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Dunkin' Donuts' tasty fall treats dare to go beyond pumpkin spice

Justina Huddleston is an editor and the head writer for TDmonthly Magazine. She has been a freelance writer for several years, though her real passion is cooking. You can see the recipes she creates on her vegan food blog, A Life of Litt...

Dunkin' is clearly trying to win autumn with its new seasonal coffees and doughnuts

For the past few years, fall has been synonymous with hysteria over the arrival of pumpkin spice beverages at Starbucks. But Dunkin' Donuts is out to prove that the green mermaid isn't the only one with a stake in this game.

On Aug. 29, the Dunkin' Donuts fall menu returns, and while it does have pumpkin-flavored coffees, doughnuts, Munchkins and muffins (the chain has to if it wants to compete with Starbucks), it's banking on a new flavor to set it apart.

More: Is the new bottled Pumpkin Spice Frappuccino as good as the real thing?

This year, Dunkin' Donuts is introducing a new line of Salted Caramel beverages. You can choose from flavored coffee, lattes and macchiatos, hot or iced. I am so here for this. Salted caramel, with its toasted sugar notes, is a perfect flavor choice for fall, and if I can enjoy a nice, warm latte that doesn't reek of synthetic nutmeg and public bathroom air freshener, I'm all about it.

Dunkin' Donuts isn't the only one looking for new fall flavors this year. M&M'S came out with a seasonal butterscotch flavor, Peet's Coffee is mixing it up with a Dark Chocolate Pumpkin mocha, Jiff has a maple peanut butter spread, Pop-Tarts is releasing a caramel apple flavor... Companies are slowly broadening the range of fall flavors that we can choose from. And having a choice other than "Uhhh... that spiced pumpkin one, I guess?" is truly a relief to my taste buds.

More: Dear Starbucks, pumpkin spice lattes do not belong in August

As one last gift to us all, Dunkin' Donuts (in partnership with Blue Diamond Almond Breeze) will also carry almond milk at all of its stores now. It started rolling out a vanilla-flavored almond milk at many stores in 2014, but now you'll be able to use it as a nondairy creamer alternative everywhere, not just in select stores.

This fall, you won't be stuck with pumpkin. Sure, the devout lovers of the orange gourd will still be able to eat and drink it to their hearts' content — at Dunkin' Donuts and beyond. But for the rest of us, it's nice to know that salted caramel and other fall flavors are finally out there waiting for us too.

More: Pumpkin spice White Russians will make you forget all about trendy lattes

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