Is Homemade Pre Workout Legit? (With 5 Delicious Recipes!)

Enter the world of DIY pre workout fuel! 

Many turn to commercial pre workouts for enhanced performance and endurance workouts. 

But homemade pre workout concoctions offer a customizable, cost-effective, and healthier alternative. 

As a certified personal trainer, I’ve done my due diligence to research the basics behind crafting your own pre workout.

We’ll also explore five tantalizing homemade pre workout recipes. 
Here’s what’s coming up

What’s Pre Workout?
Is Homemade Pre Workout Safe?
Why Try Homemade Pre Workout? 
Ingredients That Can Make Pre Workout Effective 
How To Make Homemade Pre Workout
5 Delicious Homemade Pre Workout Recipes
Bottom Line

Medical Disclaimer: The content on WorkoutGreat is for general informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.

We are not a medial resource. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider when starting a new training regiment and/or diet.

What’s Pre Workout? 

Pre workout is a dietary supplement that you take before working out in order to boost performance. 

The boost in performance comes from ingredients that can give you 

  • increased focus
  • increased energy 
  • increased blood flow
  • increased endurance 
  • decreased fatigue 
  • decreased muscle soreness 

Is Homemade Pre Workout Safe?

Yes, homemade pre workout is safe as long as you use your best judgment to use proper doses of quality ingredients. 

This is especially true for caffeine. The FDA recommends 400 mg per day for adult users, but you do not have to use that much. 

For best practice, always follow the label for suggesting serving size. You can also do your own research from trust worthy sources. 

Buy quality ingredients from brands that have good reviews. Remember that pre workout does come with side effects.

Since you are adding the same ingredients you mat experience symptoms if you are sensitive. 

Those side effects include: 

  • Jitters (from caffeine) 
  • Anxiousness (from caffeine)  
  • Rapid heart beat (from caffeine) 
  • Itchy skin (from beta alanine)  
  • Changes in blood glucose  
  • Nausea 
  • Bloating
  • Cramping  
  • Diarrhea 

Please note that not everyone will suffer from these side effects. Be cautious as you make homemade pre workout and consume it. 

Why Try Homemade Pre Workout?

homemade pre workout

The pre workout industry is booming, but a lot of products on the market are not all they claim to be. 

Research shows that some of the doses of beneficial ingredients are undercut in many pre workouts. 

Not only that, but with the rise of new brands manufacturers are protecting their “trade secret recipes.” 

They will not disclose exact amounts of ingredients, so you don’t really know what you’re getting!

Why shell out $30-$50 or more for a product that may not be as effective as advertised?

Plus it only lasts 30 to 45 days, and you have to buy another. There has to be an alternative.  

That’s where homemade pre workout comes in! You can use your own ingredients, and flush low quality pre workout from your body. Here’s the benefits and drawbacks of making your own pre workout at home. 

Benefit: 100% Customizable 

Now you get absolute control over the amounts of ingredients in your pre workout! Add the stuff you prefer and skip the ones you don’t care about. 

Let’s say you’re not having a great day and need more caffeine to amp you up. You now have the command to add what you need without taking a whole other scoop. 

While pre workout companies can skimp on effective doses of ingredients, you can take tailor your creation to be the best for for you. Follow the recipes later for effective doses back by science. I did the research for you from the reputable site Examine.

Benefit: Super Cost Effective  

 The cost per serving of homemade pre workout turns out to be less than store bought. 

Many of the ingredients bought online come in bulk size of 200-500 grams. Your dollar stretches much further with the bulk serving size because it lasts much longer.

Instead of buying a new pre workout every month (30 servings), you can replace the ingredients every 3 months (90-100 servings). That’s the power of homemade pre workout.

For example, you can 120 caffeine pills at 200 mg per pill for $10. That’s cost effective! 

Benefit: Better Quality & Healthier  

With homemade pre workout, you get to control the quality of the ingredients you put in. No more extra fillers, artificial sweeteners, or secret blends with things you don’t want. 

You get to research and choose everything you ingest to fuel your workout and make the most of it. 

This ends up being a healthier alternative, especially for those individuals who are sensitive to certain ingredients found in regular pre workouts. 

Related Article: Does Pre Workout Really Cause Acne?

Drawback: Takes Time To Mix  

Can’t lie, but it is easier to buy a pre workout already incorporated. Just scoop, mix, and you’re ready to go. Making homemade pre workout involves gathering ingredients, measuring, then mixing, which can take a bit more time.

A way to prepare for this is to pre measure the set amounts into containers at the beginning of the week. That way it can be prepped and ready for when you need to make your drink. 

Drawback: More Money Needed Upfront  

Homemade pre workout is cheaper in the long term, but more costly up front when buying the stack of ingredients.

This financial commitment might deter those on a tight budget, especially when getting a single container has been the norm. The upfront cost may seem higher, but when spread across multiple servings, the long term value is there.

Drawback: You Need To Add Flavor 

All the powdered ingredients you add to your homemade pre workout don’t come with flavors unfortunately. That’s a bummer when you consider the tasty fruity and sour flavors that a lot of brands have to offer. 

No worries though! There are alternatives to make your pre workout delicious. You can add low calorie flavorings from Mio, Crystal Light, Koolaid, and even Starburst. Check out the flavoring packets online or at your local store. 

Ingredients That Can Make Pre Workout Effective

Crafting an effective homemade pre workout involves selecting ingredients that provide a balanced combination of energy, endurance, and focus. Here’s top 7 ingredients you can consider adding. 

Check out more ingredients to add in my article “Is Pre Workout Right For You?”


Caffeine is the classic pre workout ingredient. If you’re looking for increased energy and performance, mental motivation, and delayed fatigue, add caffeine into your home made pre workout. 

If you’re allergic or sensitive to stimulants, you can skip the caffeine. 

Get caffeine from coffee, green tea extract, matcha, or capsules/pills.

Caffeine powder is not recommended because overdosing on it is a reality and can be lethal. 


Betaine has been shown to increase your capacity to exercise, while also boosting power and even muscle size. 

Get betaine in powdered form or form natural foods like spinach and especially beet root. 

Beta Alinine  

Beta alanine helps to improve high-intensity exercise performance. It does this by regulating acid in the muscles, which helps prevent fatigue. 

A common side effect is that classic itching feeling after taking pre workout called paresthesia. 

Beta alanine is sold as powder or capsule.  


Branched chain amino acids consist of isoleucine, leucine, valine. The body does not create these on its own, so it’s need to be ingested through diet or supplements.

These help with building up muscle proteins for growth.

BCAAs are sold in powdered form and are a great addition to homemade pre workout. 

Citrulline Malate
Or L-Citrulline 

These are forms of citrulline that act as notice oxide boosters. Nitric acid is a gas found naturally in the body that enhances the widening of blood vessels (vasodilation). 

Vasodilation means better blood flow, and the benefits are more delivery of nutrients to your muscles and a better pump.

Citrulline Malate and L-Citrulline comes in powdered form or in beetroot extract or capsules. 


Creatine is a safe and effective compound that promotes muscle growth, strength gains, and better performance in the gym . 

An important thing to remember is that a single dose of creatine will not have a major effect on your workout. Creatine needs to be stored up in the muscles, during a loading phase. 


This may seem like an odd ingredient to add to your homemade pre workout, but it’s important! 

Salt is an electrolyte, and when you exercise, you lose electrolytes through sweat. 

Salt not only helps to keep you hydrated by maintaining fluid balance, but it can also give you better muscle contractions and pumps. 

The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) recommends 2 to 3 grams of salt before working out. You can use any type of salt, like pink Himalayan or sea salt.

How To Make Homemade Pre Workout

To make your pre workout, first decide all the ingredients you want to add. You’ll find convenient recipes below for ideas. 

  • Carefully measure all the ingredients into a shaker bottle, blender, or container for later use.  
  • Next add the liquid. This is usually water, but can be substituted for coconut water or juice depending on the recipe.  
  • Mix the ingredients well until fully incorporated. You can premix pre workout, but make sure to drink it within 24 hours. 
  • Drink your homemade pre workout 30 minutes before working out. 
  • See how you feel during and after your workout. Adjust the ingredients as needed. 
  • You can experiment with different flavors, or once you find something that’s right for you, stick with it! 

5 Delicious Homemade
Pre Workout Recipes 

These recipes are customizable and serve as idea starters for you to craft your own perfect blend. The amounts of ingredients are the effective doses as I have done the research for you. 

Citrus Burst Energizer 

  • 4-8 oz of coconut water or water 
  • 1 packet or squeeze of orange water flavoring 
  • 1/4 teaspoon grated ginger (digestion aid)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 200-300mg caffeine (capsules) 
  • 3g beta alaine
  • 2.5g betaine

Mix all ingredients until dissolved.
Consume 30 minutes before your workout. 

Blended Green Power Up 

  • 1/2 cup spinach leaves (strength and pump)  
  • 4 oz beetroot juice or 1 scoop beetroot powder
    (vasodilation for nutrition and pump)  
  • 4 oz coconut water or water
  • sugar or sweetener to taste
  • 200mg caffeine  (capsules)
  • 5g creatine 
  • 3g beta alaine
  • 2.5g betaine

Blend all ingredients until smooth.
Consume 30 minutes before your workout. 

Candy Blast Pump 

  • 4-8 oz of water  
  • 1 packet of candy water flavoring (Starburst, Sour Candy)   
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 200mg caffeine (capsules)
  • 3g beta alaine 
  • 6g citrulline malate

Mix all ingredients until dissolved.
Consume 30 minutes before your workout.

Coffee Lover Power Fuel 

  • 6-8 oz cold brew coffee (70 to 100 mg caffeine)   
  • Coffee creamer of choice (optional) 
  • 100 mg- 200mg caffeine (capsules)
  • 200mg caffeine  (capsules)
  • 5g creatine 
  • 3g beta alaine
  • 2.5g betaine
  • 6g citrulline malate

Mix all ingredients until dissolved.
Consume 30 minutes before your workout.

Turmeric Spice Recovery

  • 4-8 oz of almond milk  
  • 1/2 tsp ground turmeric (anti-inflammatory & recovery)  
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon (anti-inflammatory & recovery)
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 100 mg- 200mg caffeine   (capsules)
  • 3g beta alaine 
  • 2.5g betaine
  • 1 scoop BCAA (20g) 

Mix all ingredients until dissolved.
Consume 30 minutes before your workout.

Bottom Line 

Homemade pre workout has beauty not only in its simplicity, but also in the ability to customize flavors and nutritional content.

It’s a cost effective option to try if you’re tired of overspending on new pre workout supplements on a monthly basis. 

Take your fitness routine to new heights by trying your own homemade pre workout. 

Cheers on your fitness journey! 


Shalom is a content creator, musician, and a teacher at heart. As a certified personal trainer, his goal is to encourage others to lead healthier lives and to get buff in the process!

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