With as much baking as I do, I go through vanilla extract like nobody’s business.  I don’t give a second thought to buying most of my baking staples but I would always flinch a bit when I picked up an $8 bottle (Really?!  For that much?!) of vanilla extract from the store.  It seemed like I was doing so more and more frequently, and something had to give.  Thankfully making your own vanilla couldn’t be easier and it is far more economical than buying the store bought variety at an alarming rate.  Do you have five minutes?  Then you have time to make vanilla.  And now is the perfect time to make your own.  The holidays are fast approaching and bottles of homemade vanilla extract could make wonderful gifts for the bakers in your life.   How cute would these look tied with a little bit of holiday ribbon and a personalized tag?  Be still, my heart.

All you need are vanilla beans, cheap vodka (save the good stuff for drinking), and bottles or jars.  Really just about any container that closes will do.  Fill your containers with vodka, split vanilla beans, and add three beans per eight ounces of vodka.  Close your containers tightly and place them in a cool, dark location for about two months.  Shake occasionally.  That’s it!  Whenever I finish a bottle, I refresh with a new bean or two and refill with vodka.  I have three bottles in rotation in my kitchen and so far it has been just the right amount to keep me stocked.  Try it and your wallet will thank you.

Source: Use Real Butter

*The containers pictured here are from Sur La Table.  I buy vanilla beans on Amazon.