Use stale vanilla beans?

“A” writes: Quick question: what can I do with stale vanilla beans?

First, are they really stale?

  1. Make Extract — extract grade beans almost never go stale, so there should be no problem using stale beans in vanilla extract.
  2. Make vanilla sugar — chop stale vanilla beans and combine with sugar to make vanilla sugar.
  3. Make ground vanilla — pulverize stale vanilla beans in a coffee grinder to make vanilla powder.

Related
Frequently asked vanilla questions.
Vanilla information.
Vanilla extract tutorial and recipe.

1 comment

  1. I’m assuming the “stale bean” still has the fragrance of vanilla, but is merely dried out. If this is the case, you can also put the vanilla bean into your homemade vanilla extract and wait for a day or so and the bean will plump up again. If the bean is pliable and does not look it is saturated with liquid, use it like you would a fresh vanilla bean. If the bean has been plumped up and feels saturated with liquid, cut the top off and squeeze the seeds out for your vanilla recipe. You can then put the bean back into your extract to get the most flavor out of it or dry it and then use it for vanilla sugar.

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