How-To: Colder weather calls for pumpkin spice lattes

photo illustration by Gabriela Faraone

Leaves turning orange and falling to the ground means that is that time of the year where there is pumpkin in everything.

From pumpkin pies, cookies, jams and lattes, there is no way to escape the onslaught of that seasonal ingredient. And if it’s your first time trying a recipe using pumpkin – don’t worry, we got you covered.

Who invented the Pumpkin Spice Latte?

The Pumpkin Spice Latte was created in 2003 by Peter Dukes, director of espresso Americas for Starbucks and its team. The Starbuck Pumpkin Spice Latte has become the company’s most popular seasonal beverage of all time.

Everything started the day that Dukes and his team gathered together and ate pumpkin pies while drinking espresso in the search the next unique beverage to add to the fall espresso lineup.

They wanted to make this creation using two specific ingredients: pumpkin pie and spices.

As they mocked up drink after drink, they played around with raising and lowering the levels of these two components, tasting each trial carefully to see what worked and what didn’t.

The winner featured high levels of both pumpkin and spice. The use of pumpkin sauce as opposed to syrup was part of the equation, too; heavier than syrup, the sauce helped replicate the texture of pumpkin pie, Seattle Met reported.

It was the beginning of a story of success for the Pumpkin Spice Latte. It gives you the perfect balance of flavors while also evoking the kind of warm-fuzzy feelings many of us feel about fall.

Pumpkin Spice Latte recipe

Got a budget? Here is a cost-efficient recipe for a vegan version of the seasonal drink that will spare the calories, but not the flavor of its Starbucks counterpart.

What you will need:

1 cup of unsweetened plant milk of your choice (almond, coconut, soy milk)
2 tablespoons of pumpkin puree
¼ teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice
¼ teaspoon of vanilla extract
1 medjool date pitted, or sweetener of preference
¼ cup of brewed coffee

First, heat the milk but do not let it boil. Feel free to use the coffee hot or cold, depending on personal preference. Next, add all of the ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth. Serve in a mug or a jar with some (optional) whipped cream, and add pumpkin spice or cinnamon powder on top. Now the drink is ready to enjoy!