As fall has come around, so have the delicious seasonal fall drinks from coffee shops like Starbucks. Both on and around campus, there has been no shortage of people walking around with coffee and pumpkin bread in hand.
As a former barista, I pride myself in being somewhat of a coffee aficionado. I’ve worked at a couple different coffee shops since high school, and know just how popular seasonal drinks and treats are. However, as a college student, I also know pricey pumpkin spice lattes and breakfast sandwiches can add up. But this doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice your favorite fall treats. Using my knowledge from my days as a barista, I’ve compiled a few recipes that are easy and inexpensive to make from home.
Cold Brew topped with Cold Foam
One of the newest and hottest drinks this fall is the pumpkin cream cold brew, one of the many different variations of cold foam cold brew. While this drink will cost you around $6, it’s easy and much cheaper to make at home. I recommend using a milk frother to make the cold foam, which is only about $8 on Amazon. Put a little bit of milk in a glass (a little goes a long way) with half a teaspoon of pumpkin puree, along with cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger. Then, froth the milk working from the bottom of the glass up to create a thick foam and put it over any iced coffee or cold brew of choice.
If you aren’t much of a pumpkin spice fan, no need to worry. There are tons of different variations of the cold foam cold brew that are easy to make at home. One of my favorites, the cold brew with cinnamon oat milk foam, only takes two ingredients to make the foam itself. Use vanilla-flavored oat milk (or any other milk of your choice), add however much cinnamon you desire and then froth until it becomes a thick foam. It’s another cold and refreshing drink for those warmer fall days.
Pumpkin Spice Latte
I’ll admit, even I’m in love with this fall beverage often deemed “basic.” Let’s face it, it’s a classic. But just like the cold foam cold brew, this will also cost you around $6. To make this at home, use the same ingredients for the pumpkin cream cold brew, only add more milk and froth. I also recommend using vanilla-flavored non-dairy milk, but you can also sub vanilla syrup instead to make it sweeter.
Next, brew the espresso or coffee of your choice. I make my espresso with a moka pot, which is an Italian coffee pot made for the stovetop. This is much cheaper (and less complicated) than an espresso machine. Combine the brewed espresso and frothed milk and finish it off with more cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger on top.
Not a coffee lover? I’ve got you covered. Matcha is one of my absolute favorite drinks, and arguably one of the easiest to make from home. Matcha can be made iced or hot, and only requires three ingredients: matcha powder, water and a milk of your choice. I like to buy matcha powder already sweetened, but it can also be made without any sugar or whatever amount of sugar you would like.
To make an iced matcha latte, put a few scoops of the powder in with a little hot water and stir well, then add your milk of choice along with ice. To make a hot matcha latte, froth the milk with the matcha powder in it, and omit the water. This drink is great when you need a soothing beverage without all the caffeine.
Pumpkin Baked Oatmeal
Craving something sweet for breakfast? This pumpkin baked oatmeal is a delicious way to start the morning and much healthier than a slice of pumpkin bread. I found this recipe on Pinterest, and let me say it did not disappoint.
The nice thing about making this baked oatmeal is that it only takes about 10 minutes to prepare and put in the oven, and no stand mixer is needed. It isn’t incredibly sweet, so I topped mine off with organic maple syrup from Trader Joe’s.
Since this recipe makes quite a few servings, I put mine in the fridge and then heated it up in the microwave when I wanted it for breakfast another day. This pumpkin baked oatmeal is a great way to get all the flavors of pumpkin bread in a healthier way to fuel up for those early morning Zoom classes.
Craving something savory? A breakfast sandwich is the perfect way to start the morning. This staple that can be found in almost every coffee shop is just as easy to make at home. I typically put olive oil in a pan on medium-high heat and let the pan heat up a bit. Crack an egg and let it cook until it’s ready to be flipped. Even though I love a runny yolk sometimes, I usually break the yolk while it’s still in the pan and let it cook through. Top the egg with a slice of sharp cheddar cheese and wait to turn off the heat until the cheese is melted. My favorite bread to use for the sandwich is a toasted English muffin.
The toppings are where you can have fun with your breakfast sandwich. I’ve kept it simple with just an egg and cheese, but I also love to top it with avocado, bacon or hot sauce. Whatever you choose, I’m sure it will be delicious.
Baked Apple Cinnamon Donuts
This past summer, one of my three jobs was working at a donut shop, and now that I’m back in school, there are some days I just really crave a donut in the morning. I found this recipe on Pinterest, and it’s great for people who have allergies as it’s peanut, tree nut, dairy and gluten-free.
Just like the pumpkin baked oatmeal, this recipe also doesn’t require a stand mixer and can easily be made by hand. The only equipment necessary for this recipe is a donut pan, which can be purchased on Amazon or at Target. The donuts are topped with an easy-to-make maple-cinnamon glaze and are best served warm.