In the fall, when the leaves turn orange and we break out our wool sweaters, pumpkin spice lattes are all the rage! Plunge headlong into pumpkin spice latte (PSL) mania; try making our three beverages in the comfort of your own home!
Commercial PSLs are very popular. One even has its own Instagram account with nearly 40K subscribers ! But, there are many good reasons to prepare your own homemade version:
- It will be much less sweet ! In fact, a 16-oz. pumpkin spice latte can contain up to 50 g (!!!) of sugar, or the equivalent of about ¼ cup. Now that’s a lot of sugar !
- It’s easier on your wallet ! All the required ingredients can be purchased at the grocery store, and you can prepare one, two, three or ONE THOUSAND fall-themed drinks without breaking the bank !
- It’s easy as…well…pie. You don’t need any sophisticated equipment to enjoy your hot drink while waiting for the first snowflakes to fall.
In fact, a 16-oz. pumpkin spice latte can contain up to 50 g (!!!) of sugar, or the equivalent of about ¼ cup. Now that’s a lot of sugar !
That’s all fine and good, but what exactly is pumpkin spice latte made of? Many variations exist, but here are the five key ingredients of this mythical beverage:
- The pumpkin. You’ll find 100% pure pumpkin purée (not to be confused with pumpkin pie mix) in the flour and pastry products section. You can also make your own by simmering peeled and seeded pumpkin cubes in a saucepan with a few inches of water until the meat flakes easily with a fork. Purée in a blender, then heat again in the saucepan to evaporate any excess water. You’re aiming for a consistency similar to that of ricotta !
Since a PSL doesn’t require a huge amount of pumpkin, freeze any leftovers in ice cube trays. That way, you’ll have it on hand for use in future PSLs or in oatmeal, chia pudding, muffins, energy balls, lentil curry, etc. You can always use an extra dash of beta-carotene !
- The spice mix. The combination of spices is the secret to the PSL magic ! You can buy ready-made mix in some shops or prepare one yourself according to the following proportions (it’s super easy !):
- 4 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 2 tsp. powdered ginger
- ½ tsp. nutmeg
- ½ tsp. allspice
- ½ tsp. cloves
- The milk. You can make a latte without milk ! Vary your pleasures by trying 0% or 2% milk, a soy beverage or low-fat coconut milk.
- The coffee. So that the taste of coffee doesn’t get drowned out by the milk and spices, brew your coffee a little bit stronger than usual. A filter coffee will do the job.
- The sweetening agent. Always keeping moderation in mind, try sweetening your PSL with maple syrup, honey or even dates ! You can also cut sugar while losing none of the taste by adding a few drops of vanilla.
Once these bases are well understood, you’re ready to treat yourself !
All three recipes yield one portion each.
The classic PSL…vegan-style !
- 2 tbsp. pumpkin purée
- 1 tbsp. maple syrup
- 1/8 tsp. pumpkin spices
- ¾ cup vanilla-flavoured soy milk
- ¼ cup very strong brewed coffee
In a saucepan, combine pumpkin purée, maple syrup and spices. Stir in soy beverage and heat over medium heat while stirring. Transfer to a blender and pulse a few times to froth milk, making sure to hold the lid in place. Pour over hot coffee in a cup.
The post-workout PSL
- 1 cup vanilla-flavoured soy milk
- ½ cup 2.9%-fat latte-flavoured yogurt
- 2 tbsp. pumpkin purée
- ¼ tsp. pumpkin spices
- ¼ tsp. vanilla
- 1 tsp Goji berries, rehydrated a few minutes in water (optional)
Combine all ingredients in a blender. Taste and adjust the sweetness with a little maple syrup, as needed. Enjoy within 30 minutes of a workout for optimal recovery.
Since a PSL doesn’t require a huge amount of pumpkin, freeze any leftovers in ice cube trays. You can use them in your future PSLs.
The “good night, sweet dreams” PSL (caffeine-free)
- 4 tsp. pumpkin purée
- 2 tsp. honey
- 1/8 tsp pumpkin spices
- 1 cup milk or unsweetened non-dairy milk
In a saucepan, combine pumpkin purée, honey and spices. Add milk and heat on low while whisking the mixture. Serve in a cup and stir with a cinnamon stick to add some delicious autumn taste !
In short, by playing with a few key ingredients, you can take the taste of pumpkin spice with you anytime, anywhere this fall ! So, what’s “your” favorite recipe for adding pumpkin to the menu?
Sophie Geoffrion | Follow me on HappyFitness
Sophie Geoffrion is passionate about cooking, jogging, and travelling. She’s also a nutritionist and the co-founder of the Mouvement HappyFitness, a Montreal-based company that motivates women to adopt a healthy lifestyle and focuses on fun, balance and simplicity. Sophie’s favourite topics, which she covers during private consultations, lectures, retreats or in her articles, are healthy cooking, managing weight in a healthy way and vegetarianism.