Fall is just around the corner, and we all know what that means: pumpkin spice lattes are back on the menu! But don’t let the coffee shop’s fancy equipment fool you—making your own pumpkin spice latte at home is easier than appreciating fall’s foliage, and cheap to boot.
How to Make a Pumpkin Spice Latte
- 2 cups milk
- 1 cup brewed coffee
- 2 tablespoons canned pumpkin pie puree
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice, plus a dash for garnish
- Whipped cream for serving
Step 1: Make a cup of joe
A pumpkin spice latte’s palate-pleasing flavor takes center stage, but the drink’s unsung hero is coffee. Brew up a light roast for an extra kick of caffeine, or opt for a dark roast for a rich, smooth character. For even more fall flavor, try coffee with cinnamon and cloves.
Step 2: Prep the flavoring
In a saucepan over medium heat, whisk together the pumpkin puree, pumpkin pie spice, milk, maple syrup and vanilla extract. Heat everything until it’s hot and starts to steam. Make sure you don’t let it reach a boil or the milk might curdle.
Test Kitchen tip: Use your leftover pumpkin puree to make a tasty pumpkin breakfast.
Step 3 (optional): Blend the hot mixture
To mimic the foaminess of a Starbucks pumpkin spice latte, pour the heated mixture into a blender and blend for about 15 seconds until frothy.
Step 4: Mix it all together
Pour the brewed coffee into a large mug and gently top it off with the hot pumpkin and milk mix.
Step 5: Top it off
Add a hearty peak of whipped cream to the top of the drink, and sprinkle with a dash or two of pumpkin pie spice.
Step 6: Enjoy!
Fall’s quintessential drink is now in your hands (with plenty extra to share with friends). For the full autumn experience, drink it with a decadent fall cake, or satisfy your sweet tooth with a tasty maple dessert.
Tips and Substitutions
- Maple syrup and sugar: If you don’t have real maple syrup, you can 1–3 tablespoons of sugar or sugar substitute, or use no sweeteners at all.
- Pumpkin pie spice: Make your own homemade pumpkin pie spice with just four common spices.
- Milk: Whole or 2% milk will make the creamiest texture, but lower-fat milk or non-dairy alternatives will do the trick, as well.
- Espresso: Substitute coffee for espresso to make the latte even smoother and put a little more pep in your step.
- Extra spice: Along with the pumpkin pie spice, add a dash of cinnamon to the whipped cream or stir into your pumpkin spice blend.