Homemade vanilla extract 3 ways with Beanilla vanilla beans

3 1/2 years ago I discovered the online vanilla bean company Beanilla and have been in love with their beans ever since!  When I moved to Germany, getting my hands on local affordable, high-quality beans was impossible so I was excited to have found Beanilla.

Homemade Vanilla Extract 3 Ways | JavaCupcake.com

Before I go on… if you’re here for the GIVEAWAY scroll to the bottom for all the details! 

I reached out to Beanilla a couple months ago and expressed to them how much I loved their beans and would love to partner with them for a post on JavaCucpake!  I have been using their beans in my homemade vanilla extracts as well as in all my vanilla recipes.  Every time I split open a Madagascar vanilla bean the aroma fills my kitchen and I go to my happy place!

Since I make all my extract in bulk, Beanilla and I decided that I’d create for you a “How to Make Homemade Vanilla Extract in Bulk” tutorial for you.   This tutorial will feature three distinct Beanilla beans paired with three different liquors.


I really hope you are able to get a lot of helpful information from this tutorial! Vanilla extract is super simple to make and it really is so amazing in place of store bought extract. Once you start making it yourself, you’ll never go back to imitation!


The Video Tutorial

I created two video tutorials to help you make homemade vanilla extract.  This first video below is longer with more details about the beans and alcohol I used. The video at the bottom of this post has been edited to only include the specifics of making the extract.

The Flavors

  • Madagascar vanilla beans and vanilla vodka extract – Creamy, strong, full, rich vanilla beans paired with a smooth vanilla vodka make for the ultimately perfect vanilla extract for baking

Homemade Vanilla Extract 3 Ways | JavaCupcake.com

  • Indonesian vanilla beans and honey bourbon whiskey extract – Floral, sweet, delicate beans with tones of fruit paired with a honey infused sweet bourbon whiskey create a simply sweet vanilla extract for desserts with deep flavors

Homemade Vanilla Extract 3 Ways | JavaCupcake.com

  • Ugandan vanilla beans and spiced rum extract – Strong, creamy, rich tones of chocolate and caramel beans paired with a caramel spiced rum produce a bold vanilla extract strong enough to hold up to any chocolate recipe.

Homemade Vanilla Extract 3 Ways | JavaCupcake.com

The Supplies

The Technique

  1. Start with one type of beans and the alcohol paired with it.   Prepare those vanilla beans by using the straight edge of the paring knife and pressing the vanilla pod flat evenly distributing the beans inside the pod.  Split the pod in half the long way.  Repeat until all the beans are split.Homemade Vanilla Extract 3 Ways | JavaCupcake.com
  2. Place the beans into the clean, dry glass jar and pour the alcohol until it reaches the neck of the bottle.  Place the cork on top and shake gently.
  3. Add a label to the jar noting the date you made the extract.
  4. Store the jar in a cool place away from direct sunlight for a minimum of one month up to four months.  
  5. Repeat this process with the two other types of beans and their corresponding alcohols.

The Labels

  1. Download these bottle labels made exclusively for JavaCupcake readers by Rachel of Glitter & Bow.
  2. Vanilla Extract Labels | JavaCupcake.com Vanilla Extract Labels | JavaCupcake.com Vanilla Extract Labels | JavaCupcake.com Vanilla Extract Labels | JavaCupcake.com
  3. Print the labels on sticker labels and adhere them to each bottle.
  4. Write in the type of extract you made along with the date made and when it will be ready to use.
  5. Alternately, you can print the labels on regular paper and use double sided tape to adhere them to the bottles.

The Giveaway

Thanks to Beanilla, I’ve also got a custom designed Vanilla Extract Kit exclusively for one of my JavaCupcake readers!

Homemade Vanilla Extract 3 Ways | JavaCupcake.com

One person will win:

You must be 18 years old to enter and have a USA or Germany mailing address.  One person will be chosen by random on Monday, December 1, 2014.  Total value of this package: $100

a Rafflecopter giveaway

How to make Vanilla Extract – Condensed Version

42 thoughts on “Homemade vanilla extract 3 ways with Beanilla vanilla beans

  1. What a fantastic idea!
    I just discovered vanilla making- and Beanilla- so finding your blog and this post is a dream come true.
    I had no idea you could make vanilla so many different ways, thanks for teaching me something new !

  2. I haven’t made my own vanilla before but I hear it is far better than store bought. The first thing that I’d make is Vanilla ice cream!

  3. I’ve never made my own extract, but I can’t wait to try this! The worst part will be waiting for it to be ready. I think I’d first make a vanilla cake with vanilla buttercream.

  4. I have never made it before but I think one of the first things I would make with it would be home made ice cream, then cake and frosting to go with it.

  5. I have never made vanilla extract but since vanilla is my favorite flavor and I have a hard time getting things”vanilla enough” I am very interested in making my own.

  6. I’ve never made homemade vanilla extract, but I would love to try some. I would make cookies, biscotti, scones, etc. with it. Thanks!

  7. I am so glad that you shared this Betsy. I never knew that you could make your vanilla and then with so many combinations. I am so ready to try these. Thanks again for sharing.

  8. I have made my own vanilla extract in the past, but did not realize that different kinds of beans/alcohol made different flavors of vanilla extract!

  9. I’ve never made vanilla extract before. The first thing I would make with it is vanilla flavored sugar cookies. I love to bake and decorate sugar cookies.

  10. Just made my first batch of homemade vanilla a few months ago for my Christmas baking. What a difference in flavor. Thanks for a fun giveaway. Happy Thanksgiving!

  11. I’ve never made my own extract but I’ve used homemade and I’m so excited to make my own!

    I’m excited to make ice cream and cheesecakes with homemade extract.

  12. I’ve been wanting to make my own vanilla, I bake a lot, we make all our food from scratch, so things like pancakes use vanilla.
    I need to get going and make my own!

  13. I never have made my own extract but this year I will. I would use in a coconut cake or some cinnamon rolls. Oh, all kinds of things.

  14. I’m the baker in my house and I use vanilla in nearly everything I bake. This would be a great help as I can refill right at home. Please enter my name as a possible winner. Thanks!

  15. I have been making my own extract for myself and for gifts. My favorite combination is the vodka with the Madagascar Beans from Beanilla. I tries the Bourbon but did not use the honey one you did and it is still too much bourbon, not enough vanilla! I’ll definitely use the one you recommended instead from now on.

    What do you do when the liquor levels drops after use? Do you refill and leave the beans alone or do you add more beans? Do you ever remove any beans?

    1. Hi Cheryl – I usually never remove the beans. I really like when I pour the extract out the seeds of the bean pod go into what I’m baking. And no… I never reuse the beans. When I run out of the bottle, I make a fresh batch. 🙂

  16. I made vanilla extract for the first time over a year ago using Beanilla beans. It’s so much better and cheaper than what I can buy in the stores. I really want to make it using the vanilla vodka. I bet it smells amazing!

  17. I have heard about making one’s own vanilla but haven’t had the time (or remembered) to look further into the process. Your instructions are fabulous! I do not like the vanilla found in the grocery store and am going to do this for Christmas gifts this year!

  18. I have been making vanilla for a few years. I have one for baking and one for candies! Would love this set to share with others!

  19. i have never made vanilla extract before. I think the flavor would be so much more intense though and would love to try it in half a dozen recipes!

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