4 Easy Ways To Recreate Starbucks' Pumpkin Spice Latte At Home

Avoid the drive-thru with these easy hacks.

by Mia Mercado
Originally Published: 
4 Easy Ways To Recreate Starbucks' Pumpkin Spice Latte At Home
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Whether you like it or not, pumpkin spice season is officially upon us, especially when you think about the fact that Starbucks’ Pumpkin Spice Latte is making its highly anticipated return on August 4, 2021. If you’re looking to partake in the pumpkin spice festivities but want to avoid going to Starbucks — because of the ongoing pandemic, because of the inevitable long lines, or some combination of the two — there are plenty of ways to recreate Starbucks’ Pumpkin Spice Latte at home. Button up your cardigans, my caffeinated friends, because fall is whenever Starbucks says it is.

In addition to avoiding lines and the very real coronavirus risk, making a pumpkin spice latte at home gives you even more options for customizing your PSL. Want an extra shot of espresso? Go for it, no extra charge. Don’t like it so sweet? Halve the amount of simple syrup you add. Want oat milk? Of course, you do. Oat milk away. Want to put pumpkin spice whipped cream on your pumpkin spice latte? Did you even realize that was a thing you could and absolutely should do? Your at-home PSL options are as unlimited as you want them to be.

If nothing else, you’ll save yourself a few bucks. Here are four ways to make a Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte at home.


Go With A Classic Recipe


The internet is overflowing with a recipe for a copycat Starbucks PSL. Fortunately, they all tend to have about the same, easy-to-get ingredients. Here’s what you’ll want to add to your shopping list:

  • pumpkin puree
  • simple syrup or a sweetener of your choice
  • vanilla extract
  • cinnamon
  • nutmeg
  • allspice
  • clove
  • ginger
  • milk
  • espresso or strong coffee
  • Whipped cream

From there, it’s just a matter of patience and trusting yourself with a stovetop. You can see the full at-home Pumpkin Spice Latte recipe here.


Make It Vegan

This vegan PSL dupe is pretty similar to the classic pumpkin spice latte recipe above, just with some plant-based substitutes. You can use the non-dairy milk and a plant-based sweetener of your choosing. Process-wise, that recipe is a little less finicky: you pretty much just add all your ingredients into a pot and stir until smooth and frothy.

The one thing you might want to invest in, regardless of which recipe you use, is a small milk frother — you should be able to find one relatively cheap at places like Target. You could also just throw it in a blender, which will make it smooth and help it get frothy. A hand mixer will work as well, but that might be a little easier if you’re making a bigger batch of PSL. For a single serving, a milk frother or a whisk and some perseverance will do the trick.


Get It Ready-Made At The Grocery Store


Perhaps the easier way to recreate the Starbucks’ Pumpkin Spice Latte is with the PSL products Starbucks sells in most grocery stores. There’s the Starbucks Via Instant Pumpkin Spice Latte, which just requires some hot milk and stirring. If you even want to avoid stirring, you can get Starbucks ready-to-drink Pumpkin Spice Latte from most major supermarkets.


A PSL With A Twist...

You know what could make Starbucks’ PSL even better? Adding chai. Courtesy of TikTok user @mainstmuse, the Pumpkin Cream Chai Latte is pretty simple to make. Here’s what you’ll need to shop for:

  • chai latte mix
  • oat milk
  • heavy whipping cream
  • pumpkin spice latte creamer
  • pumpkin pie spice
  • ice
  • shot of espresso (optional)

Add ice to the cup, take equal parts chai and oat milk, and pour the mixture over your ice. Adding espresso? Prepare that and pour it on top of the mixture, and mix it up. For the cream, add the heavy whipping cream, PSL creamer, the pumpkin spice, and use a frother to combine all the ingredients. Pour it over the chai and oat milk mixture, top it off with a little more pumpkin pie spice for aesthetic reasons, of course, and you’ve got yourself a yummy Pumpkin Cream Chai Latte.

Want to make it an iced pumpkin spice latte? That's quite literally just as easy as... adding some ice. In fact, Starbucks' ready-to-drink PSL is perfect for your iced latte. If still want to go completely from scratch and cut down on the amount of cooling time, use cold brew instead of hot coffee or espresso. So long as you've got some combination of coffee, pumpkin, autumnal spices, and a fall mindset, there is really no wrong way to pumpkin spice.

Additional reporting by Siena Gagliano.

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