This vegan pumpkin spice shake is made with almond milk, frozen pumpkin purée, and lots of fall spices for a flavourful drink that's still healthy enough.
Many of us like to buy a few sugar pumpkins in the fall to make homemade pumpkin purée. All you have to do is roast the pumpkin until the flesh is soft enough to purée. Sometimes homemade purées can be more watery than the commercially canned pumpkin, so I like to strain it through a few layers of cheesecloth to make sure it's thick enough for baking with.
When you go to all that effort, it's nice to make a big batch of purée. Then you can explore more recipes for baking with pumpkin—order your copy of the e-book All About Pumpkin so you can celebrate this star ingredient!
Freezing pumpkin purée
I freeze some of it in different portion sizes to be ready for a variety of recipes:
- freeze 0.5 cup portions to make a small batch of baked pumpkin donuts or these cute pumpkin whoopie pies filled with cream cheese frosting.
- freeze 1 cup portions for easy recipes like this pumpkin loaf cake, this whole wheat pumpkin bread, or even this maple pumpkin bread
- freeze 1.5 cup portions for this healthier pumpkin bread which is also eggless, dairy-free, and vegan, or this fabulous pumpkin bread with cranberries
- freeze some in ice cube trays for smoothies and shakes (like the recipe below)
Most smoothies are banana-based, often made with frozen banana which gives the drink a creamy, thick textures. This shake is made with frozen pumpkin and almond milk (and specifically Almond Breeze). I also usually opt for the unsweetened kind (whether plain or vanilla) because I like to control my sweetness. I've been using Almond Breeze since 2009, and I've been hooked ever since. I've got to be honest though: I would not drink Almond Breeze straight, BUT I love it in breakfast porridges, blended in shakes, or even to bake with.
Almond Breeze has added a new line of refrigerated almond milk beverages that come in 1.89-litre packs and start out in the refrigerator aisle (different from the shelf-stable tetra paks). I found this convenient for a recipe like this one because adding room-temperature milk to a cold shake kinda doesn't make sense and I never remember to pre-chill my almond milk before opening it because my shake-making is usually spontaneous.
I am not one for protein powders or adding scoops of anything more than the fruits and veggies I'd eat if I weren't about to blend them. And, as I mentioned earlier, I don't think every single "healthy drink" that comes out of my blender should involve a banana. This is a pumpkin pie shake and it tastes exactly like pumpkin pie: a little sweet, a little spiced, and a little creamy. In fact, I based this vegan shake recipe on the ingredients in the pumpkin tarts. I have consumed blender-fulls of this pumpkin pie shake. It's really very good, if I may say so myself.
Pumpkin spice shake
- 500 mL (2 cups) Almond Breeze unsweetened almond milk
- 25 grams (2 tablespoon) light brown sugar, more or less depending on how sweet you like your shakes
- 5 mL (1 teaspoon) pure vanilla extract
- 15 mL (1 tablespoon) pure maple syrup
- 2.5 mL (½ teaspoon) ground cinnamon
- 1.25 mL (¼ teaspoon) ground ginger
- 0.625 mL (⅛ teaspoon) ground nutmeg
- 1 pinch ground cloves
- 250 grams (1 cup) pumpkin purée, about 10 ice cubes worth if using homemade pumpkin purée frozen in ice cube trays
- In a blender, start by blending the almond milk, sugar, maple syrup, and spices.
- Add the pumpkin purée and blend until it's the consistency of a thick milkshake.
- Divide among glasses. Makes 4 small servings or 2 breakfast portions. You can sprinkle with some freshly grated nutmeg, ground cinnamon, or even graham cracker crumbs.
Almond Breeze sent me samples of their almond milk and financial compensation to develop recipes with their products this month. Thanks for supporting the sponsors that allow me to create new recipes for Kitchen Heals Soul. As always, please know that I wouldn't mention the product if it wasn't worth it. And I really have been using Almond Breeze since 2009.
I like the texture bananas provide, especially if I'm not including yogurt in the smoothie. But that's just me.
Thanks! Hmmm, maybe it lends a certain creaminess? But doesn't it overwhelm flavours?
Shareba @ In Search Of Yummy-ness says
I've been experimenting with pumpkin-flavoured drinks too, but I haven't found anything that I really like yet. Your shake looks yummy though! I've pinned this to my "pumpkin love" board 🙂
Thanks, Shareba! I tried a few versions of this recipe, but this was my favourite in the end. One of my versions even had a little Bird's Eye custard powder in it, but that one tasted great but had a cornstarch-y mouthfeel I didn't like. In the end, the simplest ingredients worked out the best, I guess 😉
Yummm!!! I agree that all smoothies rely on bananas too much. Pumpkin is a genius replacement
I love the idea of making pumpkin cubes - I'll have to do that soon! When I make smoothies, I rarely use banana. Lots of people like to use them because they add sweetness, especially if you are also tossing greens into your smoothie, and frozen bananas offer a thick, creamy texture. Me? I much prefer berries over bananas in smoothies.
ummm... this looks so yummy... now to get one delivered 😉