DIY Homemade Vanilla Syrup

homemade vanilla syrup

I’m really happy to be here today guest posting on Henry Happened while Stephanie is on baby leave! I normally blog at Oh My Veggies, where I write about meatless cuisine (and the occasional cupcake or two). I thought I’d combine my love of writing about food with Henry Happened’s DIY sensibilities and show you how to make something delicious–Homemade Vanilla Syrup.

One of the best parts about going to a coffee shop is all the fancypants syrup options, right? And maybe you drink enough coffee that you buy bottles of these syrups for your home or office too. Well, guess what? They are super simple to make. And when you make them yourself, you can use real fruits, herbs, and spices to make them–no artificial flavors, no food coloring.

DIY homemade vanilla syrup

In the case of this vanilla syrup, you’ll be using a vanilla bean to provide the flavoring. If you haven’t used vanilla beans before, don’t be intimidated–you can find them at most grocery, gourmet, or seasoning shops. (I like buying them from my local spice shop because they sell them in bulk and I can get the exact number I need.) Use the tip of a sharp knife to cut the pod from top to bottom, pull it open, and then use a butterknife to scrape the paste-like insides into the saucepan. If you want an even stronger vanilla flavor, you can add additional vanilla extract to the recipe too.

how to make vanilla syrup

With its heady aroma of vanilla, this syrup is the perfect addition to your morning cup of coffee. I love using it to make homemade cream soda too–just add it to sparkling water. And it’s wonderful on fresh strawberries! If you’re feeling adventurous, try adding cardamom or cinnamon to the syrup too.

DIY vanilla syrup

DIY Homemade Vanilla Syrup

1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise & insides scraped out
1 c. sugar
1/2 c. water
1 tsp. vanilla extract (optional)

Whisk together vanilla bean scrapings, sugar, and water in a small saucepan. Heat at medium, whisking occasionally, until sugar has dissolved. Remove from heat. For double vanilla syrup, whisk in vanilla extract.

Allow syrup to cool completely in saucepan. Once syrup has reached room temperature, pour into a resealable container or bottle through a fine mesh sieve. Store in refrigerator and use within two weeks.


Thank you so much Kiersten for sharing this yummy recipe. A perfect addition to my morning pick me up! And definitely check out Oh My Veggies – so many easy-to-make but oh-so-tasty recipes. With gorgeous photos to boot!


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  1. Emily says

    Great recipe! I’m using this for Christmas gifts this year. :) Do you think Turbinado sugar would work in place of granulated? I’m just getting into using Turbinado, so I’m not sure quite yet where it works and where it doesn’t. Thank you! :)

  2. Michael says

    I doubled the recipe, but used four beans, 1/2 cup water, and 1/2 cup homemade vanilla extract. I boiled it until it went from cloudy to clear. Thick, super-sweet, and very strong.

  3. Emily says

    Kiersten you’ve done it again! This recipe sounds so easy, I’ll be trying it soon. And making my own cream soda with it, too!

    • says

      You could use it on pancakes or waffles, but it would be a little too sweet for me personally. I think if you added fresh fruit to them and then the syrup too, it would temper the sweetness a little. And when you store this in the fridge, it lasts about 2 weeks. It doesn’t last as long as plain simple syrup because of the added vanilla bean.

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