Worth it or Not – Caramel Apple Spice

Sorry I didn’t post anything yesterday. I managed to catch my husband’s cold. We’ve been lounging together in a sense of shared misery. I’ve had to pick my cooking battles since I can only concentrate for so long. I figured the perfect pick-me-up would be a nice cup of caramel apple spice.

What is that? It’s a delicious combination sold at Starbucks of warm apple juice, a squirt of cinnamon syrup and caramel syrup – the syrups you put in coffee – and whipped cream (optional). I love caramel apple spices! They’re the perfect way to celebrate fall. However, they cost $5.00-6.00 per cup, which meant I was very limited on my intake. I fell so in love with the beverage that a couple of years ago I looked up the recipe. It’s so cheap and easy to make, I haven’t bought a cup at Starbucks since.

So, why am I trying to change my recipe if the original was so good? Because finding cinnamon syrup is a real challenge. The only way to purchase it is to get it from Starbucks, which means you’re charged the Starbucks price. I paid around $15.00 a few years ago for a large bottle of the syrup. It lasted a very long time, but I wasn’t a fan of the original investment for a beverage I only want once a year.

Thus the online research began. I found a recipe to create your own cinnamon syrup so hypothetically, you can create your own caramel apple spice without spending as much. Why wouldn’t I look into it?

Making your own cinnamon sauce is simple. Put ½ cup of brown sugar, ½ cup of water and a tsp of cinnamon in a pan and simmer it for 5 minutes. The mixture should reduce in half. Once you’re finished, you can assemble your caramel apple spice. Take 12 oz. of apple juice, 3 tablespoons of the finished cinnamon syrup and add the same amount of caramel syrup and warm up the concoction either in the microwave or over the stove. If you use the stove, your whole house will smell delicious! Add whipped cream on top and serve.

Now, my only side comment about the caramel sauce: you can use the caramel sauce found in the dessert aisle or you can use the syrup you put in coffee. Both will have the same effect. One could be more concentrated than the other, so use and adjust accordingly. I did make my own caramel sauce and will post a review about it this week. It’s pretty much up to you, there are plenty of cost effective options.

The big conclusion you’ve all been waiting for: is it worth it or not. I happen to think it’s completely worth it to make your own cinnamon sauce. I’m sick and was still able to make it because it takes very little concentration. You put it on the burner, stir it once and turn it off after it’s reduced in half. That’s it! It’s so much cheaper than buying it at Starbucks and it’s delicious. That’s a huge win in my book!

                                           *Photo provided by Starbucks.com