Let the whole world swoon over Pumpkin Spice Lattes, I've got somethin' even better for you! Pumpkin Spice Crio Bru – naturally sweetened, full of real pumpkin flavor, and made with 100% ground cocoa beans and 0% coffee. Bring on fall!
It's been 6 months since our last TIDBITS Talk!? What is this strange world where days seem to drag on forever and months seem to pass in a blink of an eye? Anyone else feel like this?
Well no matter what's going on in this crazy world, the leaves around me are on fire with vibrant color, the air is perfectly crisp, and I'm using a new hair conditioner that smells like a ginger snap cookie, so LIFE. IS. GOOD.
With fall in the air, my mood and perspective on this confused world is infinitely better so how 'bout an uplifting chat?
It wouldn't be a good heart to heart without something warm in my hands, so to celebrate fall, today's drink of the day is Pumpkin Spiced Crio Bru and it SCREAMS autumn.
It's my coffee free version of the infamous Pumpkin Spice Latte and I'm so excited for you to try it out!
IMPORTANT ITEMS OF BUSINESS FOR TODAY
- Reader question: What happened with InstaFreeze Meals? Why did you cancel it?
- How's your school year going so far? I'm on Plan D . . .
- Kids and tablets – How to keep them safe
- Songs, Memes, and Words to make you feel good
- Can't stop, won't stop eating: Socca Bread
- Brain Balance update
- Face tanner update – I've found THE ONE!
- Leggings or Joggers?
- Things I'm loving lately – No mess erasers, amazing almond butter, favorite water bottle, and more!
Whoa, 9 topics on the agenda. Apparently, we need to have one of these talks more often (since I actually condensed this from a list of 15!)
This is loaded with goodies though, so grab your Pumpkin Spice “pretend latte” and let's talk!
1) WHAT HAPPENED TO INSTAFREEZE MEALS
For those not familiar with InstaFreeze Meals, it's a freezer meal class my sister and I created where people could come and create 15 Instant Pot freezer meals in under an hour. We also created an online version for those who don't live locally so they could make them in their own homes.
When COVID hit, we had to close the classes. Then because of increased restrictions, we weren't allowed to restart the classes either. So after some major business restructuring, we came up with a new version of InstaFreeze Meals that we are busting at the seams to talk about!!! Buuutttt . . . I can't quite talk about it yet. Just trust me when I say, A-W-E-S-O-M-E things are in the works! Also, I'm being pushed out of my comfort zone on a daily basis and it's really, well, uncomfortable. Like – putting on a pair of skinny jeans after living March through September in yoga pants – uncomfortable.
Because I only have so many hours in the day, we have shut down the online version as well, and unless I can find a clone, it will likely stay closed.
Great things to come – STAY TUNED!
My InstaFreeze Meals partner/sister in crime, Maegan (who will forever be 10 years old to me)
2) 2020 -2021 School Year
AKA the year of “I don't know what to do so I'm gonna close my eyes and point.” I've changed my mind approximately 86 times (per day) on what I thought would be best for my kids this year, and even now, after a solid two months of school, I'm thinking, hmm . . . maybe I'll switch to full time homeschool. (Cue my husband throwing his hands into the air and exiting the room before he says something he'll regret). Making a decision has never been my best skill.
At the moment my kids are two days on campus, two days at a tutor, and one day with the most impatient teacher they've ever experienced (oh, hi – that's me).
How are things for you? Feelin' good? Feeling overwhelmed? Hangin' in there?
We are coping with the help of our two new kitties, Wonder and Thunder . . .
and motorcycles – always motorcycles.
3) Kids and Tablets
I asked this question on Instagram the other day and received several good suggestions of different apps and such that people are using. They all sounded good, but didn't work very well with my daughter's Amazon Fire Tablet. I basically want to have a tablet with a total of 3 things my daughter can click on – Disney Plus, Spotify, and a Spelling Practice app. It looks like I could drop $800 on a new iPad and have that feature, but is that really my only choice? Please share!
4) Mood Boosters
My latest finds:
Inspiring words on hope (LOVE this man)
Enjoyable Book of Mormon scripture study YouTube Channel (This duo is phenomenal! They also have bible studies that are INCREDIBLE)
Song to make you bawl your face off (in a good way)
My favorite Covid meme of all time
What are your “mood boosters”? I might need a few more come flu season. . .
5) Food Obsession
Have you ever heard of Socca Bread? Wow, wow, WOW! I've been making it weekly since June and it always takes center stage to whatever else I have on the table. It's like a crispy flatbread made out of garbanzo bean flour, water, olive oil, and salt – that's it! I highly suggest this version from Pinch of Yum. The combo of the creamy feta and tangy tomatoes is out of this world! Soup season is upon us and this bread is my new spoon.
Sun Sugar Tomatoes soaked in vinegar and herbs over herby whipped cream cheese, on top of Socca Bread. Mmmmmm.
My family loves when I take pictures of them eating.
6) Brain Balance Update
I mentioned the Brain Balance program in a TIDBITS newsletter a while back and asked if anyone would be interested in updates as my son journeyed through this challenging program to increase his ability to focus, read, be less impulsive, etc. Brain Balance was basically my pick between the choice of behavior medication and trying something a bit unheard of (this just in: Harvard Study about Brain Balance and ADHD – so good!).
When I started the program with him a few months ago, they only had an “in clinic” version. The clinic is 90+ minutes from my house so one night of every week I've been staying overnight in a hotel so my son could do his sessions.
It has been a crazy, wonderful, frustrating, exciting, and rocky road, and even though I'm only a few months into it, I highly suggest looking into it for anyone who has behavioral or learning challenges with their child.
Climbing those mountains, conquering his world
In response to the virus, they very recently rolled out a virtual version that I'm incredibly impressed with so far. It will reduce the cost of travel for us significantly and also make it more widely available to many more kiddos.
With the encouragement of some of you, I've decided to keep the details of my son's experience through the program quiet with respect to him. But if you're interested in it, send me an email to [email protected] and I can answer any questions you might have. If you are REALLY interested, I can also provide you with discount information.
7) Best Face Tanner!
Back in April, I mentioned I was trying to find the ultimate face tanner. I'm happy to report that I'VE FOUND IT!!! Tanceuticals to my pasty face rescue!
It doesn't stink, the color is just what I wanted, it doesn't cost a million dollars, and most importantly, IT DOESN’T MAKE ME BREAK OUT! I have been happily living indoors 90% of the day, all while looking like I live on the beach. Okay, maybe not so much “beach mama”, we'll just say I don't look like a sickly ghost. I love the DARK lotion for the face. I bought the Body lotion as well, but haven't used it yet. I'll update when I do!
8) Leggings or Joggers?
I tend to be a yoga pants/leggings kind of girl, but I'm seeing more and more people wearing joggers lately and I'm thinking, “hmm . . . I think I could rock those”.
What's your vote? Leggings or Joggers and where do I find your favorite pair? I just did a major closet clean out and I'm on the hunt for pants that'll make me happy all winter long.
If I'm not in yoga pants, my kids ask, “Where are you going? Can I come?”
9) Things I'm Lovin' Lately
I have found some serious GOODIES lately! I was going to save them for my upcoming gift guides in November, but I simply can't wait that long to tell you about them!
Loom Journals: These journals are like a back and forth discussion in writing with your child. The book comes with prompts on each page to get the dialogue rolling and it's been so much fun to discover what's on my kids' minds. I got one of these for my daughter over a year ago, and just started doing another with my son. I'll shamefully admit that I get too distracted in a day with my checklist, and “forget” to sit down and look my kiddos in the eye for a precious moment. These journals bring that side out of me better than anything else I've ever done. I highly recommend!
Best Almond Butter and Peanut Butter: Now I'll be up front and say that in order to get this magical AB and PB you will need to become a Thrive Market member (which I didn't even realize until after I ordered), but I haven't regretted the membership one bit. I order several products from their site now (they usually beat any other price on Amazon or elsewhere), but for the Thrive Market Crunchy Almond Butter alone – I'm a member for life! Bonus, the nut butters come in a bag so instead of making an oily mess every time I need to stir a jar of peanut butter, I just squeeze and shake the bag until I can tell it's mixed well. Pure Genius!
Almond Cow: I mentioned this a while back in this Instant Pot Horchata recipe, but if you are a diligent plant-based milk maker (or want to be), this appliance makes homemade almond milk a total breeze. I love, love, LOVE It!
Water Bottle of my Dreams: I'm a complicated girl, I know, and sometimes I want a straw, sometimes I want to chug. Owala Water Bottles are here to save me from my indecisiveness. Depending on your mood from second to second, you can sip or you can chug and it literally still has ice in it after 24 hours of sitting on my desk. That is insanely awesome and I bought one for each of my kids. Well done Owala!
Erasable Marker Pens: To every mama who cringes at the looks of eraser shavings all over the counter, floor, and beyond – I've got your answer – Erasable Marker Pens! Is it a marker or a pen? I DON'T KNOW! All I know is that when my son erases half a sheet of drawings, there is no mess to be seen anywhere! This just might be my Christmas gift to everyone this year.
NutPods Winter Creamer Collection: Pumpkin Spice, Holiday Nog, and the most amazing creamer I've ever experienced, Peppermint Mocha! This company is seriously upping my Crio Bru game!
Speaking of Crio Bru . . .
Crio Bru Flavor of the Month – Pumpkin Spice!
Out of pure jealousy of the Pumpkin Spice Latte crowd, I just had to make a Crio Bru Knock Off Version and is SPOT ON!
If you're not a coffee drinker or you'd just like to try a dark chocolate version of the ol' pumpkin spice latte – MAKE THIS!
My kids had to go through a few rocky taste testings to get us to this final “two thumbs up” version, but I finally got it!
This recipe will work with any flavor of Crio Bru, but if you'd like to have a “latte” type experience, go with their Mocha Crio Bru flavor. If you'd like less coffee flavor and more “awesome for everyone” flavor, try it with Caramel Crio Bru, mmmm.
WHY YOU WILL LOVE PUMPKIN SPICE CRIO BRU
- Bursting at the seams with cinnamon spiced pumpkin flavor!
- Creamier and more luscious than my other Crio Bru flavors due to the addition of pumpkin puree
- 1000x healthier than the typical sugar laden hot pumpkin drinks
HOW TO MAKE PUMPKIN SPICE CRIO BRU AKA COFFEE FREE PUMPKIN SPICE LATTE
- Add Crio Bru grounds, pumpkin spices, pumpkin puree, water, and almond milk to the pressure cooker pot
- Cook for 5 minutes
- Pour through a fine mesh strainer, add maple syrup, and enjoy!
MORE CRIO BRU FLAVORS TO TRY
- Basic Crio Bru
- Creamy Cashew Crio Bru
- Golden Crio Bru
- Coconut Orange Crio Bru Crio Bru Smoothie
- Strawberry Crio Bru
I love to hear from you! Leave me your thoughts and suggestions in the comments below.
When like minds get together, it turns into a gold mine of advice, and it excites me to no end to read what you have to say.
Thank you in advance for your wisdom!Print
Pumpkin Spice Crio Bru
Fall in love with a cup of warm, chocolatey pumpkin goodness, made quick and easy in an electric pressure cooker!
- Prep Time: 5 minutes
- Cook Time: 5 minutes
- Total Time: 20 minutes
- Yield: 4 cups 1x
- Category: Drinks
- Method: Pressure cooker
- Cuisine: American
- 1/4 cup Crio Bru Ground Cocoa Beans
- 2 cups water
- 2 cups unsweetened vanilla almond milk
- 1/4 cup pumpkin puree
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
Spiced Whipped Cream (optional but delicious)
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Add Crio Bru, water, milk, pumpkin puree, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, and vanilla extract to the pressure cooker pot; whisk to combine.
- Secure the lid and turn pressure release knob to a sealed position. Cook at high pressure for 5 minutes.
- Optional Spiced Whipped Cream: While Crio Bru is brewing, whip all of the whipped cream ingredients with a high speed blender or hand mixer until thick. Store in the fridge until ready to use.
- When cooking is complete, use a natural pressure release for 10 minutes and then release any remaining pressure.
- Place a fine mesh sieve over a bowl and pour Crio Bru through the sieve to filter out the grounds.
- Whisk maple syrup into the Crio Bru.
- Serve immediately with a dollop of spiced whipped cream.
- Cool leftovers and store in a mason jar in the fridge for up to 5 days. Enjoy cold or pour into a microwave safe mug and warm for 1-2 minutes.
- A fine mesh sieve is important here so you don't end up with a gritty beverage. A nut milk bag also works well, just be careful when pouring the hot liquids into the bag.
- This recipe can easily be doubled and stored in the fridge for up to 5 days.
Keywords: instant pot drink, healthy hot chocolate, easy recipe
Welcome! I’m Marci, wife to my motorcycle dream man and mother of 3. I have a passion for creating and cooking delicious masterpieces in my kitchen and am ecstatic to share my discoveries on TIDBITS! I like my food tasty, wholesome, memorable, and always, ALWAYS followed by dark, salty chocolate.