Create 10 Starbucks Drinks for a Fraction of the Price With These Recipes

6,693 Views
homemade double chocolate frappuccino in a glass
Life is Poppin's double chocolate chip frappuccino is a great solution to every Starbucks lover’s chocolate craving. Image courtesy of Grace Cooper

It’s no secret that people spend tons of money on their daily Starbucks fix. Even if you frequent Starbucks only during the workweek for your $3 drink, you could be spending $780 a year on coffee. And it’s likely that those prices will only go up with time.

So if you’re looking for more natural, healthy and — most importantly — cheaper option, here are 15 copycat recipes every Starbucks drinker should know.

1. The Pink Drink

a home recipe for st

Photo courtesy of Grace Cooper
  • 1 cup fresh strawberries: $1.50
  • ½ cup sugar: 14 cents
  • ½ teaspoon green coffee bean powder: 73 cents
  • 1 cup white grape juice: 35 cents
  • 2 cups coconut milk: $1.15
  • 2 cups ice: free
  • Optional: strawberries and blackberries

Total: $3.87

Servings: One

Cost per Serving: $3.87

Starbucks price: $3.85 to $5.85

This pink drink recipe by Beauty and the Beets is a classic. It’s definitely a splurge — at $3.87 it’s only a couple dollars cheaper than a large cup from Starbucks — but it’s always fresh. The recipe works with either fresh or freeze-dried strawberries — the latter will give you a frothier consistency. This recipe is a delicious way to get a little creative with your coffee habits, while adding a little more fruit to your diet as well.

2. Cool Lime Refresher

Homemade cool lime refresher drink

Photo courtesy of Grace Cooper
  • 1 organic mint-leaf tea bag: 33 cents
  • 1 cup peeled and chopped cucumber: 50 cents
  • 3 cups water: free
  • ¾ cups sugar: 21 cents
  • 2 cups lime juice: 50 cents
  • Optional: lime garnish

Total: $1.54

Servings: Eight

Cost per serving: 19 cents

Starbucks price: $2.95 to $4.45

I’m a huge fan of the Starbucks Cool Lime Refresher, but I’m not a huge fan of the price. This recipe by Darling Tomboy is a lifesaver for anyone with a craving who doesn’t want to shell out the bucks, and it makes enough to share. It’s best to use fresh mint, but if you’re in a rush, like I always am, dried mint will do just fine. And don’t be afraid to use your preferred sweetener, like stevia or honey, instead of sugar.

3. Caramel Macchiato

  • 1 cup coffee: 3 cents
  • 3 teaspoons sugar: 2 cents
  • 5 tablespoons heavy cream: 56 cents
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter: 32 cents
  • 4 tablespoons brown sugar: 13 cents
  • ¼ teaspoon salt: 1 cent
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract: 20 cents

Total: $1.27

Servings: Four

Cost per serving: 32 cents

Starbucks price: $3.75 – $4.75

Baking Mischief’s caramel macchiato is a great homemade twist on the popular Starbucks drink. With seven ingredients, it’s a little more involved than other recipes, but the good news is that you likely have all these components in your kitchen already!

4. Green-Tea Lemonade

Homemade Green tea lemonade in a glass

Photo courtesy of Grace Cooper
  • 3 tablespoons sugar: 6 cents
  • 1 green-tea bag: 11 cents
  • ½ cup boiling water: free
  • 2 lemons: $1.12
  • ¾ cup water: free
  • Ice: free

Total: $1.29

Servings: Two

Cost per serving: 65 cents

Starbucks price: $2.75 to $4.25

I love this green-tea lemonade by A Cute Lifestyle because it’s exactly what the drink says it is: lemonade and green tea. It’s simple, chemical-free, and you can sweeten it to your taste. You can also feel free to add in your own fruit flavoring, like mango or peach.

5. Pumpkin Spice Latte

Homemade recipe of pumpkin spice latte, drink in a brown mug

Photo courtesy of Grace Cooper
  • 1 cup sugar: 32 cents
  • 1 cup water: free
  • 2 tablespoons pumpkin puree: 10 cents
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice: 50 cents
  • ½ cup coffee: 2 cents
  • 2 cups milk: 30 cents

Total: $1.24

Servings: Two

Cost per serving: 62 cents

Starbucks price: $4.25 to $5.25

This recipe by The Jenny Evolution is a great excuse to drink pumpkin spice lattes all year round, but without the outrageous prices. And if you don’t have pumpkin pie spice on hand, don’t worry:  Just substitute a mix of allspice, nutmeg, cinnamon, ginger and cloves. If you’re a spice hoarder like me, you probably already have all of those ingredients in your pantry.

6. Double Chocolate Chip Frappuccino

homemade double chocolate frappuccino in a glass

Image courtesy of Grace Cooper
  • 1 cup milk: 15 cents
  • 2 tablespoons sugar: 4 cents
  • ⅓ cup chocolate chips: 41 cents
  • 3 tablespoons chocolate syrup: 15 cents
  • 2 cups ice: free
  • ⅛ teaspoon vanilla extract: 5 cents

Total: 80 cents

Servings: One

Cost per serving: 80 cents

Starbucks price: $4.25 to $5.25

Life is Poppin’s double chocolate chip frappuccino is a great solution to every Starbucks lover’s chocolate craving. This frappuccino is basically a milkshake minus the ice cream, and at just 80 cents a drink, it’s hard to beat!

7. Cinnamon Dolce Latte

  • ¾ cup boiling water: free
  • 1 teaspoon instant espresso powder: 28 cents
  • 1/2 cup milk: 75 cents
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon: 1 cent
  • ½  teaspoon brown sugar: 1 cent
  • ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract: 20 cents
  • 1 pinch of nutmeg: 1 cent
  • Optional: whipped cream and ground cinnamon

Total: $1.26

Servings: One

Cost per serving: $1.26

Starbucks price: $3.65 to $4.65

This cinnamon dolce latte by Diethood has all the flavor of the original Starbucks drink without the added price. Although there are a lot of ingredients, they all likely living in your kitchen already, making it an easy fix for an early morning and a great money saver.

8. Peppermint White Chocolate Mocha

Homemade pepperment white mocha in a mason jar

Photo courtesy of Bright Eyed Baker
  • 1 cup heavy cream: $1.79
  • ½ cup sugar: 14 cents
  • 4 ounces white chocolate: 72 cents
  • ¼ teaspoon peppermint extract: 14 cents
  • ½ cup milk: 8 cents
  • 10 tablespoons coffee: 1 cent
  • Optional: whipped cream, crushed peppermint

Total: $2.88

Servings: One

Cost per serving: $2.88

Starbucks price: $3.75 to- $4.75

The peppermint white chocolate mocha is another seasonal drink that could use a homemade makeover. This recipe by Bright-Eyed Baker is a great way to save money and drink decadent peppermint all year long.

9. Black Tea Lemonade

iced black tea in a glass pitcher

Photo courtesy of Grace Cooper
  • 4 Earl Grey tea bags: 47 cents
  • 4 cups boiling water: free
  • 1 can frozen lemonade concentrate: $1.25
  • Ice: free
  • 2 cans filtered water: free
  • Optional: sweetener, lemon for garnish

Total: $1.72

Servings: Six

Cost per serving: 29 cents

Starbucks price: $2.45 to $3.95

This black tea lemonade recipe by Heidi’s Home Cooking makes six to eight servings, which makes it perfect for parties or just for staying Starbucks-free all week long. To avoid a trip to the grocery store, I used lemonade concentrate instead of lemon juice, which not only reduced the sugar but also saved me a little money along the way.

10. Iced White Chocolate Mocha

  • 2 tablespoons white chocolate sauce: 21 cents
  • 2 tablespoons cold coffee: 1 cent
  • 1 cup milk: 15 cents
  • Ice (free)
  • Optional: Whipped cream

Total: 37 cents

Servings: One

Cost per serving: 37 cents

Starbucks price: $3.75 to $4.75

This iced white chocolate mocha by The Grant Life is the easiest and cheapest recipe I came across. It’s also probably one of the best. It uses just four ingredients and costs only a fraction of the Starbucks price. You can treat yourself by adding extra toppings or skip the whipped cream and save the extra calories.

Making your own coffee-shop drinks saves money, time — no more standing in line! — and gives you the ability to customize your drink exactly how you want it — plus, there’s nobody there to spell your name wrong.

Grace Cooper is a freelance writer and college student from Washington, D.C. Her favorite Starbucks drink is the Green Tea Lemonade, especially when it only costs $1.29