As we budget our nickels and dimes, it sometimes can be difficult to track how much money is flying right out of our pockets! Rent, gas, groceries, insurances, it all adds up remarkably quick. But what if you're spending too much money on coffee, and don't even know it?! That can't be good.
The notion of "saving money" on our various daily pleasantries is not uncommon. We're in an age of self-education and empowerment! That sounds great, right? People are getting more savvy with shaving a few buck here and there, because in the grand scheme of things, a little bit of frugality can go a long way.
Here are 4 ways to save money on coffee.
1. Brew More Coffee At Home!
This one is a biggie, but here's the deal. Lots of people are out and about, we totally get that. Getting coffee at a drive-thru or a shop is certainly a normal thing, but have you ever tracked how much money you drop on that super-sweet drink? $4-$5 bucks on a latte every now and then doesn't seem like much... but it is. At a rough glance, if you drop about $15 a week on coffee... that's $60 a month... which is about $720 a year. Dang! (Here's a side thought, have you ever wondered how much gas your car burns through while waiting in the drive-thru? There's something to think about.)
Now we're not saying "stop going out". Everyone likes a treat! It's just good to be mindful of habits. A bad habit can throw off good habits very easily!
2. Buy "More" Actual Coffee!
When you're at the grocery store, you might just see a lot of pre-made, ready-to-drink coffee. How enticing! But also, how expensive! That little bottle may be full of sweet goodness, but considering cost per liquid oz., it is certainly far from sweet for your budget.
On the whole bean or ground coffee shelf many companies sell a rather small bag of coffee for a pretty steep price and while the bag may look like a pound it's probably 12 oz. which is 4 oz. shy of an actual pound. Yes, that coffee may be slapped with the word "Artisan" or "Gourmet", but that doesn't always equate to value or quality. Pay attention to the details because you may be paying more for less if you're not careful. Now we understand that speed and convenience are two things everyone can appreciate -- but single-serve machines, in all reality aren't very cost effective. A box of coffee pods can be pretty pricey and for a real shocker, do the math on what a pound of coffee in pod costs...spoiler alert, it's not small. At that point, you're paying for the convenience, not the processed coffee. Buying a large 2lb. bag of coffee will last far longer than an expensive box of pods.
3. Get Creative!
This one circles back to #1 -- a big reason as to why people like going out, is that it's a much more open experience. You have a plethora of styles and flavors at your beck and call! But it doesn't have to be that way. By getting yourself some cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla syrups, etc.. you can make your own fancy-schmancy drink yourself! (And at a fraction of the cost from a drive-thru). And you can use your own healthy ingredients without colors, chemicals or tons of sugar.
...But if you simply MUST go out, be brave! Venture towards the condiment section. Many coffee shops have cinnamon, honey and cocoa powder readily available for customers. If you ordered just a regular coffee with some cream, you can add some of the fixings yourself and EASILY save a buck or two right on the spot.
Have you tried making coffee ice-cubes?! Just use an ice-cube mold, and pour in some coffee. Next time you want an iced coffee beverage, you won't have to worry about it watering down with standard ice-cubes. Tricks like that will make your friends go "whaaaat? Game-changer!"
If you enjoy making your own drinks, you'll love our Radiant Recipes blog!
4. Brew Better!
Ultimately, how you drink your coffee is up to you. But what if an improvement could be easily made? What if you didn't have to buy paper filters anymore?! Traditional Hot-brewers have one fatal flaw; coffee sustainability. Coffee that's brewed with a drip machine is a bit of a "one-hit-wonder" in that it makes coffee that's only 'good' while it's fresh. Once it stays on the burner for an hour or more or cools down, it becomes much more bitter -- thus no one drinks it. Have you ever drank coffee that's been sitting on the hot-pad for hours? It's not pretty. Also, a lot of the coffee gets dumped down the drain! Which makes sense -- no one really wants crummy stale, burnt, bitter coffee. If a decent percentage of coffee is not being drank, that means it's being wasted. Wasting coffee = wasting money. Bottom line you really cannot store hot-brewed coffee for later. Since it's been 'cooked' it will start to degrade fast so watch out for mold within a few days.
This is where cold brewing has a leg-up on the competition. Cold brew coffee is a much more purified and concentrated version. Because it's never heated it stays fresh in the fridge for up to two weeks! Plus because it's super concentrated you can use it to make both hot and iced drinks, desserts and cocktails in seconds.
Interested in reading more about brewers? Check out our Battle Of The Brewers blog.