Dunkin’s new Signature Pumpkin Spice Latte hit stores on August 19.
The beverage combines espresso with pumpkin, vanilla, whipped cream, caramel drizzle, and cinnamon sugar.
A dietitian breaks down the drink’s sugar and calories, and offers tips on how to make it a bit less indulgent.
Autumn starts early this year—according to Dunkin’, that is. The brand’s new Signature Pumpkin Spice Latte, along with an entire lineup of autumnal drinks and snacks, hit stores on Wednesday, August 19—its earliest fall menu release ever. (The chain is even beating out Starbucks’ OG this year.)
But what exactly are you getting on the nutrition front when you order this sweet drink? Here’s everything you need to know about the new beverage—including a dietitian’s advice on enjoying it with zero guilt.
What’s in Dunkin’s Signature Pumpkin Spice Latte?
The Signature Pumpkin Spice Latte mixes espresso with pumpkin and vanilla flavors and comes topped with whipped cream, caramel drizzle, and cinnamon sugar. There’s no word on whether the brand uses real pumpkin or pumpkin spice to flavor the drink. Dunkin’s PSL is available hot or iced—an ideal option, considering that there’s more than a month of summer left.
Dunkin’ Signature Pumpkin Spice Latte nutrition
Like all of Dunkin’s drinks, you can pick up a Signature Pumpkin Spice Latte in small, medium, and large sizes with a variety of milk options. Here’s the nutritional information for a medium PSL with whole milk:
14 g fat (8 g sat fat)
59 g carbs
12 g protein
0 g fiber
230 mg sodium
55 g sugar (36 g added sugar)
What’s the healthiest way to enjoy Dunkin’s Signature Pumpkin Spice Latte?
As you can probably guess, this is “definitely not something you would want to drink every day,” says Diana Sugiuchi, R.D.N., founder of Nourish Family Nutrition. “You should treat the PSL as a dessert—something to be enjoyed occasionally as a treat, but not as an everyday coffee drink.” Think of it this way: This PSL packs a whopping 55 grams of sugar for a medium. Compare that to the chain’s apple cider donut, which contains 15 grams of sugar. Meanwhile, the pumpkin donut has 20 grams of sugar.
She points out that the large PSL with whole milk—which comes in at 540 calories—has the same number of calories as a good-sized meal, plus about as many carbs as five slices of bread and twice the daily recommended serving of sugar (71 grams!). Smaller sizes and alternative milks like skim can bring down the total calorie count, but the amount of fat and sugar is still up there, at least for a regular indulgence.
“Often, we don’t register feeling as full when we drink something as we do when we eat the same amount of calories,” Sugiuchi explains. “You could easily have something to eat along with the PSL and not feel super full. And after having all that sugar you’ll probably have rebound low blood sugar, which can actually make you feel hungrier and crave more sugar.”
A few easy modifications can make Dunkin’s new drink a little easier to justify. Sugiuchi suggests you skip the whipped cream, caramel drizzle, and cinnamon sugar on top. You can also just order a small: “You’ll cut the calories, fat, and sugar almost in half,” she explains.
Of course, fall doesn’t feel like fall without the occasional PSL—so if you do indulge, just do so in moderation. And if you want to avoid it altogether, it looks like an apple cider donut may be the way to go for a sweet treat!
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