A Peek at the Fun: Have you ever tasted homemade vanilla extract? Well, once you do you’ll never want anything else. Plus, I have some super cute Homemade Vanilla Extract Labels you’ll want to print.
Homemade vanilla is a total game changer for all you bakers out there. Seriously, it’s so good and will enhance any recipe. And when you find out how easy it is to make, you’ll be sold.
I started to make my own vanilla a couple of years ago after my cousin told me about it and now I’m a bit of a nut…I make it for everyone I know. 🙂 And as I’ve handed out bottle of this deliciousness, I’ve had lot of questions about how I make it. So, here is my answer!
Homemade Vanilla Extract Labels:
Did you know vanilla extract only takes two ingredients? Well, it does. Seriously so simple. Here’s what you need.
- Fresh Vanilla Beans Affiliate (3-5 vanilla beans per cup of alcohol)
- 80 Proof Alcohol (I use Vodka)
- Sealable Glass Jar
- Extract Label
I order my vanilla beans online. I’ve ordered them from Amazon or directly from Vanilla Bean King. The prices are very close. I use Grade A vanilla beans so I know I’m getting the best vanilla beans for my extract.
Making Vanilla Extract:
- Decide what container you are using. If you are making smaller batches for gifts, I would suggest using the alcohol bottle as your container while your extract is aging and then when it’s ready you can pour the vanilla extract into the smaller bottles.
- Once you decide on a container, fill it with the alcohol leaving room for the beans without causing overflow.
- Make a slit in the vanilla beans running lengthwise. This allows all of the flavor to be released from the beans.
- Place the beans in your container. If they are too long just cut them in half or whatever size will fit your jar.
- The biggest part of making your own vanilla is allowing enough time for your vanilla to be perfectly aged. Most everything you read will tell you to wait 8 weeks, but I would suggest giving it even longer. It really just gets better with time. I usually give my vanilla 3-4 months.
- Shake your bottle once a week while it’s aging.
*Pro Tip: If you are filling smaller jars after it has aged, I always add some of the vanilla beans to the smaller jars so they can keep seeping flavor.
How Long Does Vanilla Extract Last:
Let’s talk about how to store your vanilla. The best way to store vanilla extract is in a cool, dark place. This is why so many vanilla extracts come in a brown bottle. It helps keep the sunlight from affecting the alcohol. That being said, usually people store their vanilla in a cupboard where it is dark so sunlight isn’t too big of a concern.
Because vanilla extract is made from alcohol it will last for a very long time. Some say it will last indefinitely, but you will probably use it quicker than that.
My rule of thumb is that it will last 5-10 years. In fact, it will get better with age because the alcohol will evaporate a little each time the bottle is opened making the flavor more concentrated. If you keep the beans in the bottle you can refill with alcohol when you start to run low. Just repeat the process of giving it a little time to develop the flavor.
Now for the cute homemade vanilla extract labels. You can save them to your computer and size how you want, then print, or I have a PDF with some different sizes that are ready to print.
I printed these labels on tan paper and I love the way they turned out.
Have FUN making homemade vanilla extract.
Try Your Homemade Vanilla One These Recipes: