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Step Into Fall With These Cozy Drink Recipes

Published:
December 14, 2023
October 16, 2023
(Pumpkin) spice up your life this autumn with these fall drink recipes.

Ready or not, here it comes — the pumpkin spice latte. This drink seems to unofficially mark the start of fall when it makes its infamous rounds on coffee shop menus. While the temps outside may still scream summer, juxtaposing our desires for a new season to arrive, festive fall drinks help welcome the idea that change is coming. And since hot chocolate has staked a claim on the winter months, pumpkin, apple, and caramel-based drinks seem to boldly announce that fall is here. 

And with these fall drinks comes a sense of nostalgia, a taste for the past and hope for the future, a sense that good things are coming in the form of holiday gatherings and seasonal greetings. So, it’s not just a drink we are after during the fall season — it’s a moment to acknowledge change, while also appreciating the traditions we celebrate year after year. Thus, the pumpkin spice latte (for many) has become a tradition in and of itself. From the first whiff of nutmeg and cinnamon, we know we’ve entered into our season of change. But before you wait in line to grab your latte, check out some of our tastiest and easiest fall drinks you can make in the comfort of your own home. 

The Classic PSL

The “it” drink of the season, the classic pumpkin spice latte is a mainstay during the fall with its creamy texture and cinnamon and nutmeg flavors. While you may be the first in line to order your pumpkin spice latte, this recipe from Gimme Some Oven is easy enough to recreate at home and delicious enough to replace your drive-through order. Bring your latte to your favorite pumpkin patch or enjoy this drink cozied up on the couch — either way ring in fall with your very own version of this seasonal favorite.

A few tips…

Pumpkin puree: This pumpkin spice latte recipe uses real pumpkin puree. Make sure when buying this ingredient you grab the pumpkin puree and not the pumpkin pie filling! 

Maple syrup: Any sweetener can be used for this latte, but the recipe recommends using maple syrup, which compliments the pumpkin flavoring. 

PSL syrup: In order to make your pumpkin season last longer, this recipe suggests making a large batch of the syrup (pumpkin puree, maple syrup, vanilla, and spices) to keep in your refrigerator for when you need it.

Frothed milk: You can use a milk frother to make your milk creamy. If a frother is not available, heat your milk and then pour it into a mason jar. Shake the milk until it becomes frothy. 

Ingredients:
  • 1-2 shots of espresso or ⅓ to ½ cup of strong coffee
  • 1 tablespoon of pumpkin puree
  • 2 teaspoons of maple syrup
  • ½ teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice
  • A pinch of sea salt
  • 1 cup of milk of any kind
  • Additional topping: whipped cream and pumpkin pie spice
Instructions:
  1. Pour the brewed hot espresso, pumpkin puree, maple syrup, vanilla extract, pumpkin pie spice, and salt in a large mug. Stir to combine the mixture. 
  2. Next, heat the milk until it is hot and pour immediately into the coffee mixture. 
  3. Top with whipped cream and pumpkin pie spice (optional) and enjoy!
The Tailgater’s Home-Opener Hot Butter Rum

Fall brings a variety of weather patterns, from clouds and rain to wind and frost. But for football fans, cooler temps won’t get in the way of a tailgating event. When prepping for the home opener game this year, it may be a good idea to whip up a warm drink to share with friends. This hot butter rum recipe from the Spruce Eats is simple to make and also travels well in a thermos mug. Your friends will love the taste and their cold hands will thank you.

A few tips…

For a large group: Combine 2 cups of brown sugar, 1 cup of unsalted butter, 1 tablespoon of vanilla extract, 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon, ½ teaspoon of ground nutmeg, and ½ teaspoon of allspice. Blend ingredients with an electric mixer. This will create enough batter for about 24 drinks. To make each serving, pour a shot (1.5 ounces) of dark rum into a mug, then add a tablespoon of batter, topped with hot water. 

Sweeten the deal: To add sweetness to this drink, consider using a teaspoon of honey.

Storage: Make sure to place the batter in a well-sealed jar in the refrigerator. It will be ready for use after about an hour and can keep in the refrigerator for a few weeks. 

Mocktail-version: Hot butter rum makes for a great drink sans alcohol. Just skip the rum and mix the batter with hot water and a rum extract instead. 

Ingredients:
  • 2 teaspoons of packed brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon of softened, unsalted butter
  • 1 splash of vanilla extract 
  • 1 dash of ground cinnamon
  • 1 dash of ground nutmeg 
  • 1 dash of ground allspice
  • 2 ounces of dark rum
  • 4 ounces of hot water
  • Cinnamon stick for decoration 
Instructions:
  1. Put the sugar, butter, vanilla extract and spices in the bottom of a mug or class and mix together.
  2. Next, pour in the rum and top with the hot water.
  3. Stir ingredients together and top with a cinnamon stick. 
The Adventurer’s Caramel Apple Spice

A road trip is the perfect fall weekend activity. Whether it’s a relaxing drive to watch the foliage change or a long weekend to visit family, now is the time to pack a bag and find some downtime before the busy holiday months hit. And a successful road trip always includes a treat, which means your roadside companion could be Food Apparel’s Caramel Apple Spice. A robust drink, warm, sweet, and tangy, this caramel apple cider can be kept warm in a thermos as you take in all that fall has to offer this season.

A few tips…

Apple cider: Pure pressed apple cider is the best option for making your drink. Using a brand like Simply Apple with 100% pressed cider will make your drink taste better. 

Big batch: Feel free to use a crockpot to make a large amount of this drink. It will typically take 1-2 hours to warm. 

Spices: If you do not have whole spices, you can use ground cinnamon, cloves, and allspice too. Use ¼ teaspoon of each and then you can increase the amount to your preference. 

Ingredients:
  • 4 to 6 cups of 100% pure pressed apple cider
  • ¼ cup of caramel sauce
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 6 cloves whole
  • 6 allspice berries
  • Whipped cream (optional)
  • Caramel sauce to drizzle
Instructions:
  1. Place the apple cider, caramel sauce, and spices in a medium pan and heat on medium-low for 5 minutes. 
  2. Pour the mixture into a cup or travel mug and top with whipped cream and caramel sauce. 
The Host’s Apple Crisp Cocktail

Fall creates the perfect backdrop for a party, and whether you host or attend, having a signature cocktail on the menu will surely impress your guests. And that is where this Sugar and Charm Apple Crisp Cocktail comes onto the scene, combining the flavors of fall into one special party drink. 

A few tips…

DIY Honey Simple Syrup: You can easily make your own honey simple syrup by combining a ½ cup of honey and a ½ cup of water in a saucepan. Heat and stir until the honey is dissolved, then cool. Store in an airtight container or refrigerate for up to 1 month.

Substitutions: Whiskey is the alcohol of choice for this drink, but if you don’t like the taste, you can substitute for vodka. 

Garnish: If you want to impress your guests, decorate each glass with an apple slice to style this apple crisp drink.

Ingredients:
  • 3 ounces of apple cider
  • 1.5 ounce of apple-flavored whiskey
  • ½ ounce of honey simple syrup
  • ½ ounce of lemon juice
  • 1 medium cinnamon stick
Instructions:
  1. Add all ingredients to a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake for about 20 seconds. 
  2. Strain the mixture into a glass with ice. 
  3. Add the apple slice garnish and a sprinkle of nutmeg. 

Fall brings new beginnings, but it's also a reminder of the traditions we make with those we love. From a celebratory football game to a drive to see the autumn foliage, the fall season catches us in a sweet spot of change, while simultaneously embracing the familiarity of cyclical customs. So, whether we are making a pumpkin spice latte for a friend or trying out a new fall cocktail for an outdoor pumpkin party, it’s the memories we make during this season that count the most. 

Creators:
Lauren Lawson
Published:
December 14, 2023
October 16, 2023
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