kick out of the candy web and chocolate spiders.”
– Bev K., Winnipeg, Manitoba

Ingredients

  • 1 3/4 cups chocolate wafer crumbs (about 28 wafers)
  • 1/4 cup butter or margarine, melted
  • 3 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 can (15 ounces) solid-pack pumpkin
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 3 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 cups (16 ounces) sour cream
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 4 squares (1 ounce each) semisweet chocolate, melted

    How to make it  1 hour, 35 minutes


  • 1

    Combine wafer crumbs and butter; press onto the bottom and 1 inch up the sides of a greased 10-inch springform pan. Set aside.

  • 2

    In a mixing bowl, beat cream cheese and sugars until smooth. Add eggs; beat on low speed just until combined. Whisk in pumpkin, cornstarch, vanilla and pumpkin pie spice just until blended. Pour into crust. Place on a baking sheet. Bake at 350°F for 60-65 minutes or until center is almost set. Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes.

  • 3

    Combine topping ingredients; spread over filling. Bake at 350°F for 6 minutes. Cool on a wire rack for 10 minute. Carefully run a knife around the edge of pan to loosen; cool 1 hour longer. Refrigerate overnight. Remove sides of pan; set aside.

  • 4

    For spiderwebs, draw six 3 x 2-inch half circles on two sheets of parchment paper on top; tape both securely to work surface.

  • 5

    In a saucepan, bring the sugar, cream of tartar and water to a boil over medium heat. Boil, without stirring, until mixture turns a light amber color and candy thermometer reads 350°F. Immediately remove from the heat and stir. Cool, stirring occasionally, for 10-15 minutes or until hot sugar mixture falls off a metal spoon in a fine thread.

  • 6

    Using a spoon or meat fork, carefully drizzle syrup over half-circle outlines and inside the outlines to form spiderwebs; reheat syrup if needed. Cool completely.

  • 7

    Place melted chocolate in a resealable plastic bag; cut a small hole in a corner of bag. Pipe 1-inch spiders onto parchment or foil; cool completely. With remaining melted chocolate, pipe two or three dots on each web; attach spiders.

  • 8

    Remove sides of springform pan. Cut cheesecake; place a web on top of each slice and remaining spiders on the side. Refrigerate leftovers.

Editor’s note: We recommend that you test your candy thermometer before each use by bringing water to a boil; the thermometer should read 212°F. Adjust your recipe temperature up or down based on your test.