Frosted coffee drinks can run $4 at coffee houses, and that’s without extra flavors, added espresso shots and milk substitutions. To save money, be your own barista and try these recipes.

Frosted coffee drinks can run $4 at coffee houses, and that’s without extra flavors, added espresso shots and milk substitutions. Drink one each day and your tab can exceed $1,000 a year.

To save money, be your own barista.

Besides coffee, you’ll need flavorings, such as syrups, cocoa, flavored creamers and spices. Some recipes call for milk or cream; others are made with ice cubes or ice cream in a blender. Be sure to factor in time for chilling.

For iced drinks, the coffee can be prepared either hot or cold, according to Travis Arndorfer, co-author of “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Coffee & Tea."

“You can brew it hot, and pour it over ice cubes or put it in the fridge. With the ice cubes, you run into trouble with dilution,” said Arndorfer, a Milwaukee-based copywriter.

“With a cold-brew method, you make a concentrate and you can keep it about a week in the refrigerator,” he said. To cold-brew: Coarsely grind a pound of your favorite coffee, then add to it about 72 ounces (a little more than a half gallon) of fresh water. Let it sit for about 12 hours or overnight. When it’s brewed, pour it through a strainer to filter out the grounds, then refrigerate.

“Your proportions will vary, depending on taste,” said Arndorfer. “Cold-brewing is less acidic and has a more rounded flavor.”

He said cold-brewing is preferable for drinks that contain milk, “because it has a deeper, resonant tone that cuts through milk a little better.”

There are home cold-brewing systems (such as the Toddy) in stores, but Arndorfer said special equipment is not needed to make cold-brewed coffee.

According to the National Coffee Association, 86 percent of coffee drinkers prepare their coffee at home. Some tips:

-- Consider using skim milk and sugar-free creamers to cut calories.

-- Use a cocktail shaker to make drinks extra frothy.

-- Try double-strength coffee. To make hot, simply double the amount of coffee required by your coffeemaker. The usual coffeemaker ratio is 1 tablespoon ground coffee per cup, so use 2 tablespoons per cup.

- -Make sure all the ingredients are thoroughly mixed when using a blender. When making large amounts — more than 5 cups – divide the ingredients in half and blend separately. Then combine the mixture in a large pitcher.

-- Make coffee ice cubes to guard against watered down drinks. Simply fill ice cube trays with coffee and freeze. Put the cubes in a freezer bag until ready for use.

-- Use attractive glassware. Drinks will seem special if presented in fancy glasses instead of plastic cups. For a frosted finish, store the glasses in the freezer before using.

-- Don’t forget the garnish. Add whipped cream, a squiggle of caramel or chocolate syrup, a pinch of nutmeg, some colored sprinkles, a scoop of ice cream or a cinnamon stick. Make sure the garnish reflects the flavor of the drink.

“Most iced coffee drinks are pretty simple,” said Arndorfer. One of his favorites is the Affagato Gianduja, a traditional Italian drink made with vanilla gelato or ice cream and espresso. It can double as a dessert.

“It sounds good,” he said, “but it tastes better.”

Blended Coffee Frost

Adapted from Nestle

1 cup 1 percent milk
2 tablespoons Italian crème or French vanilla flavored coffee creamer
2 tablespoons brown sugar
5 teaspoons instant coffee granules
2 cups ice cubes
Whipped topping (optional)
Ground cinnamon (optional)

Place milk, creamer, sugar and coffee granules in blender; cover. Blend until coffee is dissolved. Add ice; blend until smooth. Pour into glasses; top with whipped topping. Sprinkle with cinnamon.

Note: For chocolate flavor, replace the brown sugar with the same amount of chocolate syrup.

Makes 2 servings, 1 1/2 cups each

Affagato Gianduja

From “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Coffee & Tea” by Travis Arndorfer and Kristine Hansen

1 scoop cream- or vanilla-flavored gelato
1/3 cup Nutella spread (adjust for taste)
1 shot espresso
Valrhona unsweetened dark-chocolate powder

Chill the glasses or cups in which the drink will be served. (Smaller-sized martini glasses or 3-ounce demitasses work well.)

Mix 3 parts gelato to 1 part Nutella spread. The mixture will melt, but it should not be liquid. You only need to mix so Nutella is streaked in gelato.

Put a spoonful of the mixture into the chilled glass or cup. Make espresso, and pour shot over mixture. Top with dark-chocolate powder and serve. Swirl ingredients around to incorporate.

Makes 1 drink.

Black and White

From “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Coffee & Tea”

1/2 ounce coconut syrup
1 (1-ounce) shot espresso
8 ice cubes
1 ounce vanilla extract
1 ounce coconut milk

Pour coconut syrup into a martini glass. Add espresso shot and two ice cubes to a shaker, and shake. Strain espresso from ice and pour it over syrup. Shake together vanilla extract, coconut milk and remaining six ice cubes. Gently pour vanilla mixture over espresso.

Makes 1 drink.

Ice Cream Parlor Mocha Sodas

From the National Coffee Association

½ cup hot water
8 teaspoons coffee, finely ground to a powder
2 cups milk
4 scoops chocolate ice cream
1 quart club soda
Sweetened whipped cream or prepared whipped topping

Place hot water in a medium-sized pitcher. Add coffee and stir until dissolved. Stir in milk.

Place 1 scoop of ice cream in each of four ice cream soda glasses. Pour coffee/milk mixture equally into each glass. Fill glasses almost to brim with club soda. Top with sweetened whipped cream or prepared whipped topping.

Serves 4.

Kathryn Rem can be reached at kathryn.rem@sj-r.com.