Make Your Own Caramel Apple Spice

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

I'm probably the only oddball in the world who doesn't enjoy the taste of coffee. This is fairly inconvenient because I am also a person who is perpetually cold. Cuddling a hot coffee between my hands would be a great solution for mornings like this one when my fingers are about to fall off, but me and coffee just aren't friends. Tea doesn't strike my fancy either and you can only drink so much hot chocolate. That leaves me with the beauty that is a caramel apple spice and I am perfectly okay with that. This drink is my jam. It gets me. It offers everything that I need in a warm drink and warms my bones up while it's at it.

I remember the first time I ever tried this exquisite Starbucks drink. I was with my sister and a few friends in Target and we stopped by the in-store Starbucks for drinks. They ordered while I hung out in the background, waiting. What's a non-coffee drinker going to order in a coffee shop? I'll just sit and awkwardly watch you sip your drinks, thanks. My sister had ordered a caramel apple spice and mentioned that I might actually like this drink. She let me have a sip of hers when it came and my eyebrows shot up to my hairline. "You can't even taste the coffee!" I exclaimed. My sister gave me that "Oh, Whitney" pity look and replied, "That's because there is no coffee, genius."

I was sold. The best part is that it is available at Starbucks year-round, not just whenever the much more popular pumpkin-spiced latte deigns to make its yearly debut. Eventually, though, I started to feel a little ridiculous. I was essentially handing over my money to Starbucks on a semi-regular basis for a barista to heat up some apple juice for me.

Sure, they made it look pretty and I'm sure there were a few more spices in there than just juice (I hope), but still. I knew it shouldn't be that hard to make on my own. So when a suggested pin popped up on my news feed a few weeks ago, promising to produce the same type of caramel apple spice that Starbucks does, I hesitantly pinned it. (It was also probably the first suggested pin I've ever re-pinned. I'm probably doomed from here on out.)

4-6 cups of Simply Apple brand apple juice
1/4 cup of caramel sauce
2 cinnamon sticks
6 cloves
2-3 shakes of Apple Pie Spice*

Pour everything in a pot together and simmer for 5 minutes. Pour into cups and top with whipped cream, caramel drizzle, and a shake of cinnamon. BOOM! 

*The original recipe that I read called for all-spice berries, a phenomenon that I had never seen before and could not find in all the aisles of my local Kroger. I'm sure they were hiding somewhere. I thought about getting ground all-spice, but everything I read online said that it would be much more potent in grounded form. So I grabbed a thing of apple pie spice instead which, according to the jar, contained a blend of cinnamon, nutmeg, and all-spice. All of those ingredients sounded good, plus how can you go wrong by putting apple pie spice in a apple spiced drink?! You can't. It turned out amazing.

P.S. You may like these posts too: What Do You Snack On? and Chicken Lime Fiesta Soup Recipe


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  1. I used to be a barista at starbucks and quickly got burnt out on coffee but the caramel apple spice was my go to! I love this and I'm definitely going to try it at home (because I've probably only walked into a starbucks maybe 10 times since I quit 2 years ago)

    1. Definitely a great coffee alternative. It's perfect for this time of year too!

  2. I haven't tried this yet but am so eager to! I'll have to make some this weekend. My Mark has to work all day Saturday so I imagine I'll spend the day writing-- so a warm cup of apple juice with froth and yumminess sounds about right.


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