This homemade gingerbread latte is the ultimate winter coffee drink!
Well would you look at that? It is officially Christmas time. I hope everyone enjoyed their Thanksgiving weekend! I took a blogging break and just enjoyed the time with my family. On Sunday Mr. Briar and I went on our annual Christmas tree hunt. It was a little different this year since we are in a new state. Moving is hard, right?
Ever since I was in my early twenties I had the fantasy of having a yearly tradition with my (future, imaginary) family. I imagined us driving through the countryside to a quaint Christmas tree farm, (all wearing plaid and boots probably), selecting our perfect tree, cutting it down, sipping on some hot cider or cocoa (probably out of a vintage thermos), maybe visiting santa, then strapping the tree to our car and driving home to gather round and decorate the tree. When Mr. Briar and I moved back to Portland for our first Christmas as an engaged couple, I found the perfect Christmas tree farm. “We have to start establishing our family traditions!” I told him, and since my good-natured husband adheres to the “happy wife, happy life” philosophy, he agreed.
We went to that farm the two years we were in Portland, but since we moved to Washington this year we had to find a new “family tradition” spot. After some googling and review reading, I narrowed it down to a few options. The first farm we went to was a huge disappointment. It was basically a bunch of scraggly trees in a muddy field next to a gravel parking lot. There were some huge trees and some tiny trees but no average sized trees. We wandered around and did not see even one tree that was a maybe. Luckily at some point we realized that we didn’t actually have to buy our tree there, so we decided to leave and find a better option.
The second farm was perfect! It was very similar to our favorite place in Portland, Family owned, many varieties of trees in different sizes, and a generally quaint holiday experience. So although it can be difficult sometimes to re-establish traditions, in this case I was pretty happy with how it turned out.
There are other traditions that we all associate with the holidays, many of them having to do with food and drink. Although I don’t go out to coffee shops that often anymore, I do have a soft spot in my heart for the holiday flavored coffee drinks. And as much as I love a good peppermint mocha, it is a tough choice between that and a gingerbread latte. I love the holiday spices and the fact that it is a little less sweet than a mocha. I decided to recreate it at home since I really don’t like spending $5/drink on coffee, and I gave up the chemical laden coffee creamer a few years ago (begrudgingly).
This syrup is very similar to the Autumn Spice Syrup I shared a few months ago. The main difference is that there is molasses in this, which is what give it that distinctive gingerbread flavor. Oh, and lots of fresh ginger, of course. All you do is combine the ingredients, bring to a simmer, then let it steep for about an hour to really enhance the flavors. Most of the time I just pour some into my coffee with some half and half and I have the perfect cup of gingerbread flavored coffee. I usually use my Bialetti Moka Express for really good, strong coffee without an espresso machine. If you want more of a latte you can make some foamy milk to pour into your coffee. Don’t have a milk steamer? No problem. I made my own foamy milk with no special equipment. I just microwaved some milk in a glass mason jar, then screwed on the lid and shook it up a bit (not too much, we aren’t trying to make butter here!), and I had some nice hot, foamy milk for my coffee. Easy peasy!
Homemade Gingerbread Latte Syrup
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon molassas
- 2 inch piece of ginger peeled and sliced
- 3-4 cinnamon sticks
- 1 whole nutmeg
- 2 teaspoons whole cloves
- 2 teaspoons whole allspice
- Combine all ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium high heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar.
- When mixture is simmering, reduce heat and simmer on low for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, turn off heat and allow to steep for about an hour.
- Strain through a fine mesh sieve to remove solids, store in a sealed container in the fridge.
- To make latte, brew a strong cup of coffee or espresso. add syrup to taste (1-2 tablespoons or more), then top with steamed milk.
What are your Christmas traditions?
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Renee Grabski says
I actually made this, however I did make alterations to it. When I made it I used buckwheat honey (all I had was blackstrap molasses, not good eats) and darkest brown sugar and I adjusted the spices (added 2 pods of cardamom, one star anise and reduced the allspice because I ran out) and used the pre-graded ginger in the tube. Tastes really good in my coffee. However how long are we to microwave the milk and how long are we shaking the jar?
Hi Renee – I microwave it foe 20-30 seconds and then shake the jar for about 10 seconds – until the milk is very foamy. The only thing to watch out for is that it can build up pressure so the milk can spray when you open the jar. I sometimes put a tea towel over the lid when I open it and open it very slowly to release the pressure. I’m glad you enjoy the syrup!
Linda Jones says
I have a question about the nutmeg; do you put it in whole, crack it, grate it..?
Hi Linda – yes, you put the whole nutmeg into the pot with the other ingredients 🙂
Linda Jones says
Thank you. We had homemade Pumpkin Lattes on October 1st. Now I’m ready to try your Gingerbread Lattes. Thank you so much for sharing.
Alida @My Little Italian Kitchen says
Love the look of that coffee, I especially love that froth on top. Being Italian I have a small collection of those coffee makers (mokas) at home. Love your photos!
Thank you so much Alida! I do love the moka pots, I think it is my favorite way to make coffee 🙂
Nicole @ Young, Broke and Hungry says
As a latte drinker, this recipe sounds delightful! I can only imagine how cozy all the flavors are with the steamed milk.
Thank you Nicole! Nothing like cozying up with a latte!
Moving does make things hard! haha we moved to NC about 2 years ago now and have definitely had to sort of re-establish everything here!
This gingerbread latte sounds amazing!
I think it takes a year or two to really settle in to a new place, but it feels so nice when you finally start to feel like your new place is “home”! Thank you Ashley!
Lauren Gaskill | Making Life Sweet says
I took a blogging break over Thanksgiving too! Wasn’t it nice?! I need to give myself breaks more often. I think I am going to start having a break once a month for three days each month. SO WORTH IT! Cheers to dreaming about Christmas and these amazing lattes!
Yes, taking a break sometimes is so important, especially with blogging where it seems like we are “on” all the time with social media. I’m glad you had a lovely break too!
Ashley | Spoonful of Flavor says
I am all about gingerbread this time of the year. I could use a latte this morning and this one sounds perfect!
Thank you Ashley! Apparently I love goingerbread more than I realized, I accidentally planned 3 gingerbread themed recipes this months, whoops! 🙂
I am powerless to resist the draw of holiday beverages! Because our christmas over here in OZ is usually unbearably hot i more often than not opt for the chilled frappacino versions. I cannot wait to try this one over ice. The syrup sounds so fragrant and spiced! I love it.
Thank you Ruby! I think it would be great iced – I am an iced coffee drinker in the summer too 🙂
Jessica @ Sweetest Menu says
That is such a gorgeous tradition! We don’t really have Christmas tree farms over here but it reminds me so much of all the good American Christmas movies. I think these gingerbread lattes need to be a Christmas tradition too. They look AH-Mazing!
Thank you so much Jessica! We didn’t have Chirstmas trees where I grew up in Alaska either, I think that is why I love the idea so much, it is a fun tradition 🙂
My Dish is Bomb says
Love this! I’m back into drinking coffee so of course I want to dress it up in all the delicious ways. Your Christmas tree fantasy gave me a flashback to a certain Chevy Chase movie 😉 I’m going to be going tree shopping this week for the first time in years and I’m super excited!
Haha, well luckily we have not brought a squirell home in our tree yet! Have so much fun Christmas tree shopping, I love it!
Awwww. It sound like y’all had the perfect romantic weekend!
This latte looks amazing. I also have a soft spot for um….green mermaid drinks. I like how this one has a lot let sugar in it and a lot more love.
Thanks Annie, we did! This latte definitely has more love in it than the green mermaid one 😉
Rachel @ Bakerita says
I’m all about this!! I have got to try making my own syrup. Sounds like the perfect holiday tradition 🙂
Thanks Rachel! I pretty much have syrup on hand all year for my coffee, in some flavor or another, it is the best!
Oh I’m so excited to try this!! One of my favorite flavors as well, especially during this festive season. Your Hubby sounds like a very wise man in his “happy wife, happy life” philosophy! Brings a smile to my heart!? this recipe brings a smile to my appetite! Thanks for sharing~❤️
You will love it! <3