Using only two ingredients and a little patience, this vanilla bean sugar recipe is the just the easiest homemade recipe you absolutely must try. All you need is 5 minutes (maybe less!) and you'll be ready to upgrade your breakfasts and desserts, or give someone special an impressive homemade gift. For best flavor allow the sugar to infuse for up to a week or more.
How to use Vanilla Bean Sugar?
Vanilla bean sugar is incredibly versatile and the possibilities for what to use them for are endless!
For sweet recipes, vanilla sugar is often used to add flavor and sweetness directly to the batter or dough, but it can also be used as a final touch sprinkled on the tops of those fresh out of the oven cakes, pies, and, of course, cookies. Vanilla bean sugar is also a great addition to homemade frostings and whipped cream. Others use it to sprinkle onto fresh fruit or add to coffee/tea.
In savory recipes, the vanilla sugar can be added to barbecue sauces and vinaigrettes, to balance out the acidic flavor within the foods.
Personally, I always have them on my dining table to sprinkle my avocado for breakfast every day. It's more popular in Java than the US, but you should try it--it's tasty!
You can also put your sugar vanilla inside a sweet little jar and make a great gift for special occasions. I’m going to show you exactly how to do it.
How to pick the right beans?
Practically, vanilla beans are the star in the vanilla bean sugar recipe. Different varieties of vanilla beans have a different flavor profiles. It all comes down to your preference or the purposes of the final product.
- Bourbon Madagascar Vanilla bean
Derived from the Vanilla Planifolia plant, the cured bean exudes full, sweet, and mellow flavor with creamy and slight velvety notes.
This vanilla variety is well suited for many baking recipes, drinks, and desserts where the flavor is meant to complement, not dominate the dish.
- Tahitian Vanilla bean
It has an intriguing flavor and incredible aroma. The flavor is exotic even sensual with sweet cherry, caramel, and licorice notes. The aroma is floral with tones of ripe fruit. Tahitian vanilla bean is a great choice for sweet confections and savory dishes that use vanilla as its main flavor profile.
And, there is another vanilla bean variety like Mexican vanilla that could be an option too. It has a smoky, spicy-sweet flavor and woody notes.
Grade A or Grade B vanilla bean?
The difference between the grade of the vanilla beans is their length, appearance, and moisture which will all reflect how much flavor they will contain. Grade A or gourmet vanilla offers darker color, plumper, longer and flexible pods (not easy to break or split), and especially higher moisture content. While grade B vanilla offers lower moisture content and less attractive appearance.
Grade A vanilla beans are definitely the winner if you looking for the richest and fullest flavor. There are whole layers and varieties of flavor that you only get from grade A beans - before the beans get dried out. For many purposes, grade B beans will be an adequate substitute and offer all of the strongest and most traditional vanilla flavors, however, it will take a longer time for the grade B beans to give up their flavor and absorbed by the sugar.
Vanilla Bean Recipe - homemade easy
1 vanilla bean (pod, split lengthwise)
1 lb. sugar (white)
- If you purchase the sugar in bulk, measure then transfer sugar in the new container.
- Slice the vanilla bean lengthwise, scrape out the caviar (vanilla seeds), and place it in the jar with the sugar. Cut the pods into sections of about 1 inch and bury them deep into the sugar for better absorption.
- Place the lid on tightly, shake to spread the vanilla seeds, and leave the jar in a cool place for a week or two, and maybe longer for grade B beans.
- Shake the jar every few days to help distribute the natural flavors evenly.
- Once ready to use, continue to store the sugar with the cuttings of the vanilla bean and the flavor will just get richer.
Vanilla Bean Sugar for a gift.
For gifts, portion the sugar into swing top, cork lid jars or bags. Scoop the prepared vanilla bean sugar as many as you’d like to each gift. Label and date. Put a hanging tag for a nice touch.
Did you know?
If kept dry in an airtight container, your homemade vanilla sugar has an extremely long shelf life, as does the vanilla bean used to flavor it. You can always have vanilla sugar on hand if, as you use it, you refill to the container with more sugar occasionally. The vanilla bean will continue to add flavor to the newly added sugar as long as it is still fragrant.