Vanilla Extract - Before

I’ve read over and over again about how much cheaper it is to make your own vanilla extract. The problem for me was I never have vodka in the house. Well, I finally got some, so problem solved!

Vanilla Beans

The process is really easy. Take your vanilla beans (I used 16 Bourbon-Madagascar vanilla beans for a 750 ml bottle of vodka), split them in half, leaving about 1 inch not cut to keep the bean still in one piece. Put in vodka. Don’t forget to take out a little vodka to account for the volume of the beans.

Vanilla Extract - After

And voila! Now just wait at least 8 weeks and you have homemade vanilla extract without the corn syrup additives that some companies like to add. Now let’s look at the cost. I spent around $5 on the vodka and $15 on the vanilla beans to make 750 ml of vanilla extract, which is about 25 fluid ounces. That comes out to $0.80 per ounce, not including that you can top it off and make it last even longer. The lowest price online I found for pure vanilla extract was about $2 per ounce (before shipping). I’d say this turned out to be a pretty good deal!