Signals of fall include decrease in temperature, pumpkins everywhere, Halloween costumes – but for me, I know it is fall when I start seeing Pumpkin Spice Latte signs at Starbucks. I love Starbucks. I am not ashamed to admit it. I also love all that is pumpkin.
The first pumpkin spice latte I had I knew I was in trouble. Caffeine and pumpkin all rolled into one in a creamy delicious green and white cup served with a smile and a “have a nice day.” Just how much of a splurge are we talking about here? I knew that the pumpkin syrup that they were so generous with was not sugar free and the whipped cream they automatically added was also packing on the calories. So…oh, so many years ago when this tradition started, I looked into this. Here is what I found
Grande Pumpkin Spice Latte 380 calories
380 calories! No way am I spending that many calories on a beverage. 380 calories is about what I usually eat for lunch. Just how many minutes would I have to spend on the treadmill just to break even? Too many.
Just how can I have my pumpkin spice latte and not blow the calorie bank?
- Remove the whip and save 70 calorie – we are down to 310
- Switch to nonfat milk and save another 50 calories – we are down to 260
Another way to decrease the calories would be to choose a tall (Starbuck’s small) instead of a grande for 200. However, I think Starbuck’s only has small for two reasons 1) people who don’t drink coffee and just want to absorb the hipness of Starbucks or 2) have already had 4 cups of coffee and find themselves at a Starbucks for a meeting. So, the tall thing does not work for me but may for you.
The real way I handle my pumpkin spice latte love, is to only have 2 per season. That’s right 2 per season. Any more and the specialness of the drink would diminish. Only having 2 forces me to be mindful in drinking and enjoying the latte instead of getting to the bottom of the cup and not remembering how special it was. I have these 2 at times when I can sit and really savor it.
In case you are wondering what my usual Starbucks order is – Grande, 2 pump sugar-free vanilla, non-fat, Misto, rolls right off of the tongue. For the non Starbucks addict, that is ½ coffee and ½ steamed milk. At 50-80 calories not something that will break the calorie bank and cheaper than a latte.
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