How to make pumpkin spice latte drinks at home
For the last several years, one of the most popular coffee drinks has been the pumpkin spice latte. Whether you’re a pumpkin spice aficionado or a coffee drinker looking for something new, learning how to make a pumpkin spice latte at home is a great way to change up your coffee routine.
To make these delicious drinks at home, you only need a few specialty ingredients, saving you time and money compared to a trip to the coffee shop.
What is a pumpkin spice latte?
A pumpkin spice latte is essentially a regular latte that’s flavored with pumpkin pie spice. While the famous Starbucks pumpkin spice latte has contained a little pumpkin puree since 2015, it originally just contained the spices traditionally used in pumpkin pie. To give your latte an extra boost of pumpkin, try adding some pumpkin puree to upgrade both the texture and flavor of your drink.
How to make a pumpkin spice latte
Pumpkin spice latte equipment
To make a pumpkin spice latte at home, first gather your equipment. You will need an espresso maker or other concentrated coffee maker and a saucepan to heat the milk. If you would like your milk to be frothy, you can also get a milk frother to add a foamy quality.
Pumpkin spice latte ingredients
It is a good idea to gather your ingredients before you start to make your drink so you know if you are missing any elements. The following are the standard ingredients for two pumpkin spice lattes.
- 4 shots of freshly brewed espresso or strong coffee (more on brewing this below)
- 4 tablespoons of pumpkin spice coffee syrup or 1 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice — the trouble with using ground spice is that it can feel grainy in your latte
- 1-4 tablespoons of sugar, to taste (if using pumpkin pie spice instead of pumpkin spice syrup)
- 4 tablespoons of pumpkin puree
- 2 cups of milk of your choice — non-dairy or dairy
- 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract — the higher quality the better
Brew your coffee
Choose a coffee that you already know you like, as this will make up the base of your pumpkin spice latte. Because the coffee is the base of the drink, poor quality coffee won’t be masked by other ingredients. For the best results, choose whole beans and grind them yourself just before brewing. Ideally, pumpkin spice lattes should be made using espresso, so an espresso machine would help this process. However, quality espresso machines are pricey, so it’s not worth buying one just to make pumpkin spice lattes. Instead, we’d recommend using a Moka pot or stovetop espresso maker. Although these machines don’t reach the pressure needed to make true espresso, they make highly concentrated coffee, strong enough to use in place of espresso in most lattes.
Mix and heat ingredients
Once your coffee is brewed, set it aside while you create the milk mixture. Add milk, vanilla extract, sugar, pumpkin puree and pumpkin spice syrup or spices to a saucepan. If you are choosing to use the pumpkin puree, you will only use a small amount and can freeze the rest for later use. Whisk the ingredients together until fully combined, and heat till the mixture is steaming, but not boiling.
Add coffee to the milk
Take the saucepan off the heat and add the coffee. For two standard-strength pumpkin spice lattes, add four shots of espresso to your milk mixture. However, you can decrease or increase the espresso to taste.
To serve, divide the pumpkin spice coffee between two large coffee mugs. If you have some extra pumpkin pie spices, you can sprinkle a little on top of each drink before serving, adding extra flavor and aroma.
What you need to make pumpkin spice lattes
Get the smoothest results by using pumpkin spice syrup instead of ground spices. This blend has a base of cane sugar syrup, so there’s no need to add extra sugar.
This classic blend of cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and allspice is an alternative to syrup. However, this spice is not sweetened, so you’ll need to add sugar.
Oat milk is an excellent alternative to using dairy milk in pumpkin spice lattes, as its mild taste lets the pumpkin spice flavors shine through.
If you don’t already have a favorite coffee blend that you want to use in your PSL, this flavorful dark roast is an excellent choice to balance out the sweetness of the drink.
A classic pumpkin puree that contains nothing but pumpkin, making it the perfect addition to your pumpkin spice latte.
This is a high-quality vanilla extract that makes a huge difference to the overall flavor of pumpkin spice lattes.
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