Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew

Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew is a fall spin on iced coffee reminiscent of the popular drink from Starbucks...except this recipe is easy to make at home with natural ingredients including real pumpkin puree!

Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew with text overlay.


 

'Tis the season for all things pumpkin! October has arrived, and while many parts of the country are already enjoying cool fall weather and glorious fall foliage, those of us in Texas are (alas!) still seeing temperatures creep into the 90s. And so this year -- rather than willing the temps to drop by perspiring in my cute sweater while sipping on a warm pumpkin drink -- I decided to instead carry my iced coffee infatuation beyond the summer months. Say hello to this scrumptious, easy-to-make Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew recipe!

If you're a fan of the pumpkin coffee drinks at Starbucks, you are probably already familiar with this drink. So while we're on the topic, I have a shocking confession to make: Even though I love pumpkin drinks, the ones from Starbucks aren't my favorite...because I think they taste rather artificial. (We can still be friends, right?)

I had high hopes the first time I ordered a Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew, but the orange color and the synthetic pumpkin flavor gave me that same not-so-great reaction I always have to a PSL. So, like any good food blogger would do, I decided to try making my own version of a Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew at home using more straightforward ingredients!

Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew in glass plus ingredients to make it in background.

Ingredients

I already have an all-natural Pumpkin Spice Creamer recipe that I originally thought could be frothed to make a Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew. And while it did somewhat work when I tried it, that creamer recipe is a little heavier on the pumpkin, so its "foam" didn't get quite as lofty as I was hoping.

Therefore, I basically tweaked the proportions and made some adjustments to that recipe for a more authentic PCCB experience:

Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew ingredients with labels.
  • Half-and-half. My personal preference is to use half-and-half in my coffee. I find milk to be too thin and heavy cream to be too rich. That being said, you can use any type of milk or cream that you prefer in this recipe. Skim milk, 2%, whole milk, half-and-half, heavy cream, soy milk, almond milk, oat milk...the choice is yours! Just keep in mind that the ability of different types of milk to foam can vary (for better or for worse) when you whip or froth them.
  • Pumpkin puree. Use Homemade Pumpkin Puree if you've already got some on hand, or you can crack open a can of plain pumpkin puree and then use the leftovers for other pumpkin delicacies. A tablespoon of puree was as much as I could add to my foam and still get it to stabilize. But fortunately, that's still enough to give your drink authentic pumpkin flavor!
  • Vanilla syrup. While I typically use maple syrup as the sweetener in my homemade coffee creamer recipes, for this Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew recipe, I wanted to be able control the sweetness and the vanilla flavor of both the coffee and the foam (as Starbucks does). So I found that by using vanilla syrup, I could add it to both components. Store-bought vanillasyrup will work just dandy (I do check the ingredients to make sure it's basically just water + cane sugar + vanilla), or you can scroll down to the next heading to easily make your own homemade vanilla coffee syrup.
    • If you wish to use a different type of sweetener, however, go right ahead! Maple syrup, simple syrup, granulated sugar, or your favorite sugar-free sweetener will all work, though amounts may have to be adjusted. Also, a syrup (such as simple syrup in place of granulated sugar) is going to work better in a cold drink since the granules are already dissolved.
    • Finally, you could always add a tiny splash of vanilla to your iced coffee components to compensate for using a plain sweetener. For example, you could use 1 tablespoon maple syrup + an additional ½-teaspoon vanilla in the pumpkin cream recipe, and 1-2 teaspoons maple syrup + ¼-teaspoon vanilla per glass of coffee.
  • Pumpkin pie spice. If you don't already have a bottle of Pumpkin Pie Spice in your spice cabinet, you can easily make your own Homemade Pumpkin Pie Spice. Or, if you don't want to whip up a whole batch, simply substitute ¾ teaspoon cinnamon + ⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg + ⅛ teaspoon ground allspice + a pinch of ground cloves for the 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice that this recipe calls for.
  • Salt. You only need a tiny pinch to help the other flavors pop! I use my favorite fine sea salt.
  • Pure vanilla extract. Use real, high-quality vanilla extract in a drink like this since you'll really taste it.
  • Cold brew coffee. My favorite cold brew coffee that I've tried thus far is easy to make (let the bags steep for a day in a pitcher) and the flavor is smooth and delicious. But let's be real here. I'm not always on top of my game enough to have cold brew coffee prepped and waiting when I wake up. So since my husband makes a pot of coffee every morning, I am not above pouring a cup of hot, freshly brewed coffee into a mug, popping it in the freezer long enough to cool down, and then pouring it over ice and proceeding with my recipe. Don't judge me.

How to Make Vanilla Syrup

If you don't wish to buy a bottle, making your own homemade vanilla syrup to use in coffee or other drinks is as easy as making regular simple syrup:

  1. Simply combine 1 cup water + 1 cup granulated sugar in a small saucepan.
  2. Stir over medium heat until the sugar is completely dissolved, but do not boil.
  3. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in 3 teaspoons of pure vanilla extract.
  4. Allow to cool, transfer to a bottle or a jar with a lid, and store in the refrigerator.
Jar of cream to make a Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew.

How to Make a Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew

(The below photos are intended to be helpful, but please refer to the recipe card at the bottom of this post for FULL DIRECTIONS.)

Make the pumpkin cream:

  1. In a small pot, whisk together the half-and-half, pumpkin puree, vanilla syrup, pumpkin pie spice, and salt until smooth and steaming...but not boiling. Remove the pot from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract.
  2. Strain the mixture through a sieve into a jar. Allow it to cool, seal the jar, and refrigerate until chilled.
Pumpkin cream mixture being whisked in pot on stove.
Straining the foam mixture through a sieve into a jar.
Jar of the liquid that will be turned into foam.

Prep the coffee and froth the foam:

  1. Pour 1 cup of cold brew coffee into a glass and stir in desired amount of vanilla syrup. Fill glass with ice to the top of the coffee level.
  2. Pour ¼-cup of pumpkin foam into a 1-cup glass measuring cup (or a frothing pitcher). Use a handheld milk frother (or alternative method -- see Tips & Tricks below) to foam the milk to your desired consistency.
Pouring coffee over ice.
Mixture ready to foam for a Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew.
Using a milk frother to foam the Pumpkin Cream.
Glass of iced coffee next to measuring cup of foam for Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew recipe.

Assemble a glass of Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew:

  1. Pour the pumpkin foam over the top of the iced coffee, sprinkle with pumpkin pie spice, and serve immediately.
Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew being made as cream is poured into iced coffee.
Close-up of foam and spices on top of a Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew.

Yield

This recipe yields enough for four servings of pumpkin cream. However, once foamed, the foam doesn't hold indefinitely.

So store the jar of pumpkin cream in the fridge and then foam enough for one serving (¼ cup, as explained in the directions) just before you are ready to enjoy a glass of Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew.

Helpful Tips, Tricks, & Equipment

  • This is the handheld milk frother that I own. It's inexpensive, it's versatile (I use it for more than coffee!), and it works well, assuming the batteries don't need to be changed.
  • Or for an even more luxurious, velvety foam, you can splurge a bit and get an electric milk frother.
  • That being said, you actually don't even need a milk frother if you don't have one or don't wish to buy one. You can easily froth your milk by hand...it just takes a bit longer and the foam will be looser and probably won't hold up quite as well.
    • Pour your liquid into a jar (leaving at least ⅔ of the jar empty), tightly seal the lid, and forcefully shake the jar for up to a minute.
    • Or, vigorously whisk your liquid in a small pot or bowl using a wire whisk until your desired bubbles form. Ta-daaa...free foam! 😉
  • For the most stable foam, your half-and-half (or chosen milk) should be both fresh and cold. But again, the type of milk you use will ultimately affect how fluffy your foam turns out, as will any other ingredients you may choose to increase or substitute.
  • Using my own preferred ingredients and tools, foaming this pumpkin cream results in about half liquid (that pours down into my coffee) and half foam (that sits on top). And I'm just fine with that ratio! But as always, feel free to tweak and experiment to get the Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew of your dreams.
Aerial close-up of foam atop Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew.

Hope you enjoy, friends!

A refreshing Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew is just what the arrival of fall calls for...whether the weather is adequately reflecting the season or not. 😉

More Yummy Fall Drinks

Aerial view of Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew.

Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew

Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew is a fall spin on iced coffee reminiscent of the popular drink from Starbucks...except this version is easy to make with natural ingredients including real pumpkin puree!
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Chilling time:: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 10 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 119kcal
Print Pin Rate

Ingredients

For the Pumpkin Cream/Foam:

  • 1 cup half-and-half, OR your favorite milk
  • 1 tablespoon pumpkin puree
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla syrup
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For 1 serving of Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew:

  • 1 cup cold brew coffee
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons vanilla syrup
  • Ice
  • Additional pumpkin pie spice or cinnamon, for serving

Instructions

TO MAKE THE PUMPKIN CREAM/FOAM TOPPING:

  • In a medium saucepan set over medium heat, whisk together the half-and-half (or milk), pumpkin puree, vanilla syrup, pumpkin pie spice, and salt until smooth and steaming (do not bring to a boil). Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract.
  • Strain through a fine mesh sieve into a jar; allow to cool. Put a lid on the jar and refrigerate until chilled (at least 1 to 2 hours).

TO MAKE ONE SERVING OF ICED COFFEE:

  • Pour 1 cup of cold brew coffee into a glass and stir in desired amount of vanilla syrup. Fill glass with ice to the top of the coffee level.
  • Pour ¼-cup of Pumpkin Cream into a 1-cup glass measuring cup or a frothing pitcher. Use a milk-frother to froth the milk to desired consistency. Pour over the top of the iced coffee, sprinkle with pumpkin pie spice (if desired), and serve immediately.

Notes

  • NUTRITION FACTS were calculated for 1 serving of Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew, assembled as directed (using ¼ cup of pumpkin cream recipe + 1 cup coffee).
  • This recipe will work with half-and-half, heavy cream, or just about any type of milk (skim milk, 2%, whole milk, almond milk, soy milk, oat milk, etc.), but keep in mind that the ability of different types of milk to foam can vary.
  • If you don't own a milk frother, you can instead shake the pumpkin cream in a ⅔-empty, tightly-sealed jar for about a minute until foamy, OR vigorously whisk it in a bowl with a metal whisk until foamy.
  • You may substitute your favorite type of sweetener for the vanilla syrup. See the post for more specific information and suggestions.
  • If you don’t have Pumpkin Pie Spice on hand, you may make your own for this recipe by combining ¾ teaspoon cinnamon + ⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg + ⅛ teaspoon ground allspice + a pinch of ground cloves. Or simply substitute straight cinnamon for the pumpkin pie spice.

Nutrition

Calories: 119kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 22mg | Sodium: 37mg | Potassium: 215mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 799IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 74mg | Iron: 1mg
Made this recipe? I'd love to see on IG!Mention @FiveHeartHome or tag #FiveHeartHome!

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Recipe Rating




3 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    I'm really not much of a pumpkin spice latte fan normally. But this recipe is awesome! Love the real pumpkin in here! Delish!

  2. 5 stars
    Pumpkin drinks are the best!! The Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew from Starbucks is my favorite, but it was even better making it at home!