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Vanilla Extract

If you always seem to be out of vanilla extract, try this easy homemade version! Although it takes some time to set up, this homemade Vanilla Extract recipe is the perfect baking ingredient in any recipe. Make a big batch and store it in a container for whenever you need it. Or, pour it into pretty jars for a simple, inexpensive homemade gift. This vanilla extract will add amazing flavor to any baked good, guaranteed.


This video tutorial will show you everything you need to know about making vanilla at home!



11 Copycat Recipes for Homemade IngredientsFind even more baking substitutions in our free eCookbook, 11 Copycat Recipes for Baking Ingredients: Recipes for Homemade Bisquick & More.


  • 2 cups vodka
  • 5 vanilla beans, cut in 1-inch pieces


  1. Combine vodka and vanilla beans in a jar with a tight-fitting lid. Cover the jar and let it stand 6 to 8 weeks. (The vodka mixture will turn amber colored after a day or two.)
  2. After half the vanilla extract is used, add more vodka to cover the beans. The flavor in the beans is gone when the vodka no longer turns to a dark color.

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I love vanilla. I always have vanilla extract in the baking cupboard and use a teaspoon in almost everything I bake. I think it adds a certain dimension and enhances flavor. I would make this just because it's my own and not store bought. I would, however, rather slice the vanilla beans lengthwise and insert them in the vodka that way, rather than slice it into pieces. Something else I do with vanilla beans is when you have scraped out the seeds to use in a recipe (I typically do that for panna cotta) I take the bean and insert it into my sugar and it makes a vanilla sugar. I just use the sugar as normal except now it just tastes better!


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