Shoeaholic No More



September 2014



Frugal Food Friday – Pumpkin Spice Latte (Paleo Style)

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One of the hardest things about doing the Paleo challenge in the fall is not being able to have my favorite Starbucks drink - the Pumkin Spice Latte.OMG! One of the hardest things about doing the Paleo challenge in the fall is not being able to have my favorite Starbucks drink – the Pumpkin Spice Latte. Available only for the fall each year, this drink is like “fall in a cup”. (Did you get that move reference, where I changed a line from The Proposal from Christmas to fall?!)

My BFF decided she had to torture me by informing me in all caps in an email that “STARBUCKS BROUGHT THE PUMPKIN SPICE LATTE BACK EARLY THIS YEAR!!!” All I wanted to do was be-head her – seriously. Ok, not so seriously, but I was mad that she told me this during the first week of my month-long Paleo challenge.

Just a few days later when I was reading Blogging Away Debt I stumbled upon Ashley’s latest post about How to Make Your Own Pumpkin Spiced Coffee for Cheap!!! Talk about perfect timing on her part. 🙂

Here are Ashley’s instructions, followed by my own additions in red:


  • Favorite coffee. I buy pre-ground stuff, usually vanilla-flavored. It doesn’t have to be flavored, but vanilla works really well with this “recipe.” I tried Hazelnut, as that’s what I had on hand, but it was nasty. After I bought some vanilla flavored ground coffee, it was WAY better.
  • Appropriate spices. I keep it simple and just use pumpkin pie spice, but if you don’t have that on hand you could use a mixture of cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and other traditional Fall flavored spices.
  • Canned (or cooked) pumpkin. You won’t need much, but you can store leftovers in the fridge. I just put mine in a gladware container with a lid in the fridge. So far, so good and it’s been in there just over a week.
  • Milk or milk alternative. I tend to like really creamy coffee, but I don’t want all the extra calories so I’ll use a lower-cal almond milk with just a splash of the “real” stuff (I use 2%). Since I’m on Paleo and we can’t have any dairy, I just used Almond milk (unsweetened) and it turned out yummy!
  • Sweetener of choice. For years I have used agave nectar in my coffee (it’s delicious, try it!), but you could use sugar or any sugar substitute of your choice. On this Paleo challenge we can only use raw honey or “real” maple syrup. I used about a teaspoon of organic raw honey because I already had some on hand.


First, prepare your coffee grounds. I like to mix it all up together in the actual coffee can, but you could certainly mix it up for a single coffee pot sized serving if you prefer. Simply mix your spices into the coffee grinds. Use a little more than you think you need, until you can really see the specks of brown (cinnamon, nutmeg) amidst all the black coffee grounds. You should be able to smell the stuff through the coffee scent when you’re done. Brew your coffee as usual.

Put a heaping teaspoon of pumpkin (canned or cooked fresh) in the bottom of your mug of coffee, then pour the hot coffee over the top. Stir and stir until all the pumpkin is completely dissolved.

Next, add your milk and sweetener of choice (if you prefer, you can also skip this step if you like black coffee). If you want a truly coffee-house style drink, warm up your milk a little and use a frother to really get a good foam going before you pour it into your coffee.”

There you have it folks! A Pumpkin Spice Latte – Paleo style! It’s better for you with no artificial ingredients, real pumpkin, less fat, and a natural sugar source, and cheaper too!

Yum yum! Holler if you try it and have some changes or additions. I’d like to know how it turns out for you.


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Kayla is a mid-20s single girl living in the Midwest, USA. She is focused on paying off her consumer and student loans, while simplifying her life and closet. You can join her on her journey at ShoeaholicNoMore or follow her on Twitter.


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