I know it is still summer but I have to share a fall favorite with you now, I just couldn’t wait any longer. Fall is definitely one of my most favorite times of year, but one of the best things about Fall is the Pumpkin Spice Latte at Starbucks. It is creamy, rich with just the right hint of pumpkin pie spices…but I am always so sad when January comes and it is gone once again…that is until now. This year I have decided to make my own Pumpkin Spice Creamer so I am not at the mercy of Starbucks and their seasonal delight, plus I will be saving a ton of calories, points (a latte is only 3 WW+ points) and $$. It really is a win , win for everyone in my book.
So what started me on this pumpkin spice latte journey in late summer? Well it was this pesky tweet I saw one day from @TheRealPSL a few weeks ago. Starbucks and their massive marketing minds starting talking about the beloved Pumpkin Spice Latte and dropping hints about when it might be making an appearance in the stores, but it has still not given any definite dates so I decided it was time that we created our own. After poking around on Pinterest for a few days and looking at some other pinners attempts I started experimenting and then finally I had it…Pumpkin Spice Creamer as good as Starbucks.
I use the creamer to make a latte with my Nespresso machine but you could use it with coffee and it would be AMAZING!! I don’t add the whip cream everyday but I did for my first one, it just makes it a little more special & pretty.
Pumpkin Spice Latte
A pumpkin spice latte as good as the expensive chain stores
Calories 85 Calories from Fat 25 Total Fat 2.8g Saturated Fat 1.8g Cholesterol 11mg Sodium 57mg Potassium 189mg Total Carbohydrates 10.7g Sugars 8.9g Protein 3.6g
Vitamin A 20% - Vitamin C 2% - Calcium 14% - Iron 1%
Nutrition Grade C-
The Half Baked Life http://www.thehalfbakedlife.com/
For the creamer I used skim milk but did choose to use Half & Half, it adds just the right amount of creaminess and richness without a lot of added fat and calories. Also make sure you strain the pumpkin mixture before storing it…I made the mistake and did not the first time and it made for a very grainy and lets just say not so delicious coffee expereince. I normally use 3 tbsp. with my espresso or coffee with a little added skim milk and find that it is just the right amount of cream and makes a perfect pumpkin spice latte.
To store it I use a mason jar so I can keep the lid closed tight. Just make sure to shake it really well before each use as it settles pretty quickly.
With all the calories and points I am saving this fall I am definitely going to have indulge some other decadent pumpkin treats so make sure a check back for more pumpkin goodies!
Pumpkin Spice Creamer
A homemade creamer that brings fall to your coffee anytime of the year
Mexican food is definitely my down fall. I mean everything is loaded with cheese, there are chips, tortillas and just the right amount of heat…everything I love, but it can also be terrible for my waistline…until now. Last week I was looking through my pantry looking for inspiration and I found spaghetti noodles & enchilada sauce…now that is a interesting combo, but then I thought to myself why can’t enchilada sauce be a base for a pasta sauce, it has tomatoes in it…so the fun began.
The beauty of this dish is it ended up being a 2 pot dish, one for the pasta and the second for the chicken and sauce. By cooking the chicken and veggies in the same pan all those flavors have a chance to meld together and create one of the most flavorful sauces ever. This sauce is great over pasta but it would also be great as an enchilada sauce, burrito sauce or as a base for tortilla soup.
If you wanted to sneak in some additional veggies this would be a great dish to do it with. You could throw in some zucchini, squash or even some eggplant to the veggie mix which would add some added nutrients and some great body to the sauce. When your ready to serve the pasta you can top it with fresh cilantro, cheese, sour cream, avocado or some green onions. It is such a colorful dish that will make your dinner table so pretty.
If you have had enough chicken, you can use ground beef instead and I bet the kids would love it too.
Chicken Enchilada Pasta
A creamy, easy and pretty pasta dish that brings together all the best flavors of chicken enchiladas
Some of my most favorite memories as child are around July 4th. For many, many summers we would go to our family farm in Missouri and my grandparents would have a family reunion each July 4th weekend. We would have a golf tournament, fun games, a show put on my all the kids and then a huge bonfire with hotdogs and my most favorite S’mores!!
There is just something special about roasted marshmallows, chocolate and graham crackers all put together into a cute little sandwich that just makes a perfect little dessert. As much as I love s’mores made on an open fire it is a little more difficult now, I mean the folks in my subdivision kinda frown upon bonfires, so I had to come up with a delicious alternative…and these bars are that and so much more!!
With each bite you get some of the buttery graham cracker crust with the chocolate from the cookie middle and then a little marshmallow that has been perfectly browned. If you wanted to change it up a bit you could add in some white chocolate chips or even some butterscotch chips. If you wanted to add a little more crunch you could throw in some of your favorite nuts, a crushed up candy bar, or even some pretzels. The possibilities are endless!!
A delicious bar filled with all the best a s'mores treat has