How to Make Vanilla Sugar

Homemade Vanilla Sugar is ridiculously easy to make and can be very economical. Give those costly vanilla beans a second life. You only need the empty pods for this recipe.

a jar filled with sugar and vanilla beans.

Vanilla beans are expensive!

If you buy good vanilla beans the pod itself has plenty of vanilla fragrance and can be used to make vanilla sugar. You don’t need to use the precious seeds to make this recipe.

This is a very hands-off process. Simply keep a separate jar of sugar in your panty. Every time you use a vanilla bean for the seeds, nestle the empty pod into the jar with the sugar.

The spent pods will beautifully perfume the sugar over time.


ingredients for vanilla sugar in glass bowls.

How to make it

layering sugar and vanilla beans in a glass jar.
  • After you use the seeds from a vanilla bean in a recipe, save the spent pod to make vanilla sugar.
  • Pour granulated sugar into a container with tight fitting lid.
  • Nestle vanilla pods into the sugar.
  • Tightly close the jar and set aside for 1-2 weeks to develop the flavor.
  • As you use the sugar add more to the jar. Any time you use another vanilla bean for the seeds, add the spent pod to the jar.
Can I use vanilla beans with seeds to make Vanilla Sugar?

Yes. Scrape the seeds from the pod and whisk them into the sugar. Use your fingers to break up any clumps of seeds. Add the pod too.

How long does vanilla sugar last?

Indefinitely. As you use the sugar add more to the jar. Any time you use another vanilla bean for the seeds, add the spent pod to the jar.

Can I make vanilla confectioner’s sugar?

Yes, use the same process but first allow the pods to air dry. If the pods are very moist they can become sticky in the sugar and make clumps.

How do I make a quick vanilla sugar?

Scrape the seeds from a fresh bean and whisk it into the sugar. Break up any clumps with your fingers. The flavor from the seeds will permeate the sugar more quickly then just the pod.

How do I use Vanilla Sugar?

  • Use Vanilla Sugar to sweeten your coffee, tea or hot chocolate.
  • Substitute the granulated sugar listed in a recipe with vanilla sugar. This works best in recipes where vanilla is the main flavoring. See some suggestions below.
  • Make a simple syrup with vanilla sugar to flavor your cocktails or sprinkle on cake layers.
  • Pack some into a cute jar to give as a hostess gift.

Recipes that use Vanilla Sugar

a JAR filled with sugar and vanilla beans.
a JAR filled with sugar and vanilla beans.
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Vanilla Sugar

Save your vanilla pods to make this versatile recipe. Use vanilla sugar in your coffee or bake with it.
Prep Time5 minutes
Total Time5 minutes
48 servings
Save Recipe


  • 24 oz granulated sugar (3 cups)
  • 3 vanilla bean pods (with or without seeds)


  • Pour 24 oz granulated sugar into a jar or container with a tight fitting lid. Bury 3 vanilla bean pods into the sugar and close the container.
  • Each time you use a vanilla bean, add the spent pod to the jar of sugar. As you use the sugar add new sugar to the jar.

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The amounts listed in the recipe for the sugar and vanilla pods are just a guideline. You can start making vanilla sugar as soon as you have 1 spent vanilla pod. Select a container, fill it with sugar and add the pod. Add more pods as you use them.


Calories: 55kcal | Carbohydrates: 14g | Fat: 0.05g | Sodium: 0.1mg | Potassium: 0.3mg | Sugar: 14g | Calcium: 0.1mg | Iron: 0.01mg
Have you tried this recipe?Mention @eileen.bakingsense or tag #bakingsense!

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