is psl gluten free

Pumpkin Spice Latte, commonly known as PSL, is a popular fall beverage that many people look forward to enjoying each year. However, for individuals with gluten sensitivities or celiac disease, it is essential to know whether PSL is gluten-free or not. So, let’s delve into this question and find out the truth about the gluten content in PSL.

Ingredients in PSL

Before we determine if PSL is gluten-free, let’s take a closer look at its ingredients. A typical Pumpkin Spice Latte usually includes the following components:

  • Espresso or coffee
  • Pumpkin puree
  • Milk or non-dairy alternatives
  • Sugar or sweeteners
  • Pumpkin pie spice
  • Whipped cream (optional)

From this list, the potential sources of gluten are the milk or non-dairy alternatives and the pumpkin pie spice that is used in PSL. To determine if PSL is gluten-free, we need to examine these ingredients further.

Gluten in Milk or Non-Dairy Alternatives

Milk is naturally gluten-free, and many non-dairy alternatives such as almond milk, soy milk, and oat milk are also gluten-free. However, cross-contamination can occur during the manufacturing process, so it’s essential to read labels carefully and choose certified gluten-free brands if you have a severe gluten sensitivity. Do keep in mind that some specialty versions of PSL may use flavored syrup or creamer that contains gluten, so checking the labels is crucial.

Gluten in Pumpkin Pie Spice

Pumpkin pie spice is a blend of warm spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and cloves. While these individual spices are naturally gluten-free, some pre-packaged pumpkin pie spice mixes may contain added ingredients that could include gluten. Therefore, it’s wise to check the label of the pumpkin pie spice you’re using or look for a gluten-free version to ensure that your PSL doesn’t contain any hidden gluten.

Specialty PSLs and Cross-Contamination Risks

When it comes to PSLs from popular coffee chains or cafes, it’s worth mentioning that there is a possibility of cross-contamination with gluten-containing ingredients. This can happen due to shared equipment or improper handling practices. If you have a severe gluten sensitivity, it is advisable to inquire with the barista about their preparation methods, potential cross-contamination risks, and if they offer any gluten-free alternatives.

Creating a Gluten-Free PSL at Home

If you prefer to have complete control over the ingredients in your Pumpkin Spice Latte and want to ensure it is gluten-free, you can easily make one at home. By using gluten-free milk or non-dairy alternatives, certified gluten-free pumpkin pie spice, and homemade whipped cream (using gluten-free vanilla extract), you can confidently savor a delicious gluten-free PSL without any worries.


In conclusion, whether a PSL is gluten-free or not depends on the specific ingredients used and the potential for cross-contamination during preparation. While the primary components of a PSL are typically gluten-free, it is essential to be cautious about specialty versions, especially those from coffee chains, and always check labels for any potential hidden sources of gluten. By being mindful of your ingredients and preparation methods, you can enjoy a delightful gluten-free PSL experience this fall.