When that first hint of fall hits the air, it’s time to enjoy a pumpkin latte. While it’s fun to order a latte at your favorite coffee shop, you may be surprised to learn it’s not impossible to make your favorite fall drink at home.
To get that barista-brewed flavor and creamy texture, using the proper equipment makes all the difference. So while shopping for the right gadgets can be overwhelming, we’ve listed the tools you’ll need to make lattes (of the pumpkin variety, and more) at home.
What You’ll Need To Make a Pumpkin Latte
Pumpkin spice latte recipes typically combine:
- Pumpkin purée
- Ground spices
To put these ingredients together, you need the right combination of tools. Whether you love high-tech machines with all the bells and whistles or prefer low-tech options, there are plenty of latte-making gadgets on the market.
Start With an Espresso Maker
First, you need a reliable espresso maker to create a pumpkin spice latte. Like many specialty coffees, a pumpkin latte has an espresso base. To make espresso, the machine forces water, using high pressure, through finely ground coffee.
So if you want to create that coffee-shop flavor at home, pressure is a crucial factor. That’s why the traditional drip brewing method just won’t work for espresso or latte. A quality espresso maker exerts the right amount of pressure to push the water through the ground coffee, which is measured in “bars.” Depending on the brand and model, espresso machines generally produce nine to 19 bars of pressure.
Luckily, whether you use an automatic machine or opt for a manual espresso maker, there are plenty of brands and styles to choose from:
Nespresso Latissima One
The Nespresso Latissima One offers all the features you need to make a delicious pumpkin spice latte. From brewing espresso to frothing milk, it’s an all-in-one gadget for the home barista. Just keep in mind that you’ll have to buy coffee pods for this Nespresso machine.
But when you’re craving a creamy latte, the Latissima One has much to offer:
- Fast heat-up
- 1-touch recipes
- Milk frother
- High-pressure pump
- Automatic shut-off after 2 minutes
- Auto-cleaning function
- Descaling alarm
The descaling alarm is an important feature on any coffee maker, because it helps prevent mineral buildup that can affect the taste of coffee.
Nespresso Creatista Plus
Want to jazz up your latte game? Make each pumpkin spice latte a work of art with the Nespresso Creatista Plus espresso machine. Why should professional baristas have all the fun? Thanks to Breville milk texturing technology, you can select the right milk temperature and texture for creating latte art. Helpfully, the high-resolution display guides you through each step, from preparation to cleaning.
Additionally, there’s even more to love about the Creatista Plus:
- 3-second heat-up
- Steam pipe for milk frothing
- Programmable cup sizes
- 19 bar maximum pressure pump
- Stainless steel milk jug designed for latte art
- Descaling alarm
Latte art involves pouring the microfoam from the specially designed jug onto the cup of coffee in various patterns, such as a heart. When making latte art with your Creatista Plus, the foam should have a paint-like texture with tiny, fine bubbles known as microfoam. Whole milk generally makes the best microfoam, but you’ll learn from experience which milk and temperature setting produces the best texture.
Breville Bambino Plus
Ideal for small kitchens, the Breville Bambino Plus makes silky pumpkin spice lattes while taking up little counter space. This attractive, brushed steel machine offers three adjustable milk temperatures and textures for smooth and silky microfoam.
Key features of the Bambino Plus include:
- 3-second ThermoJet heating system
- Automatic and manual milk settings
- 9-bar pressure
- 1-touch shot control
- Stainless steel milk jug
- Stainless steel portafilter
K-Café Single Serve Coffee Latte & Cappuccino Maker
If you’re a Keurig coffee fan, consider the K-Café Special Edition Single Serve Coffee Latte & Cappuccino Maker. It works with any K-cup pods, so you can make a pumpkin latte with your favorite pumpkin spice K-cup pod. The pods are made from recycled materials, so it’s a win for sustainability, too.
Other things you’ll appreciate about the K-Café machine include:
- SHOT button for concentrated coffee
- Dishwasher-safe milk frother
- Travel mug accommodation
- Auto shut-off after 2 hours
- Descale reminder
AeroPress Original Coffee Maker
Finally, you can’t go wrong with a manual espresso maker. The budget-friendly AeroPress Original Coffee Maker requires no electricity and works in three simple steps:
- Add hot water and coffee
- Press the plunger
It takes a little practice to master the plunging technique, but it’s worth the effort when you can savor that creamy latte.
Consider Stand-Alone Milk Frothers
A pumpkin latte needs a silky, rich foam. Texture matters as much as the flavor when you’re craving a smooth, creamy pumpkin latte. But if you use a manual espresso maker to make lattes, you’ll need a stand-alone milk frother. Fortunately, the home barista can choose from a variety of milk-frothing tools:
Instant Milk Frother
Versatile and easy to use, the Milk Frother From Instant has a 4-in-1 program that creates foam from dairy and non-dairy milks. If you prefer oat milk or other vegan options, you’ll want to check out this machine to create rich, smooth microfoam to make your pumpkin latte complete.
You’ll love this milk frother’s compact size and user-friendly features:
- 4 settings for warm or cold foam
- Easy controls to start and stop programs
- Quiet frothing action
- Safe and cool exterior and handle
- Dishwasher-safe lid and whisk
- Easy-to-clean interior
With just one control button, the Nespresso Aeroccino3 is a breeze to use. Whether you want cold or warm foam, all it takes is the push of a button. This frother works best with the fat content of whole or 2% dairy milk, so it may not be ideal if you prefer non-dairy options.
Here are some of our favorite features of the Aeroccino3:
- Nonstick interior jug coating
- 2-minute frothing time
- Energy-saving mode
Zulay Milk Boss Milk Frother
If you prefer a handheld gadget, the Zulay Milk Boss Milk Frother is a good low-tech option. The wand runs on AA batteries and comes with its own stand, so it’s super portable.
The following features make the Milk Boss Milk Frother a great addition to your pumpkin latte tool kit:
• Ergonomic handle
• Stainless steel whisk
• Single on/off switch
The NanoFoamer by Subminimal is another battery-operated milk frothing wand. Select either the regular AA battery option or the rechargeable battery option.
Other Tools for Pumpkin Latte Lovers
From spice stirrers to coffee mugs, a variety of other products are available for the home barista. After all, you want to use the most precise measurements for your coffee and spices. And while you’re at it, go ahead and splurge on a fun and stylish latte mug.
Frieling Coffee Scoop & Stirrer
For example, the 11” Frieling Coffee Scoop and Stirrer lets you measure and combine coffee, spices, and syrups with ease. At one end, the spoon measures up to 2 Tbsp. At the other end, a convenient stirring spoon mixes ingredients together.
Travel Latte Mugs
If you’re serious about your pumpkin latte, the coffee mug is as important as any other home barista tool. The stainless steel Siesta Ombré Coffee Mug comes in your choice of fun colors. This 12-oz travel mug keeps beverages hot up to 24 hours and it may even become your first choice for sipping lattes at home.
While some travel mugs are dishwasher-safe, your best bet is to gently hand wash them in soapy water. Most are not microwaveable because they contain stainless steel.
At-Home Latte Mugs
If you plan to enjoy your latte at home, why not pour it into a stylish mug? There are plenty of durable mugs that look great and keep your latte warm.
If you enjoy sipping your hot drinks slowly, you’ll love the 15-oz. Bodum Cafe Latte Cups, made of clear double-walled glass.
Meanwhile, the Pfaltzgraff Naturewood Latte Mug is a 20-oz. stoneware work of art.
How To Make a Pumpkin Latte
Now that you’ve assembled the necessary gadgets, it’s time to savor that homemade pumpkin spice latte. Make a cup and curl up with a good book, or invite some friends over for a latte break.
Ingredients can vary with personal preference, but a typical recipe for a single cup contains:
- Espresso coffee
- Milk (dairy or nondairy)
- Pumpkin purée
- Maple syrup
- Vanilla extract
- Pumpkin spice powder
You can use pumpkin spice powder or prepare your own spice mixture from:
- Ground ginger
Instead of ground spices, you can use flavored syrups such as Torani Puremade Pumpkin Pie Sauce or Monin Pumpkin Spice Syrup. (You can often omit the pumpkin purée, vanilla, and maple syrup if you opt for syrup or sauce.)
Here are some basic directions for a pumpkin latte:
- In a sturdy coffee mug, combine the pumpkin purée, spices, maple syrup, and vanilla.
- Prepare the espresso coffee in your coffee maker according to the manufacturer’s directions. You’ll need 2 shots of espresso for each latte.
- Froth the milk using either the frother that comes with your machine, a stand-alone frother, or frothing wand. Follow the manufacturer’s directions to reach the foam consistency you prefer. The milk will stay warm and foamy so you can set it aside until you’re ready to add it to your latte.
- Add the espresso shots to the spice mixture in the cup and whisk until thoroughly combined.
- Add the foamy milk to the coffee mixture. If you have a frother that can make microfoam, now is your chance to whip up some impressive latte art. Sprinkle with pumpkin spice or cinnamon for a finishing touch.
And there you have it: Your homemade pumpkin spice latte is ready to sip and savor.
Enjoy Your Pumpkin Latte This Fall
Whether it’s just for you or for your family and friends, let the fall flavors take center stage. We hope our list of gadgets to help create your pumpkin latte will start you on your way to becoming a home barista.