What is Vanilla Bean Paste & How Do I Make it?
Here's a quick video that explains how to make vanilla bean paste, and more detailed information, including the recipe, can be found below the video. This video clip is a short sample of one of our extract-making live, interactive workshops that you can register for on our Eventbrite page. You can also join our private Facebook group with 100,000+ members for 24/7 answers to all of your vanilla bean and extract making questions from our vanilla pros around the world. 
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  So why is vanilla paste so popular?

It’s stronger and more flavorful than vanilla extract. If you're in a hurry, it’s quicker to use than scraping out a vanilla bean, AND you are using the entire bean. Not just the seeds!  If you are baking something sweet and you want that vanilla flavor to really stand out, the paste is a nice option. It can last at least 2-3 years. Keep it in an air tight jar away from direct heat and sunlight.  I’ve read in several forums that If you keep it in the refrigerator, the vanilla may separate and will not last as long, as well as condensation may form and ruin your paste. Although, if you live in a humid climate the shelf life may be shortened. So, you decide which will work best for you!:)

The vanilla bean paste you’ll find in the stores are notoriously heavy with corn syrup.  If that’s ok, there are a ton of recipes out there to choose from. I wanted something a little cleaner than the store bought versions. This recipe has no corn syrup or white sugar.  

Add it to some yummy cream cheese frosting, Bavarian cream, or homemade vanilla ice cream. I’m sure you will notice the difference!

This recipe makes roughly 1 & 1/2 cups of vanilla bean paste


  • 5oz of grade A vanilla beans. Any origin will do. (5oz can be anywhere from 30 beans to 40 or even 50 beans depending on bean size, so knowing the weight is very important.)
    • (You can use vanilla beans that have already been extracted as well. Remove them from the extract and lay them out on a paper towel or dish towel overnight to dry. Then weigh them for use here.)
  • 6 Tbsp VanillaPura extract
  • 1 2/3 cups of organic raw agave nectar ( you could try vegetable glycerin for sugar free option)


  1. Place all the ingredients in a food processor and puree until smooth (you can chop up the vanilla beans if you want to save some time). Try to have minimal vanilla "lumps." 
  2. Place a fine mesh strainer over a glass jar and pour the blended slurry into the strainer. Using a spoon, press the pulp into the strainer, so a clean, filtered paste falls into the jar. 
  3. Continue adding and pressing the pulp until it is no longer dripping into the jar. Your vanilla bean paste is now ready for use! Store the paste in an air-tight container in a cool, dark place. Do not store in a refrigerator. Shelf life is usually 1 year. 

We'd love to hear about your creative uses for vanilla bean paste. Share them with us so we can share them with our global VanillaPura family!

Visit our comprehensive extract-making guide center for more essential extract making tips and ongoing education. 


Jill Fulton


How long does vanilla bean paste need to be stored before using?

Also can you used Tahitian beans for paste?

— Patricia Boling

When making the vanilla bean paste how many small jars can you get out of 50 vanilla beans?

— Patricia Boling

Could you add vodka to the dried pulp to make a sweet extract?

— Jean Crocker

Hi Sherrie, We do not recommend adding the pulp to your mother jar because you would also be adding the agave.
Happy extracting!

— VanillaPura Pro

Can you add the PULP from vanilla paste into your mother jar?

— Sherrie Kleefeld

Can you use anything else besides agave?

— Susan Hoffman

What do I do with the pulp after I strain the bean paste? Thank you

— Estella Markisen

Thanks for Sharing but I have another question can I use the beans that I put in my Vanilla extract or use fresh beans. Thank you so much.

— Carol Tillery

Thank you ladies for sharing this information. I too just want to make a small jelly jar of the v.b. Paste for myself so I would need to know-how many beans to process. If It turns out well, I may make some for friends and nowgwhere do 8 purchase the beans from and what beans do you suggest using? Madagascar? Or something else. Thank you in advance for helping me. 8 have never made paste or extract in my life so I feel now is a good time to start. I moved to Cleemont, Fl. From S.E. Michigan several years back but still don’t know my way around a lot of the areas. I’ll get there though. Barbar.a

— BArbara KEnyon

S I’m pm psi many good questions. I need an answer how much vanilla paste does this recipe make? Also the “leftovers”….. what an you do with the pulp after straining. I know there is still great flavor in that strainer.

— Virginia

Hello to you both,
Just wish that you would of shown the bean when it was cut. I feel there’s way to much product in the middle of the island & you can’t really see anything to well. The camera is far away I think. Could you please bring the camera closer to you so we can see everything please. My eyes aren’t as young as the used to be.
Thank you,

— Maureen

This looks great. I have used the store-bought paste in my ice cream. This recipe looks like it makes a lot. I didn’t want to make too large of a batch if it only lasts 2-3 years. Can I make it with just 2oz of beans and cut down the recipe?

— Patti

This is great info! Thank for sharing!

— Kelly Shaver

Hi Sandy!

Here is a link to our recipe. :) https://www.vanillapura.com/blogs/recipes/vanilla-bean-caramel-blondies?pos=1&_sid=2eaf689a1&ss=r

— VanillaPura

Can’t find recipe for vanilla bean caramel blondies

— Sandy Harrow

The leftover sludge that you baked low & slow in the oven… The final result looks similar to Muscovado sugar…

— Linda Anderson

I started my mother jar 9 months ago it is so amazing. Glad to know of other uses for the beans in my vanilla.
Happy to find this group.

— LaWanda Box

I want to add it to my instant pot cold start yogurt!

— Nancy

I want to add it to my instant pot cold start yogurt!

— Nancy

I am curious as why you would require vanilla extract to make vanilla paste when you are using such a rich source of beans as the main ingredient? What purpose does the extract serve?

Thank you

— ModernChaf

Can you substitute the agave for raw honey?

— Lori

Hi Janet, It depends on the individual harvest, but on average, there are 6-8 beans per ounce. I went ahead and added this to the recipe post, so it’s not confusing to others as well. :) Good luck making your vanilla bean paste!


Hi Brandie, I love your question about using your beans from a mother jar to make vanilla bean paste. I’ve never tried it! This would be a great test and a more affordable solution to making vanilla bean paste. Our group would love to hear about your results! You can find the group on FaceBook, “Making Vanilla Extract by Vanillapura”. I have however, used beans from my mother jar to make vanilla bean powder. It’s easy to make and a nice way to use grade B or older beans like those in a mother jar:). Good luck on your Vanilla adventures!

— Jill

According to Red Mill, “Vanilla sugar is actually a pretty simple one, in that it should theoretically never go “bad.” Neither sugar nor vanilla contains any ingredients that will go rancid or bad, in a traditional sense, so if nothing else creeps into your storage container then you should be safe to eat vanilla sugar forever! However, sugar can harden and vanilla beans can lose their flavor after about two years, so we would advise whipping up a new batch at that point.” In my experience, keep it in an air tight container, and it lasts about 3-6 months. We just use it up too quickly to know if it lasts any longer:). Good luck in your vanilla sugar making!

— Jill

Hi Laurie, great question! You can use it right away, but I would suggest waiting 2 weeks for best results:)

— Jill

How many ounces is 30 Madagasgar beans? Looking forward in making Vanilla Bean Paste.

— Janet WALSH

Can you use use vanilla beans from a mother jar of extract or do they need to be fresh beans?

— Brandie

Haw long does it keep?

— PM

How long does it have to sit before use?

— Laurie Caldwell