DIY Gift Idea: Perpetual Vanilla Extract

Two years ago for Christmas, my husband and I decided to give the gift that keeps on giving- literally. We both love creative gifts and we thought it would be really fun to make perpetual vanilla extract for our friends and family.

I stumbled upon photos of us making the extract as I was cleaning up hardware space on my computer recently and was so happy to have a record of this process!! (We did this project months before I started this blog)  This is the perfect gift to make 1). if you have a large family and/or lots of friends and 2). if you know someone who loves baking and will really appreciate it. To make this you will need: a glass bottle or bottles (we ordered ours on Amazon) vodka, and vanilla beans (about 5-6 beans per 8oz bottle).  I recommend sterilizing the bottles first before making the vanilla.


First, cut each vanilla bean along it’s vertical axis- but not into two pieces- just along the center, about 6 inches long:


Next, put the vanilla beans inside the bottle, and pour the vodka inside using a liquid measuring cup.



When you’ve reached the fill line, close the bottle and shake it vigorously.  Let it sit for at least two weeks before using.  To complete the gift, create custom labels for your vanilla extract which adds a personal touch to the gift.


The best part about perpetual vanilla extract is it lasts for a perpetually long time.  As you bake with the vanilla extract, replenish what you have used by pouring more vodka back into the vanilla extract bottle.  It’s been two years and I still use my vanilla!

More DIY Gift Ideas coming this month!


* Disclaimer: Not recommended to drink. Use only for baking.


There are 6 comments for this article
  1. 58Teresa at 7:14 am

    Good thing you put in that disclaimer, I was tempted! Where were you when I need 20 gifts for the monitors? LOL.
    Awesome idea!

  2. Ryan Callahan at 3:46 pm

    Thanks so much for the great idea! My wife and I are making some for my coworkers. To personalize our bottle we are etching a letter “v” onto each bottle using “Armour Etch”!

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