The dictionary defines the word “basic” as forming an essential foundation or starting point; fundamental. I define it as a human who looks like me, sounds like me, and smells like me, because it is me—corny and uncool, all wrapped into one big burrito of basicness. I’m full of un-redeeming and predictable qualities, like baking banana bread, complaining about capitalism, and wearing Uggs. But perhaps the most obvious quality of mine that makes me undeniably annoying is the fact that when summer fizzles away, I can’t wait to get my hands on a warm and tangy Pumpkin Spice Latte.

Ah yes, the PSL. The drink that paved the path for cheugy. It stands for everything I hate and yet I can’t wait for that time of the year when PSLs take over. The denim jackets, the infinity scarves, the freshly manicured hands gripping their beverage like it’s the only thing standing in between them and winter. Most importantly, seeing one out in the wild means that the objectively best season of the year is upon us: fall.

Fall is for mourning summer. It’s a months-long funeral of kitchiness that reminds us the only constant in life is change. It’s when watching dumb 90s movies with awful reviews is genuinely enjoyable, the only time of the year when doing objectively boring things, like picking apples and sitting on hay bales is fun and cool. It’s when skeletons hang from dead trees and our sidewalks become unseeable because of the mounds of ombre leaves. As everything else dies, the $600 million dollar pumpkin spice industry flourishes.

If you thought the Pumpkin Spice Latte was basic, think again. The Pumpkin Spice Chaga is that times one hundred. It’s as if the Pumpkin Spice Latte graduated college, said goodbye to her state school sorority sisters, and moved to a luxury apartment in Williamsburg or Silver Lake, started taking hot yoga classes, and wearing designer toe rings.

The Pumpkin Spice Chaga goes hard because it’s the healthy version of Pumpkin Spice Latte. It’s got (way) less sugar and more spice. It’s the PSL from another planet, ripe with ingredients like cinnamon and cacao that pair with pumpkin puree like soulmates. So if you’re looking to become even more basic than you already are, look no further. Catch me at Starbucks charging my selfie stick while I dip my pumpkin spice muffin into my pumpkin spice chaga. 


  • 1 cup of almond or oat milk
  • 2 tablespoons of canned pumpkin puree (not pie mix; puree. big difference.)
  • 1 packet of Chagaccino
  • 2 shots of espresso
  • 1 dollop of vegan whipped cream


  • First, pour your espresso into a mug. 
  • Drop in the pumpkin puree and stir slowly until it dissolves.
  • Pour in the Chagaccino mix, stir, add your almond or oat milk, and top it off with a dollop of vegan whipped cream (lots of brands make coconut milk-based whipped topping)