I’ve found it interesting that many of you have left comments on the Homemade Vanilla Extract post stating that “vanilla beans are expensive”. Vanilla beans do seem expensive at first glance. I wasn’t prepared for their price when I first looked into making homemade vanilla a few years ago. They do cost a significant amount more than say…pinto beans. :)
Ever checked the price of Real Vanilla Extract at the grocery store though? I’ve found that even the least expensive brands are around $2/ounce. If you buy your own vanilla beans and make your own Homemade Vanilla Extract, it’ll cost you half that amount. Plus it will be completely pure, unlike the “Pure” Vanilla Extract you buy at the store that has added…stuff.
So, are vanilla beans expensive? Not if you are planning to make homemade vanilla for half the price of purchasing it premade! Investing in vanilla beans to make your own Homemade Vanilla Extract will save you money in the long run AND be much healthier for your cooking and baking!
You can buy very cheap vanilla beans through Ebay…but I REALLY don’t recommend it. We’ve made several batches of Homemade Vanilla Extract at our house. One bunch of vanilla beans we ordered (through Ebay) was significantly less expensive than other beans we’d seen. We decided to go for it, since of course, we’d be saving so much money!
Months later, those beans are STILL sitting in the bag, untouched. They came to us very dry and withered and pitiful. We may have “saved money” on vanilla beans, but in essence, we wasted money. The quality of those vanilla beans leaves a lot to be desired.
By contrast, we’ve been so pleased with our vanilla bean purchases through Olive Nation. They offer high quality vanilla beans, excellent customer service, free shipping for vanilla bean purchases AND a special Heavenly Homemakers discount. I appreciate Olive Nation very much and recommend them highly.
The special Heavenly Homemakers discount expired at the end of 2010…and I’m very excited to share that Olive Nation has been generous enough to extend their discount for several more months! If you purchase vanilla beans (or any of Olive Nation’s wonderful products) and use the code home, you’ll receive 10% off your entire order!! (There will be a shipping cost for other products; Vanilla Bean shipping is FREE!)
So, my response to “WOW, vanilla beans are expensive!” would be: Yeah, I used to think so too. But now I realize how much money it saves to buy the beans and how much healthier it is to make my own vanilla.
And did I mention the homemade vanilla is delicious? Yeah, that’s a pretty nice perk too. :)