Vanilla Extract

Did you know that the ubiquitous vanilla extract that is used in baking is actually really easy to make at home?  Dressed up in a pretty jar and a ribbon, it makes a fun gift for the bakers in your life!

Prep Time

5 minutes

Cook Time

0 minutes


8 Ounces


3 vanilla bean
8 ounces vodka (80 proof or higher)


Split the vanilla beans lengthwise.  Place the beans in an 8 oz glass jar and cover completely with vodka.  Cover the jar and shake gently. Store the jar in a cool, dark place for about a month (or longer if you like a stronger flavor), shaking gently every once in a while.  When it’s ready, strain out the vanilla pods, if you would like (you can just leave them in the liquid too). If you also want to strain out the little vanilla seeds, strain through a coffee filter.


If you are giving this as a gift and you don’t have a month to let it sit, feel free to give it as is with instructions for how much longer it needs to infuse and when to remove the vanilla pods.

Experiment with other types of alcohol like bourbon, brandy, or rum, if you want a different taste.