It’s been over a decade since Starbucks premiered its Pumpkin Spice Latte—the burnt-orange beverage with its own Instagram account that has since become synonymous with sweaters, scarves, and strolling over crunchy autumn leaves. But the fall flavor spans far beyond the PSL, and outposts all over Charm City are using pumpkin spice as a starting-off point to create their own seasonal specialties. From beer to baked goods, here are some of our favorite local pumpkin products.
Michele’s Granola’s pumpkin spice blend: Local granola guru Michele Tsucalas got her start by pedaling crunchy concoctions at area farmers’ markets, and now, she’s created a flavor inspired by the markets’ annual fall harvest. Among the many varieties that Timonium-based Michele’s Granola whips up for the chillier months is a pumpkin spice blend that fuses golden flax, pumpkin seeds, pecans, and pumpkin pie spices. In addition to the year-round 32nd Street Farmers’ Market, Michele’s Granola is sold at retailers including Whole Foods Market, MOM’s Organic Market, and Wegmans. Multiple locations including 3201 Barclay St.
The pumpkin spice snowball at Walther Gardens: Who says snowballs are only a summer thing? At Hamilton-Lauraville’s Walther Gardens, snowball season doesn’t have a cut-off date. The garden’s signature shack, arguably the oldest in existence, uses a French line of specialty syrups that features fall flavors like maple spice, candy apple, and, of course, pumpkin spice. Sample one of the seasonal snowballs while strolling around the picturesque property in search of the perfect gourds and pumpkins this fall (Christmas trees also go on sale later in the winter). 4715 Walther Avenue, 410-426-0546
Pumpkin Power smoothie at Pure Raw Juice: Move over, PSL. This local juice bar, which operates locations everywhere from Federal Hill to Hampden, is offering a healthful alternative in the form of its new Pumpkin Power smoothie. Light orange in color, the drink is blended with banana, almond butter, cinnamon, pumpkin spice, turmeric, and cashew mylk. Other fall offerings not to miss include a pumpkin-spice au lait and an Apple Cinnamon Harvest acai bowl topped with homemade oats and maple syrup.
Miss Shirley’s pumpkin bread pudding: Chef Brigitte Bledsoe is always coming up with creative spins on classics dishes at Miss Shirley’s, and as the leaves begin to change, she typically brings back the cafe’s signature pumpkin offerings. This year, try the decadent pumpkin bread pudding layered with cream cheese, topped with a scoop of Taharka Bros. vanilla ice cream, and garnished with cinnamon and powdered sugar. Multiple locations including 1 Park Place, Annapolis, 410-268-5171
Atwater’s pumpkin lattes: Not only does Atwater’s serve up some standout soups and sandwiches, but the local farm-to-table chain also offers a slew of fall-inspired takeaway items and coffees this time of year. In addition to desserts like pumpkin bites and pies, the cafe features a warm pumpkin latte using a homemade syrup made with roasted pumpkins and a blend of spices. Multiple locations including 3601 Boston St., 667-309-7146
Pumpkin Spice ice cream from The Charmery: Regulars know that this Hampden-based sweet shop has a reputation for its outside-of-the-box flavors. But this fall, co-owner and master creamer David Alima couldn't help but get a little basic with his signature Pumpkin Spice ice cream. (Other seasonal staples include Apple Cider Sorbet and Speculoos.) To take the flavor to the next level, the team blends a scoop with a slice of cheesecake and some milk to create their irresistible Pumpkin Cheesecake milkshake.
Local pumpkin beers: We’d be remiss if we didn’t mention the bounty of local breweries currently celebrating seasonal releases. From favorites like Heavy Seas’ Great’er Pumpkin and Evolution Craft Brewing’s Jacques Au Lantern to DuClaw’s 31 Pumpkin Spice Lager and Full Tilt Brewing’s Patterson Pumpkin, Charm City is chock-full of fall brews to get you in the mood for apple-picking and leaf-peeping.