Pumpkin Spice Syrup

This pumpkin spice syrup is made with sugar, water, pumpkin puree, and spices just like you’ll find at Starbucks. But better. It’s a fantastic (and inexpensive!) way to add some pumpkin spice flair to your lattes, smoothies, pancakes, or frosting. Here’s how to make it.

A jar of pumpkin spice syrup with a spoon resting on top and two spoons beside the jar.

Confession time, everyone. We know that this time of year, it can be easy to succumb to pumpkin spice obsession. When you feel that need to indulge come on, you’ll want to be able to reach for a jar of this in the fridge.–Renee Schettler Rossi

Pumpkin Spice Syrup

  • Quick Glance
  • (5)
  • 5 M
  • 30 M
  • Makes 16 (1-tbsp) servings | 1 cup
4.4/5 - 5 reviews
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In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine the sugar and water and whisk constantly until the sugar dissolves.

Whisk in the pumpkin purée, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, nutmeg, cloves, and ginger. Continue to cook, whisking frequently, until the mixture thickens and reduces in volume, about 10 minutes more. Don’t let the mixture come to a boil.

Turn off the heat and let the pumpkin spice syrup cool in the pan for about 15 minutes.

If desired, strain the pumpkin spice syrup through a strainer lined with a coffee filter or cheesecloth.

Tester tip: Straining the syrup requires a touch of patience since the liquid is thick and will take quite a while to strain. It’s not necessary to strain it, although straining does prevent the spice residue from clinging to your coffee cup after you’re done sucking down your pumpkin spice latte. If you don’t strain the syrup, it will need a quick shake or stir before using to redistribute the settled spices.

Transfer the syrup to a glass jar or other container with a lid. You can stash the syrup in the refrigerator for up to 1 month. Originally published October 16, 2014.

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Recipe Testers' Reviews

This pumpkin spice syrup recipe is just what I've been looking for—spicy, pumpkin-y, deep orange sweetness. We love all things pumpkin and spice, but I really dislike the imitation flavors of some products. It never occurred to me to try making my own pumpkin spice syrup.

It's the perfect addition to any number of dishes. I didn't strain the syrup, and it's just fine—the spices aren’t at all gritty. Since I didn’t strain the syrup, it does need a quick shake to redistribute the settled spices before using. I cut the cloves down to 1/8 teaspoon, and we still thought it was a little strong. Next time I'll use less.

It’s best to start with half the amount you think you will need and then add more after tasting. We started with 2 tablespoons in a 12-ounce cup of coffee, but it was too sweet and too spicy—just too much. But when we remade the coffee with a little less than 1 1/2 tablespoons syrup, it was perfect. Definitely use with restraint, taste, and adjust.

A couple tablespoons of syrup took a bowl of plain mashed sweet potatoes to sublime heights. And my morning oatmeal was truly a treat when I stirred in a tablespoon of spicy sweetness. I can’t wait to figure out other ways to use the rest of the syrup. I think this will be a permanent resident in the fridge this fall and winter.

I've used this pumpkin spice syrup every day for 5 days in lattes. I didn't strain the first batch, and I got a residue in the bottom of cup similar to coffee grinds. So I made the recipe again, strained it, and had just small trace of residue in the bottom of the cup. It works really well in lattes, and I'll continue to use it.


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  1. Maybe it´s just me who is used to Starbucks artificial pumpkin spice flavoring but I made this recipe and doesn’t it both taste and smell a lot like gingerbread? I tried to make pancakes with some of the syrup and it smelled and tasted like some kind of gingerbread cake, I´m not implying that it´s something wrong with the recipe, I´m just wondering if it´s supposed to taste like that or if I did something wrong? 🙂

    1. Jonatan, you didn’t do anything wrong. Real pumpkin spice contain many of the spices used in gingerbread. What you’ve grown accustomed to at Starbucks is anything BUT spice. Until recently, it didn’t contain any pumpkin. It did contain high fructose corn syrup, which supposedly they changed to sugar, fruit and vegetable juices for color, annatto (for color), potassium sorbate (preservative), and salt.

  2. OMG this is both amazing and delicious! Pure fall in syrup form! I have a hunch that I will need to make a double batch next time! Thanks so much for sharing!

  3. Wow, finally my own pumpkin spice syrup at home! Those selfish baristas at You Know Where won’t sell me their magic syrup. But in 25 minutes, I had an amazing pumpkin spice syrup. And I’ve had it in coffee every morning since. I did change one thing. Instead of using 1 cup sugar, I substituted 1/2 cup Splenda as I’m trying to cut down on calories anywhere I can. Next batch I’m going to play with the spice ratios some. I’m thinking more cinnamon and less clove. The batch after that, maybe I’ll up the ginger. The possibilities are almost endless.

  4. The syrup sure is tasty even though it was a lot of work to strain. But then I ran into a problem: after I store the syrup in a mason jar in the fridge, the next day I noticed the bottom has crystalized. Is that typical?

    1. Lily, there’s no cause for concern with the crystals. They’re harmless. (It’s possible that the syrup didn’t remain at the proper temperature quite long enough, but it’s nothing to worry about, and reheating it will only further evaporate the liquid and concentrate the flavors, so no need to do anything about it.) As for straining, we like to just walk away and let gravity do its thing. Many thanks for trying the recipe and letting us know. Looking forward to hearing which one you try next.

  5. I made this with half the sweetener in the form of coconut sugar, but strained and froze it in ice cube trays for a “single serving” dollop so my “right out of the pot” coffee is drinkable and delectable a little sooner 😉

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