The Genius Hack For Cheaper Starbucks Caramel Macchiatos

You can get everything from a Mint Chip Frappuccino to the discontinued mango black tea if you know how to order certain customizations through the Starbucks app, but the secret menu doesn't have to get all the fun. According to the chain, there are more than 170,000 ways you can modify your drink order — and some of those can be seriously money-saving. For instance, iced latte lovers can cut costs by using an iced espresso base, and caramel macchiato fans can get a cheaper but just as delicious version of their favorite beverage by using this hack from Limabean Living on Youtube.

First, to replicate a classic venti iced caramel macchiato, order a triple iced espresso. Then, add five pumps of vanilla syrup, a caramel drizzle, and 2% milk, making sure the ice amount is set to regular. Your drink should come out to $4.75 with the added syrup and drizzle charges — but considering a regular venti iced caramel macchiato costs $5.95, we'd say this drink is quite a steal. If you normally get a tall, which costs $4.75 and contains one espresso shot and two pumps of vanilla syrup, you still save 60 cents by ordering the $4.15 customized drink.

Sweet, sweet savings

Of course, this hack is much easier to pull off if you order from the Starbucks app or website. As Limabean Living points out, the app shows you exactly what goes into a caramel macchiato, so it's easy to replicate it through a customized order.

If you normally get a grande, for instance, just check out what the regular drink contains (two espresso shots and three pumps of vanilla syrup), then add those modifications to your iced espresso. Since a typical grande iced caramel macchiato is $5.45, you're saving here too by ordering the $4.35 modified version.

If you get a grande or a venti, it's a strategic move to ask for your drink in a grande or venti cup too. You'll want to click on the "Customize" button in the app, then select your size from the "Cup Options" dropdown. And while you're there, you can change the milk options under "Add-ins" if you don't want 2% milk. Or, if you're getting a larger drink, feel free to ask for an "extra splash" of whichever milk you choose. You can even request that the barista line your cup with caramel sauce for extra sweetness, but with no extra charge, under the "Add-ins" section.

The exact amount you save may differ depending the pricing in your local area, but regardless, your drink will taste that much sweeter knowing you saved a little extra dough in the process.