Homemade Lavender Extract

06/01/2011 by Lara • 16 Comments Pin It

Recipe: Beyond A Garden's How to make lavender extract
Total time: 8 days
Ease: easy
Unusual ingredients: lavender buds, vodka

June will be the month of tea-inspired recipe posts!

Homemade lavender extract came about from a trip to Cape Cod where my in laws live. They live very close to Atlantic Spice where we pick up all of our super fresh spices and herbs, and we stopped on the way to pick up an assortment of items. I had seen a number of recipes that included lavender, and wanted to try to make my own extract! Little did I know that I would also be going home with an assortment of mason jars, thanks to my awesome mother in law.

Making the lavender extract is super easy – it just takes a shake once a day for a few days. Before, and after:

It’s quite strong, and is easily smelled and tasted in every recipe we’ve tried it on so far. A little bit definitely goes a long way, and we ended up with quite a bit from the recipe – we will be using this extract for a looooong time!

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  1. Margie says:

    I love the fragrance of lavender, but I really have no idea how to use it in cooking. What are the most common uses for lavender as a flavor in cooking?

    • Lara says:

      I’ve been using it as a replacement for other extracts (almond extract, vanilla extract, etc.). It adds a very nice floral flavor to whatever you’re baking!

  2. Charlotte says:

    Thanks! I’m gonna give this a go this weekend so I can make some lovely and yummy lavender things :-)

  3. I have been growing and selling lavender for 12 years now. I have to admit, at first I made lavender margarittas, ice cream, and cookies using an infusion method. BUT this only works when the lavender is fresh. Since I have over 6000 plants to take care of, I don’t have time to bake during the peak season which is June/July/August. So, making the extract was a no brainer. It is a clean way to cook with lavender and it is consistantly wonderful. I will be making some to sell on our website and it should be available by August 2011. Look for it if you don’t want to do this yourself. Also, if you use potato vodka (available in liquor stores and it is 100 proof) you can make ice cream that is gluten free for those who suffer from celilac. But it is so simple. Take 100 fresh stems. Cut the heads off. Place in a jar (at least a gallon glass jar) pour 2 cups of 100 proof vodka over the buds. This will kill anything on or in it. Plus it keeps bacteria from growing. Shake jar daily for 8 days. Keep jar in a dark cupboard. Then strain out heads. Using a coffee filter, strain again. Place in sterilized jars (same process you use to make jam) Label, date and enjoy. Use at a rate of 1 tsp. If you need more, use more but I use it like vanilla. I make lavender cookies, shortbread, coffee cake, lattes, mochas, margarittas, ice cream, cheese cakes and more just with the extract.

    • Holly Z says:

      I just bought some fresh lavender from the farmers market. Peggy thank you for this tip on how to make the extract, very helpful!
      All the best!

    • Lee Cope says:

      Thank you for the wonderful recipe and tips…I have been growing my own lavender for over 20 years and am just in the past few years discovering its culinary delights…I have been wanting lavender extract for homemade ices, ice cream and gelato, which idea struck me on an extremely hot summer day in NYC at a heavenly gelato shop which sold rose petal gelato…mmmm, close your eyes and heaven. I am also adding the lavender to teas…along with rose and marigold petals, a delightful summer reminder on a cold winter day!

  4. Jill says:

    Why is it necessary to use 100 proof alcohol? Is there something else that can be used instead this?

  5. Skye says:

    I used Smirnoff Vodka. Works just fine.
    Use a Vodka that has the mildest taste. You want the Lavender flavour to come through, not the Vodka.

  6. Carol Voigts says:

    I use Everclear alcohol, stronger and purer that vodka for all my extracts and liqueur making. Works perfectly.

  7. You can use a 80 proof vodka if you can’t find Everclear. I have used both and don’t really see the difference. We cannot purchase Everclear here in Idaho. So I use what I can get. Thanks for your comments. where to purchase extract, annieslavender.com

  8. Fija says:

    I’d like to try this. What are the proportions?

  9. […] the fake additives or crunchy lavender bits. You can make your own lavender extract by using this Homemade Lavender Extract tutorial from Semi Sweetie, or you can purchase it online on retailers like Amazon or at your local […]

  10. […] Two warnings, be picky about your tea. Just like dried spices, the longer tea has been sitting around, the less flavor it will have. And if you have time, try making your own Lavender extract or you will end up paying through the nose for it! Here is a recipe I found: Lavender Extract […]

  11. Lauren says:

    Is there a way to turn lavender extract into a simple syrup?

    • Susanne says:

      lavender simple syrup
      2 c water
      2 c sugar
      6 rounded tablespoons dried lavender (or 2 loose cups)

      bring water and sugar to boil. add lavender, stir, take off heat and cover pot with lid. steep 15 minutes, then strain. refrigerate when cool enough and keep refrigerated and it will last a long while. Light pink color and delish in iced tea.

  12. courtney says:

    Hey there making some of this extract..using dried buds from Atlantic spice..how many cups of the dried per cup of vodka..thanks..:)

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