The Frugal Foodie: Perk up your coffee

As the weather gets colder and nights get longer, coffee consumption among college students inevitably rises. While people occasionally drink coffee for pure enjoyment, it is often used to fuel late-night study sessions or an early morning class. Homemade creamers and syrups are simple additions to coffee that can make a world of difference. Not only do they taste delicious, but also they are extremely cheap and easy to make. Regardless of the reason behind your coffee habit, you should enjoy it!

Salted Caramel Coffee Creamer


3/4 cup brown sugar

3/4 cup water

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 cups of half and half


Add water and sugar to a saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir until the mixture heats up and the sugar dissolves, which will take about two to three minutes. Remove from heat. Measure one cup of the sugar-water mixture (also called simple syrup) in a bowl and whisk in the vanilla and salt. Allow the mixture to cool for five to 10 minutes and then add it to the two cups of half and half. Stir well.

Keep creamer in a sealed container in the refrigerator, such as a mason jar. Store in fridge and shake before using.

Toasted Vanilla Maple Coffee Syrup


1 cup sugar

1 cup water

3 tablespoon vanilla

1/4 cup maple syrup

A dash of cinnamon


Put water, sugar and maple syrup into a large saucepan and bring to a gentle boil, making sure to stir often. Add vanilla and take off the burner for a few minutes. Put back on burner and allow mixture to simmer on low for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Allow mixture to completely cool before moving to a sealed container. Store in fridge and shake well before using. I advise using a syrup as a sweetener and pairing it with plain creamer or half-and-half.

Crème Brûlée Coffee Creamer


1 can (12 ounces) evaporated milk

1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed

1 1/2 cup milk

2 teaspoon vanilla extract


Heat evaporated milk and brown sugar in a saucepan over medium-low heat and whisk until sugar is fully dissolved; this will take about a couple of minutes. Remove from heat and add milk and vanilla extract. Once cooled, pour into a sealable container. Store in fridge and shake well before using.