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How to make a PSL at home

From homemade recipes to pre-made mixes, here’s how.

They say the unofficial start of fall is Labor Day, but those of us with a sweet tooth for flavored drinks get out our light jackets and slippers as soon as our local cafe puts their spice latte back in the air. pumpkin on the menu – even though it’s still 80 degrees outside.

Although some claim the drink is cheugy, who cares? This is delicious! Flavors of nutmeg, cinnamon and clove blend together to create a sweet, yet not too sweet flavor that reminds us of our favorite post-Thanksgiving dessert in this creamy, dreamy drink. And while we wish we could go to Starbucks, Dunkin’, or our local coffee shop for one each day, that’s just not realistic or economical.

Of course, part of the appeal of a PSL is joining the crowds of fall-goers lining up for a sip of this sweet, syrupy concoction. But, who likes lines, really? And aren’t you sick of the barista rolling his eyes every time you order one? It might be time to start preparing your PSL in the privacy of your own home. Creating your own PSL at home is surprisingly simple, especially if you already have a coffee station at home. While you don’t need a fancy espresso machine or the most expensive coffee beans you can find, you might need to run out of a few ingredients before you sip. After that, you’ll be well on your way to creating everyone’s favorite fall drink, all without having to change out of your plaid pajamas.

How to do a Pumpkin Spice Latte

There are several ways to create your own PSL, all of varying difficulty. You can choose to make one from scratch, using pumpkin puree, or you can go the easier route and buy pumpkin flavored cream and coffee.

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If you’re feeling adventurous and want to go the full DIY route, here’s how to do it with real pumpkin.

Ingredients:

For the spiced pumpkin syrup

  • 1 ½ cups sugar
  • 1 ½ cups of water
  • 6 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons ground nutmeg
  • 4 tablespoons pumpkin puree

For the latte

  • 1 cup milk of your choice (dairy or non-dairy)
  • 1 oz brewed espresso or strong coffee
  • 3 tablespoons of your homemade pumpkin spice syrup
  • ½ cup whipped cream (if desired)
  • A pinch of pumpkin pie spice (for garnish)

To make the syrup, heat equal parts sugar and water over medium heat. This will create a basic simple syrup. Heat the mixture until the sugar is completely dissolved. Add the cinnamon sticks, cloves, ginger, nutmeg and pumpkin puree, simmering for about 20 minutes. After that, remove the mixture from the heat and strain it through cheesecloth. This makes enough syrup for eight glasses and it keeps in the fridge for up to a week.

Once your syrup is made, all you have to do is mix your drink. Start by heating and frothing your milk of choice until nice and frothy. If you haven’t already, prepare your coffee or espresso. Add pumpkin spice syrup to coffee, stirring to combine. Once mixed, add the frothed milk. If you want, you can add whipped cream and a sprinkle of pumpkin pie spice on top, otherwise you’re done. You can also enjoy this drink frozen.

If you’d rather go the easier route early in the morning (which we can’t blame you for), consider adding some pumpkin flavored creme to your usual cup of java, swap your regular beans for a spiced roast a la pumpkin or buy pre-made pumpkin spice lattes that you can easily sip whenever you like.

Pumpkin Spice Latte Recipe Essentials

Grounds and Hounds Pumpkin Spice Blend

For those who prefer their morning cup of Joe Black but still want a little pumpkin goodness, opt for a roast coffee that actually contains some of that baked spice flavor. This one from Grounds and Hounds combines sweet vanilla, pumpkin spice, and classic cream flavors to create a slightly sweet, slightly salty cup of coffee. Plus, 20% of all Grounds and Hounds profits go to fund dog rescue initiatives, so it’s a win-win.

Buy here: $15

Blume Pumpkin Spice Blend

blume psl

Vegan, dairy-free and caffeine-free? This mix has it all. While it doesn’t have the literal crema that a Starbucks PSL would have, it’s just as flavorful. To make it, all you have to do is add a spoonful of the mixture to hot water, stir until it dissolves, and enjoy. Of course, if you want, you can add your favorite non-dairy milk to make it creamier. Consider this your evening latte because you can enjoy it at the end of the day without worrying about staying up all night from the caffeine.

Buy here: $25

La Colombe canned pumpkin spice latte

the dove psl

There’s no shame in buying a pre-made coffee drink, especially when it tastes so delicious. This PSL from KCM favorite La Colombe is lactose free, made with real coffee (as opposed to coffee flavoring), and contains the caffeine equivalent of one and a half cups of black coffee. You can easily pour it over ice for a beautifully chilled drink that only takes seconds to prepare.

Buy here: $36

International Delight Pumpkin Spice Creamer

international delight creamer

Love getting up super early to create your own pumpkin masterpiece? We neither. Make your life easier by adding this delicious creamer to your coffee. Not only will it take away any bitterness you would taste in a black coffee, but it adds an autumnal touch to your morning routine. Plus, this strain is both dairy-free and gluten-free.

Buy here: $4

Pumpkin Pie Spice

pumpkin pie spice

Chances are you already have this mix at home if you’re baking around the fall season, but if not, adding a jar of pumpkin pie spice to your arsenal is key to nailing a PSL. at home. This blend sets the perfect combination of ginger, clove, nutmeg and cinnamon for you, that way you don’t have to measure them all out if you want to add a kick of flavor to your coffee or on the whipped cream.

Buy here: $2

Canned pumpkin puree

canned pumpkin

You can most certainly make your own pumpkin puree, and we applaud you for that, but store-bought stuff will be just as delicious in your pumpkin spice syrup.

Buy here: $3

Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Ground Coffee

starbucks pumpkin coffee

To recreate the OG PSL, navigate to the source. Starbucks actually sells its Pumpkin Spice Coffee by the bag and in pod releasesso you can easily prepare the drink without even having to measure how much grounds you need.

Buy here: $10

Breville Bambino Espresso Machine

breville child

True coffee fanatics know there’s nothing quite like being able to pull your own shots of espresso at home. If you’re short on space and time, this compact espresso machine will help you create barista-level coffee in just minutes. Katie P. from KCM uses it every morning to make her favorite lattes and java.

Buy here: $350

Anthropologie Floral Pumpkin Mug

anthropology mug

Lean into pumpkin vibes! Enjoy your homemade PSL from this adorable pumpkin cup. If you want it to be a bit more subtle, you can also opt for the white, pottery inspired version too.

Buy here: $16

Native Pumpkin Powder for Pets

pet native pumpkin powder

Okay, this one is admittedly a little extra. If you want to share the love of pumpkin spice with your four-legged friends, this pumpkin powder is the answer. Although not quite a PSL, it is an excellent food supplement for cats and dogs or a licking mat additive for dogs. You can also mix this powder with water or yogurt to thicken it. Pumpkin is full of fiber which helps promote healthy digestion and bowel movements, can help calm an upset stomach, and is great for pets with food sensitivities.

Buy here: $20