Become a Home Barista to Get Your Pumpkin Spice Latte Fix

Drink in the season with these festive fall beverage recipes. They'll taste as good as a PSL from your local coffee shop!
By aha insurance - Oct 2, 2020

At aha insurance we continually explore ways to stay in control of all aspects of life – because we know life is about more than insurance. In our Life Matters series we talk about staying in control of your life and living on your terms. Control feels great!

Fall is here, and so is (almost) everyone’s favourite seasonal flavour – pumpkin spice! Stopping by Starbucks for a treat on a busy October day is one of our favourite autumn activities too, but what about when you want to stay home and would rather not shell out a lot of money for a fancy coffee? Check out these copycat recipes, sure to satisfy your Pumpkin Spice Latte cravings.

A Brief History of the Beloved PSL

The Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte first wowed caffeine connoisseurs in Vancouver and Washington, D.C. back in 2003. Since then, trendy coffee lovers everywhere have been clamouring to copy the golden seasonal beverage that has made upwards of $1.5 million for the coffee giant.

Did you know that Starbucks technically uses pumpkin spice sauce (not syrup) to capture the richness of pumpkin pie better? Really, check the coffee chain’s “secret” ingredients here.


The Starbucks Copycat

Gemma Stafford from Gemma’s Bigger Bolder Baking has crafted a homemade Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte that perfectly replicates the comforting taste of “Thanksgiving in a mug” as she puts it. Gemma’s version of pumpkin spice sauce includes home-mixed spices as well as home-roasted pumpkin puree.


Surprise! This PSL recipe video features two other Starbucks holiday favourites: the Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate and Peppermint Mocha. That’s what we call a stay at home barista bonus!

The Healthy Vegan Copycat

Everyone knows that Starbucks has dairy-free and low sugar options for their sweetened seasonal beverages. You can still ditch the pre-made syrup and added sugar, using healthier ingredients to kick up your latte’s flavour.

Abby Sharp from Abbey’s Kitchen has designed a healthy vegan Pumpkin Spice Latte with simple, whole ingredients that are sure to wow your tastebuds. This recipe uses real maple syrup (sure to delight Canadian coffee lovers), vanilla, pumpkin pie spice and pumpkin puree to add that signature PSL flavour to espresso and almond milk. Make a hot latte or try the iced frappuccino version, which is also a highly celebrated Starbucks favourite!


Top with coconut whipped cream and your favourite brand of gram cracker crumbs (gluten-free, vegan, keto, etc.). This extra indulgent, pie crust inspired finish will ensure you don’t miss the added sugar or dairy of a regular Pumpkin Spice Latte.

Those are all the recipes you need to delight your friends and family with homemade Starbucks copycat refreshments this fall. Maybe you can even pour some into a reusable Starbucks cup to test if they can taste the difference?

Many criticize the PSL trend for being “basic,” but that won’t stop its reign as one of North America’s most popular flavour combinations. Kraft even launched pumpkin spice flavoured KD in Canada this year. Seriously.

Inspired to brew, simmer and whip up your pumpkin spice masterpiece with the pie ingredients you already have in your kitchen? Want your PSL decaf, extra hot, sweeter, less sweet, with soy milk or extra foam? You’re the barista! You’re in control to customize the perfect cup of fall goodness for yourself and anyone lucky enough to share your table this pumpkin harvest season!

aha insurance is Canada’s first car and home insurance brokerage to offer a fully online customer experience. Customers can purchase and manage their car and home insurance online in minutes from the convenience of wherever they are. This puts customers in complete control, and control feels great.