When Starbucks' pistachio latte went out of season (it's back now, thank goodness), I simply resigned myself to not enjoying that nutty flavor until the coffee conglomerate decided to bring it back. But that was silly! You can -- and you should -- make your own coffee syrup at home, therefore creating any kind of flavored latte from the comfort of your own home. It's not as intimidating as it sounds, and having your favorite flavor on hand at all times? Worth it.
So, where do I start?
Have you ever made simple syrup for cocktails? Good, you're already on your way! If not, the formula is simple: sugar + water. Heating that mixture over the stove until the sugar melts and it thickens up a bit is all there is to it.
So, go on and get out your sugar and measuring cups -- you'll use a 1:1 ratio (sometimes a little less water, play around with it!), so add equal parts sugar and water to the pot and simmer until it starts to feel just the slightest bit goopy.
And now I have syrup?
Sure do! Any next steps from here will depend on your preferred flavor profile. If you like a general sweetener, you're done! But if you prefer something more special, you'll want your add-ons.
For vanilla syrup, add 1 vanilla bean and vanilla extract.
For caramel syrup, you want corn syrup and vanilla extract.
For brown sugar cinnamon syrup (another Starbucks favorite), add half a teaspoon each of brown sugar and cinnamon.
The list goes on.
Some syrups require a little more detail. To make a mocha, you'll need a chocolate syrup: Add cocoa powder to your simple syrup mixture over the stove, then follow up with vanilla extract after it's off the heat. For pumpkin spice syrup, you'll add pumpkin pie spice and pumpkin puree during the heating process.
Now, you add a bit of your syrup to your morning cup of coffee along with your usual milk or cream and sugar. (For reference, one "pump" at Starbucks is about half a tablespoon of syrup.)
Time to customize!