Instant Pot Vanilla Extract is a wonderful homemade vanilla that is so easy to make from vanilla beans! Pressure cooker vanilla extract is delicious, and makes great gifts!
Homemade vanilla extract is such a nice gift to give!
Originally published 8/29/18
Instant Pot Vanilla Extract
Raise your hand if you enjoy giving homemade gifts! I sure do! I’m actually not that creative when it comes to crafting, so I tend to make edible gifts. Then I do what I can minimally to make them look nice enough to gift to my family and friends.
Pressure Cooker Vanilla Extract is just one of my favorites because it is easy to make, and can be used by almost anybody, and has a very long shelf life, so I can make it far in advance of the Holidays!
Just a few simple ingredients are needed to make Instant Pot Vanilla Extract!
The steps to make homemade Instant Pot Vanilla Extract are simple:
After pressure cooking, let the jars cool in the pressure cooker undisturbed.
Give the jars a good shake a few times a week after you first make this pressure cooker Vanilla Extract. Agitation helps with the extraction process.
Some simple baker’s twine and pre cut tags made these bottles of Instant Pot Vanilla Extract gifts easy to decorate. Get as creative as you want!
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Questions I Have Been Getting About Instant Pot Vanilla Extract
Where do you get the vanilla beans?
I get mine on Amazon. I like both the Tahitian and Madagascar varieties. Be sure to get grade ‘B’ as those are less expensive and are made for making extract.
I did purchase these Grade A Vanilla Beans as the price has finally gone down, and I LOVE THEM!
How long does vanilla keep?
It keeps indefinitely, as the alcohol keeps it shelf stable. Keeping the beans in the jar or bottle, just top it off with vodka when it starts to get low enough for the beans to poke up out of the alcohol. Then shake it every week or so to agitate it. I have one right now that is 2 years old. My friend has one that is 7 years old! He just tops it off once in a while!
What if the jars seal while pressure cooking? I thought you can’t can in the Instant Pot.
If the jars seal, I wait until they are cooled and just pop the lid open. Then close it. This isn’t canning, and the alcohol will keep the vanilla shelf stable.
What if I don’t want to use alcohol?
I haven’t tried it, but some people make their vanilla with vegetable glycerin (also called food grade glycerin).
Which Gift Bottles do you use?
Either the 4 oz size bottles (affiliate), or the 5 oz hot sauce bottles (pictured above). (affiliate)
Why Use a pressure cooker to make Vanilla Extract?
The main reason is the pressure cooking accelerates the extraction process so you can have dark, rich vanilla much sooner. Not everyone plans ahead, or can. So this method is very good for making vanilla when you want to.
Is It Safe to Make Vanilla in the Instant Pot?
With some simple precautions, it is pretty safe.
• Use good quality canning jars.
• Don’t have any open flames anywhere near the pot.
• Let it do a full natural release.
• Use caution when handling hot jars (I let them cool in the pot).
• Don’t try to move a pressurized pot (no matter what you’re making).
I can’t guarantee anything, but please use common sense and be careful, no matter the recipe you are making in your pressure cooker.
A few of my other favorite homemade gifts is Hot Sauce (recipe below), jam, cookies, Dulce de Leche (recipe below), and a few others. I try to make as many as I can during the summer and fall, that way when I’m in my busy Holiday season, all of those gifts are done!
Instant Pot Lemon Curd
Instant Pot Dulce de Leche Caramel
Instant Pot Hot Sauce
Instant Pot Maple Candied Pecans
If you make this wonderful pressure cooker vanilla extract recipe, please leave me a comment below with a star rating. I’d love to know how you liked it!
Instant Pot Vanilla Extract is a wonderful homemade vanilla. It is really easy to make, and makes fun gifts, especially for the Holidays!
- 24 Vanilla Beans (extract grade "B" or Grade "A")
- 4 cups Vodka (cheapest kind) or use Vegetable Glycerin
- 1 ½ cups Water (2 ½ cups for the 8 qt pot)
Cut all of the vanilla beans in half crossways, then split lengthwise ¾ of the way, leaving attached (kind of like a banana peel).
Put 12 vanilla beans into each pint jar (that's 24 halves in each jar). If you are using smaller or larger jars, adjust accordingly.
Pour the vodka into each jar, filling only to the bottom lid thread (that leaves about ¾ inch of space or more).
Put the lids on the jars finger-tight (that's just barely tightened, and not as tight as when you store them).
Pour the water into the stainless inner pot of the pressure cooker. Then put the metal trivet/rack in. Set the jars on the metal rack, not touching each other of the side of the pot.
Put the lid on the pot and set the steam release knob to the Sealing position.
Press the Pressure Cook (or Manual) button or dial and then the +/- button or dial to select 30 minutes. It will take a few minutes for the pot to come to pressure.
After the cooking cycle is finished, and the pot beeps, turn off the pot so it doesn't go to the Warm setting.
Let the pot do a FULL NATURAL RELEASE of the pressure. You can let it sit after that as long as you want. I let the jars cool down quite a bit in the pot before I move them to a cooling rack to finish cooling.
You can let the vanilla stay in the jars and keep extracting, which it will do indefinitely, or transfer to the smaller jars as you like. Don't strain it or discard the beans! They will keep flavoring the vanilla for years! Just top off with vodka when the bottle runs low.
Since vanilla makes a nice gift, I use the 4-ounce or 5-ounce glass bottles, and add 2 or 3 of the beans to each jar as that will look nice, and it keeps extracting.
- Be Safe! Don't make vanilla near open flames.
- Always let the pot Naturally Release FULLY, then let the jars cool.
- Cheap vodka is what you want to use. Don't bother wasting the good stuff!
- I think the vanilla is best left in the jars and only transferred to the gift bottles just before gifting as it will be stronger from sitting longer.
- Shake the jars a few times a week after you first make the vanilla. This will help with the extraction, and get those little seeds moving.
Pressure cooking accelerates the extraction process so you can have dark, rich vanilla much sooner. It will darken as it sits in a dark pantry.
KEEP THE BEANS AND SEEDS IN THE VANILLA!
Use common sense and caution. Don't allow children near the pot while making this recipe. Just be careful!
Resources to Make Pressure Cooker Vanilla Extract Recipe
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Also… real vanilla extract is going sky high in price!!! Like Pensey’s is like $50 for a 16 oz. bottle!! Crazy!!! They have one that says it’s “Double strength”, what does that mean??
BUT since I have other brands of Vanilla in my cupboard right now, can I extend their shelf life by adding more beans and vodka to them too??
I would say yes. Or start another jar. It will take longer if you don’t use the IP to accelerate it, but you can at least start it. Either option will work.
So just so I have this right in my head… How many V beans in a pint jar, a 4oz. jar or an 8 oz. jar?? You then cut them in half and then split them length wise, right?? And you are saying that the grade A beans are better then the Grade B beans?? Is there a noticeable taste difference??
So using 2 pint-sized jars (16-ounce jars) you will put in 24 halves. Yes, split them lengthwise so more of the “caviar” is exposed. Grade A beans are superior, but not necessary unless you want to use them. They are more expensive. Grade B are drier, but work just fine. I can’t tell the difference in the taste of the vanilla.
Do they HAVE to be canning jars or can I use recycled (well washed and sanitized) condiment jars? For some reason, canning jars are flying off the shelves.. thank you!
It’s best to use jars that can take the heat and pressure. Canning jars are recommended.
How many beNs and vodka wouldi need to just put in the pot no bottles. I have a big bottle i want to transfer it to. The bottle is 33 oz
10-15 beans to 1.75 liters of vodka
This is a great and easy recipe. My mother in-law and I made us each a jar. What I am curious about is, how long should it sit, before being used?
I would say a week or so. The whole concept of cooking it is to accelerate the extraction process, so you can use it much sooner.
So mine still smells really strong of vodka… and I thought it would be darker… I’ve already cooled them. Can I put them back into the IP and redo it? Also, is it supposed to be really liquidy? I had in my mind it would be thicker like store bought. Not an issue… just wondering.
No, it won’t be thick. You can cook it longer if you like. What this method does is accelerate the process so it can be used sooner. I usually won’t use it right away after making it. The alcohol smell will lessen over time, and it will darken over time as well, as long as you used enough beans.
Can I use gin instead of vodka? I ran out of vodka, but have a good sized bottle of quality gin.
I wouldn’t use gin. Do you have bourbon? That’s really good. Otherwise wait until you can get some vodka (get a cheap one).
How do you transfer the vanilla & beans into bottles if you processed it in jars? Or is it easy to get the vanilla bean “caviar” into the jar? It just looks difficult to scrape into the bottles.
I use a small funnel. The beans are easy to just pop into the bottles.