• Elena

Homemade vanilla extract

Updated: Jan 29, 2021

What would baking be without vanilla?! Adding a touch of vanilla to the recipe always gives that little extra and helps balancing the flavors. Most of the recipes you find on this page call for vanilla, but depending on where I found my inspiration that can come in the form of vanilla sugar, vanilla paste or vanilla extract.

Vanilla extract is most commonly used in american recipes, and it's always a must in my kitchen. Finding it in stores is not that hard, but the quality is not always the greatest and the price is often quite high. The good news is that making your own is super easy, which honestly doesn't make it worth to buy any at the store.. All you need is two ingredients and a little patience.


• Pure vanilla extract is made using alcohol and vanilla beans. You can use any alcohol you like, as long as it's over 35%. I used vodka because that's what I had at home, and it's also the option where the flavor of the alcohol won't influence the final product, but other alcohol like brandy, cognac or whiskey would work fine too, and the option you choose will give a different character to your extract.

• During the infusion time the bottle needs to be shaken once to twice a week. I keep my bottle well visible in one of the counters in my kitchen and shake it whenever I see it.

• Once the extract is ready there is no need to remove the vanilla in it. The 8 weeks in the recipe are the minimum time to turn the alcohol in vanilla extract, but the longer the vanilla is in there, the better the extract becomes. The most important thing though is to make sure that the vanilla is submerged at all times to avoid the risk of mould.


𝐻𝑜𝓂𝑒𝓂𝒶𝒹𝑒 𝓅𝓊𝓇𝑒 𝓋𝒶𝓃𝒾𝓁𝓁𝒶 𝑒𝓍𝓉𝓇𝒶𝒸𝓉

Ingredients: 7 vanilla beans

2,5 dl vodka

1 glass bottle or jar that fits at least 3 dl liquid

How to:

Slice each bean once long-ways and place them in bottle. If needed, cut them into smaller pieces so they fit in the bottle more easily.

Pour the alcohol in the bottle (all of it!) making sure the vanilla beans are submerged completely.

Go on with your life and wait for at least 8 weeks, shaking the bottle once or twice a week until it has reached that dark color and perfect balance.

Bake like there is no tomorrow!


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