Here’s the quick and easy recipe to make your own vanilla extract. If you’re wondering what in the world you would do with all that vanilla, why not start putting it aside for a rainy day — or give it to friends with other baking ingredients or homemade gifts in a nice basket? They probably won’t have a clue how easy it was for you to make and will be really impressed with your self-sufficiency skills!
How to Make Vanilla Extract
- 6 vanilla beans
- 2 cups vodka
- Leaving one inch of the vanilla bean untouched at a single end, slice the bean in half using a small, sharp knife.
- Place beans into a jar or bottle and completely cover then with vodka. If they are too long, just squish them down into the jar a bit more. If you use a small bottle of vodka, just drop the beans into the original bottle or add more beans for the added amount of vodka.
- Place the jar/bottle in a dark cupboard or pantry for at least two months. Remember to shake periodically to redistribute the vanilla as it will generally settle to the bottom of the jar and only infuse the bottom half of the vodka.
- When finished, use this vanilla extract as usual and don’t forget to refill the jar once you’ve removed 80% of the vanilla so your beans continue working as you use up your supply of extract. The same beans will produce vanilla extract for many years.