Save Hundreds of Dollars a Year by Making These Four Drinks at Home

by Mike on April 2, 2012


We spend a lot on beverages. Take a typical Saturday–you may grab some coffee in the morning and spend anywhere from $2 to $6, depending on the drink you buy. Later, you may go out for lunch and pay over $2 for a soda, then go out to the bar in the evening and spend $12 on two mixed drinks.

Instead of spending upwards of $20 in ONE DAY on drinks, consider these drinks you can make at home and save a bundle:

1. Soda–With the advent of machines like SodaStream, spend $80 to $100 to buy the machine, and then supplement with the soda flavor of your choice and the carbonation can, which lasts for 60 litres of sparkling water. According to Daily Finance, you can make the equivalent of one can of soda for 25 cents using a SodaStream. In addition, the soda you make at home is healthier. Daily Finance explains, “SodaStream flavors contain about a third of the sugar, calories, carbohydrates, and sodium in the national brands. SodaStream mixes also stay away from high-fructose corn syrup.” Not only do you save money, but you are consuming a healthier drink.

2. Coffee drinks. Yes, coffee you make at home may not taste exactly like Starbuck’s brew. However, for the amount of money you save, getting used to the taste difference may be well worth it. If your tastes go beyond drinking coffee straight, you may want to invest in a espresso maker. You can find these used on Craigslist for $25 to $50. If you spend $5 on Starbuck’s, even when you try to save money there, an espresso machine would pay for itself by the tenth drink you make at home.

3. Smoothies. Is there anything better than a fresh, store bought smoothie? Yes–a smoothie made at home. Invest in a variety of fruits and some juice or the milk of your choice, and you can make your own smoothies for less than half price of the $5 drinks you can buy, plus, like soda, the smoothies you make at home are probably better for you with fewer additives. Best of all, smoothies don’t require special equipment to make at home like soda and coffee do. If you have a blender, you are ready to make smoothies at home.

4. Mixed drinks. Alcoholic beverages are much cheaper when prepared at home rather than bought at a restaurant or bar. Of course, not everyone wants to make alcholic drinks at home because they enjoy the social aspect of going out to a bar or restaurant with friends and having a few drinks. However, if you prefer to have a small party at home, serving drinks there will save you the most money over any of the other drinks you can make at home.

Often times we buy coffee or soda when we are out because we don’t think we can make it at home. However, spend some money buying the right equipment, and you can make your own soda and coffee at home and save a bundle. Smoothies are nutritional drinks that you can easily make from home. Of course, making mixed drinks at home can save you quite a bit of money, but if you prefer to go out for those, make your soda, coffee and smoothies at home, and you will be able to use the difference to go out for alcoholic drinks once in a while, if you prefer. Or, use the money you save for debt repayment or as a way to find extra money in your budget.

**Photo by Praveen on Flickr**

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Andi @ MealPlanRescue April 10, 2012 at 6:37 pm

We’ve essentially stopped buying soda. We make iced tea at home by the pitcher, and we make smoothies in our mega blender. My husband wants us to get a sodastream because if left to my own devices I will drink my weight in club soda and gingerale.

2 101 Centavos April 9, 2012 at 7:04 am

Good article, Melissa. We’ll have to give the soda stream a serious look!

3 Untemplater April 8, 2012 at 11:25 pm

I generally only order water when I eat out for this very reason. Drinks are expensive! Fortunately I don’t crave juices very often and avoid soda so I don’t spend much on drinks at the grocery store either. -Sydney

4 Matt @ RamblingFever Money April 5, 2012 at 7:52 am

I too have been contemplating getting a SodaStream for quite some time now. It’s just a matter of time before I get one. Your explanation of the health benefits, (less sugar, sodium, etc.) may have been the final selling point for me. Thanks for that!

As far as Starbucks, just buying their coffee grounds to brew at home is a good way to save and still get great coffee. Yeah, Starbucks grounds are way more expensive than Maxwell House or Folgers, but still much cheaper than buying by the cup from a Starbucks store.

5 Christa April 3, 2012 at 6:17 pm

I love my espresso machine and my mini blender (for smoothies). I don’t have a SodaStream, but I don’t drink a ton of soda. For someone who does drink soda more often, though, they make a lot of sense!

6 Marianne @ Preserving Pennies April 2, 2012 at 10:01 pm

I’ve been contemplating buying a soda stream machine. When I lived in France 10 years ago they were already doing a version of this in that they made their own soda drinks out of carbonated water and flavoured syrups. I thought it was a novel idea back then but didn’t really think of doing it here because I don’t know where I would get coke syrup from. Now that they have the soda stream machines though I am interested. Part of me thinks I should just stop drinking pop but the realistic part of me thinks that I don’t really want to stop drinking pop and I should just buy a soda stream machine so that I don’t spend so much on it. I wonder if I would drink more with the machine though…

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