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Hot Savings on DIY Cool Coffee

I love iced coffee but I have a hearty dislike for spending $3 or $4 every day with my local barista.

Like every good Krazy Coupon Lady I needed to find a way to close the gap between my morning pick-me-up and my reluctant pocketbook.

I am also in the process of shedding a few pounds, and everywhere I check the coffee drinks are loaded with sugar and calories.

It took a bit of trial and error, but I figured out how to have an iced coffee every morning and stay on a tight budget (caloric and financial).

Let’s use a price of $1.70 before tax for a 22 oz. (270 calories) McDonald’s iced vanilla coffee. These days I spend $0.22 cents to make my own: an 87 percent savings. Huzzah! My total monthly coffee budget? $7.00.  I also save 6,000 calories each and every month. Hello, skinny jeans!

You Need:

  • One pound of your favorite coffee
  • Large container (I use a large stock pot.)
  • Eight quarts of cold water
  • Large pitcher or covered container
  • Refrigerator

How it Works:

  1. Pour the entire bag of coffee into the LARGE container.
  2. Cover the coffee with 8 quarts of cold water and cover your container. Let this sit at least 8 hours or overnight while the coffee cold brews.
  3. Place a strainer with a cheesecloth or paper towel over a large gallon pitcher. Pour the brew through the strainer into the container. Keep filing containers until you are left with only grounds. Refrigerate the containers. The very concentrated brew will keep in the fridge for about a month.
  4. Discard or compost the coffee grinds.


Skinny Iced Coffee

  • Fill a tall glass with ice.
  • Add one packet of Splenda or Truvia.
  • Add 1/2 cup of 2 percent, 1 percent, or nonfat milk.
  • Add coffee to rim.
  • Stir and enjoy.

Naughty Iced Coffee

  • Fill tall glass with ice.
  • Add 1/8 tsp. vanilla extract.
  • Add 1/8 cup sugar (or to taste).
  • Add 1/8 cup half and half (or to taste).
  • Add coffee to rim.
  • Stir and enjoy.

Personalize your coffee recipes. For example, this past month I used French Vanilla ground coffee instead of my usual regular breakfast blend. During the fall I love to use pumpkin pie flavored coffee .

Keep in mind this technique makes 32 cups of coffee. I drink two a day. My local grocery store has a BOGO coffee deal now and then, which is when I stock up with coupons. I can typically get good coffee for about $2 a pound.

This has been a guest post by Joy from Columbus, GA.
Learn more about the KCL Contributor Network here.

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13 thoughts on “Hot Savings on DIY Cool Coffee”

  1. Tina says:

    DH and I tried this out last night (but halved the recipe to try it first) – dh said it was way too watered down. We were unclear whether the oz’s of coffee were in ‘weight’ or ‘liquid’ measurement in the recipe. I did measure using a liquid measuring bowl….so that may of been the problem. We have since adjusted the ratios against how he makes a regular cup of coffee and see if that changes (will know in the morning). I LOVE the ice cube tip! I’m definitely going to try that! I also like Patricia’s mix – sounds yummy too!! (I would suggest whoever tries to make this to half the recipe first making just as noted, and then change it as needed. I know dh likes stronger coffee…so it could be completely fine and not watered down at all to the average coffee drinker. =)

    • Tina says:

      oh and the ounces is because we halved the pound…lol. So maybe if we kept that it would have made the difference! =) It must be by weight now that I look at it…which can be hard to figure out without a scale…=)

  2. nadina says:

    another thing people do with leftover coffee is put them in ice cube containers so that when you have your iced coffee, instead of ice cubes, it’s iced coffee cubes and it doesn’t water down your coffee!

  3. Anonymous says:

    Wow, $7 budget per month. I spend $177 per month at Starbucks! :(

  4. This recipe is unclear if its for ground coffee or whole beans?

  5. I have a Keurig and I brew my coffee at night (I use the same cup twice through) into 2 travel iced drink plastic glasses. I refrigerate them over night, add my sugar free flavored creamer (0 Weight Watchers points) and ice to bring it to the top! Very affordable, fresh, and 0 WW points! I usually have both glasses during the day. I take one to work with no need to wait for the drive through line!

  6. I make a pot of hot coffee, pour 2/3 into a pitcher, add about 1/2 cup brown sugar, 1/4 bottle imitation vanilla (or to taste), and enough 2% milk to fill the pitcher full. Mix well. Chill overnight….taste heavenly!

  7. heidi says:

    I do the same thing. But i put the coffee grounds in a coffee filter and put a rubber band around it and it acts like a giant tea bag. No straining!