How to Make Your Own Vanilla Extract


Vanilla – one of the best flavors in the entire world – is a staple in most pantries in the form of vanilla extract. While it’s convenient to purchase this product at the store, it’s also super easy, fun and rewarding to make at home. High-quality homemade vanilla extract requires just three ingredients to make, including alcohol (use proof of choice) and vanilla beans – bourbon, Madagascar or Tahitian beans work best.

Simply soak the beans in bourbon, vodka or rum for up to a month (or longer for a deeper flavor) and you’re ready to add this sweet elixir to baked goods, desserts and more.

Homemade Vanilla Extract |

Homemade Vanilla Extract |
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How to Make Your Own Vanilla Extract

Prep Time 5 minutes
Author Heather McClees


Preferred accents:

You will also need:

  • Long bottle with cork top (available at craft store)


  1. In bottle, combine all ingredients. 

  2. Soak at least 30 days, but preferably up to 3 months. The longer they soak, the more intense the vanilla flavor will be.

  3. After desired soaking time, discard beans and accents. Store in pantry, or another cool, dry area, and use up to two years

Recipe Notes

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Heather McClees

Heather McClees is a nutritionist and a health, food and lifestyle writer from South Carolina. She has a B.S. degree in Nutrition Science and Dietetics with a minor in Journalism and Fine Arts and has a background in the areas of philanthropy, public speaking, nutritional counseling and health- and business-related journalism. Heather has been writing professionally for over 10 years and is passionate about reading, writing, staying active, eating well and spreading the message of health and wellness with others.