Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Home Cooking >
Aug 4, 2006 10:54 PM

How much Vanilla Extract equals one Vanilla Bean?

I've got a recipe which calls for one vanilla bean, but I've got a lot of Bourbon Vanilla Extract I'd rather use.

How much of the Vanilla Extract shall I use to equal the flavor of one vanilla bean?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Practically all recipes seem to call for the same amount of vanilla extract. I'd just use what you use in other recipes.

    1. According to this site, one inch of vanilla bean is equal to one teaspoon of vanilla extract.

      The amount of vanilla extract certainly does differ from recipe to recipe.

      6 Replies
      1. re: Trixie Too

        A typical vanilla bean is about 8 inches which would equal to about 8 teaspoons of extract. That might be too much extract for most recipes.

        1. re: Trixie Too

          I would venture that there are tens of thousands of recipes that call for a teaspoon of vanilla. I generally use a generous teaspoon. As Trixie mentions, 8 is very likely to be overkill. I have never in my life seen a recipe that called for even a third that much.

          1. re: foiegras

            I have a recipe for vanilla bean ice cream (custard style) which calls for 1 whole vanilla bean and the recipe yields 10 half-cup servings.So 8 doesn't seem to be overkill there.

            1. re: IceCreamYouScream

              On what basis?

              Many cookie recipes calling for 1 t vanilla extract yield several dozen. One can double that with only positive effects, but octupling it still seems ill-advised to me.

              1. re: IceCreamYouScream

                That's different. In recipes where vanilla is the primary flavor, like vanilla ice cream, you would use a whole pod. In regular baking of cakes, etc. you certainly wouldn't use a whole pod. You would only require an equivalent of 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract, which would be only one to two inches of a pod in length.

                1. re: janccd

                  I agree. I make 1 gallon of vanilla ice cream and use 3 Tablespoons of vanilla and it is wonderful. That is the equivalent to 9 teaspoons of vanilla (3 teaspoons per Tablespoon)

          2. 1 vanilla bean = 2 tsp of extract

            Pretty standard.

            2 Replies
            1. re: Pupster

              I am more inclined to agree with your answer. The vanilla beans I have are 6 inches long and my ice cream recipe that makes 5 cups calls for 1 whole vanilla bean. I have tried it before, and it is not too much vanilla. I disagree with those who are saying 1 inch of vanilla bean is equal to 1 teaspoon vanilla extract.

              1. The original comment has been removed
                1. I get a lot of my spices from a website called Savory Spice Shop. According to them 1 vanilla bean is equal to about 1 tbsp of extract.