Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte Copycat

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Delicious Pumpkin Spice Latte made just like Starbucks, this copycat recipe shows how easy it is to make this drink at home in just 5 minutes, including the homemade whipped cream!

Pumpkin Spice Latte in a cup with whipped cream.

Recipe Highlights

  • Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte (also known as just PSL), is a popular seasonal fall drink.
  • PSL is made with pumpkin spice sauce, espresso, milk, and topped with whipped cream.
  • With a combination of flavors like pumpkin, cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove, PSL is a delicious and comforting hot beverage, perfect for the cooler months.
  • This copycat recipe recreates a grande size (16 ounces) Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte, including the vanilla whipped cream.
  • Store-bought or homemade pumpkin spice syrup or pumpkin spice sauce can be used for this drink.
  • An espresso machine or a Nespresso is needed to make espresso for a latte, but strong brewed coffee can be used as a substitute, although it won’t taste quite the same.

RELATED: Starbucks Iced Pumpkin Spice Latte Copycat

Pumpkin Spice Latte at Starbucks

A very popular hot beverage, the Pumpkin Spice Latte returns to Starbucks at the end of every August, along with other pumpkin spice drinks like Iced Pumpkin Spice Latte and Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew.

All pumpkin spice drinks are made using a pumpkin spice sauce (also seasonal) that contains sugar, pumpkin puree, and condensed skim milk.

The Pumpkin Spice Latte is topped with whipped cream and a sprinkle of pumpkin spice topping, which is a blend of warming spices like cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves.

The drink comes in 4 sizes: short, tall, grande, and venti. Like all other lattes, it’s made with 2% milk but it can always be customized with any milk Starbucks offers, including oatmilk and almond.

RELATED: Pumpkin Spice Chai Latte

Ingredient Notes

Pumpkin Spice Latte ingredients.

Step-by-Step Instructions

4 photo collage showing steps to make homemade Pumpkin Spice Latte with whipped cream.

For full ingredients and instructions, scroll down to the recipe.

  1. Whisk heavy cream and vanilla syrup to make whipped cream. Set aside.
    The quickest and easiest way to make whipped cream for drinks is to use a handheld milk frother.
  2. Put pumpkin spice sauce, espresso, and frothed milk into a mug. Stir.
    Use 2 Nespresso espresso pods or pull 2 shots from an espresso machine.
    Frothed milk can be made using an electric milk frother or with the steam wand from an espresso machine. Another method is to simmer milk on the stovetop, pour it into a French press, then pump the plunger a few times to create froth.
  3. Top with whipped cream.
    Use a spoon to add the whipped cream on top of the drink.
  4. Garnish with a sprinkle of pumpkin spice topping.

Using a Nespresso

For a drink to be a latte, it has to be made with espresso. The easiest way to make espresso at home is with a Nespresso machine.

My Nespresso Pick

Photo Credit: amazon.com

This Nespresso model makes espresso and brewed coffee and costs around $200. Tip: Skip the Aeroccino and get a bigger milk frother.
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1 shot of espresso = 1 Nespresso espresso capsule

To make a grande size Pumpkin Spice Latte at home like the one at Starbucks, you’ll need 2 Nespresso espresso capsules or 1 double espresso capsule.

Nespresso makes Starbucks capsules for both Vertuo and Original machines which will make the drink taste more like the one at Starbucks.

Make sure the Nespresso capsule you use makes espresso and not coffee/mug (7.77 ounces).

Starbucks uses their signature espresso to make the PSL:
Nespresso Starbucks Espresso Vertuo capsules
Nespresso Starbucks Espresso Original capsules

But, instead of the regular Starbucks espresso, try making it with their Blonde Espresso capsules which are more popular and better reviewed.

My Nespresso Starbucks Pod Pick

Photo Credit: amazon.com

To recreate Starbucks drinks at home, go for this popular blonde espresso.
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Homemade Pumpkin Spice Topping

Homemade pumpkin spice topping can be made at home by combining:

Expert Tips

  • Instead of caramel sauce, you can use caramel syrup. The syrup contains no dairy so it’s not as rich in flavor as the sauce, but it’ll be easier to stir into the milk since it’s a thinner liquid.
  • Milk will increase in volume when frothed, so to get 1 ¼ cups of frothed milk for this recipe, use ¾ cup of cold milk (dairy or non-dairy).
  • An easy way to froth milk is by using an electric milk frother that can make at least 2 cups of frothed milk at one time. A Nespresso Aeroccino isn’t big enough to make grande size drinks and you’ll need to froth milk twice to get enough milk for the drink.
  • To whip cream for drinks, use a handheld milk frother for about 30-50 seconds until you get soft peaks. Don’t overwhip.
  • Vanilla syrup is used to sweeten and flavor the whipped cream, but you can replace it with regular simple syrup or 2 teaspoons of sugar if you don’t have it.
  • Homemade vanilla syrup is super quick and easy to make at home using just 3 ingredients, so I highly recommend making it instead of buying it.

RELATED: Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Frappuccino Copycat

Questions You May Have

What’s in Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte?

In a grande (16 ounce) drink, there’s 2% milk, 4 pumps of pumpkin sauce, 2 shots of espresso. The drink is topped with vanilla whipped cream and pumpkin spice topping.

What’s in pumpkin spice topping?

There are 4 spices in the pumpkin spice topping at Starbucks: cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and clove.

Is pumpkin spice sauce the same thing as pumpkin spice syrup?

Sauces contain dairy and they’re thicker than syrups. Both the sauce and syrup contain pumpkin puree.

Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte copycat drink with whipped cream.

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Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte Copycat

Author: Jee Choe
This Starbucks PSL copycat recipe shows how easy it is to make this drink at home in just 5 minutes.
5 from 10 votes
Prep Time 5 mins
Total Time 5 mins
Course Drinks
Yield1 serving (16 ounces)

INGREDIENTS
 

Pumpkin Spice Latte

Whipped Cream

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Whisk heavy cream and vanilla syrup to make whipped cream. Set aside.
    The quickest and easiest way to make whipped cream for drinks is to use a handheld milk frother.
  • Put pumpkin spice sauce, espresso, and frothed milk into a mug. Stir.
    Use 2 Nespresso espresso pods or pull 2 shots from an espresso machine. Frothed milk can be made using an electric milk frother or with the steam wand from an espresso machine. Another method is to simmer milk on the stovetop, pour it into a French press, then pump the plunger a few times to create froth.
  • Top with whipped cream and garnish with a sprinkle of pumpkin spice topping.
    Use a spoon to add the whipped cream on top of the drink.

NOTES

  • Instead of caramel sauce, you can use caramel syrup. The syrup contains no dairy so it’s not as rich in flavor as the sauce, but it’ll be easier to stir into the milk since it’s a thinner liquid.
  • Milk will increase in volume when frothed, so to get 1 ¼ cups of frothed milk for this recipe, use ¾ cup of cold milk (dairy or non-dairy).
  • An easy way to froth milk is by using an electric milk frother that can make at least 2 cups of frothed milk at one time. A Nespresso Aeroccino isn’t big enough to make grande size drinks and you’ll need to froth milk twice to get enough milk for the drink.
  • To whip cream for drinks, use a handheld milk frother for about 30-50 seconds until you get soft peaks. Don’t overwhip.
  • Vanilla syrup is used to sweeten and flavor the whipped cream, but you can replace it with regular simple syrup or 2 teaspoons of sugar if you don’t have it.
  • Homemade vanilla syrup is super quick and easy to make at home using just 3 ingredients, so I highly recommend making it instead of buying it.

Homemade Pumpkin Spice Topping

 
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground cloves

Using A Nespresso Machine

 
  • 1 shot of espresso = 1 Nespresso espresso capsule
  • To make a 16 ounce (grande) Starbucks drink, you’ll need 2 Nespresso espresso or ristretto capsules. You can also use 1 Vertuo double espresso.
  • With the Vertuo machine capsules, only use espresso capsules and not the coffee capsules that make 7.77 ounces.
  • Recommended Nespresso capsules to make Starbucks drinks at home:
    Starbucks Blonde Espresso Roast
    Nespresso Vertuo capsules
    Nespresso Original capsules

NUTRITION

Calories: 607 | Carbohydrates: 75g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 32g | Saturated Fat: 19g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 112mg | Sodium: 200mg | Potassium: 500mg | Sugar: 74g | Vitamin A: 1369IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 394mg | Iron: 3mg
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