The race is on to create the perfect costumes, dig out the hair-raising home decor and plan the Halloween festivities. Lucky for us, we have some Maple Grove-area experts ready to step in with spooky treats for every palate.
Nadia Cakes has created quite a stir with its epic and artsy cake creations. With three locations—including Maple Grove and Woodbury—delicious and beautiful desserts are within a short drive from anywhere in the Twin Cities.
The website lists 150 flavors of cupcakes—from simple to over-the-top—searchable by season, occasion, flavor or allergy-friendliness. Most have been around since Abby Jimenez launched the brand in California in 2009, but new ones are often added. And for holidays, the store goes all-out, with folks lining up around the block for April Fools’ Day cakes that look like chili, broken glass, dog food or ramen.
Maple Grove chef lead Jeni Grugel says that when a new variety gets released, the whole team taste-tests a batch, sometimes with many iterations happening before a cake makes the case. But sometimes, “we’ll whip up a batch, and it’s pretty much perfect already,” she says. Be on the lookout for last-minute chef specials, like tiny tombstone cake-toppers or other creepy touches.
For Halloween, the store’s signature flavors get a macabre and Instagram-worthy makeover. Here are a few favorites:
Riddikulus! Channel your inner wizard with a taste of Harry Potter’s favorite beverage. It’s a cream soda- and butterscotch-flavored cake topped with vanilla frosting and a tiny edible straw.
Cookie Dough Monster
Try this vanilla cake with chocolate chips, filled with chocolate chip cookie dough, topped with buttercream and decorated like Cookie Monster. Just try to finish this one without exclaiming, “Cookie, cookie!”
How about a vanilla cupcake with strawberry filling, strawberry buttercream frosting and a strawberry glaze on top that makes it look just like—you guessed it—someone spilled their brains all over dessert?
Because everything should have a little #PSL action this time of year. This oh-so-basic little baby is made with nutmeg, cinnamon, allspice and pumpkin and topped with a generous dollop of cream cheese frosting.
A note on ordering:
Nadia Cakes takes orders in-store or over the phone. Give two days’ notice for a cupcake order—or longer for custom creations. Got a spooky idea in mind? Start by reaching out to the cake designers at email@example.com.
Everything gets a little creepier for Halloween, including what goes in kids’ cups. Need a few mocktail ideas for your own little monster bash?
Blue Slime Sipper, geniuskitchen.com
6 oz. blueberry gelatin mix
3 cups chilled lemonade
3 cups lemon-lime soda
2 cups boiling water
4 cups cold water
Mix the gelatin and two cups boiling water; stir until dissolved, then add the cold water. Cover and chill four hours to set the gelatin. To serve: stir gelatin with a large spoon or whisk until gelatin is in small pieces. Place ¼ cup lemonade in each clear tumbler; add ½ cup gelatin and ¼ cup soda. Stir slightly and slurp away!
Fun Fact: Liquor store business soars for Halloween, and Maple Grove MGM franchise owner Bob Pederson and his team plan spooky tastings and events, even when the holiday falls on a Wednesday like this year.
Ask for their recommendations on wines with the creepiest labels, like the fan favorite, Poizin zinfandel, with skull and crossbones on the label. Stock up on tiny bottles of booze for your over-21 trick-or-treaters or ingredients for a witch’s brew that will stand up to a long night hitting the pavement with the kiddos. (Check out MGM’s blog for more fun ideas.)
Ghoul Punch, tasteofhome.com
12 gummy spiders
1 gallon tropical fruit punch
2 liters lemon-lime soda, chilled
1 qt. raspberry sherbet
Put a spider into each opening in an ice cube tray, fill with water and freeze. Fill the glove with water and freeze that, too, for about four hours. In a punch bowl, combine the punch and soda. Add sherbet and ice cubes, plus—after carefully cutting off the glove—the hand-shaped ice cube. Just scoop and serve!