Thrift Kitchen: Frappacheapo


I have to admit a shameful secret. I used to drink frappachinos. You know the ones in the bottle at the gas station. Talk about a sugar rush. It’s not the healthiest thing in the world and not to mention the expensive. YIKES! They are around $3 each here in Ames.

It’s been quite a while since I had one. The other day I was tired, I was on the way to the office, and it was hot. I’m such a whiner. Anyway, I caved and bought one. And honestly, didn’t like it so much. It was so sweet and thick and had a funny taste to it. Maybe it’s just that since they put the local coffee shop in the gas station (they actually roast their own beans, go figure), no one has been drinking the bottled stuff. They are pretty old. Anyway, point is, I just didn’t enjoy it all that much.

What to do? My frappachino dreams were crushed. Since I’ve cut out most sugar, I just don’t have the taste buds for it anymore. I also shouldn’t be drinking that much cream. My stomach is a lot happier on local milk. Not sure what it is, maybe it’s all in my head. I don’t care at this point. I’m just going to follow my stomach.

I also wanted a way to enjoy my summer delight without spending a load of money on it. Well, easy solution: I saved my bottle. I made my own extra strong coffee, added a little honey for sweet and some milk for yum.

Here’s how to make your own cool indulgence.


1. Grab your favorite glass bottle – I used a Snapple bottle for awhile too. Use one that reseals well.
2. Fill it 2/3 full with extra coffee you have in the morning. We use a French press and brew it pretty strong, but you can brew it to your own taste.
3. Add honey to taste while it’s still hot. Put on the lid and shake.
4. Add 1/4 cup milk of your choice. Pop in the fridge and enjoy later in the day. If you want it by lunch time, chill it in the freezer.

Yum, yum! Enjoy!

26 thoughts on “Thrift Kitchen: Frappacheapo

  1. good tip. I'd try it if only I actually made coffee and had a coffee maker. I grab one of these frappachinos as an occasional treat or pick-me-up while on the road, but sometimes I too find them too sugary and thick.

  2. To thicken it a little, you can add a teaspoon or so of instant pudding mix.

    I make my coffee the night before, and just let it cool on the counter. I know that most people would find that absolutely awful, but I don't like putting hot coffee in my fridge.

  3. We make ours using the Senseo pods. Just make one shot of your favourite coffee in a jug or mug, stir in the honey or sugar to taste whilst hot, then top up with very cold milk. Half fill a pint glass with ice cubes, pour the coffee over the ice then add a scoop or 2 of coffee or vanilla ice cream. Top with squirty cream if you like and add a straw. If you want a mochafrappacheapochino use choc ice cream and choc squirty cream, lol

  4. Vegan version-
    use chocolate almond milk (sweetened) and leave out the honey.

  5. What a great idea! It costs 4,50 € here in Germany! O__O
    THANK you so much!

  6. Every night I fill a jar with 2/3 cup coffee grounds and 2 cups water and refrigerate it. In the morning I strain it through a layered cheesecloth add 2 rounded tablespoons sugar to the strained coffee, pour it into short glasses, and top with a little half and half and ice. Makes about 4 servings. Tastes just like the “coffee” flavored frappachino!

  7. I remember reading somewhere that pectin is the thickener that the big coffee chain uses to get that interesting consistency in the fraps.

  8. My recipe for frappachinos: to one pot strong coffee (cooled), add one can sweetened condensed milk, stir until blended. Refrigerate or serve over ice.

  9. I definitely recommend cold brew like others have previous. The brewing hot method and then chilling, while probably ok if you are going to drink it chilled the same day, will make for a much more bitter and less rich in smooth coffee flavor drink (due to the acidity that hot brewing bring out in coffee, also not good for your tummy). Cold brewing is less acidic due to the lack of heat begin used, and this yields a richer, smoother, and richer brew that brings out the varied notes of the coffee flavor and is easier on your stomach.

    I usually make mine with the french press, so you already have all the equipment you need to make it! Also you can store the stuff in the fridge for up to a week.

    The one downside I can see in comparison to your method is that you cannot melt the sugar in the coffee- the simple solution is to make a simple sugar (heat together 1part water w/ 1part sugar until sugar is dissolved into water) and keep it stored in the fridge to mix into your drink whenever you need it.

  10. Lately I've been using almond or rice milk since soy is starting to give me headaches. Or if I'm feeling fancy, I'll get picket fence creamery which is a local organic dairy farm right outside of ames.

    Each morning Jason and I make hot coffee for ourselves and we share a few cups over breakfast, but somehow we are always left with excess. Instead of dumping it down the drain, I do the above to have a pick me up at the studio around lunch time. It's a lot about using up the leftovers from the morning.

    If planning ahead and making coffee just for cold consumption: Best methodis to use the cold brewed coffee method I talk about in the August issue of Craft Leftovers Monthly. All you need is a french press, course ground coffee, and some milk. Or I'll use this coffee toddy system – so yummy!… That's definitely my favorite.

  11. We make a mocha slushie version by using coffee ice cubes (leftover coffee poured into ice cube trays and frozen), milk and a bit of chocolate syrup in the blender. Tastes better than the name brand with much fewer calories.

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