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10 Cheap Drinks to Make at Home and Save Money

Recession-Proof Cocktail Recipes


Sometimes we need to cut costs on everything and when it comes to a financial situation like a recession the need is especially important. Often drinking habits change and many people choose to make drinks at home more often and these are a few drinks that are easy on tight budgets. You'll also find a few easy variations that require one or two extra mixers you may already have so you can have diverse options for about the same price.

For those fond of beer, Bryce Eddings (About.com Guide to Beer) has some great tips for saving money while enjoying some great beers.

Cape Codder

Hail to the Chief Cocktail - Skyy Grape Vodka
Photo Courtesy of © Skyy Spirits

Vodka and cranberry juice is simple and a great drink anytime. A bottle of cranberry can be found for around than $2 and if you add that to an inexpensive bottle of vodka (check my recommendations) you'll have Cape Codders for days at minimal cost.

Additional Cheap Drinks:

Pictured: Hail to the Chief

Margarita and Daiquiri

Margarita Cocktail
Photo Credit: © Shannon Graham

Both the Margarita and the Daiquiri are obvious favorites and probably one of the most cost effective ways to diversify your drinking experience. For either you basically need one spirit - maybe a budget liqueur here and there - and, with a few fresh fruits that are in season and at their best prices, you can shake or blend these two drinks into any flavor you could imagine.

A Few Suggestions:

Pictured: Strawberry Daiquiri

Black Russian

White Russian
Photo Credit © Colleen Graham

Easy and luscious, the Black Russian is one of the best drinks for a tight budget and with a few extras at hand you can make quite a few other drinks.

Additional Cheap Drinks:

Pictured: White Russian

Lemon Drop Martini

Lemon Drop Martini Cocktail
Photo Courtesy of: © www.CocktailTimes.com

Vodka, lemon juice and sugar combine for an elegant, yet low cost drink. With a few extra and inexpensive mixers you can expand from the Lemon Drop to other favorite neat drinks.

Additional Cheap Drinks:


Classic Whiskey Highball
Photo Courtesy: © Shannon Graham

A six-pack of small bottles of ginger ale and a bottle of whiskey and you have the "Highball" of all highballs for a few days. Your looking at $20 or less depending on your whiskey of choice and when the budget is tight, that sounds pretty good.

Additional Cheap Drinks:

Pictured: Dutch Green Tea

Gin Rickey

Gin Rickey
Photo Courtesy: © Shannon Graham

One way to save money in the bar is to invest in a soda siphon and a few CO2 cartridges. This can take you through a myriad of drinks with different base liquors so you can utilize a well-stocked bar and go from the Gin Rickey to quite a myriad of other drinks at minimal cost.

Additional Cheap Drinks:

Pictured: Rock Star Root Beer

Gin and Tonic

Gin & Tonic Mixed Drink
Photo Courtesy: © Shannon Graham

One of my favorite drinks of all time, the Gin and Tonic can be as cheap or extravagant as you want to make it. You can find some great gins for around $10 and decent tonics can be found for just a few dollars

Additional Cheap Drinks:

Rum and Coke

Easy Rum and Coke Mixed Drink
Photo Courtesy: © Shannon Graham

Rum has always been one of the least expensive spirits and the Rum and Coke one of the cheapest drinks. A $10 bottle of rum with a $1 liter of cola is tasty and easy on the wallet.

Additional Cheap Drinks:

  • Cuba Libre - add lime
  • Lounge Lizard - go with a dark rum and add amaretto
  • Whiskey and Coke - your favorite whiskey for the rum
  • Lime Cola - hold the rum for an enhanced cola drink

Pictured: Midnight Smash


Cardinal Cocktail - Superbowl XLIII Cocktail Recipe - Arizona Cardinals
Photo Credit: © Colleen Graham

One of the best ways to spice up a low cost bottle of wine is to mix it. In the Kir an equally inexpensive bottle of creme de cassis adds a touch of flavor and sweetness.

Additional Cheap Drinks:

Pictured: Cardinal Cocktail


Photo Credit: © Jared Zimmerman

Sometimes it takes some fresh herbs to spice up a drink and if you have a bottle of rum, some mint and club soda you have yourself a fantastic drink that doesn't break the bank.

Additional Cheap Drinks:

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