I ordered some Madagascar vanilla beans a few months ago. Every time I go to the store and see those glass jars with the one vanilla bean for $10 I am like,
“I want some vanilla beans”. But not for $10 and not just one. So I found this awesome vanilla bean company online and ordered me some beans.
As soon as I opened the package, I knew I made the right choice to purchase these bad boys.  
Bailey stamp of approval. You know it’s good!!!
I knew I did not want these precious little heavenly beans to go to waste, so I started researching things to make with them. There are a lot of homemade goodies to make with vanilla beans. Homemade vanilla ice cream, where you scrape the seeds of the bean into the ice cream while it is churning and it is oh so yummy. Done that! Vanilla bean sugar scrub. Want to do that! Plan to do that. I have planned to make a special holiday vanilla bean lip balm. I can’t wait for that. I already know that is going to be lovely. But Vanilla Extract? Something I use all the time. I can make my own? Vanilla Extract is perfect. Just in time for the holidays.
The recipe is so simple. Who knew that you could make almost anything into an extract. Not anything but a lot of things. All you need is vanilla beans and alcohol. Specifically Vodka or Bourbon.
The process takes anywhere from 4-6 weeks or longer. My vanilla has already been brewin’ up for 7 weeks now. The longer the vanilla beans soak in that bourbon bath (or vodka) the stronger your vanilla is going to be. The vanilla has to be stored in a dry dark and cool area. Certainly not in the sun like it is in my pictures. I just took my vanilla on a little adventure for picture purposes and approval of course.
This is how I made my Vanilla Extract
What you will need
Mason Jar with lid (or similar vessel)
Paring Knife
16oz Bourbon or Vodka  (the higher quality alcohol, the higher quality extract)
6 Grade A or B Madagascar Vanilla beans (or Tahitian)
First, pour the bourbon into the mason jar. Then, using your paring knife make a slit down your vanilla bean length wise, starting from 3/4 of the way up and working it all the way down to the end. Again, run the tip of your knife down the inside of the pod from top to bottom and scrape out the seeds of the bean. Put the seeds in the bourbon as well as the bean. Do this to all 6 beans.
Screw the lid on tight. Label the top with the date that it was made. It is easy to forget how long the extract has been fermenting, so writing it down helps. The only thing you have to do now is give the jar a little gentle shake and store it away. Again, it is important to not leave the vanilla sitting out in a sunny place or cold or hot or wet. Store it in the pantry or somewhere dark and safe. Let the little angel get it’s beauty rest. She’s gonna need it.
I just go in every couple of days or so and give the jar a little rocking. You don’t have to do it as often. Once a week is fine. I just get excited watching something come to life. Yes, something as little as a delicate jar of sweet vanilla extract.
Jaxon approved too!
He wanted to give the vanilla a little shake too after playing in the rainwater barrel. That is the kind of love that went into this batch of vanilla extract
Blessings to all

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