Does Vanilla Extract Contain Alcohol?

Queen Vanilla extracts are made by combining pure vanilla beans with a mixture of alcohol (sugar cane-derived ethanol) and water. This allows the flavour compounds from the pure vanilla bean to infuse into the alcohol/water mixture, which then forms the pure vanilla extract.

While vanilla beans can be extracted without alcohol, it is very slow, ineffective and results in a lower quality vanilla extract. At Queen we want to produce the very best vanilla for your baking, which is why our extracts are made through the alcohol extraction method.

Does the alcohol cook out

The highest percentage of alcohol Queen Vanilla contains is 35%. This means that if you use 1 tsp Queen Vanilla extract in your baking (5ml), you would at most add 1.75ml alcohol to your cake (a tiny amount). The high temperatures achieved during baking will cause most of this alcohol to evaporate out of your cake with the flavor remaining intact, as the alcohol is simply a carrier for the flavor.

What alcohol free vanilla do you have in your range

Queen Finest pure vanilla beans are the only alcohol free vanilla in our range at this time.

Queen Imitation Vanilla Flavour is another option for your baking but this is not a vanilla extract, only an imitation vanilla flavour and contains less alcohol.

In short, alcohol is the most effective way to extract the true flavour from the vanilla bean that you love in your baking. That rich aroma when you crack open a bottle, and the incredible flavour when used in baking are all achieved by the extraction process that we have perfected here at Queen over the past 120 Years!

After stories emerged earlier this year about a woman in Connecticut that was caught drunk driving after drinking vanilla extract, people across the country started to wonder how much alcohol was in the baking ingredient. Truthfully, the vanilla extract contains quite a bit of alcohol.

Most vanilla extracts contain between 35 and 40 percent alcohol. That is the same amount found in vodka, rum, and tequila. Homemade vanilla extract, which is made by soaking a few vanilla beans in vodka, can contain even more.

The alcohol in vanilla extract is so important in fact, that during the time of Prohibition, the Flavors and Extracts Manufacturers Association (FEMA) successfully lobbied to exclude the extract from the ban.

Many people don’t know vanilla extract contains that much alcohol. After learning that it does, many also wonder just how much vanilla extract it takes to get drunk.

The Amount of Vanilla Extract to get Drunk

The FDA doesn’t only require that vanilla extract contains alcohol. The federal organization also requires that all extracts, including artificial extracts, contain a minimum of 35 percent alcohol.

This means that for most vanilla extracts, four to five ounces should be enough to get a person drunk. Of course, like all alcohol, this depends on a person’s weight, tolerance to alcohol, gender, and whether they have eaten recently.

Although this may not sound like a lot of vanilla extract to get drunk, it’s important to understand that vanilla extract is quite costly. This is particularly true if you buy real vanilla extract and not imitation. Vanilla extract typically costs between two and eight dollars per ounce.

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This means that even six ounces would cost approximately $12 to $48. Liquors that are high-quality typically cost approximately $20 and up, so while vanilla extract can get you drunk, you’re likely better off simply buying your favorite liquor.

Here’s what you need to know about vanilla extract alcohol content.

Vanilla extract is a must-have ingredient in cookies, biscotti, cake and so many more baked goods. While extract is a more convenient and affordable way to add flavor to recipes than a vanilla bean, the question of if vanilla extract contains alcohol might make some home bakers pause.

Is There Alcohol in Vanilla Extract

By definition, yes there is alcohol in vanilla extract. According to the FDA, vanilla extract is a mixture of vanilla scent and flavor characteristic, and alcohol. To be exact, the FDA requires an ethyl alcohol content of at least 35% for a product to be considered vanilla extract.

Before you worry about getting a buzz from your baked goods, nearly all of the alcohol from extracts evaporates in the cooking process. So, your next batch of chocolate chip cookies is definitely safe to take to a school bake sale.

Is There Non-Alcoholic Vanilla Extract

Yes, you can find vanilla extracts that contain less or no alcohol, though they won’t be called “extracts” since they don’t meet the FDA’s standards. These products are commonly referred to as vanilla flavoring, instead.

If you’re shopping for vanilla flavorings, be sure to read the labels carefully. While some of these products are just alcohol-free versions of vanilla extract (typically using glycerin instead of alcohol) it could also indicate that there less natural and/or artificial vanilla flavor and scent than the FDA’s requirements.

What About Bourbon Vanilla

If you get into niche types of vanilla, you may see bottles of extract labeled as Madagascar Bourbon vanilla extract. We get it: Bourbon and vanilla sounds like a pretty good combination. But let us stop you right there: There is no bourbon in Madagascar Bourbon vanilla. (Shocking, right!)

This type of vanilla has the name Bourbon attached to it because, according to Nielsen-Massey, Madagascar (where the vanilla is grown) used to be referred to as one of the Bourbon Islands.

So you won’t get any bourbon notes in this type of vanilla, but you will get a strong, rich vanilla flavor.

How much alcohol is in a teaspoon of vanilla extract?

A teaspoon of vanilla extract equals 1/2 a tablespoon. With the vanilla content being 35% alcohol, you can work out that it is approximately 17% alcohol in a teaspoon.

Please note, all information provided by us is for educational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. Please consult your doctor for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment options. The information on this website has not been evaluated by the FDA, and we make no claim to diagnose or treat any illness whatsoever.

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Vanilla Extract Brands that Do NOT Contain Alcohol

Our own products do not contain alcohol because we are a small producer & we work in small batches. We use Madagascar Bourbon Vanilla Beans which is an awesome, rich, tasty vanilla that doesn’t contain any alcohol. We also offer a Vanilla Sugar Scrub that contains no alcohol.

Flavors of McCormick Products That Have No Alcohol: McCormick Ground Vanilla Bean, McCormick Pure Vanilla Extract, McCormick Vanilla Bean Paste and McCormick Madagascar Bourbon Pure Vanilla Extract.

Can you get drunk off a tablespoon of vanilla extract?

On average, there are 17% alcohol within the 35% alcohol vanilla extract. By this logic, a tablespoon of vanilla extract contains approximately 3/4 of an oz. of alcohol. Similar to any other spirit and occasional drink, this amount of alcohol could get you drunk, however this would require several tablespoons and is debatable as to whether a person could consume such a large amount in one sitting.

This is not recommended by the FDA and can be considered dangerous because of the health risks associated with consuming too much alcohol too quickly. Vanilla Extract is a Must-Have Ingredient for Baking.  While you may opt to buy extracts instead of vanilla beans and make your own extract, however, there is definitely a time and place for vanilla extract in baking!

Even though extracts are a great substitute for real vanilla beans, they are not as effective in lending their subtle nuances. You can also use vanilla extract when making custards to add another layer of flavor such as traditional milk custard recipes or creme brulee, but you will get the most flavor out of using real vanilla beans.  This is because real vanilla beans contain much more complex notes that are similar to white wine.

What is alcohol content of vanilla extract?

The alcohol content of an alcoholic beverage is the percentage of:

• Ethanol (pure alcohol) that is contained in 100 milliliters (ml) of an alcoholic beverage.

• This means that a vanilla extract with an alcohol content of 35% contains 35 ml of pure ethanol. In order to know how the alcohol content affects you, it is important to know how much pure ethanol you are consuming. For this reason, we need to know the amount of a vanilla extract that we are planning to use.  The standard amount used in baking is 1/2 teaspoon and it has been previously used by many people without any side effects or bad reactions from overconsumption.

Vanilla = +6% Alcohol,  which is one of the highest in all plants.

The alcohol content of vanilla extract is between 18-20% (2/3 of an ounce). To make sure we’re not talking out of both sides of our mouths, it’s important to note that the alcohol content can vary widely depending on how the vanilla beans are processed, such as natural or artificial extract. Vanilla essence vs Vanilla extract:

Essence:  comes from beans and sugar with some added flavoring and does not contain alcohol or food coloring as additives. This is why that it’s often used in making flavored vinaigrettes and creams.

Can I substitute alcohol for vanilla extract?

A recipe for which the extract is missing can be easily substituted with some brandy, rum or vodka. However, these substitutes will not provide the same taste and flavor of the original recipe. Alcohol is similar to vanilla extract because alcohol enhances many different flavors in a recipe. In addition to enhancing other flavors, alcohol also helps to dissolve sugar during baking so that it doesn’t crystallize. This is why it’s crucial that you do not substitute vanilla extract for alcohol in your recipes!

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Looking for a good vanilla substitute? Many believe that real Madagascar Bourbon Pure Vanilla Extract is one of the best alternatives to real vanilla extract. Madagascar Bourbon Vanilla is produced with vanilla beans grown in Madagascar, Africa and also has a rich, creamy flavor that is similar to Mexico’s expensive vanilla extract but of course at a much more reasonable price.

What if I run out of vanilla extract?

No matter what brand you use there is a possibility that you are going to run out of it some time if you use it regularly. However, if the bottle does not have an expiration date then consider keeping it for up to one year after opening. If the vanilla extract has an expiration date then store it in a cool dark place.

Using Fresh Vanilla Beans

In many recipes, chefs prefer to use fresh vanilla beans as opposed to extracts because of their superior flavor and aroma. This is also true when making homemade vanilla extract as well. Fresh vanilla beans are used because they release more fragrance over time than extracts that are made with artificial flavoring or alcohol.

To get the most out of these beans, you should use them within a week or two of storing them in a cool, dry and dark place. Vanilla beans are actually the tastiest part of the vanilla plant and many chefs like to use them rather than extracts to flavor their dishes because they are not as concentrated. However, if you are unable to find fresh vanilla beans then you can also substitute it for extract that is made from pure and natural ingredients.

Can I substitute vanilla vodka for vanilla extract?

Most people who make their own vanilla extract prefer to make it with vodka instead of rum or brandy because it’s a more neutral flavor, which makes the extract more versatile. Although you might be tempted to substitute vanilla vodka for vanilla extract, this is not recommended because they are quite different in taste and consistency.

Some of the most popular brands of vodka also have a high alcohol content of 35-40% which you may need to consider if you have several tablespoons in one container. When using vodka as an ingredient in your recipe, just make sure that you do so sparingly because it can overpower many other flavors and add a very strong scent such as those found in mixed drinks or desserts.

You can always use an extract, but if you want to make something that tastes great, and is much better for you than store-bought, try making vanilla extract at home! Homemade vanilla extract will never be like commercial extracts. However, if you have used commercial extracts in the past and liked them then homemade will blow your mind because they are so much better. If you are using real vanilla beans and following a proven recipe then there is a good chance that what you are drinking or eating will be very tasty.