DIY Pumpkin Spice Coffee

It's Friday! We made it! Hurrah!

Now that our collective celebration is out of the way, let's get down to the fun stuff. Last night I baked a pumpkin pie (which I'm crossing my fingers that the crust cooked all the way through, but won't know for sure until it's go-time), made white turkey chili for dinner and curled up to watch Fringe. Is anyone else watching? It has been so outta control good this season. Plus, an hour of Joshua Jackson ain't so bad either. I'm so excited for spending time with friends and family this weekend and for getting to rock my brandy new Giants zip up on Sunday!

Anyhow, after two weeks of sipping on delicious pumpkin spice coffee, I thought it time to share my tale with all of you!

Today's recipe is a result of my plight of righteous indignation over expensive coffees and other coffee-laden drinks. You see, all summer I've had an injured wrist. After finally having it looked at by none other than a hand specialist, I found out that the problem was all stemming from a cyst - aka a giant egg on the top of my wrist. After a not-so-pretty shot and a splint, I was sent on my way. And since I was such a good patient, I felt that my inaugural pumpkin spice latte from Starbucks was just the ticket as a reward for my good patient behavior. You know, like I'm an eight-year-old.

Imagine my outrage that a Grande Pumpkin Spice Latte was nothing short of $5.17. I mean...seriously? Ok for a once in a while splurge, but how could I possibly justify over $5 per day to get my pumpkin spice fix? There had to be a better way.

And that's when I came across a yum-inducing recipe for Coffee Shop Pumpkin Syrup on Savvy Eats. Bingo. I altered the recipe a bit to eliminate more sugar and overall, this recipe really hits the mark for a super delicious autumn coffee. Oh and minus all the extra calories of a latte!

DIY Pumpkin Spice Coffee
*Adapted from Savvy Eats
2 tbsp canned pumpkin
1/4 C Splenda Brown Sugar Blend
1/2 C + 2 tbsp water
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground nutmeg
1/8 tsp ground cloves (or leave out altogether if you have an aversion to its pungency)
ground coffee (as much as you want to make)
half and half or milk of your choice

In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine pumpkin, Splenda, water, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves.

Stir together until ingredients have melted together. Continue cooking until the mixture thickens, resembling syrup, but making sure that it doesn't get too thick. Stir frequently so that it doesn't burn. This entire process took about 5 minutes. I had many reservations about the Splenda's ability to syrupify, but it worked! Hurrah for not wasting calories! I poured mine into that pretty saucer you see above to cool and then transferred it to a plastic container and stored in the fridge.

Now it's morning and time to put it altogether! Get your coffee grounds and make your coffee as usual...

I store my Dunkin' Donuts original blend in this pretty mason jar that I scooped up for just a few buckaroos at Michael's. Isn't it so much nicer than dealing with that awful and annoying bag that coffee comes in?

Since the syrup has a tendency to sink to the bottom, I mixed a teaspoon of the syrup with a bit of half and half (ok, more than a bit...I like my coffee creamy! You see why I don't have calories to spare on extra sugar) in a mug and microwaved it for about 20 seconds so that the syrup could dissapate into the cream. Yum!

Not to mention that adding warm cream to the hot coffee makes all the difference in the world! I carry mine around in a sweet tumbler that I bought at Target a couple of years ago. Add any further sweetner that you deem necessary and you're set with your cheap DIY Pumpkin Spice Coffee! Now do the happy dance because you are saving mucho moola with this creation.

So there you have it. A cheap and easy way to enjoy an autumnal favorite. What do you think? Do you ever prefer to DIY things in the name of saving a few bucks? Am I the only one outraged by the prices of Starbucks and other specialty coffee shops? And bonus question, what are you most looking forward to this weekend?