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How I Saved This Week: Making coffee at home

Making Coffee at Home

I know it’s simple, but one way we save hundreds of dollars each year is by making coffee at home. You might feel like buying coffee really isn’t costing you much, but here’s what I wrote two years ago:

The Simple Dollar estimates that the cost of a 16-oz. brewed at home cup of coffee will cost you no more than $0.50 to $0.60 each, including the cost of energy, cream, sugar, etc. When I calculated it myself, I was coming up with the same costs for high-quality coffee. If you get a good deal on the coffee beans, your savings is going to be even higher.

So, if you’re typically paying $1.50 per cup of coffee, that’s a savings of around $1 per cup five times per week — or $20 per month or $240 per year. If you typically pay $4 for a fancy cup, you’re saving at least $17.50 per week, $70 per month, or $840 per year! Crazy, eh?

Making Coffee at Home

Not only does it save quite a bit of money, I also like coffee brewed at home the best. I can make my cup exactly like I like it. It’s almost like an art form to me!

We don’t really make fancy coffee all that often and we don’t even use sugar in our coffee any more around here, but we do love good cream. So we splurge on half and half every week. It costs us less than two cups of coffee at the coffee shop would cost us and it lasts us all week long — and it makes good coffee so much better!


Some Tried & True Recipe Links:


I was thinking about how much money we save by making coffee at home this week as I found myself brewing a delicious cup and pouring it into my favorite Copco cup before heading out the door.

And not only that, but it saves a lot of time waiting in line, too.

If you’ve been to a Starbucks any time recently, there’s a good chance you’ve waited in line for a least a few minutes, possibly much longer. Those orders of no-whip-two-pumps-extra-foam-double-cup-extra-hot-sugar-free orders take quite awhile to process. 😉

{Speaking of which, I was at the coffee shop recently and someone ordered some drink with a long string of names and instructions that included a specific temperature for the coffee to be. I was pretty aghast that that was allowed. I kind of just want to try ordering a coffee drink with instructions for it to be some random temperature — like 42.5 degrees or something — just to see what the barista says! 😉


For the record, I’m not at all opposed to buying the occasional cup of coffee, I just like it to be a fun treat, not an every day occurrence. Because once you add up how much it costs over time for “just that one cup of coffee”, it becomes a lot more motivating to learn how to brew your own cup of coffee!

What’s one way that YOU saved this week? I’d love to hear!

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  • Emily says:

    Haha! Please order a drink at 42.5 degrees. I’m sure the baristas face would be priceless!

    Although you should probably pick a hotter temp if you want to actually drink the cup of coffee. 🙂

  • Kristy says:

    Love this, Crystal!

    I’m a huge coffee fan and, true, I can hardly stand to BUY a cup of Joe! Love my home-brewed stuff with heavy cream and stevia. 🙂

    I had never put a pencil to the savings, but I’m feeling pretty good about my daily cuppa right now!

  • Miriah says:

    My brother in law bought a super nice espresso machine for under $300 during amazons Black Friday lightening deals. We pitch in for milk & coffee beans. It’s definetky paid for itself! Plus we love making lattes & prefer our own!

  • Pam says:

    I make my own lattes at home. The machine was $100. My old one lasted 3 years before it died. So about $35 a year or $1.50 per week for the machine, times 3-4 lattes per week. It costs me about $1.25 for 2-3 shots of espresso, the ounce of vanilla syrup, and the milk. Total drink cost at home is about $1.75. Same drink at Starbucks is almost $5. Saving $12-15 per week by doing it myself 🙂 It takes an extra few minutes, but totally worth it!

  • Whenever I go to Starbucks, I used to wonder 1 cup of coffee in a fancy cup costs you several dollars, its the same as the good ol coffee we make at home too yes but in a fancy, cup with loads of froth and cream, maybe a heart shaped one on top of that Frappachino 🙂

    I learnt something from this . Thank you for the post 🙂

  • melissa says:

    I have been using the dunkin doughnuts pay app to keep track of how much I spend and was shocked! From September through December I spent t $850!!!! Now yes there were some extra expenses like gift cards for teachers and I paid the PTA brea fast but it was still a crazy amount! For the new year I am planning to only go once a week. Also to always use the app since you get a free drink for every $20 you spend.

  • Vickie says:

    Coffee at home is quite a money saver! I’ve learned how to make tortillas this week. Not sure the savings but I had all the ingredients on hand.

  • Ann says:

    I saved money this week by making dinner by “repurposing” leftovers into a different meal. Another meal I used what we had here instead of running to the store (it was too cold to go out anyway!). I also saved by using the Walmart Savings Catcher app – it got me $5.12 back!

    • Jenni says:

      We did the same thing this week! A pot of chili seems to never end. It has been super cold so chili was good but after three days…..
      I really wanted pizza last night but decided to make chili dogs instead:)

  • Beth says:

    My guilty pleasure is getting coffee just so I can have some with my journal and Bible before work. But I save it for a weekly treat, not a every day occurrence.

    An extra blessing for me is that, my work place has coffee in the break room which actually does not taste bad at all. My coffee is mostly free :).

  • Jillbert says:

    I agree that making coffee at home is the way to go. We bought a super-automatic espresso machine as a family treat two months ago. It is delightful to wake up and have a really good coffee each morning. Our whole family enjoys it — lattes for the teens, steamed milk (with vanilla) for the tween, cafe Americano for me, and double shot of espresso for my husband. We buy our beans in bulk from Costco to keep the cost down.

  • Lana says:

    We used to have a home school moms meeting at Atlanta Bread Co. every month and I did ask for extra hot hot chocolate since they only make it lukewarm which I find disgusting.

    I used up an open jar of lime salsa that we did not like for chips in a crock pot full of chicken tortilla soup. It was awesome in the soup and did not get thrown out.

  • Heather says:

    I saved with 80-90% off Christmas clearance- and brought home items to use now and for birthdays! Here are 5 ways we saved this week…

  • Jamie says:

    So…this might be a bit much. But. Every other day, because of the timing of my hubs and I’s coffee habit, there is a half a pot of coffee leftover when it’s time for my afternoon cup. So I reheat it on the stove top instead of brewing more. It really tastes fine! Don’t judge 🙂 We had a friend for dinner last night and instead of going out for dessert, she whipped up those saltine toffee things using ingredients we already had. Good dinner guest, huh?

  • Tracy says:

    We usually brew our own coffee at home as well.

    Crystal I completely agree that it is ok to go buy a cup as a treat. My Mom actually took me out this morning to get a cup of coffee and some breakfast at our local coffee place. It was an awesome treat for me.

  • Michele says:

    My grandpa always said “pay yourself first”.

    I make my own vanilla syrup for my coffee. Delicious.
    My daughter got me a Keurig for Christmas. Keeping the coffee costs down by also using my French press.

    I finally did it. This week, I canceled my cable. Whoop! Whoop!

    I was going through my Living Free book, brushing up on the tearing down the stronghold of passivity and found a $100’s in the book. 🙂

    • Yay for cancelling cable!!!

      • Michele says:

        I bought myself a ROKU for my birthday/Christmas present.
        I had a tad bit of anxiety when I canceled the cable. (I am in Seahawk country)
        Growing up in the 80’s, having a VCR, big screen TV, video games, cable, microwave……those things were a luxury and if you had those things then it meant that your family was doing okay. Letting go of stuff that represents that mindset is a huge thing…..especially as a single parent. Now that I am (as my daughter puts it) halfway to 90, my perspective had change.

  • annie says:

    How often do you use your French press?

  • Julie C says:

    Saved a trip to the grocery store and found an amazingly tasty dish to enjoy a fresh roasted turkey, green beans with rice; this is the ingredients I had on hand so a quick google search gave me this fabulous recipe; it got rave review by all 9 of us!

    Starbucks treat for me usually means an empty Starbucks bag for a free tall (made in a grande cup so I have plenty of room for cream-S on THM) and I bring my own stevia sweetener. Don’t forget to add the code on the bag for a Starbuck’s star and buy it on sale with a coupon and a Target $5 gift card with purchase (they run that sale on a regular basis). 🙂

  • Sarah says:

    This is awful to admit…but my husband and I used to each go to Starbucks every day before work, and then we would go AGAIN in the evening together 3-4 times a week. Awful, awful, awful.

    I actually used to work at Starbucks back in college and the company’s “goal” is to get customers to come FOUR TIMES A DAY!!! And you know what? Some people did actually come that often!! It’s just nuts.

    We now (thankfully) brew our own coffee at home. We either buy good beans or good cream, like you. It saves so much money and is just so much more convenient. Plus, it tastes exactly the same every time 🙂


  • Victoria says:

    Although I guess I really didn’t save money on what I am about to mention this week, I did get the bill this week so I guess it counts. I had an ultrasound done in the summer and a cyst was discovered. I had to have another to make sure it was either gone or at least not growing a few months later (it is gone 🙂 ). Anyways the first ultrasound cost us $394.91, plus the bill to have the radiologist to read it, and we have insurance. Together the two bills were over $600. My husband decided to call around to neighboring ultrasound centers and found one about 50 minutes drive from us that bills for way less. I haven’t gotten the radiologist bill yet but I did get the ultra sound bill and it was $25.05 meaning we have saved $396.86 just on that one bill alone!! and it just took my husband about 30 minutes of calling around and a longer drive for me there and back.

  • Anna says:

    So glad these posts are back…they motivate me to keep this mind-frame! I saved yesterday by using a $2 coupon on Tide that was already on sale. I know I could buy cheaper detergent/make my own, which I have but they stink up my washing machine.

  • bluffwood says:

    Everyone ought to be concerned about mold growing in their keurig and other automatic coffeemakers. And the cost per K-cup is enormous compared to using a tablespoon and a filter. A french press is easy and goes right into the dishwasher to be pristine.

    I think a microwave is better than stove top to reheat coffee. But never ever to the temp of boiling.

  • DelRae H says:

    I’ve seen you post pictures of that mug before. Do you remember where you got the “Do what you like. Like what you do.” mug? I’d love to buy one for myself and a could family/friends!

  • Riann says:

    I love your Copco cup! I had one and it broke, I used it every day on my way to work. The one I’m using now is not my fave, I may need to find a new copco one this weekend! 🙂

  • Robin says:

    We saved by making thank you cards for Christmas presents using some supplies we already had at home.

  • Katherine says:

    I forgot to buy a squash for the squash hash we were going to have for breakfast. But we had some extra potatoes. So I made a potato hash instead. Still tasty, and I saved a trip to the store!

  • Charlotte says:

    I have committed to cut out drinks with sugar in it on a daily basis. I drink more water. This has saved me at least four dollars a week from not buying soda drinks.

  • Beth Sheppard says:

    Planned on making soup today for my lunches, I freeze in jelly jars, I had no fresh thyme googled substitution and used basil. I guess the ratio is 1:3 for dried vs fresh. Tasted great and saved a trip. You can find an answer on google for anything! Love it

  • Amy Moore says:

    When the barista is steaming the milk, there is a thermometer measuring the temperature of the milk. So really it isn’t any extra work, and I bet they would be happy to give you a latte with 42.5 degrees!

  • Bethany Marier says:

    I just saved by taking advantage of Omaha Steaks Free Shipping No Min Weekend Promotion. I had 200 points which got my 6 free steak burgers… so I paid $0 because shipping was free! Wahoo!! That’s a great deal 😉

  • Allison says:

    I got almond milk for free with a coupon, so I didn’t have to buy milk like I do most weeks. I also bought some clearance Xmas wrapping paper, so I shouldn’t have to buy any at full price come December.

  • Victoria says:

    The Simple Dollar calculation does not seem apples to apples.
    1) It’s based on a coffee cost of less than $0.40/ounce. Even if you click on the link in the article, the cost for Eight O’Clock is $0.60/ounce.
    2) He took his wife’s very subjective opinion that this is “high end” coffee. Actual high end coffee (from a local roaster) is more typically $12 – $15/12 ounces. Starbucks (in the picture) seems to run $0.80 – $1.10/ounce.

    Seems like you need to be using coupons and deals to get the savings he describes on comparable coffee.

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