The Pumpkin Spiced Latte Makeover

October 16, 2013   19 Comments

Some people think fall has arrived when the leaves start changing and apples become abundant. Others know it is here with the arrival of the pumpkin spice latte from Starbucks.

Starbucks Pumpkin Spiced Latte Makeover

Starbucks has taken over fall. Honestly, I wouldn't know what season it is without Starbucks. Peppermint mocha? Winter. Iced Tazo? Summer. Thank goodness these green awning labelled shops are on EVERY corner. And, I mean EVERY corner. I once saw a Starbucks across the street from another Starbucks. I guess certain people are too lazy to cross the street so Starbucks has to be on both sides.

Frankly, I don't like the Pumpkin Spice Latte because I find it too sweet. I do adore pumpkin spice so I thought I would attempt my own version. It turns out that ANYONE can make their own pumpkin spice latte.

Why would you want to make your own? You will save:

  • Calories - mine is 130 calories less than Starbucks' lite version
  • Money - saved about $2.50
  • The Environment - no paper cup and lid to toss away

You don't need an espresso maker with a milk frother to make this drink. You can buy a milk frother that runs on batteries from Ikea for just $4 or you can order it from Amazon for under $10. I have one (first saw it in Europe) and it works great!

Buy some pumpkin spice from the baking section of your supermarket, skim milk, sugar, and you are ready to go. Try adding just one teaspoon of sugar and see if you like it. You don't need a lot of sugar to make this taste delicious.

You have some choices on how you can make this. For example, you can add some pumpkin spice to your ground coffee BEFORE you brew it. This will infuse your coffee with the pumpkin spice flavor.

If you want to use maple syrup, agave syrup, or another sweetener please feel free. And, of course, there is always a choice of milks - almond, soy, flavored soy, etc.

You can also make this drink with tea! Then you call it “chai”. Milk, black tea, spices and sugar and you got one comforting drink to keep you warm on a chilly fall day.

How do you deal with the seasons of Starbucks?


Pumpkin Spice Latte Recipe

1.6 from 24 reviews

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4 ounces coffee or espresso
1/2 cup skim or nonfat milk
2 teaspoons sugar
1/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice (plus extra to dust on top)


Brew coffee and heat milk until hot in microwave. Foam milk with Aerolatte or other milk frother. Mix sugar and pumpkin pie spice in coffee and pour milk on top. Enjoy!

Nutrition Facts

one serving = 78 calories, 0.3 g fat, 14.6 g carbohydrates, 4.6 g protein, 0 g fiber, 66 mg sodium, 2 Points+

Points values are calculated by Snack Girl and are provided for information only. See all Snack Girl Recipes

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I'll have to try this. I love Pumpkin Spice Lattes. The reason there are two Starbucks across the street from each other is because people are heading to work either east bound or west bound, for example, and it makes it easier to get your morning coffee. We work on a very busy major route and it just wouldn't be practical to have to turn around and head west to get a morning beverage with all the rush hour traffic. It would tack another 20-30 minutes onto one's morning commute. We make our coffee at home and bring it to work, though. :)

I am not a coffee drinker at all hot, cold, or these special flavors. I have seen the line at Starbucks though and see that people are very serious when it comes to their lattes so I'm sure this will be good for them. Me I'll stick with my green or chai tea with cinnamon.

For those who are caffeine sensitive, sprinkle cinnamon, sugar or sugar substitute, and a few drops of McCormick's Maple flavoring into a cup or mug. Pour decalf into cup, add fat free milk if you so choose, and then 2 or 3 "swirls" of fat free Redi Whip. Sooooo good and almost calorie free!

Mmmm. It looks so good, that I have to try it! Thanks for the recipe...

Torani has a sugar free pumpkin pie syrup that is also great for making your own Pumpkin Spice Latte :)

Thank you! I love pumpkin anything and Starbucks, yet I hate Starbucks pumpkin spice latte. It's like drinking hot sugar water! No pumpkin taste whatsoever. Will definitely try your recipe!

I made my own similar pumpkin spice latte last week for my daughter and I and loved it. Yesterday I caved and bought one at Starbucks for lunch. I am happy to say the homemade version was 10x's better and I now will no longer have the urge to buy one from Starbucks. I now plan on trying to make my other Starbuck fave- Cinnamon Dulce Latte at home so I can mark off ever going there again.

I love your ideas/recipes. You always come up with something great. Can't wait to make this drink sound so delicious.

Beautiful photo, Lisa! Makes me want to make this right now. :)

Hi! This sounds yummy and since my daughter is crazy for pumpkin spice lattes, I'm definitely going to try it.

Btw, buying pumpkin pie spice is an expensive waste of money. If you routinely keep the "Fall spices" in your baking supplies -- and most of us do -- you can make your own. My daughter, an amazing baker in her own right found this recipe for make your own pumpkin pie spice on Joy the Baker's website. Here's the link:

It's a great website in its own right because it always has great tips and substitute ideas. Enjoy everyone!!

I have to say that the milk frother works like a charm! I got my at Cost Plus World Market.

I'm not a fan of the pumpkin latte .. I'm holding out for the ginger bread latte ;-)


I've made Pumpkin Latte from scratch before and really liked it. I like the idea of making it with real pumpkin. The last time I only made enough for one cup. I recently found this recipe for making Pumpkin syrup (at this link...…) to use for lattes and I'm going to give it a try. On another note, I've stood on line in Starbucks many times, for Chai tea, Green Tea Lemonade, pastries, you name it, but rarely for lattes. Like most people standing on line at Starbucks, I'm just not that serious about a latte.

I'm a junky for Pumpkin Lattes. I make the puree and freeze. Here's mine with real pumpkin:

This drink uses real pumpkin, not just spice, so you get some FOOD if you mix it with your choice of milk in your coffee. Also good with just hot milk. The cocoa is optional, but gives a deeper layer of flavor. The salt is not optional for me because of the real pumpkin. Have you ever had awful pumpkin pie? It's usually several problems, but one is lack of or not enough salt.

29 oz can pumpkin or 2 15-oz cans
1 c sugar
½ c brown sugar
½ t salt
2 t cinnamon
1 t ginger
½ t cloves
1 T cocoa powder (optional)
water as needed, maybe ¼ c

To make: Put all ingredients in medium sauce pan and vigorously whisk several minutes while heating over a medium heat to thoroughly mix and dissolve sugars. You will see a change in texture when it's ready as the sugars dissolve. Cool. Makes 5 1-cup containers for the freezer and one to keep in the fridge for daily use. Note--if you use your own pumpkin, puree it very well.

To serve: Put 1/2 c coffee or espresso in your cup. Add 1/2 c your choice of milk. Stir in 1 tablespoon pumpkin. Heat very hot, stir very well and serve.

Option one: Just stir the tablespoon of pumpkin into hot milk for a hot drink like hot chocolate.

Option two: Substitute bourbon for water when cooking. Lovely flavor.

Option three: Cut sugars to taste. I like it sweet. Or use Splenda for fewer calories.

Option four: Use 2 tablespoons per cup for a stronger taste.

Thanks, SG, and to everyone else, for these recipes! I'm a tea girl and I love to drink "chai" tea lattes, especially in the winter. It's finally at and below 70 degrees as of today (I'm in north/east Texas) and I'm ready for it! I love the Chai lattes at Starbucks but I don't love the calories that come with them, nor the pricetags. BTW, have you heard its true name - FOURBUCKS, not Starbucks - because you can't walk out of there without spending less than $4??? I laughed my head off when I heard that one. LoL!

Thanks Jan for that recipe. Also wanted to say that Trader Joe's makes a good pumpkin tea bag that comes in a canister for those people who don't drink coffee. I always put cinnamon in my coffee for the health benefits.

I've been sprinkling a little cinnamon and nutmeg into my coffee grounds before brewing it for years. Just add as much or as little as you like into the basket, mix it around a little otherwise the cinnamon gets all clumped up, and brew as usual. Makes the coffee taste all warm and cozy.

Just stumbled across your site in my ongoing search for low point alternatives. I am so excited!!!!! I am def gonna try this one!

I'm going to try this, thanks! Will have to get a frother first.

So agree about knowing the changing of seasons thanks to Starbucks theme drinks :)

I just love all the pumpkin flavor recipes that I see this time of year. Will definitely be trying this one! These Pumpkin Raisin Cookies would go great with this latte This is my healthy version, check it out! As always, love reading your blog :)

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