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What can I do with vanilla vodka, besides give it away?

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My husband got a bottle of Grey Goose Vanilla flavored vodka. We're not big vodka drinkers, let alone vanilla vodka. Any recommendations for drinks to make with it that aren't really sweet? When I poked around online, the only recipes I could find sounded way too sugary.

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  1. plain and simple, add ice and seltzer.

    1 Reply
    1. It's very low-brow, I know, but vanilla vodka & diet coke actually make for a pleasant combination. It tastes more like a Dr. Pepper, and isn't sugary but more citrusy & smooth.

      1. Vanilla vodka & diet coke is always a good combo.

        I'm not sure how sweet is too sweet, but vanilla vodka with coconut soda is surprisingly good. Very refreshing. (Coconut soda is a surprisingly good and unusual mixer with a variety of flavoured vodkas.) I think that a friend likes it with ginger beer, but I'm not sure.

        You can also make chocolate martinis with it - equal parts vanilla vodka and creme de cacao. Sometimes I add a dash of Godiva liqueur after I've poured it into glasses.

        1. Also, vanilla vodka and ginger ale isn't bad, for a simple highball.

          6 Replies
          1. re: Alcachofa

            I second the ginger ale. Tastes just like cream soda.

              1. re: Beachowolfe

                Called a "vaginger" when garnished with a cherry. And f you add maraschino cherry juice, it's a "bloody vaginger..." I'm very sorry to say.

                    1. re: StriperGuy

                      BTW, I've never heard it called that but then again never ordered it in a bar. UrbanDictionary has some other, more fitting IMO, definitions for vaginger.

          2. Grey Goose is apparently the only maker of vanilla flavor that uses actual vanilla, instead of chemical compounds, so at least you have the good stuff!

            I would recommend you mix it with raspberry vodka and grand marnier, maybe a splash of lime, you're good to go. It's also used in drinks that taste like creamsicles (orange and vanilla) but I've foudn the better ones are basically vanilla vodka, another flavored vodka, and a splash of something or other to cut the sweetness.

            Vanilla vodka, gingerale, and a splash of angostura bitters is also VERY tasty.

            Not that this is an everyday thing, but one of the best things ever is a shot of vanilla vodka mixed with a half-shot of frangelico - take the shot and then bite immediately into a lemon slice dipped in sugar. it tasted EXACTLY like a piece of buttermilk chocolate cake. I have no idea how that works, but its totally crazy (and delicious).

            1. "Vanilla turnover shots" ....pour frozen vodka in shot glass..after drinking shot bite on wedge of lime that has been dipped in sugar/cinnamon mixture (much like the tequella/lemmon thing)...it sounds strange, but is VERY good.

              1. If you mix it with OJ it will taste like a creamsicle.

                1. I like it in either Coke or, if I'm serving something fancy, I mix it in raspberry puree with a dash of lime juice. It's really good!

                  1. Vanilla Coke and Dr. Pepper is pretty good.

                    1. D'oh! A friend gave you a flavored vodka, and you are not big vodka fans?

                      Anyway, you could just re-gift to someone who is a big distilled spirit fan (if you need it, I can give my mailing address). You can also save it for any dessert/chocolate/fruit sauce that uses some kind of distilled spirit, and use your flavored vodka instead.

                      1. Just read this thread and thought of you....


                        vanilla vodka and iced coffee sounds even better.

                        1. Once, when I was much younger, a very good friend introduced me to the virtues of Stoli Vanilla and Club Soda! Of course, that night saw me walking down Main St. with my shoes in my hand and no recollection my how I ended up home (with my shoes in the car).

                          You could try that, or there's a wonderful chocolate martini you can make, but it requires about 3 or 4 more ingredients AND, would be sweet.


                          1. I just bought a bottle of Grey Goose Vanilla by mistake and I asked around and the best mix so far that I tried out was Root Beer/Creame Soda and GG Vanilla. Mmmmmmmmm

                            1. My husband likes Black Russians made with vanilla vodka.

                              1. Sooo good with coffee as previously posted. With a little espresso, kaluha and milk (or cream) shaken with ice and served UP or Rocks is delicious.
                                I also make a version of a French Martini with vanilla vodka, chambord, a splash of pineapple, teeeny squeeze of lemon, shake and serve up in a chilled martini glass with a twist.
                                I've served this as a bartender and rimmed the glass with sugared grahm cracker crumbs....sware it tastes like cheesecake.
                                All else fails and you still don't like it....send it to me :)

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: momof3

                                  ha! I'm laughing as I read through these posts, because I'm so surprised no one mentioned the ONLY way I have ever managed to use our (still half-full) bottle of Stoli vanilla vodka: mixed with champagne! I was first served this combo at a NYC bar, and I think it was called a golden martini? in any case, it is not super-sweet, and to me, it is a very delicious pairing... the toastiness of the champagne etc.

                                2. Another Creamscicle recipe

                                  2 oz. Vanilla Vodka
                                  1 oz. Triple sec
                                  1 oz. Orange juice
                                  1 oz. Heavy cream.

                                  Combine all ingredients in mixing glass with ice, stir well and strain into cocktail glass.

                                  1. A half shot of vanilla vodka into any good heavy dark beer will make it a bit more interesting and will give you a bit more altitude as well.

                                    The Black Russian idea is superb, Cheri. I will remember that.

                                    Vanilla can also be a wonderful perfume for lobsters and large shrimp. A splash if you are sauteeing them? Just a thought.

                                    1. Make a Tequila Sunrise, substituting vanilla vodka for the tequila. Tastes just like St. Joseph's Aspirin for Children!

                                      1. I make a lychee Martini..Lychee liquor, Saki, Vanilla Stoli and lychee juice..yummy.

                                        1. I love Vanilla Vodka!!! my drink of choice is mixed with white soda (diet) and cranberry.If your not a cranberry fan any flavor juice will do...A slash of blueberry would be good and different. Very tasty not to sweet. Enjoy!!

                                          2 Replies
                                          1. re: ferfer70

                                            I had to look up "white soda", which I guess is sweetened, carbonated milk; so presumably "diet" substitutes artificial sweetener for the sugar. I have never heard of this stuff: fascinating!

                                            1. re: MC Slim JB

                                              White soda meaning Sprite or 7up.

                                          2. Infuse it with some fruit for a martini (like orange slices for orange dreamsicle).

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: kcchan

                                              or just some orange juice. ive tried it. kindda tastes like a dreamsicle.

                                            2. ive tried this before and it actually tastes pretty good. mix it with a&w creme soda. might sound a little weird but its good. or just mix it with some coke. cant go wrong either way.

                                              1. also you could use it making white russians.

                                                1. 2 oz. Vanilla Vodka
                                                  1/2 oz. Midori
                                                  1/2 oz. fresh squeezed lime juice

                                                  shake with ice. serve straight up.

                                                  1. Hawaiian Martini

                                                    Roy Yamaguchi's national chain of Hawaiian fusion restaurants serves a martini that will have you singing "Tiny Bubbles" with your imaginary monkey friend Cecil. Whole bottles of Skyy vodka, Stoli Vanil, and Malibu rum are dumped into a giant decanter along with some sugar and pineapple chunks. After three days, when all the hunks of pineapple are floating, the cocktail's ready to be served -- shaken, not stirred -- in a chilled martini glass. This is a perfect clone to prepare in advance of your next swinging cocktail party since the recipe makes around 36 drinks.
                                                    2 750 ml bottles Skyy Vodka
                                                    1 750 ml bottle Stoli Vanil Vodka
                                                    1 750 ml bottle Malibu Rum
                                                    1 6-ounce can pineapple juice
                                                    1 cup sugar
                                                    1 fresh pineapple, sliced

                                                    1. Combine vodkas, Malibu rum, and pineapple juice in a large nozzled decanter or 5 quart jug. Add sugar and stir until dissolved.
                                                    2. Slice the top and bottom off of a fresh pineapple. Slice the pineapple in half then slice the halves in half to make quarters. Cut the rind from each of the quarters, then slice the quarters into 1/2-inch thick slices. This will make several bite-size wedges. Add pineapple slices to decanter, and let mixture sit for 3 days.
                                                    3. To make the drink, shake 3 ounces of the martini blend with ice and strain into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with one piece of pineapple from the decanter, speared on a toothpick.

                                                    Makes about 36 servings.

                                                    Oh, man, are these good !

                                                    2 Replies
                                                    1. re: dockhl

                                                      Is this REALLY only 6oz of pineapple juice for 4 bottles of liquor??
                                                      I've mixed this up in 1/4 batch and have it chilling in the fridge now..
                                                      on first sample, 2oz of pineapple juice seems very light.. whew it's potent stuff!
                                                      can't wait to sample it in a day or two.

                                                      1. re: grnidkjun

                                                        Yes, really :)

                                                        These are VERY potent but delicious.

                                                    2. I'd add a dash of orange bitters, shake over ice and serve up.

                                                      1. 2 parts vanilla vodka
                                                        1 part white cranberry juice
                                                        Splash of cointreau
                                                        Splash of Lime Juice

                                                        Shake with Ice and Strain into a cocktail glass.

                                                        1. Soak mango in it with blueberries, top over angle food cake and top with toasted coconut and vanilla vodka mixed with honey for a light drizzle.

                                                          Chicken is a herbed vanilla vodka. Fresh rosemary and thyme, onions and vanilla vodka with cayenne and then marinade, grill and serve with a fresh fruit salad. Add a dash of the vodka to the fruit salsa as well. Makes a great flavor. You can do this with fish or scallops too.

                                                          1. Over fennel, grapefruit, oranges regular and blood oranges. Toss with fresh mint and serve. Great salad served over a bed a greens tossed with just a little olive oil, s/p. Top with chopped pecans or macadamian nuts. Delicious

                                                            1. The Mary Jane Cocktail

                                                              2 ounces vanilla vodka
                                                              1 ounce Belle de Brillet (Cognac-based pear liqueur)
                                                              1/2 ounce fresh lime juice
                                                              2 dashes Peychaud's Bitters
                                                              Lime twist garnish

                                                              Shake for 10 seconds and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
                                                              Garnish with the lime peel.

                                                              1 Reply
                                                              1. re: Sazerac

                                                                Oh, dear me, this sounds delicious!

                                                              2. The vodka, Roses Lime, and a lime on ice. A splash of cream if you like, tastes like key lime pie but not too sweet.

                                                                1. 1 3/4 oz of Vanilla Vodka
                                                                  1/4 oz of Amaretto

                                                                  Chill martini glass. Pour vodka and amaretto in bar shaker filled with ice and James Bond it (shaken not stirred). Strain into emptied, chilled martini glass.... a salute...

                                                                  1. For those of us who aren't into sweet, vanilla vodka goes very well with tea. It's good with iced black tea, but also with hot. Green teas don't work as well, but grain teas like barley tea or buckwheat tea make it taste a good coffee cake. It goes well in coffee as well.

                                                                    1. forget EVERYTHING else and make yourself a delicious Key Lime Pie:

                                                                      1 1/2 oz. Vanilla Vodka
                                                                      1/2 oz. Frangelico
                                                                      1/2 oz. sour (make it yourself: 1/2 real lemon juice, 1/2 simple syrup)
                                                                      1/2 oz. pineapple juice

                                                                      4 Replies
                                                                      1. re: ballardtender

                                                                        The OP wanted something that wasn't sweet. This drink would give me diabetes.

                                                                        1. re: invinotheresverde

                                                                          When properly balanced the drink is refreshing and light. To cut the sweetness use less vanilla vodka and muddle some lemon with the ice. I forgot the most important part, which is to shake HARD with ice before straining.

                                                                          1. re: ballardtender

                                                                            Depends on your vanilla vodka. Stoli, for example, has no sugar, so it doesn't add to the level of sweetness.

                                                                        2. re: ballardtender

                                                                          Just curious, but why would you use lemon juice in a "lime" drink?

                                                                          Also, how will cutting back on the vodka cut the sweetness? Is vanilla vodka sweetened? Probably better to eliminate the "sour" and just go for straight lime juice. Or key lime juice if you want to make a drink that actually tastes remotely like its namesake...

                                                                        3. The obvious thought that comes to mind is a White Russian. I also actually like dropping a shot of Stoli Vanilla into a glass of Guinness.

                                                                          1. this past christmas my cousins and i drank an entire bottle of svedka (much lower quality compared to grey goose) vanilla vodka with only 1 can of coke to use as a mixer (my parents house has never been big on sodas and we didn't bother with juice, it just wasn't necessary)...its a strong drink but it doesn't taste too strong as the vanilla mellows it out very well. i think vanilla vodka on the rocks is the way to go!

                                                                            6 Replies
                                                                            1. re: pie22

                                                                              Not that I have any interest in vanilla vodka, but I disagree that Svedka is much lower in quality than Grey Goose. It simply doesn't spend as much money on packaging and advertising. Most vodkas above the rotgut level are about equal, especially if they charcoal filter. The remaining differentiation is mostly a mutual exploitation between marketers seeking to justify a specious premium on water-diluted corn-derived ethanol and gullible consumers who want to believe a brand choice says something flattering about them. I pour Smirnoff at home.


                                                                              1. re: pie22

                                                                                Svedka is lower quality than Grey Goose? How so? How did you come to that conclusion?

                                                                                1. re: Alcachofa

                                                                                  I purchased a bottle of Svedka Vanilla recently and found it quite smooth, and am not usually able to handle vodka very well.

                                                                                  1. re: grnidkjun

                                                                                    sorry all, i guess i misspoke. i personally love svedka and really could care less about grey goose...my comment came simply from the fact that svedka is roughly half the price of grey goose.

                                                                                    1. re: pie22

                                                                                      You put your finger on the issue, pie: super-premium vodka is the ultimate Veblen good: the gullible think it must be better because it's costlier, or don't care about the quality, just the notion that its costliness is a virtue: it says, "I can afford this", allows them to consume conspicuously.


                                                                                      1. re: MC Slim JB

                                                                                        I can't even really tell the difference b/w Burnett's and GG. Especially once you add a mixer.


                                                                                3 Replies
                                                                                    1. re: ROCKLES

                                                                                      SO SAYS THE PERSON WHOSE HANDLE IS ALL CAPS. HA HA HA.

                                                                                1. Stoli Vanilla
                                                                                  Wyler's Orange Drink Mix (low-cal baby)
                                                                                  Sprite Zerop (low-cal baby)
                                                                                  Dash of Cherry juice

                                                                                  3 Replies
                                                                                    1. re: shane31270

                                                                                      Ug, I might use that to de-louse my goat.

                                                                                    2. there was a period in my life when i played a lot with making infused vodkas and the best one i came up with was on in which i steeped a bit of vanilla bean and a few coffee beans. not sure what that means for you here, b/c i mostly drank it neat or with soda (seltzer, i mean, not sweet stuff) but i liked it a lot. maybe some sort of espresso shot or coffee syrup with the vodka and soda over ice? good luck!

                                                                                      1. obviously the vodka must be well and truly gone - but for those that stumble across the link like i did, i was recently introduced to vodka, lemonade and a handful of frozen raspberries floating on top. the rasperries cut through the sweetness and also act like icecubes to keep drink cool. yummo !!!

                                                                                        1. soak fruit in it overnight. serve over ice cream.

                                                                                            1. re: chef chicklet

                                                                                              Oh, yes, Cooks Illustrated has a wonderful "foolproof" pastry recipe that calls for vodka.

                                                                                              Also, my daughter makes a drink with vanilla vodka, cardamom and pineapple.

                                                                                            2. Mix 1 3/4 ounce with 1/4 ounce amaretto over ice, shake and serve as a slightly sweet martini...

                                                                                              9 Replies
                                                                                                1. re: invinotheresverde

                                                                                                  If you want to be specific, it has no bitters, so it is not a cocktail.

                                                                                                  spirit + sweetener + water = a Sling.

                                                                                                  1. re: yarm

                                                                                                    Thank You!

                                                                                                    Gonna see you in NOLA?

                                                                                                    1. re: JMF

                                                                                                      I'll be there from Tuesday to Monday. My cell phone number and email are on my facebook if you need to reach me there.


                                                                                                    2. re: yarm

                                                                                                      Poor verbiage on my part, but that shizz ain't no martini. That was more my point.

                                                                                                      1. re: invinotheresverde

                                                                                                        actually, you make it as you would a vodka martini but instead of vermouth, you use the amaretto. Chill a glass just like you would a vodka or gin martini and strain into a martini glass. If you don't like the idea, no worries...

                                                                                                        1. re: chibuff99

                                                                                                          There's no such thing as a vodka mar...oh, nevermind.

                                                                                                            1. re: invinotheresverde

                                                                                                              I feel like the teacher just retired in the middle of class.

                                                                                                  2. Vanilla vodka and Orange soda = creamsickle.

                                                                                                    1. From Boston bartender Aaron Butler, created for the Sobieski tasting room at Tales of the Cocktail in 2010:

                                                                                                      Death by Misadventure

                                                                                                      2 oz Vanilla Vodka
                                                                                                      1 1/2 oz Meletti Amaro
                                                                                                      3/4 oz Lemon Juice
                                                                                                      3 dash Fee's Whiskey Barrel Bitters
                                                                                                      3 dash Peychaud's Bitters

                                                                                                      Shake with ice and strain into a Collins glass filled with fresh ice cubes. Top with ~2 oz Rogue Dead Guy Ale, and add a straw.

                                                                                                      Read more: http://cocktailvirgin.blogspot.com/20...

                                                                                                      1. Key lime pie sparkler:

                                                                                                        2 oz. vanilla vodka
                                                                                                        1/2 oz. fresh-squeezed lime juice
                                                                                                        1/2 oz. simple syrup
                                                                                                        3/4 oz. pineapple juice

                                                                                                        Pour over rocks and top up with club soda. Adjust sweetness to your preference with more simple syrup and garnish with a lime wheel.

                                                                                                        1. After reading this post I tried it and now I love it with Blue Raspberry Crush, I was hesitant to try it, but I mixed 2 ox vanilla vodka to 6 oz Crush. Poor over ice. It's awesome! Blue Raspberry Dreamsicle. I'm drinking one now!

                                                                                                          1. Key Lime Martinis, a great recipe for a hot day.
                                                                                                            2 shots vanilla vodka
                                                                                                            1 shot pineapple juice
                                                                                                            1/2 shot key lime juice
                                                                                                            2 TBSP cream of coconut
                                                                                                            Shake with ice and drain into martini glass (or mason jar!)

                                                                                                            This drink got me drinking hard liquor again!

                                                                                                            5 Replies
                                                                                                            1. re: iBare

                                                                                                              That's not hard liquor.

                                                                                                              That's a milkshake with booze in it.

                                                                                                              1. re: StriperGuy

                                                                                                                With 3 oz of vanilla vodka in there (even with a lot of the vanilla vodkas being around 70 proof) is still a hefty slug. The recipe looks rather good (although rum would make this recipe sing!) and rather related to the neo classic, the Chi-Chi. I had a spin of the Chi-Chi at Tales of the Cocktail this year:

                                                                                                                Thai Chi-Chi
                                                                                                                2 oz Belvedere Intense Vodka (*)
                                                                                                                1 1/2 oz Housemade Cream of Coconut
                                                                                                                1 oz Pineapple Juice
                                                                                                                1/2 oz Lime Juice
                                                                                                                1/2 oz Thai Basil Syrup (**)
                                                                                                                8 Drop Pimento Dram
                                                                                                                Shake with ice and strain into a rocks or highball glass filled with fresh ice. Grate nutmeg over the top and garnish with a brandied cherry on a pick.
                                                                                                                (*) Drink apparently works quite well with rum subbed here.
                                                                                                                (**) One recipe I found online was 8 oz of boiling water added to 8 oz sugar and 3 oz of Thai basil leaves. Stir to dissolve sugar, let steep until cool, and then strain and bottle.
                                                                                                                More about this drink here: http://cocktailvirgin.blogspot.com/20...

                                                                                                                1. re: yarm

                                                                                                                  That looks amazing; You had me at "house made cream of coconut!.

                                                                                                                  1. re: StriperGuy

                                                                                                                    Now wait, how can you have it both ways? Isn't this pretty much an upscale version of the Key Lime Martini you called a "milkshake with booze"? I'm sure it's tasty (in a swinging-in-a-hammock sort of way), but it's pretty much tropical juices/flavors with some flavorless vodka added, no? And some thai basil, of course. And a bit of allspice. But still....

                                                                                                                    1. re: EvergreenDan

                                                                                                                      "Milkshake with Booze" wasn't an insult, just a comment. It's still not really booze, but that doesn't mean, in either iteration, that I wouldn't drink one.

                                                                                                                      Fresh made cream of coconut makes me weak in the knees.

                                                                                                                      One of my all time guilty pleasures is a good Pina Colada... my best is with Coco Lopez and Lotus pineapple juice from Puerto Rico (not easy to find this side of PR though some latino groceries do carry it).

                                                                                                            2. Soak a few vanilla beans in the vodka,and make vanilla extract.

                                                                                                              1. Actually there is a fantastic chocolate martini i make at all of the bars I have worked at in New York City. Here is the recipe:

                                                                                                                -1.5 oz vanilla vodka
                                                                                                                -. 5 oz godiva chocolate liquor
                                                                                                                -. 5 oz Frangelico Liquor
                                                                                                                -1.0 oz of Baileys

                                                                                                                It results in a creamy, smooth, not too sweet cocktail. Enjoy

                                                                                                                Follow me on Twitter @BK_Mixologist

                                                                                                                1. The diaz drink is made from vanilla vodka, apple juice , ginger ale and lime wedges,
                                                                                                                  Served in a high ball glass.
                                                                                                                  2 oz Vanilla Vodka
                                                                                                                  2 wedges Lime
                                                                                                                  Apple Juice
                                                                                                                  Ginger Ale
                                                                                                                  = Fill a highball glass and add a couple lime wedges.
                                                                                                                  = Add the vanilla vodka, then fill with equal amounts of apple juice and ginger ale.

                                                                                                                  1. I like Vanilla Vodka, Diet Sunkist soda and a splash of half n half. Tastes like a 50/50 bar. Yum!!!I made this drink up and got a patent for it :)

                                                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                                                    1. re: tammyharper

                                                                                                                      Try a Painkiller. Similar flavor ideas, but with fresh juices and natural ingredients.