Pumpkin spice is a polarizing flavor ― Anthony Bourdain has said he wants it to be ‘drowned in its own blood,” and many of us bemoan what this flavor does to our favorite food products. But other folks count down all year until the day pumpkin spice lattes are released at Starbucks.
In trying to keep an open mind this year, we taste tested some pumpkin spice products again and we’ve come to a realization: there’s something to this flavor. And there’s a right pumpkin spice product out there for everyone ― it’s just a matter of finding the best one for you.
We didn’t taste every pumpkin spice product on the market ― that would be a death sentence. Instead, we simply tested the products that are being heavily promoted this fall.
This is what we found: some pumpkin spice products are insanely strong, some are incredibly mild, and some just do it better than others.
We broke it all down for you in order from the most spiced to the mildest. Read it, and give pumpkin spice season a chance.
Pepperidge Farm Pumpkin Cheesecake Cookies
If you live for pumpkin spice, if you never feel like you get enough if it in your life, these cookies are for you. They are intensely spiced and not for the faint of heart.
Nestle Toll House Pumpkin Spice Chips
Nestle Toll House
This is how you make everything taste like pumpkin spice without having to use actual spices. These little morsels pack an epic spiced punch.
Pumpkin Spice Peeps
Pumpkin Spice Peeps basically taste like what a pumpkin spice candle smells. They are serious business.
Philadelphia Pumpkin Spice
At first bite, this tastes like a pumpkin spice dream. But then the flavors begin to intensify. If you want everything to taste like a pumpkin spice cake, without having to actually make one, this is your ticket.
Pumpkin Spice Lindor Truffles
There's something unsettling about biting into a chocolate to taste a filling that is wholly pumpkin spice. But it's the best kind of unsettled you'll ever feel.
Bailey's Pumpkin Spice
This is how you make a pumpkin spice latte 2.0.
Pepperidge Farm Pumpkin Spice Milano
This might sound like a bad idea, messing with a classic cookie like the Milano, but it is in fact brilliant. Slightly spiced, layered with chocolate, all encased in the crumbly cookie we love.
Pumpkin Spice Malt Balls
Julie R Thomson
You didn't know how badly you needed pumpkin spice malt balls in your life until you bite into one of these orange treats. These are a gift to fall.
Nestle Toll House Pumpkin Spice Cookies
Nestle Toll House
Yummmmmm. Pumpkin spice plays nice in these ready-to-bake cookies. Bonus: your kitchen will smell really nice when you make them.
Caramel Almond Pumpkin Spice Kind Bar
Kind has done its best work in this seasonal bar. It is balanced in its spice, has a candy-coated bottom, and is all around a dream to bite into.
Pepperidge Farm Pumpkin Spice Swirl Bread
Cinnamon raison has some serious competition with this loaf. It's what your morning toast has been missing. It tastes like pie, without sugar, that you get to eat for breakfast. Bravo.
Yes, yes, yes, yes. The genius thing about this seasonal release is that it has all that rich pumpkin spice flavor, but is mixed with the lightness that is popcorn so it doesn't make you feel like you need an elastic waist band on your pants.
Pumpkin Spice Covered Pretzels
Julie R Thomson
This. Is. It. This is the fall spiced food you can eat every day and never get sick of. The salt from the pretzels is what pumpkin spice has been missing all along. It balances out everything and makes fall not only feel, but also taste, like the most wonderful time of year.