For some coffee and latte enthusiasts, the infamous pumpkin spice latte is one of the most eagerly awaited beverages in most coffee chains across America and the globe. However, aside from people trying to figure out whether there is a sugar-free pumpkin spice sauce, the other question in some drinkers' minds is whether or not pumpkin spice is vegan-friendly.
Regardless of the answer, it would only be fair to start by saying that the PSL is delicious, and its return is highly anticipated. Still, it’s important to understand that pumpkin spice is not made using just one ingredient–it is a blend of several warm spices, some of which include nutmeg, cinnamon, allspice, ginger, and cloves. These cozy, fall flavors are the main reasons why people prefer pumpkin pie sauce for coffee.
So, the answer to whether pumpkin spice is vegan is two-fold. This is because, on its own as a stand-alone spice, it is entirely vegan. The pumpkin spice latte, though, typically contains condensed milk, so it is not vegan. Furthermore, some autumnal delicacies out there associated with pumpkin spice are also not vegan. For instance, foods like pumpkin spice cookies, cupcakes, muffins, and for the large part, the beverages you find at your local bakery or café are not vegan-friendly; in most cases, they tend to be laden with animal-product-based ingredients such as cream, eggs, butter, and others.
The Traditional PSL Isn't Vegan
Even though the traditional PSL may not be fully vegan, you can often still have your barista make it plant-based. As mentioned earlier, the conventional PSL, whether you decide to pick yours up from Starbucks, Dunkin' Donuts, or your local café, will not be made vegan. You have to remember that a PSL is usually made using whole milk and special ingredients, and is topped off with whipped cream. Even though you can get your PSL without whipped cream and dairy milk, the fact remains that Starbucks’ Pumpkin Spice Sauce still contains milk, which is also the case with Dunkin's Pumpkin Flavored Swirl Syrup–this means that they can't be ordered vegan. Still, you can learn how to make a healthy PSL at home if you want to make your own vegan sauce.
To get a vegan PSL at a cafe, you can also order a vanilla or plain latte with plant-based milk and request a pumpkin-flavored topping, which should be vegan. This means you can enjoy the best of both worlds regarding taste and a cruelty-free diet.
The Future of Vegan Pumpkin Spice Lattes
Until recently, the well-known Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte has not been vegan-friendly since it is made using condensed milk. Fortunately, it’s looking like a vegan version of the coffee giant’s pumpkin spice syrup is coming sooner than later. Until then, it’s a good idea to make your own vegan PSLs at home using your own pumpkin spice syrup–whether you make it yourself or try Skinny Mixes’ Sugar-Free Pumpkin Spice Syrup!
It would be fair to say that a vegan version of the Starbucks PSL, or Pumpkin Spice Latte, has been in demand for quite some time–there was a petition filed five years ago that managed to garner the support of more than 11,000 customers demanding a vegan PSL.
Of course, if you’re looking for a guilt-free way to enjoy that pumpkin spice flavor, you can use Skinny Mixes Sugar-Free Pumpkin Spice Syrup in your daily brew–it has zero calories and zero fat, so feel free to drizzle it over your homemade coffee to your heart's content!