Homemade Vanilla Extract

Welcome back! Last night was a bit dramatic…my dog Jethro and I spent a few impromptu hours at the vet for what turned out to be an upset tummy. (He’s totally back to normal now! Whew!)  So because I wasn’t able to post yesterday, there will be two posts tonight, both baking related!

First things first, I only just recently learned how to make vanilla extract from scratch and frankly, I was shocked to find out how easy it was. I also feel like I might be totally out of touch and everyone already knows how to do this haha. Either way, I’d thought I’d share.  It would make a great Christmas present for any foodie or cocktail lover.


To make Homemade Vanilla Extract, you’ll need:

Alcohol of choice (I chose bourbon, knowing that the folks I’m giving it to are bourbon fans. Vodka, rum, brandy, etc would all work well.)

Vanilla bean pods (about 1 pod per jar)

Glass jar or bottle


Start by splitting the vanilla bean pod lengthwise with a sharp knife, and then if necessary, cut horizontally to fit in jar or bottle. Add vanilla to container and pour over with alcohol.  Done and done! The pods should sit in the alcohol for at least two weeks before using. The flavor will mature over time, and most recipes I’ve read say that 6-8 weeks is ideal. Some may prefer to leave the pods in indefinitely. I think it’s just a matter of personal taste.

If you’re planning on gifting this vanilla extract, remember to put the bottling date on the label, so the recipient knows how long the pods have been soaking!


Later tonight I’ll be sharing a holiday cake recipe! Vegan friendly! See you then!





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