Vanilla bean simple syrup is one of the most satisfying syrups to DIY, and it’s fairly quick and easy, too!
This delicious, sweet syrup is perfect in coffee drinks like a vanilla latte or my Starbucks copycat Vanilla Sweet Cream Cold Brew, or even cocktails like this Raspberry Passion Fruit Tequila Sour or a Strawberry Vanilla Daiquiri.
Vanilla is a very versatile flavor and it’s subtle floral flavor complements the earthy, chocolately notes of coffee so well. It’s also a great way to add sweetness and authentic vanilla bean flavor to layer cakes, pancakes or waffles, oatmeal, smoothies, or teas. Try it to sweeten your next cup of Earl Grey or chamomile tea!
A simple, equal parts recipe
Simple syrup is just a mix of equal parts water and sugar. Here we’re using 1 cup of water, 1 cup of sugar, and 1 whole vanilla bean. Vanilla beans are quite expensive, but it’s well worth the genuine flavor. This recipe will yield about 1 and a half cups of vanilla syrup.
Tip: Split the vanilla bean before dropping it into the water and sugar mixture. This will allow the syrup to become more flavorful more quickly.
To make the syrup, combine the water and sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir frequently to help the sugar dissolve. Once fully dissolved, add the split vanilla bean and let the syrup cook for one minute. Next, remove the pan from the heat and allow the liquid to cool fully (about a half hour).
Once fully cooled, remove the vanilla bean and store the finished syrup in a covered container like these cute swing-top bottles. Keep the syrup in the refrigerator. It should last at least two weeks.
Ways to use this vanilla bean syrup
Add one ounce of this simple syrup to your morning coffee or try an ounce in a smoothie with frozen blueberries, unsweetened almond milk, and greens. One ounce adds just the right amount of sweetness for most folks, but you might find that you like a little more or a little less.
A delicious, caffeine-free and kid-friendly way to use vanilla bean syrup is in homemade lemonade. Lemon and vanilla are the perfect flavor pair and vanilla lemonade is an unexpected, sophisticated twist that everyone will love.
Start with equal parts fresh lemon juice and syrup over ice, then add 4-6 parts of water or sparkling water. You can make this for one using the following recipe: 1 oz vanilla bean simple syrup, 1 oz freshly squeezed lemon juice, 4-6 oz club soda. Garnish with lemon wheels and enjoy.
You can also try vanilla bean syrup in place of plain simple syrup in TikTok’s favorite summer drink, Whipped Lemonade!
More syrup recipes to try:
Easy Vanilla Bean Simple Syrup Recipe
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- 1 whole vanilla bean
- Combine the water and sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat.
- Stir frequently until the sugar dissolves. Once dissolved, split the vanilla bean length-wise and add it to the liquid.
- Cook the syrup one minute, then remove from the heat.
- Allow the syrup to cool fully (about 20 minutes) before removing the vanilla bean.
- Store any leftover syrup in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.