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Homemade Pure Vanilla Extract

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YouTube: Homemade Pure Vanilla Extract

For the past couple of years, I've been feeding my baking addiction by making homemade vanilla extract. It's very easy to do, and it saves a lot of money over buying vanilla extract at the store. Vanilla extract is nothing more than vanilla beans soaked in vodka for several months, until the liquid is infused with the essence of the vanilla beans.

By the way, the Food and Drug Administration has a requirement that vanilla extract contain at least 35% (70 proof) alcohol to be classified as "pure." This doesn't matter if you're making this for your own personal use, but it does matter if you're selling it.

The best part about making your own vanilla extract is you'll always have a fresh supply of the finest vanilla extract on the planet. And over time, the cost savings is significant!

Vanilla beans can be expensive, but you can find them online at a good price, and it's really no more expensive than buying vanilla extract itself. However, this vanilla can be replenished over and over again, simply by re-filling the bottle with vodka and allowing it to ferment. It's just a matter of slicing the beans in half to expose their innards, and then preserving them in vodka. Set your phone alarm to remind you to shake the vanilla once per week. And keep doing this again and again, for at least six months. Finally, it will take on a deep brown color and consistency. The scent will be unmistakable: the scent of the finest vanilla.

When you're ready to use your extract, pour the liquid into a separate bottle. Top off the original bottle with more vodka! By the time you're finished using your bottle of extract, the new liquid will have fermented and be ready for use. You can keep on doing this, over and over, for years! You'll always have a lot of vanilla extract to use, and you won't have to buy any from the store.

After a few years, if it seems as though the vanilla extract is becoming thin or bland, don't throw out the original vanilla beans. Chop them up and mix them with coffee grounds. After a few days, the coffee grounds will be infused with the vanilla, and you'll have a truly superior vanilla coffee mix.