I’ve got a confession to make. I don’t drink coffee. At all. Not even when it’s so full of cream, sugar, and flavored syrups that’s it’s almost beyond the recognition of coffee. Maybe that’s why I’ve never really paid attention to the pumpkin phenomenon that seems to be growing this time of year.
Since I don’t drink coffee and I don’t frequent Starbucks, I can’t rely on the seasonal Pumpkin Spiced Lattes (or PSL for those in the know) to tell me when fall is officially here. Luckily, I recently realized that all I have to do it look around at the local grocery store.
A week or so ago, my friend Susan posted a picture similar to this on Facebook playfully asking if we had jumped the shark with all the pumpkin nonsense we seem to see in the grocery store this time of year.
My immediate thought was… meh. I don’t think of pumpkins and crackers as a match made in heaven. BUT… there are so many nice, mild, creamy cheeses that would complement this cracker. Think of a nice Wensleydale with cranberries. That would totally go with a pumpkin cracker.
But the real question is… does Triscuit have any business with the flavor of the season? Should every brand be cashing in on this trend? More importantly, ARE THEY? And are we falling prey to words like LIMITED EDITION? Are they simply manipulating us into buying things we don’t need just because of those two magical words: pumpkin spice?
I recently took a quick walk around the grocery story to see how far things have really gone. And maybe to pass a little judgment on some of these brands and products.
Not being a coffee drinker, it’s hard to pass judgment on this one. But I do think coffee tastes so bad that I’d probably want to spice it up as much as possible if I were to drink it.
In this case, I found Pumpkin Spice K-Cups along with Bailer’s Pumpkin Spice Coffee Creamer (Seasonal Favorites!) and Nestle Pumpkin Spice Coffee-mate.
What I really want to know is what would happen if you used pumpkin spice coffee and pumpkin spice creamer? I triple dog dare you.
And of course, if you’re going to have pumpkin spice coffee, it only makes sense to have pumpkin spice baked goods. In fact, this is the one place where pumpkin makes the most sense. So there was definitely no shortage of it.
No one is surprised by treats like Entenmann’s Pumpkin Loaf cake, Tastykake Cookie Bars, or Little Debbie Pumpkin Spice Rolls, right? Or even that you can buy things to “help” you bake (seriously, guys, if you’re going to bake, do it from scratch – it’s easier than you think) like Pillsbury Pumpkin Quick Bread mix, Libby’s Pumpkin Cheesecake kit, or sort of bake-it-yourself pumpkin cinnamon rolls (those actually sound yummy).
My favorite, in all seriousness though, was the Kodiak Cakes Pumpkin Dark Chocolate Minute Muffin.
“Just add water & microwave”
Translation: Cake in a Cup!
So far so good. We’ve covered coffee. We’ve covered cakes. While the quantities might be overwhelming, have we jumped the shark? NOT YET.
Let’s have a nice pumpkin-based breakfast before we get there.
A complete breakfast starts with Thomas’ Pumpkin Spice English Muffins (Limited Edition!), followed by Quaker Pumpkin Spice Oatmeal (Limited Edition!) and Dannon Greek Pumpkin Pie yogurt, and ended with Tastykake (again) Pumpkin Spice Mini Donuts.
And if that’s not enough, you can tack on a Pumpkin Spice Nutrigrain Soft Baked Breakfast Bar (Limited Batch!) or use it as a snack throughout the day.
Surely, the pumpkin madness must end there, right?
Nope. Let’s keep going. All the way until…
Pumpkin Spice Jell-O pudding!
Pumpkin Spice Oreo (Limited Edition!) – not to be confused with their Halloween Oreos or their 1.6 million other flavors.
Keebler Pumpkin Spice Fudge Stripes (Limited Batch!)
And if you’re feeling creative, skip the chocolate chips and go for the (Limited Edition!) Nestle Toll House Pumpkin Spice Pumpkin Flavored Morsels!
Or simply buy a dessert. How about a Peanuts-themed Great Pumpkin cake? Thankfully, this is just a normal flavore dice cream cake. There IS some sanity still.
But we haven’t jumped the shark. We’ve just experienced pumpkin overload. That’s all about the change.
Jumping the shark
There’s Pumpkin Sparkling Spiced Cider (Limited Time Original!) because we couldn’t possibly live with just the boring old taste of apples in our spiced cider.
And there’s Pumpkin Pasta Sauce (also Limited Time Original!).
Don’t hate me. I actually bought this one. I was intrigued. I haven’t tried it yet but I’ll be sure to report back.
Finally, if you haven’t gotten enough pumpkin in your coffee, baked good, breakfast, dessert, or pasta sauce and drinks, you can simply sit back, relax and spray your Pumpkin Scent Air Freshener into every corner of your house and enjoy.
But don’t get too comfortable. We’re just a few weeks away a grocery store sprinkled with peppermint everything!