8 Recipes For Making Homemade Extracts

There is nothing like pure extracts to use in baking your favorite recipes. Using high quality extracts make a big difference in the outcome of your food’s flavor. Additionally, those who are wanting to live a more wholesome lifestyle should be aware that the imitation extracts are made from wood byproducts and often contain chemicals.

Get Creative!

Extracts are made by transferring the flavor and aromas of the bean, nut or herb into alcohol (usually vodka, but sometimes brandy or rum). Vodka is the alcohol of choice because it has a neutral flavor. Other liquors can be used, but they contribute flavors of their own.

Rather than spending an exorbitant amount of money stocking up on delicious, aromatic extracts, you can make you own in 5 minutes – all you need are a few ingredients: high grade liquor, herbal leaves or flavoring beans and time. That’s it!

To make 8 ounces of extract, the recipe is essentially the same with each recipe:

1 cup vodka and 3/4 cup of extract flavoring

Use this basic extract method for extracting flavors of fruit, nuts, herbs and spices. You can even combine different flavors to make new extracts. How amazing would chocolate coffee bean hazelnut extract be? Or, perhaps lavender vanilla extract? Or, how convenient would it be to have chocolate peppermint extract on hand for your holiday baked goods?

Recommended Extraction Tips

  1. Use high quality alcohol. The higher the quality, the better the extract. Typically, vodka makes the most pure extracts, but feel free to play around with different forms of alcohol. I have made vanilla extract with rum and it was divine.
  2. Using a dark jar or bottle to store your extracts in will better protect the extracts from sun exposure. We used dark soda bottles that we had from making homemade soda. If you do not have a dark jar or bottle, then make sure you store your extracts in a dark place.
  3. Give your extracts the gift of time. Allow extracts to sit and percolate in darkness for two months to fully absorb the flavors you have added to them.
  4. Gently shake the jar 3-4 times a week to ensure the flavor is being distributed.
  5. Ideally, extracts do not have to be refrigerated and will store indefinitely.

8 Recipes For Homemade Extracts

 

1. Vanilla Extract

  • 1 cup vodka
  • 3 vanilla beans
  1. Place beans and rum in a clean  glass jar or bottle.
  2. Leave them in a cool dark cabinet for 6 to 8 weeks or longer as you consume the vanilla extract. This mixture will get darker over time and the flavors get richer. Don’t forget to use the vanilla beans when you are done! The vanilla is ready in about 8 weeks.
  3. Remove beans after extraction process is complete.

Tip: You may split the beans or leave them whole. If you leave them whole you can reuse it after the vanilla extract is complete.

 

2. Chocolate Extract

  • 1 cup vodka
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder (use high quality dark chocolate for the best flavor)
  1. Place cocoa powder and vodka in a clean glass jar or bottle. Mix well.
  2. Leave them in a cool dark cabinet for 6 to 8 weeks or longer.
  3. Strain mixture to remove any cocoa powder.

 

3. Coconut Extract

  • 1-1/2 cups freshly grated coconut
  • 2 cup vodka
  1. Drain coconut water and grate fresh coconut shavings and add them to a clean glass jar or bottle.
  2. Leave them in a cool dark cabinet for 6 to 8 weeks or longer.
  3. Strain mixture to remove any coconut shavings after extraction process.
4. Berry Extract
  • 3/4 cup berries (i.e., blueberry, raspberry, strawberry)
  • 1 cup vodka
  1. Add berries and vodka to a clean glass jar.
  2. Leave them in a cool dark cabinet for 6 to 8 weeks or longer.
  3. Strain mixture to remove any coconut shavings after extraction process.

 

5. Orange Extract

  • 1 cup vodka
  • peel of 5 oranges, pith removed
  1. Place fruit peels and vodka in a clean glass jar or bottle.
  2. Leave them in a cool dark cabinet for 6 to 8 weeks or longer.
  3. Remove peels from extract when process is complete.

 

6. Lemon Extract

  • 1 cup vodka
  • peel of 5 lemons, pith removed
  1. Place fruit peels and vodka in a clean glass jar or bottle.
  2. Leave them in a cool dark cabinet for 6 to 8 weeks or longer.
  3. Remove peels from extract when process is complete.

 

7. Almond Extract

  • 3/4 almonds, toasted and skins removed
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 1 cup vodka
  1. Place fruit peels and vodka in a clean glass jar or bottle.
  2. Leave them in a cool dark cabinet for 6 to 8 weeks or longer.
  3. Strain and remove almonds from extract.

8. Peppermint Extract

  • 1/2 cup fresh peppermint leaves
  • 1 cup vodka
  1. Coarsely chop mint leaves and add to a clean glass jar. Fill jar with vodka.
  2. Leave jar in a cool dark cabinet for 6-8 weeks.

The Prepper's Blueprint

Tess Pennington is the author of The Prepper’s Blueprint, a comprehensive guide that uses real-life scenarios to help you prepare for any disaster. Because a crisis rarely stops with a triggering event the aftermath can spiral, having the capacity to cripple our normal ways of life. The well-rounded, multi-layered approach outlined in the Blueprint helps you make sense of a wide array of preparedness concepts through easily digestible action items and supply lists.

Tess is also the author of the highly rated Prepper’s Cookbook, which helps you to create a plan for stocking, organizing and maintaining a proper emergency food supply and includes over 300 recipes for nutritious, delicious, life-saving meals. 

Visit her web site at ReadyNutrition.com for an extensive compilation of free information on preparedness, homesteading, and healthy living.

This information has been made available by Ready Nutrition

Originally published January 22nd, 2014
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  • Melissa

    I used this recipe to make the chocolate extract. It is SO THICK!! What happens if I just keep adding vodka until it has the consistency of “real” extract?

    • Kissa Powell

      That’s strange Melissa. Did you strain the liquid? I do this through a coffee filter and it’s the exact consistency of a typical extract (such as vanilla).

  • Tess

    Hi Sarah,

    Yes, absolutely. Fill the jar 3/4 of the way up with cherries and pour vodka over it. Then you allow it to sit in a cool, dark place for two week. Strain the liquid to separate the cherries and viola!

  • Emma

    Should I chop the berries or leave them whole for the berry extract? Also, is the resulting extract alcoholic because of the vodka?

  • Ashers Momom

    I was wondering if I were to sell the extracts, say at a farmers market, or even ebay, would I need a Liqueur License? I own a business, but do not have a Liqueur licence. I wonder if selling it as an EXTRACT is a way I could get around needing a licence for it. I mean, does the extracts we buy in the store like walmart, do those company’s need a liquier licence? thanks

  • Geni

    Will other nuts than almonds work in this recipe i.e. hazelnuts or pecans? Thanks.

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