Vegan Pumpkin Green Latte

I am so beyond into pumpkin this fall and I am lucky enough to have found a huge sale on canned...




I am so beyond into pumpkin this fall and I am lucky enough to have found a huge sale on canned pumpkin in my neighborhood so my pantry is well stocked. I have been throwing pumpkin puree into everything from soups to pasta sauces, as well as sneaking it into desserts and drinks. If you read my blog often you know that I shared a recipe recently for my Pumpkin Pie Green Smoothie. I really loved how well pumpkin mixed into that healthy drink and set out to  find other ways to make pumpkin smoothies. I came home from a walk last week craving my afternoon coffee and, surrounded by cans of pumpkin puree,  I decided I would revamp the classic pumpkin spice latte. I don't keep fresh coffee beans at home so this drink was made with organic freeze dried coffee granules but feel free to substitute freshly brewed espresso or coffee. When I made this beverage I wasn't really hungry so I didn't want to make a thick smoothie, I wanted something with a similar thickness to a milky latte. 



There is both ice and hot coffee in this drink. The final temperature is neither hot or cold, but warm -- which works well with the pumpkin flavor while still masking the flavor of the green vegetables. This drink would also be delicious poured over ice or blended with more ice into a frappuccino style coffee. Next time.

The night before I made this drink I had consumed a LOT of sugar at a small dinner with friends to celebrate my husband's birthday. Let's just say I may never reach for a cupcake again. On days after I overload on sugar I tend to crave neutral foods like greens to help balance myself out. I was very intent on greening my pumpkin coffee drink to help calm my body down after the sugar assault. I didn't want to add any fruit and instead opted to use a touch of raw honey which usually doesn't spike my blood sugar when I add it to coffee. I chose honey because a little goes a long way so I could expect to only use a teaspoon or so to sweeten up my drink. It really worked in this drink but if you're vegan or just 'don't do' honey, try agave or some maple syrup or even coconut sugar or nectar -- you will need more of these alternatives than honey so be sure to taste test the drink before emptying it from your blender.




I first made this latte-style green drink last weekend and I loved it so much that I've made one every day since then. I hope you give it a try. This drink is a great way to sneak vegetables into your morning coffee routine and to satisfy your fall pumpkin cravings.



Pumpkin Green Latte
(vegan, gluten-free, soy-free, paleo, refined-sugar-free, nut-free)

 
Makes 1 very large Pumpkin Green Latte or 2 small lattes
  • 1-2 tbsps freeze dried coffee granules (I use organic decaf freeze-dried coffee OR replace the water in this recipe with 1 cup of brewed coffee and 1/2 cup water)
  • 1-2 tsp raw honey (or substitute agave or coconut nectar or maple syrup for a totally VEGAN version)
  • 1 tsp cinnamon (or more, I use 2 tsp)
  • ½ tsp ground ginger or a small hunk of fresh ginger (peeled)
  • ½ tsp vanilla bean powder or extract
  • ¼-½  cup organic pumpkin puree
  • 1 ½  cups simmering-boiling water
  • 1-1 ½  cups frozen spinach
  • 2-4 ice cubes
  • 1-2 tbsp canned coconut milk or your favorite non-dairy milk


OPTIONAL GARNISH:
  • 1 tsp canned coconut milk
  • dash cinnamon
  • ice cubes
Add coffee granules (or brewed coffee if substituting), hot water, cinnamon, vanilla, ginger, and pumpkin puree to a blender and blend together on high until smooth and frothy.
Add raw honey and frozen spinach and coconut milk and blend until smooth and frothy. Add the ice cubes and blend on highest setting until smooth and frothy.Taste! Add extra sweetener if necessary and blend until smooth.
Pour into 1 huge glass or 2 normal cups.The drink(s) will be warm but not hot. If you want this drink very cold, add two ice cubes to each serving.
Whether you choose to serve this drink warm or cold, I recommend that you garnish the naturally occurring foam on the top of the drink with a drizzle of coconut milk and a dash of cinnamon if desired.  

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