I am sitting at a Starbucks writing this so I might get struck by lightening, but here goes.

I don’t like the pumpkin spice latte.

There, I said it!

Now, before an angry fall lover strangles me with a scarf or whacks me over the head with a gourd, hear me out. I love fall too, but have you tasted a pumpkin spice latte? It doesn’t taste like pumpkin. There’s some sort of squashy flavor in there sure, but I’m not sure what it is. My suspicions were confirmed when a investigative food blogger the Food Babe wrote this post to confirm: no pumpkin in the pumpkin spice latte. I’m not as extreme as the Food Babe, I try to eat healthy foods as much as possible but I do enjoy the occasional fall treats including my variation of the pumpkin spice latte- more on that later. Here are a few of the best:

Pumpkin Pancakes – When I make pumpkin pancakes at home, I just add a scoop of pumpkin pie filling to my pancake mix, and thin it out with some milk to get the right pancake batter consistency. For an even easier way, you can use Willow Creek Mills Pancake mix, just follow the recipe and enjoy a fall breakfast.

Pumpkin Cheesecake- If I had to choose between pumpkin pie and pumpkin cheesecake, I would take the cheesecake every time. My favorite cheesecake comes from Cheesecake Heaven. When I first heard of Cheesecake Heaven I thought that seemed like a lofty name but after one bite I realized that the name is spot on. It makes a great gift for Thanksgiving,  Christmas or a fall birthday.

Pumpkin Chili- A scoop of pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling) transforms turkey chili into a fall treat. Find the recipe here and whip up this easy recipe to warm up a brisk fall night.

Berres Brothers Highlander Grog – Food doesn’t have to be pumpkin flavored to be a fall favorite. Flavored coffees by Berres Brothers will make you look forward to fall mornings. My personal favorite his Highlander Grog- it’s a satisfying combination of caramel, butterscotch and hazelnut.

Pumpkin Spice White Mocha – See, I told you I’m not a fall version of Ebeneezer Scrooge. I used to work at Starbucks so I had the perkiest of job perks- I could experiment with my own latte creations.The Pumpkin Spice White Mocha is my crowning achievement. The sweetness of the white mocha cuts down on the squashiness of the pumpkin spice for a perfectly balanced fall treat. Try it now, thank me later!

What’s your favorite fall food?