Autumn has barely settled in, and I’m already dizzy from all the pumpkin spice in the air.
No one denies the power of pumpkin spice—it eases us into the fall by adding subtle warmth and zest to everything it touches. This blend of nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves and ginger has become more synonymous with the beginning of the season than sweater weather or turning back the clocks.
But a mixture that was once limited to holiday pies has infiltrated beer, M&Ms and even potato chips, thanks in large part to the growing popularity of Starbucks’s annual release of its Pumpkin Spice Latte. The mania for the flavor even resulted in $290 million in sales of pumpkin spice-inspired products, USA Today reports.
It’s a shame that dishes that use other fall-centric flavors don’t get the same attention.
Here are five alternatives for the pumpkin spice fatiqued:
What’s better than a glass of apple cider from Huber’s Orchard, Winery and Vineyards? Getting that cider from Heine Brothers’ without a trip to Starlight, Ind. The coffee shop carries Huber’s cider during the fall. Try it straight or add caramel, ginger, or pumpkin spice (if you must).
Autumn is made for the chai-apple cider at Highland Coffee Company. The creamy combination is rich and spicy without losing the tart apple taste. For an extra treat, add a dollop of the shop’s homemade chocolate whipped cream and enjoy on a crisp day (bonus points if you’re wearing a cardigan).
Caramel isn’t just for Halloween candy and apples. It tastes great in Heine Brothers’ salted caramella, a latte laced with caramel and sea salt. Fans of this beverage are probably the kind of folks who dip pretzels in Nutella and enjoy other salty-sweet combos.
S’mores are a treat best served sitting on a hard log huddled around a fire. But if a camping trip isn’t in your plans, go for a cold alternative at The Comfy Cow. The shop offers a s’mores flavor ice cream: chocolate ice cream with a swirl of marshmallow fluff, dark chocolate and graham cracker crumbs.
It’s a shame we live in a pumpkin pie versus sweet potato pie world. Give the latter a try with a slice at the Homemade Ice Cream and Pie Kitchen. Also, keep your fingers crossed that The Comfy Cow brings back last year’s seasonal favorite, sweet potato casserole ice cream.