Homemade Vanilla Extract Recipe Reviews - Allrecipes.com (Pg. 3)
Reviewed: Jun. 4, 2011
Excellent! Economical! Purchased vanilla beans off of eBay; used Smirnoff vodka. Placed 10 split beans per 750ml bottle and let steep 3 months.
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Photo by vanessa

Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Columbus, Indiana, USA

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Reviewed: Mar. 10, 2011
you will gain more flavor by splitting the vanilla bean in half and scraping the insides and adding that to the alcohol. Try different beans for different flavors and mix them to create a more complex flavor.
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Reviewed: Mar. 6, 2011
Okay, this isn't quite a review this is just to remind me as to when I started making this. Everything went smoothly until I overflowed the bottle of vodka. Silly me! I had to take two cups of vodka out to make all the beans fit without overflowing. After I put all the split vanilla beans in the vodka I was able to add back one cup. The last cup I put in a cute bottle from the container store along with 2 to 3 beans. I used a 1.75ml bottle of vodka. I'll update in 3-6 months!
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Photo by CPA

Cooking Level: Intermediate

Living In: Naperville, Illinois, USA
Reviewed: Feb. 26, 2011
My 6 months are finally up! This worked SO WELL! I made 2 kinds - vodka and bourbon. Lvu 'em both! So-long store bought! See ya! ***update*** I have added to my stash and find that I prefer the bourbon to the vodka. I now use about 10 beans per cup and I have a much truer extract as opposed to flavored alcohol. I also split and scrape the paste out of each bean. This makes the process quicker and I really like more flecks of the vanilla in my recipes. If you have trouble cutting your beans I have found that placing the bean on the cutting board, pierce the stem end with a very sharp knife, keep the knife in the board, hold the stem and then pull the bean across the blade. This is easier than trying to split the bean as it rolls around moving the knife through it.
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Reviewed: Jan. 17, 2011
Wonderful and favorful. I bought 1# beans off of amazon and used less beans 6 was good for me because I had some other vanilla I needed to use up, so I just let it sit a little bit longer. I did shake it more than said and it was fun to watch it turn amber. The bottom is the best with all the little seeds...extra favor. I use it for more than baking we put it on meat also. It must be cooked so I also made vanilla sugar with my beans for things I wanted to not cook...vanilla sugar is great on buttered toast. I bake a lot since we have allergies in the family and this is great for milk, gums, and corn allergies. Don't forget to make enough to share.....
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Mishawaka, Indiana, USA

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Reviewed: Jan. 10, 2011
I would encourage EVERYONE that uses Vanilla Extract to - MAKE YOUR OWN!!!! I have made it for years and like others have said, once you do, the store-bought will never be the same. Even the "good-stuff" almost always has caramel coloring and/or some kind of sweetener? WHY? I usually do start with a good but inexpensive vodka but think I will try a clear rum next time? Don't hesitate - make your own Vanilla!!!! ebay is a great resource for economical beans as they can be expensive but the bang for your buck makes it a great bargain!!! The best tip I can give is do NOT skimp on the beans. The more beans, the stronger the flavor and like someone else suggested - once "used up" in your extract - let them COMPLETELY DRY - then just shove one or two at a time in your sugar canister. The best sugar around for all your baking needs or just in your coffee or tea. BE Well my friends!!!
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Photo by Grams

Cooking Level: Expert

Home Town: Choctaw, Oklahoma, USA
Living In: Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA
Reviewed: Jan. 2, 2011
I love the idea of making my own vanilla, and now that I've done it, I will never buy vanilla again. HOWEVER, after substantial reading across a number of site, this has too few vanilla beans in it to reach the desired alcohol content to technically be vanilla extract. You also need the beans to sit in there a full 6 months for this ratio to be reached. For 1L of vodka, you will want 1/4 lb beans. But you can get a quarter pound on ebay for cheap (~$12). Also, buy the grade B beans, those are extract beans. Grade A won't give you as much flavor.
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Cooking Level: Expert

Home Town: Syracuse, New York, USA
Living In: Lebanon, New Hampshire, USA

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Reviewed: Dec. 27, 2010
Easy & smells fantastic. Won't go back to store bought. Gave small bottles with Christmas goodie package to the neighbors.
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Living In: Watertown, South Dakota, USA

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Reviewed: Dec. 17, 2010
OMGosh All I can say is WOW! This could not have been easier or More tasty. I started the extract in Sept, some time after Labor Day and it is now a week before Christmas. I just used it to make my first Old Fashioned Vanilla Pudding from here and I also made Pumpkin Spice Chex Mix with it. I will Never Ever buy another bottle of the store vanilla. The beans are really Not that expensive considering what you get from them, pure vanilla flavor. hubby got mine on line and in fact, I got them Last Christmas and I finally made another good use out of that purchase. After I was done with the beans, I popped them in my sugar bowl, I guess I should have dried them off a bit cuz my sugar is a bit damp, LOL Oh well, live and learn and Buy more sugar to cover it all up! I payed about $5.00 for the vodka, the cheapest one I could find, it is in a plastic bottle and I kept it under the puter table in my bedroom. Every once in a while(read, when I remembered) I would drop to my knees and give it a shimmy shake. Knowing that in a short while I would be rewarded with a Terrific new addition to my spice rack:) The smell is like no other. You simple Must try this if for no other reason but to say Hey I Can make something that taste expensive but really isn't! You only use a tbl spoon or so at a time any way, the quart will last a good long while. I found another Keeper thanks to the good folks on this site. Thank You Re!! No need to tell you I will make this again and again:)
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Photo by Patty Cakes

Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Los Angeles, California, USA
Living In: Long Beach, California, USA
Reviewed: Dec. 12, 2010
Well it's been 4 months since I started mine. I split open 10 Madagascar vanilla pods down the middle and put them in 750mL of Vodka. Even after 4 months, the color is not quite up to what I see in commercial vanilla extract. But it does smell great and surely my family who will receive this for Christmas will love it! Next time I will put even more vanilla pods and let it seep longer (~6 months).
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