Once exclusively reserved for the autumn season, pumpkin spice is now an in-demand flavor all year-round. You’ll even find it listed as a top-selling Nespresso pod—but what makes it so? Walk into a waking office or your first class of the school day, and you’re more than likely to come across at least one person clutching a cup of pumpkin spice latte. Contrary to the “basic girl” theory, pumpkin spice is an integral part of U.S. history.
What Exactly is Pumpkin Spice?
Often in the form of a powder, pumpkin spice contains cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, allspice, and ground cloves. And no, you didn’t miss anything—there is no pumpkin in pumpkin spice. Shocker? We thought so.
However, its title isn’t necessarily misleading. Historically, chefs and bakers would combine these ingredients to create desserts, eventually commercialized to contain “pumpkin pie spice.” Drop the “pie,” and the ingredients remain the same across other snacks and drinks.
How Pumpkin Spice Shot Up in Popularity
Pumpkin spice isn’t an American discovery. Brought in by the British to commodify Thanksgiving, the seasoning became a quintessential autumn flavor, paired up with every pumpkin harvest. Over the years, the spice became trendy and mirrored the build-up to Christmastime the way it built-up to the fall season.
Now, as the pumpkin season arises, we tend to associate it with immediately with fall. As the temperature drops, even for just a few days, food industries leverage the opportunity by coming out with new pumpkin spice variants to make a profit.
Since their initial shoot to stardom, pumpkin spice is now the star of lucrative businesses such as Dunkin Donuts, Krispy Kreme, Halo Top, M&Ms, and more. Yet, pumpkin spice lattes and pumpkin spice donuts aren’t the end-all-be-all of pumpkin spice, nor are they the best way to experience the flavorful treat.
Every so often, skip the Starbucks and try your hand at baking. Consider spending a day learning to concoct pumpkin pie, pumpkin spice blondies, pumpkin spice pretzels, or your version of coffee pods. As a treat, you can prepare pumpkin spice granola bars or almond chews for the week—or make a profit and sell them online (pro tip: give them a test run with friends and family members).
As syllabus week comes to a close or the office begins to look a little more orange, your palette might start salivating for a delectable pumpkin spice dessert—or latte, if you genuinely are a Starbucks fan. Pretty soon, the only way to top off your pumpkin spice marathon will be to throw on some leggings, an oversized sweatshirt, comfortable gloves, and stunning leaves.If you’re ready to up your pumpkin spice game, why not kick off the day with Cafe Joe’s pumpkin spice Nespresso capsules? Aromatic and perfectly matched to enhance already-flavorsome South American and African coffee beans, our pumpkin pods are the talk of the town. Are you craving a Starbucks-worthy morning drink? Combine your Cafe Joe pumpkin spice with a warm cup of milk—you’ll never even taste the difference.