Pumpkin Cheesecake with Rum Spiked Whipped Cream and Candied Pecans

pumpkin cheesecake

Any of my friends can tell you, I am extremely competitive. Let me reiterate. In general I am a nice person, but in a competitive situation I will cut a bitch. With that said, when they announced that we would have a baking competition at work, I knew I had to pull out all the stops. I knew my pumpkin cheesecake was a hit. Of course it had to be since I use a recipe courtesy of the one and only Ms. Paula Deen. But I knew I had to step it up a notch, so I decided to top it off with a rum spiked whipped cream and candied pecans. And lo, I won the bake off along with a nice $50 gift card and a plastic trophy, which now sits proudly atop my desk.


Pumpkin Cheesecake

For the Crust

  • 1 ¾ cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 3 tbsp. light brown sugar
  • ½ tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 stick melted salted butter


For the Filling

  • 24 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
  • 15 oz. can pureed pumpkin
  • 3 eggs plus 1 egg yolk
  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • 1 ½ cups sugar
  • ½ tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 tsp. ground cloves
  • 2 tbsp. all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place a deep pan in the bottom rack filled with water. This will minimize cracking in the surface of the cake.


In a medium bowl, combine crumbs, sugar, cinnamon and melted butter. Press mixture down flat into a 9-inch spring form pan. Set aside.


In a stand mixer using the paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese until smooth. Add pumpkin puree, eggs, sour cream, sugar, all the spices, flour, and vanilla. Beat until well combined.


Pour the mixture into the prepared crust. Bake for an hour or until the cake is set. Remove and let sit for 15 minutes. Cover with a plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours.


Rum Spiked Whipped Cream

  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 6 tbsp. powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp. rum
  • ¼ tsp. cream of tartar


Chill the bowl of a stand mixer for at least 10 minutes. Using the whisk attachment, whip the cream until it starts to thicken. Add the powdered sugar, vanilla extract, rum, and cream of tartar. Continue to whip until stiff peaks form. Keep refrigerated until use.


Candied Pecans

  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 cup toasted pecans


Spray a glass-baking dish with non-stick spray.


Melt the sugar in a saucepan over medium high heat. Keep a close watch as sugar burns easily. Stir in pecans until completely coated.


Pour the nut mixture into prepared dish and let cool. Pulse in a food processor until loosely crushed.


Once ready to serve, top the pumpkin cheesecake with the whipped cream and garnish with the candied pecans.


Enjoy the cheesecake and the tears of your vanquished enemies!


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