PSL. Pumpkin Spice Latte. The most basic of drinks. Fall in a cup. You either love it and can’t wait to have it, or you can’t stand it. Either way, when all of the Pumpkin Spice goodies start showing up on the shelves you know your curiosity is piqued. Can it be any good? Or is it just way too much? Well after hitting up Target this week and grabbing 8 such items, I’ll give you at least my thoughts on the matter. I’m a pumpkin lover and the spicy notes of cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and clove take me back to my childhood in my grandmother’s kitchen. I want to love all of the pumpkin things in stores, but a verdict of Yeah! or Meh. must be decided.
The first thing I tried wasn’t actually from Target proper. It was at Starbucks. The first stop in any kidless trip to the bullseye. This year’s addition of the Pumpkin Spice Chai Latte on the actual Starbucks menu, while steep in price is absolutely delectable. It’s sweet and spicy. The fall fabulousness of chai is pushed to a new level with the addition of pumpkin flavor. I added a shot of espresso to mine so I guess you could call it a Dirty Pumpkin Spice Chai Latte. Say that 3 times fast. Verdict: Yeah!
Did you know Pumpkin Spice is even in candy varieties? I bet you guessed that. There are limited edition Werther’s Pumpkin Spice flavored Soft Caramels out right now. Werther’s are a classic though, so I tasted this one skeptically. I am a believer now though. Verdict: Yeah!
The Pepperidge Farms Collection grabbed my eye early on in the trip. They have Milano Cookies, Swirl Bread, and Soft Bake Cookies all in Pumpkin Spice varieties. I tried the swirl bread. It was stellar toasted with butter. Swirl bread- it’s what’s for breakfast (or dessert). Verdict: Yeah!
Next up, one that made my eyebrows meet my hairline. Pumpkin Spice Cheerios. I mean, I remember the Olympic Cheerios from years ago, and they were good. But pumpkin. In a cheerio. Really? They aren’t the only pumpkin cereal on the market, so if you want to give this a try, you have options. Verdict: Meh
Pumpkin Cheesecake Ben and Jerry’s. Now, Ben and Jerry’s doesn’t ever go wrong. But this frozen creamy dessert is delightful. It’s missing the spiciness that often goes with pumpkin pie or is found in that basic PSL, but the smoothness of this treat is so good. Verdict: Yeah!
Coffee Creamer galore! There are so many choices. Starbucks is notoriously expensive, so an at home alternative is a must. Buying ground coffee with flavoring isn’t my jam, so when I want to duplicate a fancy drink I rely on creamers. I know, I know, not the healthiest habit. But clearly this list isn’t about my (nonexistent) health kick. Of the few creamers I’ve tried this year and last I like the Pumpkin Spice Natural Bliss by Coffee Mate the best for this flavor choice. It’s no real PSL, but it’s a good substitute for that special Saturday cuppa. Verdict: Yeah!
Another candy on shelves is the Ghirardelli Chocolate Squares in Pumpkin Spice Caramel variety. The caramel inside is pretty good with nice pumpkin spice flavor, but I’m just not a fan of smooshing it into the chocolate. I like chocolate and caramel, but not so much with the extra pumpkin spice. Verdict: Meh.
Lastly, I gave Pumpkin Pie Greek Yogurt by Dannon a try. I actually didn’t see these at Target, but they caught my eye when I popped into the grocery to keep my 2 year old’s Oh-ogurt habit going. I often grab one or two yummy flavors for me too that I can pretend are dessert once the kids are in bed. Pumpkin Pie yogurt sounded like dessert anyway, so I gave it a try. Again, it’s lacking on the spice front but the pumpkin flavor was prominent enough to be satisfying. Verdict: Yeah!