Driven to Extraction!

Homemade mint extract

Here is my cupboard with:  Top left – 0range extract. Bottom – lemon extract, mint extract and vanilla extract.

The other day I was making my home-made coffee additive – again!  Let’s just say that my dearest hubby really, really likes my homemade vanilla coffee additive!

Ummmmmmmmmm…………………  You want some coffee with that dear?

Oh – you don’t know how to make your own coffee additive?  That wonderful, easy to make stuff that doesn’t have this preservative or that chemical in it, and doesn’t cost a fortune at the grocery store?  Well, for the sake of time, let me give you the link where I found the recipe I use:   Homemade Flavored Liquid Coffee Creamer.

You’re welcome! 😉

Homemade vanilla creamer

Getting ready to make some more homemade coffee creamer! All you need is sweetened condensed milk (it’s just milk and sugar), half and half, and vanilla. Get the real vanilla extract or make your own – see below!

You can see in the recipe that it takes one tablespoon of vanilla extract to make the coffee creamer – and when you are making this recipe twice a week – that adds up to a lot of vanilla, folks!  Since I like to use the “real” vanilla, this can get mighty ‘spensive!

So, when I saw an article recently on making your own vanilla extract I got all excited and couldn’t wait to try it!  Here is a link to the article that I read explaining how easy it is to make vanilla extract: The Prairie Homestead.  Yes, it is expensive to buy the vanilla beans and the vodka, but three vanilla beans makes a pint of extract!  The best part is that once you have used up your extract (or nearly used it up), you just add more vodka to the vanilla beans!  It will take a bit longer the second (or even more the third) time around to extract the vanilla flavoring from the beans, but goodness gracious, this is WAY more inexpensive in the long run!  And, since alcohol is a preservative, your extract will last indefinitely on a cool dark shelf!

Making lemon extract

Making lemon extract couldn’t be simpler! See those five “naked” lemons on the left? Those will soon be lemonade sweetened with stevia syrup! Waste not, want not!

But then I saw another article claiming you can do the same thing with lemons! You can click on that article here:  My Frugal Home. Woweeee!  I LOVE lemon extract!  I grew up with my mom making the best candies at Christmas using only 1 pound of butter, 1 pound of powdered sugar, and different extracts for different flavored candies!  My favorite was, and always will be, the ones made from lemon extract with the toasted walnuts pressed into the top. 🙂

Oh boy – stand back – I’m not sure where this will all end up, but I can’t be stopped now!    At this time I have the vanilla extract, lemon extract, orange extract and mint extract just extracting away in my cupboard!  Now I want to find a recipe for almond extract.  I was just at the store and saw some star anise – I wonder if that would make licorice extract?  I think I’m gonna try!  Or, how about banana extract?

Mint extract made from vodka

Here is a handful of fresh mint leaves, just waiting to have their minty fresh flavor extracted into vodka!

If you have another extract recipe, please let me know!  Either give me a link to your post in the comments, or if you don’t have a blog just leave the recipe in the comments!  Thank you so much in advance!

My next trick is to experiment making a coffee creamer with NO sugar, but instead using my homemade stevia syrup.  If you would like to see how to make stevia syrup/extract, click HERE.  I’m not sure if I will use half and half or cream with that,  I will just have to experiment a bit to find out which tastes best!

Thank you so much for reading this article!  If you have any questions, comments or suggestion, please feel free to comment!  I try to answer each and every one!


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16 thoughts on “Driven to Extraction!

    • Well, at this point the jury is still out on the extracts, but if so many people are making their own extract, it must work! Apparently I have to wait at least 6 weeks before any of them will have extracted enough flavor to be any good and unfortunately I am not a patient woman! Thank you for hosting your wonderful blog hop at Share Your Cup Thursday!

  1. I am in the process of making chocolate extract, both for myself and as Christmas gifts for my family. Recipe is easy – 1 1/2 cups vodka, 3/4 cup cocoa powder, store in the dark, shaking gently every 3-4 days. Let sit for a minimum of 6 weeks, the longer it sits, the stronger it gets.

  2. I’ve had it in back of my head for awhile to try making a couple of extracts, I think I may just have to give it a shot! Thanks for sharing, love your site!

    • Thank you, Jody. I think I will make some chocolate extract and almond extract next – thanks to some wonderful comments and a recipe! Let me know how yours turn out!

    • Thank you, Debra. Actually, it’s something that’s been around for quite a while that I am just discovering! Have a great week!

  3. I did this a few years ago I put 500g (about a pound) of vanilla beans in a glass bottle. Well crammed them in to be honest. Then filled up the remainder with vodka.

    I’ve been using that bottle for four years or so and just topping up the vodka. Over time the flavor has become intense and the vodka is now thickened up. The smell is heaven and the taste is amazing. Cost 60 dollars at the time to do but I’ve probably made about 8l of vanilla extract from it and it’s just getting better and better

    • MMMmmmmm – that sounds soooo good! Thick vanilla extract = heaven! Thank you so much for letting me know how it’s worked for you! Have you done any other extracts? Thanks for reading this article, Ben, and for your wonderfully informative 🙂 comment!

  4. I love that you’re making your own extracts – even vanilla. My DIL taught us to make various mustards on her last visit and now my husband is making his own, and has learned to make dill pickles. We already eat his homemade yoghurt from raw milk. Our grandson says he likes it better than what his Mom buys, so we make extra for him now, like my husband makes an extra loaf of whole-grain bread for her when they visit.

    • Homemade mustard? That sounds devine! I have always been a fan of homemade yogurt, it just tastes so much fresher and you know there aren’t any chemicals or preservatives lurking in there.

  5. Great post. Congrats on being chosen as a featured post on this week’s Wildcrafting Wednesdays! I hope you’ll join us again and share more of your awesome posts.

    • Thank you so much, Kristin! You know, I have six extracts going right now – lemon, orange, mint, vanilla, almond and chocolate! Who needs that expensive stuff you buy at the store when you can make the real thing in your cupboard!!??? Thanks again!