We do a lot of baking and cooking from scratch around here. It is important to have a well-stocked spice cabinet. One of the ingredients that I seemed to always be running out of was vanilla extract. It comes in such little bottles! And is so expensive!!
Then when I started to watch my diet, I noticed that regular vanilla extract contained corn syrup! WHAT?? Corn syrup?!? Yep, so unless you are buying organic you are probably getting ingredients you don't really want.
For example, from the Amazon site:
Watkins Original Vanilla Double Strength Extract
Water, glucose, propylene glycol, vanilla extract (alcohol, water, extractive of vanilla beans), alcohol (8.25%), artificial flavors, caramel color. Contains Sulfites.
$17.25 for 11 oz.
Simply Organic Pure Vanilla Extract Certified Organic, 4-Ounce Glass Bottles (Pack of 2)
$27.23 Water,organic Alcohol,organic Vanilla Bean Extractives
Flavorganics, Organic Vanilla Extract, 8 fl oz. for $21.41
Water, organic alcohol (35%), organic vanilla bean extractives.
- Vanilla bean extractives in water,
- alcohol (35%),
- and corn syrup.
Did you notice that water is the first ingredient on some of the lists? You don't need water in vanilla extract!
But never fear, The Resourceful Gals are here!! Make your own natural vanilla extract and know exactly what's in it! :)
All you need are real whole vanilla beans and vodka. Place the vanilla beans in a container (that you can seal) and cover with the vodka. We use the vodka because it has no other taste. Let steep for a few days to a week before the first use. Then use as you like and refill the container with the vodka as needed. You will have wonderful vanilla extract and as much as you want right at your fingertips!
Not to mention CHEAPER!! This large bottle of vodka cost about $8 for 59 oz. which comes out to 13.5 cents per ounce and will last a good long time.
You can get your vanilla beans at Herbalcom.com for only $18 for 26-28 beans. I use 5 beans, cut in half and they will last for several years. That is only 69 cents per vanilla bean and using 5 costs $3.46. Use the rest of the beans for a back-up (they will keep) or make gifts to share with those you love!
So your 10 ounce bottle of vanilla extract initially costs $4.81 and will only cost you to add the vodka at 13.5 cents per ounce after that for about 2 years. *Does happy dance*
So go ahead and get started on your own vanilla extract. You'll be glad you did!!
You will find us linked up at some of these fine sites.