Pumpkin Spice & Everything Nice: Dayton Fall-themed Treats To Try

Lauren Durham
Asst. Arts & Entertainment Editor

Cover photo courtesy of Flickr

Welcome to spooky season, Flyers. This time of the year brings everyone’s favorite festive essentials— Halloween decor, costume parties and the seasonal desserts we know and love. 

If you are looking for a Saturday afternoon excursion or just need something to satisfy your sweet tooth, stop by one of these Dayton establishments and order from their fall menus. Spoiler alert… you can’t go wrong with any of these!

Cinnamon and sugar pumpkin donut— Bill’s Donut Shop

In case you haven’t heard, Bill’s is a staple for UD students and the greater Dayton area. Since 1960, the family business has been serving fried, sugary goodness 24/7. 

Of their fall options, the cinnamon sugar pumpkin donut is my first pick. The soft pumpkin cake donut is dusted in a cinnamon and sugar coating, providing two essential fall flavors in one bite. 

“Cinderella Latte”— Starbucks


A fairy godmother or two may have just made magic happen for all avid pumpkin spice latte lovers.

The next time you order a pumpkin spice latte, try substituting half of the pumps of pumpkin for white chocolate, and bibbity bobby boo, you’ll have the trending #cinderellalatte. 

Thanks to Instagramer and Disney Parks enthusiast @happiestmamaonearth, the off-menu drink has become a hit all over the world. Delish.com says, “The pumps of white mocha mixed with the pumpkin reminded [the creator] of a white pumpkin aka Cinderella’s magical coach that takes her to the ball.”

Although there is debate as to whether the fancy variation prevails over the old reliable, I’ll take the side of a Disney movie any day. 

Apple Strudel— Ashley’s Pastry Shop

A quaint Oakwood shopping district is home to the bakery made famous by Hollywood actress Allison Janney (“The Help”). The Dayton native is a proud patron of Ashley’s Pastry Shop. She even has her favorite cookies, Sand Tarts, shipped overnight to the location of wherever she’s filming. 

From cookies to birthday cakes, you can’t go wrong at Ashley’s. I was overwhelmed by their wide array of fall desserts, so I landed on an apple strudel. Let’s just say it was meant to be. 

The glazed, flaky pastry was similar to an apple pie, but in the form of a bar. Picture a cinnamon roll and an apple pie combined, and that gooey match made in heaven doesn’t even do it justice. It’s a good (and bad) thing that Ashley’s is only a few minutes away from campus, because I will be eating more apple strudels in the near future. 

Leaf Cookie— Ashley’s Pastry Shop

Courtesy of Anna Biesecker-Mast

This festive, sparkly treat instantly caught my attention in the display. The flaky, buttery cookie is topped with a sweet, homemade frosting and dusted with edible glitter. Ashley’s had other festive cookies on display, including scarecrows, black cats, acorns, sunflowers and yes, pumpkins. 

Lumberjack Latte— Ghostlight Coffee

Looking for a little bit of motivation to crank out that essay this weekend? Look no further than 1201 Wayne Ave, only a five minute drive away from campus.

Ghostlight Coffee’s seasonal fall favorite, the Lumberjack Latte, has quite the fan base. Daytonians wait all year for the chance to order what the Dayton Daily News describes as a “warm, sweet, slightly smoky concoction with maple, cinnamon and smoked sea salt.” Yum. 

Buttermilk biscuit w/ homemade pumpkin butter— St. Anne the Tart

Courtesy of Lauren Durham

Full disclosure…I’m obsessed with this place. Tucked away in the Historic St. Ann District of the city lies a vintage haven of coffee and pastries. Beyond regular business hours, they host events such as pop-ups, guest chef takeovers and community celebrations. Their menu changes regularly, allowing loyal customers to mix it up every visit if they so desire. 

No matter what homemade goodie you choose, you’ll fall in love. I landed on a dense buttermilk biscuit filled with fresh, smooth pumpkin butter. With a cup of coffee in one hand and a bite of the biscuit in the other, I happily chatted with friends as we discussed the next time we’d return. 

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