Summertime really is the best time of the year, or I think so anyways. My wife and kids and I love spending those hot summer days by the pool. But unfortunately, all good things must come to an end… at least when you live in the Midwest they do. I know, sad right? Ok, I have to admit – Fall doesn’t make me sad, it actually makes me really happy. I love the mild temperatures and watching the leaves change colors. I just don’t like that Fall = Winter is coming. And I have a feeling this Winter is going to be a rough one since it cooled off way earlier than normal this year!
All the more reason to cozy up with a warm, satisfying cup of coffee with all your favorite seasonal flavors in it. Pumpkin spice lattes are all. the. rage. every Fall. If you’re like me and don’t like all those nasty unpronounceable “ingredients” that places like Starbucks puts in theirs, not to mention spending $5+ on one of those bad boys, then you’re REALLY going to love this quick and simple recipe I put together for you! And I use the word “recipe” loosely here… it’s kind of a “big” word for this easy drink with very few ingredients! No fancy equipment needed either.
If you’ve had Fall goodies on your mind, you might even already have the ingredients you’ll need for this drink right in your pantry. If not, they’re easy enough to find at any grocery store.
Now you might be thinking, why in the world am I making a fall coffee drink.. seems a little early don’t you think? Perhaps, but people seem to already be getting themselves into the fall theme, and pumpkin is great ALL the time, so let’s just go with it!
Before we get started, let me just tell you that this is not a hard and fast recipe. You can change the ingredient amounts, add something extra or omit anything you don’t personally like. Trust me, you’ll want to make this more than once, so you’ll be able to get it just how you like it in no time! I feel like this offers a good balance of all flavors, but if you want it more pumpkin-y or spice-y or whatever, then definitely go for it! One more quick thing – I used 2 Tablespoons of real maple syrup and it was decently sweet. So if you only like a little hint of sweetness, you’ll probably want to start with no more than 1 Tablespoon of your sweetener of choice!
Pumpkin Spice Latte
Ok, let’s get started. You will only need a few basic ingredients:
- Brewed Coffee – 6 oz
- Milk – 8 oz (I used whole raw milk, but you can use what you prefer as well as a dairy substitute)
- Pumpkin – 2T
- Pumpkin Spice – 1/4 tsp
- Maple Syrup – 2T (the real stuff) (You can also use honey or any other sweetener you prefer)
- Vanilla Extract – 1/4 tsp
- Some optional add-in ideas: Almond or other extract, extra cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, or whipped cream for topping! Whatever ruffles your truffles.
First things first, get your milk into a pot and slowly heat it up. If you’ve never heated milk on the stovetop, you need to know that it has to be done on low heat (I kept mine in the range of 2-2.8) so that it doesn’t burn. It will probably take 10+ minutes. And needs stirred occasionally to keep it from scalding on the bottom and also from forming a skin on the top. So if you don’t have the patience for this, you can also use the microwave. No big deal. I’ll give you the instructions for that here in a minute.
For now, back to the stovetop. As the milk begins to get warm, add the pumpkin to it and use a whisk to stir it and get that pumpkin blended in. Next you will add your Pumpkin Spice, vanilla extract and maple syrup. Whisk it good! Heat the milk to your own preference. Be careful – it will be hot! If you really get it going, it will even give you a little bit of foam if you like that sort of thing.
I should also mention that the pumpkin doesn’t dissolve 100%. It isn’t gritty by any means, but once you get toward the bottom of your cup, you might get a tiny piece of pumpkin here or there. It didn’t bother me (and I can’t stand weird food textures!), but you can pour your pumpkin flavored milk through a fine mesh strainer to prevent this if you’d like. If you decide to do this, you might want to wait and add your Pumpkin Spice after straining your milk to make sure you don’t pull any of that out! Just put it back in the pot on the stovetop after straining, and then add the rest of your ingredients as you continue heating it.
Now remember I told you that you can use the microwave to heat your milk if you want a faster option or are in a hurry. Heat the milk on high for 30 seconds, then remove to add in all the ingredients. (Or if you want to strain it, just add the pumpkin, whisk really well, strain, then add the rest of the ingredients.) Heat again for another 30 seconds and then carefully check the temperature since it will be getting hot! Don’t come after me if you burn yourself! We’re all grownups here. (And if you’re not – kid, you have no business drinking coffee! Don’t you know it will stunt your growth?!) If it still isn’t hot enough for you, heat it in 15 second increments until you’ve reached your desired temperature. You can usually get a little foam going in the microwave too if you want!
Once you’ve got all your ingredients mixed together, you are ready to start your coffee. I used my Moka Pot, which brews a nice strong cup (just a little less than espresso). If you don’t know how those work, check out my post on how to use a Moka Pot. I’ve even got a fun short video tutorial over there. Don’t be misled by this mysterious contraption – it’s super easy to use. More simple than a coffee pot if you ask me! But you can use whatever method you prefer, you’ll just want to make the coffee stronger than a regular cup, since you’ll be adding in a lot of milk.
If you are going to use anything other than the Moka pot, I would probably use a ratio of 3 tablespoons of coffee to 6 oz of water. BUT, if you are fortunate enough and own an espresso machine, by all means, use it for this one!
When your milk is done heating, and your coffee is finished, you can grab your favorite cup and pour in the coffee. Then add in the milk. If you want to give it a quick stir to make sure everything is well incorporated you can, but I personally didn’t need to.
I like to sprinkle a little extra Pumpkin Spice and Cinnamon on the top of mine. You could also top that cup off with some whipped cream if you want! (And don’t care that it’s no longer quite so healthy.)
Now go sit outside and enjoy this beautiful Fall weather while sipping your delicious Pumpkin Spice Latte. And don’t forget to come back here and tell me what you thought of it, or what you did to make it your own! You could even use some cold brew coffee and omit heating the milk, and make this an iced drink instead!
(Here is the official recipe)…
Healthy Fall Pumpkin Spice Latte
This is a really simple and very satisfying recipe for that Fall favorite, Pumpkin Spice Latte! Bonus - It's even healthy!
- 3/4 c Brewed Coffee - 6 oz
- 1 c Milk - 8 oz (I used whole raw milk, but you can use what you prefer as well as a dairy substitute)
- 2 Tbsp Pumpkin (from a can)
- 1/4 tsp Pumpkin Spice
- 2 Tbsp Maple Syrup the real stuff (You can also use honey or any other sweetener you prefer)
- 1/4 tsp Vanilla Extract
Pour milk into a pot and heat on Low (I did level 2.2-2.8) on the stovetop. (Or follow microwave instructions above if you want a super fast option.)
Once milk begins getting warm, add pumpkin and whisk well to fully incorporate. Strain carefully and return to pot if desired.
Add the rest of the ingredients and continue stirring as the milk heats up. Be patient! Milk can take a little while to heat up, so be patient - you don't want to get in a rush and burn it!
Make your coffee. (You'll have to judge the time based of whichever brewing method you choose. The moka pot takes about 4 minutes. You want the coffee and milk to get done at about the same time.)
Once the milk has reached desired temperature (test carefully - it will be very hot!), remove it from the heat.
Pour the coffee in your mug, and then add the milk mixture.
Sprinkle with some extra Pumpkin Spice or anything else you desire! Or top it with some whipped cream (if you to omit the healthy part)!!
ENJOY!! Doesn't it taste like a little piece of heaven?!
Tailor this to your liking! Add more or less of certain ingredients, omit something or add an entirely new one - whatever sounds good to you!