Does anyone follow Food Babe? She recently posted an expose about Starbucks’ Pumpkin Spice Latte. Now, as much as I love and appreciate Food Babe’s crusade to make big companies accountable and to use higher quality ingredients, I don’t 100% subscribe to everything. I eat plenty of non-organic foods and I buy plenty of prepared foods (which she would be totally against!). But, seeing some of the McNasty ingredients in the PSL made me super bummed. Sure, I don’t frequently buy coffee because I make my own at home, but I always look forward to at least one or two PSLs during the Fall season. Not this year, my friends! I’ll be saving my money by making my own for way less and way healthier! No high fructose corn syrup, no carcinogenic carmel coloring, and no sugar (unless you want to add some of your own!)
This is something I’ve been doing for years! I’m obsessed with all things pumpkin and when Fall rolls around you’ll be hard pressed to keep me away from the inevitable pumpkin-craze! I actually shared this tip in the comments of an earlier post, but thought I’d share it here for all to see. : )
- Favorite coffee. I buy pre-ground stuff, usually vanilla-flavored. It doesn’t have to be flavored, but vanilla works really well with this “recipe.”
- Appropriate spices. I keep it simple and just use pumpkin pie spice, but if you don’t have that on hand you could use a mixture of cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and other traditional Fall flavored spices.
- Canned (or cooked) pumpkin. You won’t need much, but you can store leftovers in the fridge.
- Milk or milk alternative. I tend to like really creamy coffee, but I don’t want all the extra calories so I’ll use a lower-cal almond milk with just a splash of the “real” stuff (I use 2%).
- Sweetener of choice. For years I have used agave nectar in my coffee (it’s delicious, try it!), but you could use sugar or any sugar substitute of your choice.
First, prepare your coffee grounds. I like to mix it all up together in the actual coffee can, but you could certainly mix it up for a single coffee pot sized serving if you prefer. Simply mix your spices into the coffee grinds. Use a little more than you think you need, until you can really see the specks of brown (cinnamon, nutmeg) amidst all the black coffee grounds. You should be able to smell the stuff through the coffee scent when you’re done. Brew your coffee as usual.
Put a heaping teaspoon of pumpkin (canned or cooked fresh) in the bottom of your mug of coffee, then pour the hot coffee over the top. Stir and stir until all the pumpkin is completely dissolved.
Next, add your milk and sweetener of choice (if you prefer, you can also skip this step if you like black coffee). If you want a truly coffee-house style drink, warm up your milk a little and use a frother to really get a good foam going before you pour it into your coffee. A friend bought me a frother for $2.50 from Ikea for Christmas last year after I’d had coffee at her house and raved about how incredible it was. I’d had no idea you can get a frother so cheap! (this is it here < not an affiliate link).
Finally, drink up!!!
I know it sounds weird to put pumpkin in your coffee, but I PROMISE you that it’s delicious! If you stir it up until it dissolves you can’t even tell (warning, if you don’t completely stir you may be left with a little hunk of pumpkin at the bottom of your coffee when you’re done). When you’re done, you get the most incredibly delicious pumpkin-flavored coffee ever!!! I’m telling you guys – I used to buy the seasonal Trader Joe’s pumpkin coffee when it came out, but my own personal recipe has entirely replaced it! You can make it for pennies, particularly if you already have the appropriate spices. And the leftover pumpkin can be stored in the fridge to be used in tomorrow’s cup, or to be added to other pumpkin-y treats. Some of my favorite options include: Add a scoop of pumpkin to pancake mix for pumpkin pancakes, make pumpkin muffins, stir it into oatmeal for a Fall flavored pumpkin oatmeal, make a smoothie with vanilla yogurt, banana, and pumpkin, mix with vanilla yogurt for a pumpkin yogurt snack – the possibilities are endless!
I hope you all enjoy this recipe as much as I do! If you try it out, let me know what you think!!
Happy (beginning of) Pumpkin Season!!!!