…aka the luxe pumpkin spice latte.
There are two ways I handle a “sweet” craving – a) jump in the car and head to the self-serve fro yo shop down the street (so as to satisfy it immediately), or b) dream up a recipe that’s detail-heavy and time-intensive (delayed gratification at its finest). Usually, there’s no middle ground.
The inspiration for the delicious concoction above came early one morning before work, as my non-caffeinated self spaced out and stared into the cabinet above our coffee maker, willing my morning fuel to drip just a little bit faster. Nothing ground-breaking spurred my thinking. Really, my gaze just happened to be fixated on a set of tea cups decked out in a festive little winter scene ($1 each at Home Goods – score!) and BAM, it hit me. These cups are just meant for a souped up PSL.
Never mind that I’d never made homemade ice cream before, or even owned an ice cream maker. Go big or go home, baby.
Sure, this recipe takes some planning. My (newly purchased) ice cream maker requires the bowl to be frozen, which can take a few hours. Then the egg/milk/sugar mixture needs to be refrigerated for a few hours. A few hours plus a few hours does not instant gratification make. But trust me, it’s worth it.
And did I mention that this recipe for pumpkin spice gelato (which is extremely loosely based on the vanilla ice cream recipe in the accompanying Cuisinart instruction booklet) doesn’t call for any heavy cream? Nope, don’t need it! You just saved yourself hundreds of calories, and your taste buds won’t even know the difference.
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- 2 cups whole milk
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar, divided
- 3 egg yolks
- very small pinch salt
- 1 1/4 tsp vanilla extract, divided
- 1/4 cup pumpkin puree
- 2 tbsp brown sugar
- 3/4 tsp cinnamon (or to taste)
- 1/8 tsp nutmeg
- 1/8 tsp ginger
- pinch of ground cloves
- Brewed espresso, optional for affogato
- Combine milk and 1/4 cup of granulated sugar in a saucepan, and heat over medium-low heat, until just barely boiling.
- Meanwhile, whisk together egg yolks and the other 1/4 cup of granulated sugar in a large bowl (you can also use a hand mixer). Mix until it looks light and creamy.
- When milk is barely boiling, slowly pour the milk/sugar mixture into the egg/sugar mixture, about 1/2 cup at a time, until all incorporated. Whisk continuously.
- Once everything is combined, pour mixture back into saucepan and stir continuously over low heat until mixture sticks to back of wooden spoon.
- Let cool to room temperature. Stir in 1 tsp vanilla extract.
- The mixture needs to be cold, so stick in the refrigerator for at least a few hours.
- Once cold, remove from fridge and whisk in pumpkin puree, brown sugar, remaining 1/4 tsp vanilla extract, and spices until smooth.
- Prepare according to your ice cream maker’s instructions. For me, this part took about 20 minutes.
- The gelato is good to go as soon as it’s finished (grab a spoon!), or can be frozen for a little while afterward for a more solid consistency.
- To make it in the affogato style (did you know affogato means “drowned” in Italian?), brew some espresso, and pour about a shot’s worth over top of gelato. Not into coffee? No problem! This is super delicious as straight-up gelato, as well.
All in all, sure it would be easier to pop into a Starbucks, grab a PSL, and head on your merry way, but the extra effort that goes into this recipe most certainly pays off.