DIY Floral Rose and Lavender Extract for Baking

Instantly enhance any recipe in seconds with this rose and lavender vanilla extract recipe. This simple recipe combines just simple ingredients with a little bit of time for a remarkable flavor boost when you're baking with edible flowers.

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For the last four years our family has lived in the Middle East, which has been an extraordinary experience for so many reasons. But one thing that I really love about living here is that the rose flavor is very common and popular in this part of the world.

I can almost always find an option with rose in every restaurant, bakery or cafe. You can find rose water everywhere. And in many cases, I like to use the delicate flavor of rose water in my recipes. I already have rose water on my blog, But sometimes you want a stronger concentration. You may love this recipe in Fresh rose ice cream, Rose chocolate chip cookies or Rose Petal Cardamom Shortbread.

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The difference between rose water and rose extract:

Rose water is made by heating rose petals in water so that it vaporizes, then cooling and condensing the vapour and collecting the resulting liquid. The steam distillation has a more delicate finish. I use rose water in many recipes like rose water syrup, or rose water lemonade.

An extract is a preparation made from alcohol infusing with an active ingredient to produce a more concentrated form. All flavors are extracted by steeping rose petals in vodka for an extended time.

In this recipe, we're using vodka, vanilla beans, rose and lavender to make floral vanilla extracts for your baked goods. These make a beautiful gift or favor.

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Where to get rose petals and lavender:

We have an entire post dedicated on how to find flowers for consumption, you can find them in your own organic garden, forage them in the wild, or purchase them online. We use this brand of roses and this brand of lavender.

Why make your own vanilla extracts at home?

There are three main reasons. 1) Extracts are expensive 2) Extracts are often sold artificially, and 3) Extracts are not available in all parts of the world. The demand for vanilla greatly exceeds the supply, which is why is the world’s second most expensive spice, only behind saffron. The FDA states pure vanilla extract must contain at least 35% alcohol and 100 grams of vanilla beans per litre. About 99% of the world's vanilla extract is an imitation not derived from the vanilla plant itself.

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In some parts of the world, you simply can not buy pure extracts because alcohol is not available. Even though rose flavor is so popular in the Middle East, you will not find rose extract, or any extract in stores of any kind. Alcohol is not sold and vanilla extract is not available at stores They just aren't available here.

Artificial extracts on the market do not contain alcohol or real vanilla or ingredients they are sold as - and in my experience, do not have the same pure flavors I desire in my baking. They taste artificial and fall short of capturing all of the beautiful, subtle floral and woodsy overtones produced by the components in actual vanilla. So, I made my own! I decided to create my own rose and lavender vanilla extracts as they would make the perfect gift. Beautiful, simple, thoughtful.

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How to make extracts:

Natural vanilla extract is created by splitting vanilla pods and soaking the beans in an ethanol/water solution to extract its flavour components. All you’re doing is pouring alcohol over split vanilla beans and rose buds and lavender, tightly close the jar you're infusing it in and and allow content to macerate for about several weeks or longer while shaking periodically (every 3-5 days). and letting the extract age over time.

The only difficult part of this process is waiting for the process of infusion. It's best to let your extract sit for up to six months before using it. The longer it ages, the better. Homemade vanilla, rose and lavender extract tastes better and infuses better as it ages.  You can continuously add more alcohol to the bottle as you use it up.

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  1. Vanilla Beans: Vanilla beans are sold as Grade A or Grade B. For the sake of making an extract, choose whichever fits your budget. Grade A are more expensive and are considered the higher quality choice as they have a higher moisture content, and grade B actually used for extraction and pastes. I am unable to determine if my beans are grade A or B when I buy them in the souk. Vanilla is the second most expensive spice in the world, and making your own extracts is the most cost effective way to enjoy them. You can find them in your grocery store or online.
  2. 80 proof Alcohol: Vanilla extract is most commonly made from plain, unflavored vodka. No need to use expensive brands. You can also use bourbon, brandy and rum


  1. Air tight bottles with a seal: Keep your infusions fresh. The recommended way to store a homemade extract is to use an airtight container that's been sterilized. I love to use small gold doppler bottles for gifting. These bottles also come with a small funnel. These small 8 oz swing tops are also a popular option.
  2. Funnel: A small funnel will help you keep things tidy when you're pouring your vodka into such small bottles.
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Rose and Lavender Vanilla Extract

5 from 2 votes
Instantly enhance any recipe in seconds with this rose and lavender vanilla extract recipe. This simple recipe combines just simple ingredients with a little bit of time for a remarkable flavor boost when you're baking with edible flowers.
Print Recipe
Prep Time:5 minutes
Total Time:5 minutes


  • 5 –6 vanilla beans ½ ounce or 15g total
  • 1 tablespoon 28 grams organic dried rose petal or 1 tablespoon (28 grams) organic dried lavender
  • 1 cup 8 ounces; 240ml 80 proof vodka


  • Slice the vanilla beans directly in the middle and open so the beans are exposed. If the length of the vanilla beans is too tall, simply cut them in half. Place beans into bottle or jar.
  • Add in your dried rose buds or dried lavender, depending on which extract you're making.

  • Using a small funnel, pour vodka on top so the beans are fully submerged. Shake a few times.


Store vanilla at room temperature out of direct sunlight. Shake about once per week or once every couple weeks. Vanilla can be ready to use in as little as 6 weeks, but is best whe infused for at least 6 months.
As you begin to use your vanilla, you can refill with a little vodka.
Strain vanilla bean after one year if you plan to continue to use it. At this point, it will not expire - but it is ot recommended to keep topping it off.


Serving: 1g | Calories: 19kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Sodium: 1mg | Sugar: 1g
Course: Edible flowers
Keyword: lavender extract, real extract, rose extract, vanilla extract
Servings: 1 8 oz bottle
Calories: 19kcal
Author: All recipes by Sarah Buckley

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