Ah, the first signs of fall: crunchy red leaves falling off trees, earlier sunsets staining the sky orange … and pumpkin spice lattes blowing up your Insta feed.
To be clear, we’re all about pumpkin pie spice—that delightful mix of cinnamon, cloves, ginger, nutmeg, and allspice. But there’s just too much sugar and too many unpronounceable ingredients in your typical coffee shop pumpkin spice latte. Enter these DIY warm drinks that are more delicious (and less basic) than a PSL.
1. Warm Pumpkin Pie Smoothie
Who says smoothies need to be cold? This soothing creation is sure to satisfy your pumpkin spice cravings. Plus, it features more real pumpkin purée than you’re likely to find in a coffee shop PSL. Top it all off with coconut whipped cream for a decadent-yet-healthy treat.
2. Turmeric Milk
Photo: Nutrition Stripped
This sweet and spicy drink gets its golden hue from (you guessed it) turmeric. If you’re new to turmeric milk, prepare to become addicted. Adding a pinch of black pepper helps your body better absorb turmeric’s anti-inflammatory goodness. And did we mention this drink is totally caffeine free? So it’s the perfect thing to help you wind down before bed.
3. Mayan Hot Chocolate Smoothie
Yep, another warm smoothie. The addition of peanut butter makes this an extra indulgent take on hot chocolate. Plus, it includes a hit of chili powder to really warm up your taste buds. Blend in some protein powder, and this smoothie becomes a delicious way to recover from exercising in the cold.
4. Vegan Pumpkin Hot Chocolate
Photo: Running with Spoons
If you’re a total fall fanatic, this is the drink for you. It’s packed with all the good stuff—real pumpkin, creamy almond milk, cocoa powder, fragrant spices, and a touch of maple syrup. We’re already dreaming about sipping this stuff on a Sunday morning, bundled in blankets while reading a good book.
5. Matcha Tea Latte
Photo: Nutrition Stripped
Matcha green tea and coconut milk are a matcha made in heaven. Since matcha is quite bitter on its own, this latte is lightly sweetened with honey. If you’ve ever bought matcha, you’ll know that good quality varieties can get expensive—but it’s so worth it. For one thing, matcha is known to be much higher in antioxidants than regular old green tea. And when not using matcha to make drinks, you can even use it in baking (hello, matcha cookies).
6. Warming Chai-Spiced Apple Cider
Before PSLs hit the scene, hot apple cider was the king of warm drinks. This version elevates plain apple cider by adding chai tea and a bit of fresh ginger. The result is a soothing, aromatic drink you’ll be longing to curl up with.