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Homemade Vanilla Extract. Could there be anything more rewarding, delicious, decadent and wonderful?

vanilla collage

Vanilla Extract is used in my home almost every day to flavor my coffee, in baking, sweet treats, I even use it in my bath salts! The Organic Pure Vanilla Extract you get in the grocery stores are expensive, and at the rate we go through it I just can’t afford it!

Homemade Vanilla Extract has a high upfront cost and takes 4-6 weeks to get a good, flavorful extract BUT you can just keep adding more alcohol to your container. Six to eight Vanilla beans can provide vanilla extract for your whole family for a year!

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Homemade Vanilla Extract
Author: Amanda – Natural Living Mamma
Prep time: 
Total time: 
This homemade vanilla extract will infuse your kitchen with warmth and deliciousness.
  • 4-8 Organic Vanilla Beans (the more you use the faster it will be done)
  • 1 Quart at least 40 proof Alcohol (Vodka is what most people use because of its neutral flavor but it is delicious in Rum and Whiskey too)
  1. Slice Vanilla Beans down the middle so the seeds can escape from the pod.
  2. Slice the beans in half and place in a Quart sized mason jar
  3. Pour alcohol of choice into the jar filling it with about an inch left to the top. Place a lid on the container and shake vigorously. Shake daily until it is a rich brown color.
  4. Decant Vanilla Extract into bottles for daily use.
  5. Add more alcohol, shake vigorously and repeat.
  6. You should be able to reuse your beans three or four times before you stop getting a good extract


To give this as a gift you can either decant your homemade extract into single use bottles and give them to your friends like that OR you can put two vanilla beans in a single serving glass bottle with alcohol over it and give them directions on how to make their own extract. It is the gift that keeps on giving!

I like to reuse glass bottles and put a cute piece of cloth on top with a label that tells what it is and how to use it.

Feel free to print this to use as a label! 


You can buy organic fair trade vanilla beans at your local health food store or at Mountain Rose Herbs.

Have you made Vanilla Extract at home? What kind of liqueur do you like to use? I am loving my rum extract right now.

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This post shared on: Your Green Resource, Thank Your Body Thursday, Tiny Tip Tuesday

About Amanda

Amanda is a mother of two amazing toddlers. She is an herbalist, natural living guru, and real food, gluten free eating pro. She loves to help educate others on how to take control of their own health through natural living, real food, herbs, essential oils, and most of all - a positive mind set. Her other business Natural Herbal Living Magazine is all about helping people learn about how to use one herb a month on a deep and profound level.
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13 Responses to Homemade Vanilla Extract with Printable – Handmade Holidays

  1. What a super recipe and one I plan to make, so I have taken the liberty of printing it off:-) We would love to welcome you over at Seasonal Celebration Sunday linky each week at Rebecca x

  2. Rebecca says:

    I am in the process of making vanilla right now, it has been in my basement for about 6 weeks so far, I am shooting for 6 more weeks for it to properly “cure”. However, I have been taught that you scrape out the “caviar” once you split open the vanilla bean. Have you tried this? It gives a more potent flavor, with the caviar floating around, but you have to strain the vanilla before using it. Most of the flavor is packed into the caviar, that is why they say to do this.

    Do you use Madagascar or Tahitian vanilla beans?

    • Amanda says:

      Great point Rebecca! I cut my beans open but have not been scraping out the “caviar” because I like to re-use the beans! Do you find this gives you a better flavor? I shake the container every day and some of the seeds come out when I do that. My next batch I will have to try this and see how it tastes.

      I use whatever organic fair trade vanilla beans I can find! This batch was Madagascar and Indonesia (separate containers).

  3. Romina says:

    I didn’t realize how easy it is to make vanilla extract. It is quite expensive at the market and now, I have an alternative. I would probably give some to friends who bake; I’m sure they’d love it.

  4. Wow, that looks totally doable! Just another of the billion things I am learning we can easily make ourselves!

    Thanks for linking up to Thank Your Body Thursday! Hope you’ll come back this week and share some more great posts!

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  8. LORI CHYKO says:

    Wow!! I had no idea it could be so easy!! I am so grateful for your many tips!! Who says you can’t teach an old dog new tricks?! I’m learning something new all the time!! Thanks!!

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