How to Make Homemade Vanilla Extract

You may be wondering how to make homemade vanilla extract.  I started making homemade vanilla extract a few years ago and it’s so easy. All you need is 2 ingredients: vanilla beans and vodka. I have so many people that as me how I make homemade vanilla extract so I thought I would just type it up!

I remember baking when I was little and the smell of vanilla when my Grandma added it to her cookies.  Every time I smell it, it brings back so many memories.  Now my kids always ask for a smell when we are making cookies and they will have that memory forever too.

You may be wondering how to make homemade vanilla extract. It's so simple and using only 2 ingredients, you can have your own for baking or gift giving.
This post contains affiliate links.

How to Make Homemade Vanilla Extract

I order my vanilla beans online.  There are many different kinds, but I usually just stick to ones from Madagascar.  I use 5 vanilla beans to 8 oz of vodka.  I’m sure many of you moms already have this in your cabinet and that’s fine to use. 🙂

You may be wondering how to make homemade vanilla extract. It's so simple and using only 2 ingredients, you can have your own for baking or gift giving.

First, you need to slice the vanilla bean open with a sharp knife.

Homemade Vanilla Extract

Next, you need to scrape out the seeds from the inside.  It’s kind of sticky, but you can just run your knife along the bean and they come right out.
Homemade Vanilla Extract

Once I’ve done all 5, I cut them in half.  The jar I use is short, so I do this so they will fit in.  If you have a taller one then you won’t have to do that.  Here’s a cute jar I found that’s the perfect size.

Pour your vodka in and close the lid tight.  Put it in your cabinet and let sit for at least 6 weeks.  That’s it!  It’s really easy. I only make an 8 oz jar at a time because I don’t use that much and it will last me awhile.  I have 2 jars that I alternate.  When I’m using one, the other is sitting so I will never run out.  I leave the beans in and only take them out when it’s completely empty.  They will continue to add flavor.

These make fantastic gifts.  I made them for teacher Christmas gifts last year and they all loved it.  I just started them right after Halloween and when I gave it to them, it was ready to use.

You may be wondering how to make homemade vanilla extract. It's so simple and using only 2 ingredients, you can have your own for baking or gift giving.

You may also like this recipe that uses homemade vanilla!

Praline Chews

These praline chews are the best eggless cookie around. I love the maple flavor with the crunch! YUM! You'll want to add these to your recipe book.

 

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9 Responses

  1. I’ve been wanting to do this for gifts. A friend of mine one time made some with a bottle of spiced rum….HOLY SCHNEIKIES, it was amazing. I put it in a pound cake, it was the best thing ever

  2. Hillary Cole says:

    I can’t wait to make this! I love to bake but hate paying so much money for good vanilla!

  3. chellie says:

    I have always wanted to make vanilla extract. Thanks for the inspiration! I never would’ve thought to look on Amazon either, nice tip.

  4. Lisa says:

    What do you do with the seeds? Thanks for this idea.

    • Holly says:

      I usually just trash them, but I bet they are good in ice cream!

  5. Shantan says:

    Is there a non alcoholic base that could be used to make vanilla extract? Would be helpful 🙂

    • Holly says:

      Vanilla is normally made with an alcohol base, but I just did a quick Google search and found 2 recipes that used food-grade glycerin. I found it on Amazon- http://amzn.to/2nRFB31 (This link is an affiliate link. That means I get a VERY small percentage if you buy using it with no extra cost to you.) If you use it, please let me know how it turns out.

  6. Janet Archuletta says:

    Hello Holly, I was watching my Grandson’s this morning and just had to make chocolate chip cookies for them to take home but saw that I had no eggs. I hit Google for eggless chocolate chip cookies and yours was the first that came up! I did look at a couple others but was drawn back to yours) I LOVE IT! My grandson’s were thrilled that he could eat some of the cookie dough…as was I. I will definitely be coming back to your site to see what else I can cook.

    I have done a luncheon every year close to Valentine’s day for the last “41 years” with my friends and have made them a gifts every year…I saw that you make your own vanilla and am going to make for my Valentines lunch 2019! One question, how long is the timeline that the vanilla will last? Thank you so much and enjoy Memorial weekend.

    Janet…

    • Holly says:

      I don’t think it really goes bad because it has an alcohol base.

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