We’re all pretty aware that buying a cup of coffee from a brick and mortar can be pretty expensive and may be difficult to save money when wanting to meet your desires at the same. But like you, I can’t compromise the taste with other alternatives. I don’t get the same productivity impact and motivational fuel that a Starbucks Caramel Macchiato gives me. But as I have been reviewing my finances, I learned I had spent a shit ton of money on Starbucks, and my overall finance could have been better if I looked at alternative solutions.

In the past, I would even budget a portion of my total income towards Starbucks. But after trying this new alternative that doesn’t compromise the taste of Starbucks, this has been a dream come true for my wallet, time taken to go to Starbucks, and gas mileage that added up for the trips. 

Keep Drinking Your Starbucks Signature Latte & Save $767.60 Each Year 

But the question to myself was, how the heck do I keep on drinking my Starbucks Signature Latte without the hefty price tag? This is how I am saving 43% or $767.60 each year, and I highly suggest if you are a Starbucks addict like me, to truly consider switching over. Mind you, the products I am referring to you as an alternative, are all Starbucks-owned and created products. Woo! 

Save Money At Starbucks by 43% Each Year & Keep Drinking Your Starbucks Signature Latte
Image: Starbucks

Save Money with a Grande Starbucks Caramel Macchiato – Hot/Ice

Let’s say you buy a grande caramel macchiato daily, and you can’t live your life without it. The base cost of the signature coffee is $4.75. Depending on where you live, the tax may differ, but we will use Texas’ 8.25% as an example. 

Before Tax Price: $4.75
Sale Tax: 8.25% or $0.39
After Tax Price: $5.14

  • If you were to buy a Starbucks at an average of 5x a week, this is the math: $25.70
  • For an entire month (4 weeks), it totals to $102.80
  • And for an entire year (52 weeks), it totals to $1336.40
Save Money At Starbucks by 43% Each Year & Keep Drinking Your Starbucks Signature Latte

Save Money with a Grande Starbucks Black Coffee – Ice, No Cream/Sugar

Here’s the alternative that your wallet and taste buds will love – buy the 48oz bottles from your local grocery store, Walmart, or Target and the Starbucks creamer of your choice for that signature taste.

The 48oz bottle gives you 3 full cups of a grande size drink (16 ounces). And if you cut down how much coffee you drink and end up drinking a tall size (12 ounces), you get an additional cup of 4 cups total. But for the sake of keeping this math story consistent, we’ll speak in the terms of a grande size and save money at Starbucks.

With the Starbucks bottle of 48oz, it costs $4.89 before tax price.   

Before Tax Price: $4.89
Sale Tax: 8.25% or $0.40
After Tax Price: $5.29

  • If you were to buy this Starbucks bottle at an average of 2x a week, this is the math: $10.58
  • For an entire month (4 weeks), it totals to $42.32
  • And for an entire year (52 weeks), it totals to $550.16

Overall, you won’t be saving much in comparison to adding the signature creamer, but you are probably saving a lot on your health if you are looking to reduce your sugar and dairy consumption. I’ve tried to minimize as much sugar as possible, but I can’t go all black on my coffee… yet! 

Save Money At Starbucks by 43% Each Year & Keep Drinking Your Starbucks Signature Latte

Save Money with a Grande Starbucks Black Coffee – with Signature Creamer

Alright, it’s okay let’s get real basic here and save money at Starbucks by DIY at home. If you want “the taste” of a full Caramel Macchiato, you’ll have to buy the signature creamer too, which they recently launched in Q4 2019. The best part of this creamer bottle is that it is quite generous with the amount that they packaged up. A total of 55 servings. That means you can use this creamer for 55 coffees. The best part of this creamer? Starbucks has created a few options – whether you like Caramel Macchiato, Cinnamon Dolce, White Chocolate Mocha, or Toffee Nut Latte. Let’s break down the costs!

With the Starbucks creamer bottle of 28oz, it costs $4.69 before tax price.   

Before Tax Price: $4.89
Sale Tax: 8.25% or $0.39
After Tax Price: $5.08

  • If you were to buy this Starbucks bottle at an average of 1x a month, this is the math: $5.08
  • And for an entire year (12 months), it totals to $60.96

Now let’s add the cost of the coffee plus the creamer together:

Per week: $10.58 + $5.08 = $15.66
Per month: $42.32 + $5.08 = $47.40
Per year: $568.80

Save Money At Starbucks by 43% Each Year & Keep Drinking Your Starbucks Signature Latte

Summary Comparison

What do you think? Yep, it’s a hell lot cheaper to do this rather than going to Starbucks daily! Here’s a summary chart of the three different options you have. 


Grande Starbucks Caramel Macchiato – Hot/Ice
(At Starbucks Store)
Grande Starbucks Black Coffee – Ice, No Cream/Sugar
(DIY at home)
Grande Starbucks Black Coffee – with Signature Creamer(DIY at home)
Weekly Total Cost
(5 coffees)
$25.70$10.58
(41% savings)
$15.66
(61% savings)
Monthly Total Cost
(20 coffees)
$102.80$42.32
(41% savings)
$47.40
(46% savings)
Annual Total Cost
(240 coffees)
$1336.40$550.16
(41% savings)
$568.80
(43% savings)

*All prices used for this comparison are as of 2/17/2020 and using Texas’ sales tax of 8.25%

Cee Ng

Hello, I’m Cee! I’m a lifestyle blogger during my downtime and a consultant and producer during the day. This blog is to share experiences in travel, work, beauty, relationships, cooking, shopping and lifestyle tips that I hope can inspire you to live the best version of yourself in whichever stage you are in life and have fun with no regrets!