Why are people obsessed with pumpkin spice?


Is pumpkin spice worth the hype? The Raider Wire put some popular pumpkin snacks to the test.

Mrs. Smith, Adviser

Happy Halloween! Welcome to our first staff editorial of the year. In celebration of Halloween, we are thinking about America’s obsession with all things pumpkin spice and are having a discussion about the strangest pumpkin spice item we’ve come across.

Why IS everyone so obsessed with pumpkin spice and what’s the weirdest pumpkin spice item you’ve ever seen? Also, do you buy into the pumpkin spice craze with a favorite treat?

What do you think? Tweet us @nfhsraiderwire

Ashton Bruce

I could do without pumpkin spice. Honestly, I don’t get the appeal: pumpkins should be for carving, gutting out its sticky, gross, seedy insides, and smashing. It isn’t a good flavor, and it definitely doesn’t deserve to be made commercialized through Pumpkin Spice Pop-tarts or Pringles.

Michelle Learmouth

Halloween the time of the little spooky monsters that’ll haunt your front door demanding some form of treats or threaten you with some tricks. However, that’s not all, sadly the world of flavors open up and dominate America, pumpkin spice the almighty Queen rules the stores. Personally, I think it’s getting out of hand with pumpkin spice, walking down the grocery aisle you get bombarded with such ridiculous creations. For instance, Pringles took it to a whole new level with “Pumpkin pie spice.” I believe it’s time to move on from this overused flavor and find something else to be occupied with.

Emily Stocksdale

The obsession with all things pumpkin spice may have something to do with the American inclination to associate the season of autumn with those types of flavors.  Whether it is the scent of the falling leaves on the air or the anticipation of pie for Thanksgiving, fall just seems like the appropriate time for spices such as cinnamon and nutmeg. In addition, the fact that pumpkins are so strongly related to the month of October–we carve Jack-o-lanterns and roast pumpkin seeds around Halloween–may have contributed to the pumpkin spice fad.  I enjoy pumpkin spice flavored drinks, but as I do not enjoy sweets, I do not enjoy the majority of the pumpkin spice-related foods.  I have never noticed many odd pumpkin-flavored items, but that is likely because I have never tried to look.

Sydney Martin

America’s obsession with pumpkin-flavored things doesn’t make sense to me simply because I’ve never tried anything pumpkin-flavored. I’ve never even had Starbucks before because it’s expensive, and I really don’t like spending money. I guess the pumpkin craze must be another stereotypical white girl thing. However, if I had to eat something pumpkin-flavored, it would be chicken, because chicken goes with everything.

Bella Angell

Many people love the season of fall and have come to associate Pumpkin Spice with it. It may be from the advertising of the Pumpkin Spice Latte at Starbucks since they label it as a “seasonal drink.” The flavor is only offered at one time out of the whole year, and society feels the need to take advantage of this opportunity. The strangest Pumpkin Spice-flavored item I have seen are Pumpkin Spice Pringles. I usually just drink hot tea when the cool, crisp air arrives.

Claire Canada

People’s obsession with pumpkin spice seems to stem from the fact that it is a representation of fall in food form. We tend to have an attraction to anything labelled as seasonal, especially food, and rush to buy anything that will not be available the next month. Pumpkin spice is just another trend that will more than likely fade in the next few years.

Abby Marks

Many people are obsessed with pumpkin flavored foods, and most likely has to do with the fact that pumpkins associate with fall and exciting holidays. Once the hot weather finally cools down, people are overly excited for a change of tone, and pumpkin is a big reminder of cooler weather and festivities or holidays taking place over the next few months, such as Halloween and Thanksgiving. The weirdest pumpkin spice flavored food item I have ever seen is pumpkin spice lasagna, and there is even a recipe floating around on Pinterest! I, personally, will stick to pumpkin bread this fall.

Kristin Iler

I believe that the craze of pumpkin-flavored goodies comes from the obsession of pumpkins in general. Americans have always been obsessed with these large orange fruits, especially during the autumn months. I believe that we are solely interested in the actual flavor, because it appeals to the mind through sensory areas triggering memories from our childhoods. Although this dedication to pumpkin continues throughout generations of Americans, at least it changes forms. Today, we have pumpkin-flavored everything, including Pop-tarts, cookies, coffees and even cereal bars. I don’t go to extremes, but every autumn I will indulge in a PSL and pumpkin pie.

JoAnn Ahn

I just don’t understand this frenzy for pumpkin. Pretty soon, I feel like we’ll start seeing pumpkin spice flavored water. Frankly, I haven’t tasted or purchased a pumpkin spice flavored anything until I had to for this year’s journalism pumpkin party. For our country, I feel as if Americans obsess over certain trends just to conform into the society, without even noticing the way that commercialism is controlling our culture.

Rachel Lee

Pumpkin spice is a much- beloved flavor to all kinds of things. Americans have developed a strange obsession with pumpkin spice and every year in autumn, the obsession grows. Eventually, pumpkins and their spices are going to take over the minds of American citizens! Why do I say this? Each year, slowly but surely, pumpkin spice has been brainwashing the minds of white girls all over America with its seasonal taste and addictive aspects. If you were to ask me if I involve myself in the craze for pumpkin spice, I would tell you no. I plan to keep it that way, too. Pumpkin spice is evil!

Morgan Champion

Honestly, I’ve never had the thought of trying something pumpkin spice related until today, and while I will admit that I did find the taste enjoyable, America is going overboard. I can understand the appeal of Starbucks’ lattes during the Halloween season, but as years continue to pass, it’s becoming less about the flavor and more about a trend. In my opinion, this way of thinking is not only crazy, but unhealthy. Come on America, if people want to drink a warm pumpkin spice latte to get excited about the fall season, let them do it without thinking about how aesthetically pleasing it will look on their Instagram feed.

Lauryn Almand

People generally seem more attracted to the idea of Pumpkin spice flavored things, rather than the actual taste of the item. The smell of Pumpkin spice is a lot more appealing in my opinion, than the flavor. I read on twitter the other day about pumpkin spice flavored Pringles. I don’t think I’ll be trying those any time soon- I prefer lattes.

Jennifer Arena

Pumpkin spice tastes pretty great, but is it worth the craze? I do not believe that it should be everyone’s favorite part of fall, but there is a certain interesting factor in the lack of pumpkin spice during other seasons. However, I still believe it is essentially glorified cinnamon that only has to do with pumpkin because of pumpkin pies.

Holley Murray

Personally, I view the idea of pumpkin-spice-ifying everything in sight during fall is pretty ridiculous. The whole artificial flavor of pumpkin is actually sort of disgusting in itself. I can enjoy the old reliable PSL from Starbucks, but that’s as far as I’ll go. Some people seem to consider it autumn treason to have my distaste for pumpkin spice everything. I’m content with coffee and sweaters to satisfy my fall aesthetic.

Diana Rodgers

Personally the only pumpkin flavored purchase I make is canned pumpkin in order to make my pumpkin cookies, otherwise pumpkin never touches my lips. I do not even really understand all of the pumpkin craze myself, it does not make any sense to me but everyone has their tastes. At the least though I wish the craze could have stayed in the realm of normal with like sweet breads and lattes but seriously Rossi Pasta, was it that necessary to keep up with a trend that you came out with a Pumpkin Spice Lasagna?

Kayla Salemi

The pumpkin trend has been going on for many decades, but nowadays people are making pumpkin flavor or scented everything. We as a generation have found a new obsession with pumpkins! Personally, I do not care for pumpkins in any form, yet I respect people who do like it. The weirdest thing I had ever eaten that was pumpkin flavor crumb cake, and it was terrible.

Leilani Gibbons

Personally, I’m a big pumpkin fan, although I don’t like pumpkin spice as much. Pumpkin spice is somewhat overdone throughout the season and it seems like you can’t find any products that don’t have this flavor. Sometimes the pumpkin spice flavored things are too sweet and just plain gross, for example: pumpkin spice lattes, but I can understand why people with sweet tooths would love it. Being a vegan, it’s hard to find any of these snacks that i can eat, so i’ll just be sticking to pumpkin oreos!

Ramya Raja

While pumpkin spice may be a seasonally loved flavor, I believe it is used a little too excessively during the fall season. I understand the common love for the flavor during the fall season; however, I also believe the craze has spiraled out of control. Industries are exploiting consumers trust and love of the popular flavor and are incorporating it into just about everything. For example, the other day, while in Kroger, I saw listerine flavored floss with pumpkin spice. I don’t think the extent the pumpkin spice flavor is necessary and is growing every fall season.

Anna Anglin

The pumpkin spice flavor craze is always a popular topic around the fall time. Personally, I view the flavor of pumpkin spice quite distasteful. In other words, no one would ever catch me ordering a pumpkin spice latte at Starbucks. However, I wouldn’t decline if someone offered me one. The pumpkin spice obsession doesn’t surprise me as Americans are notorious for creating strange holiday traditions. In fact, I find the whole situation humorous.

Noah Smith

The pumpkin spice craze is due to forceful capitalism and a consumerist society obsessed with cyclical trends. Companies view this time of year as the perfect time to capitalize off of the “pumpkin”  theme and shove it down the throats of consumers. I personally do not follow the trend, but I do enjoy certain pumpkin treats if I’m being honest.

Melina Vergilis

The moment the calendar reads October 1, everyone goes crazy for pumpkin spice everything. Personally I don’t see the big deal. I would rather stick to a classic pumpkin donut or a slice of pumpkin pie, but pumpkin spice bleach… no way! I’d rather stick to a clean linen smell, not the popular pumpkin spice that everyone looks forward to in the fall.

Grace Wood

The pumpkin spice craze comes from the fact that it only comes once a year; also the sound of pumpkin spice reminds of all our favorite aspects of Fall. One of the weirdest pumpkin spice item would have to pumpkin spice flavored peanut butter; but as weird as it is, it actually sounds good. I do not tend to buy into the pumpkin spice craze, because I am usually unaware of popular trends.

Emma Ray

The season really plays out with the whole pumpkin spice craze simply because people love fall for the weather, clothing, and food. Pumpkin spice falls perfectly among fall because “it’s like fall inside of a drink”. So when other food companies saw the trend of the popular drink they wanted to catch onto the trend with the ideas of pumpkin spice pringles and oreos beginning the craze of the pumpkin spice.


Kenya Espinoza

When the weather is dropping, the mix between the cold and the flavor of pumpkin spice really seem to mesh well attracting more people to purchase pumpkin spice flavored items. The strangest pumpkin spice flavored item I have ever tried was pumpkin spice flavored  Pop- Tarts. They did not have the best flavor. I definitely choose pumpkin spice lattes over those Pop-tarts.

Marissa Dintino

As the summer slowly fades into the beginning stages of autumn and Halloween creeps up on us, many people enjoy the highly advertized seasonal flavor, pumpkin spice. As someone who rarely has pumpkin spice, I personally don’t taste anything significantly amazing about this flavor, almost as if it were chocolate or vanilla, but it does place me into a cooler, autumn mood. I believe that the idea and mood of the sweet, autumn flavor may just be the reason why it is such an enjoyable flavor around this time of year.

Jessica Prouty

‘Tis the season, right? While I enjoy pumpkin pie and, occasionally, a pumpkin spice latte, I feel that humanity is taking the craze to new extremes. Wandering through the local grocery store, I am greeted with a new list of pumpkin spice items each year: pumpkin bark, pumpkin spice cheerios, pumpkin spice Nutri-Grain bars, and pumpkin spice latte Peeps (yes, the little marshmallows rolled in sugar which can usually only be found near Easter!). While the idea of starting my day with pumpkin spice cheerios and ending it with it with pumpkin spice lasagna (no thank you!) sounds incredible, I would rather enjoy a traditional pumpkin spice coffee and, if I am feeling tolerant, a slice of pumpkin pie after a normal dinner. Fall is awesome, and all of its seasonal perks should be enjoyed… to an extent. Everyone loves a little pumpkin spice; However, the day where the population is tired of the once cherished treat is upon us, as manufacturers continue to cram the flavor into every product on the shelf of our local Kroger or Walmart. Either tone it down, or begin to mentally prepare yourself for a day where everyone strongly dislikes anything pumpkin related and fall becomes just another time of the year.

Lany Campbell

Fall is usually a time where pumpkin pie and apple cider become major hits, and let the public know the seasons and holidays have finally arrived. Pumpkin spice, i guess, implies the arrival of Thanksgiving due to the making of pumpkin pie. The weirdest item related to pumpkin spice I’ve ever seen would have to be pumpkin spice-related beverages (21 or over). Yesterday, my mom and I were shopping, and I came across ‘Pumpkin Ale’, which had all of the ingredients associated with it (nutmeg,cinnamon etc.). Lastly, I do not participate or understand the overwhelming craze over a holiday flavor.

Abbey Ingram

I have acquired a love for pumpkin spice flavored things, whether it be lattes or donuts I tend to prefer pumpkin spice over any other fall flavor. But, on the other hand I do think it is stretched too far on the level of fascination it gets from the public specifically, when it comes to chips or things that are supposed to be salty. Pumpkin Spice has a very sweet and more so rich taste, which would make for good lattes, donuts, or even Oreos so in my opinion pumpkin spice chips aren’t the best idea.

Austin McIntosh

The strangest pumpkin spice food that i have seen would have to be pumpkin spice eggnog. I have an acquired taste for many pumpkin spice foods and eggnog, but the idea of both of them together makes me cringe. If i try this drink, I will be prepared to spit it straight back up. I might be pleasantly surprised by this drink like many other things that I have tried, but I am very skeptical about trying it.

Natalie Wilson

The pumpkin spice thing is overrated in both the overwhelming presence of its flavor and the rejection of its white-girl connotations. It is just a flavor. There is no reason why it should be hated (pumpkin spice never hurt anyone), but breaking out the pumpkin spice drug-patches just because there’s a gentle breeze in the air is considerably obsessive.

Daniel Snodgrass

Pumpkin spice is an indubitably invaluable instrument invading America. My thoughts concerning the matter are so:

I like pumpkin spice,

An absolute–wait! Too much!,

I hate pumpkin spice.

I imagine that pumpkins contain some sort of addictive chemical that causes us to crave it more, yet, eventually, we get sick of it then don’t eat it for many months afterwards.

Jack Scott

Truthfully, I do not think about pumpkin spice at all. It sure seems to be making people money, though. Perhaps I could turn a profit if I started selling pumpkin spice-flavored bottled water?

Andrew Willings

The craze over the pumpkin spice might never make sense, but I’ll assume it has to do with pumpkin spice being a traditional fall smell and it might be nostalgic for some people. I can’t say for certain that it’s a bad flavor since I’ve never bothered to try it, but the obsession many people have with it has made me wary. In the last few days of September I remember going into a bath and body works with some friends and we found pumpkin spice flavored everything. I still don’t understand why someone would want their hair smelling like pumpkin spice.

Seth Anderson

Quite honestly, I don’t understand the love of Pumpkin Spice. It’s not very tasty, the joke of “white girls” loving it gets overplayed, and the biggest annoyance is the general overreaction to it just existing. We don’t act this way about turkey for thanksgiving, or cookies during christmas, so what makes Pumpkin Spice so special? If I were to give the strange product I’ve seen taking advantage of the craze, it would be a genuine horror story called “Death By Pumpkin Spice”, a book that was smartly left in a clearance bin at Barnes and Noble.

Mrs. Smith

Pumpkin spice has a certain allure to it because the flavor itself is so fleeting. We only get pumpkin spice for a month or so out of the year, so I think people look forward to it and perhaps make it better in their heads than it is in real life. I heard on the radio a few weeks ago that someone created a pair of pumpkin spice sneakers. Not really sure how that works. I’ll stick to pumpkin spice cheerios and the occasional pumpkin spice latte.