Simple Homemade Pumpkin Spice Latte Recipe

The immortal Pumpkin Spice Latte – loved by many, and hated by others (mainly because this is about a tasty coffee drink, and not really the coffee itself). I love a good treat myself and prefer to make them with as many real ingredients as possible. There will be no bottled syrups here.

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Pumpkin Spice Latte
Sweet, rich, and tasting of our favorite fall flavor - pumpkin spice. This recipe is simple to put together and intended for use when heating milk on the stovetop. If you are using a steamer to heat your milk, a different approach is necessary (that recipe coming soon).
Cuisine Lattes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Servings
Lattes
Ingredients
  • 2 cups milk Preferably Whole Milk or Almond Milk
  • 2 tbs pumpkin puree If making your own - use sugar pie pumpkin
  • 1-3 tbs sugar feel free to substitute sweetener - adjust amount to your taste
  • 1 tbs vanilla extract can substitute maple syrup (but won't be as strong in flavor)
  • 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice plus a little more to sprinkle on top
  • .5-1 cups Brewed Coffee Depending on how concentrated your brew is (see video)
  • whipped cream as much as you like
Cuisine Lattes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Servings
Lattes
Ingredients
  • 2 cups milk Preferably Whole Milk or Almond Milk
  • 2 tbs pumpkin puree If making your own - use sugar pie pumpkin
  • 1-3 tbs sugar feel free to substitute sweetener - adjust amount to your taste
  • 1 tbs vanilla extract can substitute maple syrup (but won't be as strong in flavor)
  • 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice plus a little more to sprinkle on top
  • .5-1 cups Brewed Coffee Depending on how concentrated your brew is (see video)
  • whipped cream as much as you like
Instructions
  1. In a sauce pan, combine milk, pumpkin puree, and sugar
  2. Heat milk + pumpkin + sugar until you see wisps of steam coming off the milk - stir continuously during heating
  3. When you start seeing wisps of steam coming off the milk, remove from heat
  4. Add vanilla extract, pumpkin spice, and coffee, and stir all together
  5. Portion into cups and Top with whipped cream - sprinkle pumpkin pie spice on top
There are a few important things to note about this recipe. First off, this is intended specifically for those who heat milk on a stovetop. If you use a steamer to heat your milk (like that on an espresso machine), then you'll need to go an entirely different route. I intend on creating a video demonstrating how to make this pumpkin spice latte with espresso and a milk steamer, but I'm still perfecting the recipe at the moment – in short, the milk must be steamed alone (though the best solution is probably going to be steaming half the milk).

pumpkins

On alternatives: this recipe calls for a LOT of vanilla extract. It really does taste amazing with that much vanilla extract, but unless you have access to costco or use fake vanilla extract, this recipe can get expensive, fast. I like the alternative of maple syrup to the vanilla extract and have experimented with that, though I find the taste is not quite as potent (though the added maple is pretty nice). As an alternative to sugar, it's easy to use honey here as well.

pumpkin spice latte with whipped cream

On the subject of the coffee used: I go into this a bit on the video. Picking out the coffee to use in your pumpkin spice latte doesn't have to be a major challenge. I do recommend avoiding light roasted coffees. Light roasts can often be difficult to combine with milk and have the tastes come out well – this is especially the case when adding extra strong flavored ingredients (like everything else in the pumpkin spice latte recipe). If you find that you have a hard time getting a good ‘coffee taste' out of your PSL, then the easiest solution is to go darker with the coffee roast. Darker roasted coffees have more oils and caramelized sugars that translate well in a milk-based drink. If you want to stay with more medium roasted coffees, then in terms of the natural flavor of coffee, aim for chocolatey and nutty coffees. Central and South American coffees provide a good source of this – Colombia, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Brazil will all be a safe bet for coffee in the pumpkin spice latte.

A great source for exploring coffees and finding the perfect solution for your next Pumpkin Spice Latte or Mocha is a company like Beanbox. In particular, their Espresso Lovers Sampler will provide you with coffees that go very well with milk.

Bean Box Espresso Lovers Coffee Sampler - Beanbox