By Jessica Schoner, Interactive Media Coordinator, Goodwill Industries of Southeastern Wisconsin & Metropolitan Chicago
We love homemade gifts at Goodwill! The time put into them, whether it is minutes or hours, adds a little something special to the gift itself.
Homemade vanilla is easy to make, but does require a bit of patience. If you don’t have enough time to get your vanilla done for this Christmas, consider gifting it for a Mother’s Day gift, or even next Christmas!
The instructions below will make one jar/gift worth of vanilla extract. Simply double, triple, or quadruple the amount of each supply in order to gift more vanilla!
- 8-10 ounce bottle or jar with lid – Goodwill has a great selection of unique glassware
From the grocery store:
- 3-5 vanilla beans
- 8 ounces of alcohol - vodka for a neutral vanilla or bourbon for a more unique vanilla flavor
Split each vanilla bean in half lengthwise (chop it in pieces, if necessary to fit into the jar). Place the vanilla beans into the jar, and pour the 8 ounces of alcohol in so that the beans are completely submerged. Cover the jar or place the lid on top and shake up the bottle.
Store the jar in a cool, dark place for at least one month. Throughout the month, shake the jar to make sure the flavors continue infusing.After a month, you can choose to strain the vanilla pods out, but we think they add a really nice “homemade” touch when left in!