Whether you love to hate, hate to love, or shamelessly adore them, pumpkin spice lattes are undeniably the defining beverage of the autumn season. Buying a latte from Starbucks every morning isn't a viable option for folks who would rather spend their cash on gear, so homemade coffee concoctions are the way to go.
Watching the seasons turn while camping and climbing at Red River Gorge in Kentucky has left me with an insatiable craving for a pumpkin-flavored caffeinated treat, but my original homemade pumpkin spice latte recipe calls for 10 ingredients and a microwave — so I revamped the recipe for an easier version that can be made on a camp stove. There are only six ingredients, and the recipe is so simple you'll be able to execute it even when you're only half-awake — plus, these lattes use real pumpkin!
Beware: the wafting scents of real pumpkin and strong coffee will lure folks from every corner of the campground, so make extra! The measurements in this recipe will yield one pumpkin spice latte.
Gear You'll Need:
Utensil for Stirring - a fork will do!
Measuring Cup/Spoon — I use a mason jar to measure cups/ounces too.
Thermos or Mug
1 tablespoon canned pumpkin puree
1 cup coffee
1/2 cup vanilla almond milk (You can also use regular milk, but using almond milk let me cut out the usual vanilla extract I add to the latte, and I didn't have to refrigerate it before opening.)
1/3 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
2 teaspoons brown sugar (or white sugar, depending on your sweet tooth)
How to Make a Pumpkin Spice Latte at Camp:
- Boil water and use French Press to make a batch of strong coffee.
- In a small pot, briskly mix together milk, pumpkin pie spice, brown sugar, and pumpkin puree at medium heat over camp stove.
- Stir frequently until the mixture begins to lightly boil, and all ingredients are evenly blended.
- Pour coffee into mug, then stir in the pumpkin milk mixture.
- Top with a heaping handful of mini marshmallows. Sprinkle a little pumpkin pie seasoning on top for an extra kick of flavor.
- Try not to gloat as fellow campers stare in awe and envy as you sip on your homemade pumpkin goodness. Be prepared to share the recipe.
As if waking up surrounded by nature's glorious display of multicolored foliage and crisp autumn air didn't give you enough inspiration to peel yourself out of the cozy confines of your sleeping bag, the temptation of sipping on a pumpkin spice latte while preparing for the day's adventures surely will.
Katie Boué is a fresh-faced freelance writer with a passion for budget travel, exploring the outdoors, and promoting the art of American road trips. With the help of my travel partner, Niko, I'm exploring the country in search of the best climbs and camping.