How to Make Your Own Extracts

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One of the best ways to elevate your baking is to incorporate ingredients like vanilla extract. While imitation vanilla will certainly work, there’s nothing quite like the taste of the real thing. The problem is, real vanilla extract is very expensive and it’s easy to go through a whole bottle quite quickly. If you’re an avid home baker and you’re looking for a solution, consider making your own vanilla extract. You can even try experimenting to make extracts of other flavors, like lemon, mint, or coffee. It’s such a simple process that you’ll wonder why you’d never done it before. 


  • 1 cup of vodka or bourbon per extract
  • For vanilla: 3-4 vanilla bean pods
  • For mint: ½ cup fresh mint leaves
  • For coffee: ¼ cup coffee beans
  • For lemon: Peel of one whole lemon, cut into small strips


  1. Add vodka and ingredient of choice to a glass jar or bottle with a lid.
  2. Close tightly and place in a cool, dark location to store.
  3. Revisit and gently shake every 2-3 days.
  4. After 2 weeks, strain liquid to remove pieces of ingredients. 
  5. Return liquid to jar or bottle and continue to store in a cool, dark location.
  6. Enjoy in all of your baked goods!