Last year, my favorite local coffee drive-through was on the way to my son’s preschool, so I would stop there often. It has this amazing coffee drink called an Aztec Mocha. Coffee, chocolate, cinnamon - it’s to die for and perfect for the fall weather. Because I never miss a chance to get my favorite drink, I went a long time bypassing the classic pumpkin spice latte. I have no problem being that basic, but I just have something I like better.
Then last September I was driving from California to Salt Lake City with my best friend. We stopped in St. George, Utah to use a restroom and after seven hours of driving, I was ready for a caffeine boost to get me the rest of the way home. So we headed to Starbucks, and I decided it was time to revisit the craze and ordered a Pumpkin Spice Latte.
I don’t know about you, and I don’t know if they made it wrong or something, but I found it undrinkable and disgusting. It was syrupy, tasted like chemicals, and waaaay too sweet. I had to cut it with my previous coffee to make it drinkable.
This year as the fall weather hits, there is no preschool. I’m working remotely. There is no reason to go near my drive-through, and not many reasons to even leave the house. So I’ve had to get creative with my homemade coffee. I’m saving tons of money making my own coffee, and it makes me feel better that I am totally in control of the ingredients. So I gave the PSL another shot, and came up with something I think is much better than Starbucks! I love that I can also tailor it better to my needs. Because I am mostly plant-based, I am always looking for ways to get more protein into my diet. So I always include a scoop of Vital Proteins collagen, which has 9 grams of protein (it’s not plant-based, one of my few concessions that make me not a true vegan). I like this option because it is unflavored, and it doesn’t leave a gritty feeling like a lot of protein powders do. It blends into the drink perfectly, and you don’t even realize it’s there when you are done.
So without further ado, here is my take on the classic, beloved by white girls everywhere, Pumpkin Spice Latte.
½ cup oat milk (or milk of choice)
½ cup coffee
1 scoop Vital Proteins unflavored Collagen (if you really want a protein boost two scoops work, as well)
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
½ tablespoon sugar (or to taste)
A few drops of vanilla extract (optional)
You will also need a frother. I use this one:
Heat oat milk for one minute in the microwave. Add 1 scoop of collagen powder and blend with the frother. Froth the milk. Pour your hot coffee into another cup. Add the sugar, vanilla extract, and spices and use the frother to blend (it won’t froth). Then pour the coffee into the milk, add a dash of the pumpkin pie spice, and enjoy!