Save on Pinterest

35 Recipes That Use Vanilla Extract

Who doesn't love vanilla? Put that bottle of vanilla extract to work with these homey vanilla recipes.

1 / 35

Vanilla Meringue Cookies

Want to learn how to make meringues? This meringue cookie is light, airy morsels and the perfect fat-free treat to really beat a sweets craving. —Jenni Sharp, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Get Recipe

2 / 35
Best Vanilla Cake Exps Toham20 245451 E11 13 19b 1

Best Vanilla Cake

There's a reason this vanilla cake recipe is the best. Adding creamy vanilla bean paste into the moist, rich cake batter creates a power-packed vanilla flavor that can't be bought in stores. Try spreading vanilla buttercream frosting on top to finish it off. —Margaret Knoebel, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
3 / 35
Sugar Cream Pie Exps Ghbz18 58705 E08 15 2b 4

Sugar Cream Pie

I absolutely love Indiana sugar cream pie; especially the one that my grandma made for me. Here, we serve it warm or chilled and call it "Hoosier" sugar cream pie. —Laura Kipper, Westfield, Indiana
4 / 35
Very Vanilla Slow-Cooker Cheesecake

Very Vanilla Slow-Cooker Cheesecake

Cinnamon and vanilla give this cheesecake so much flavor, and making it in the slow cooker creates a silky, smooth texture that's hard to resist. —Krista Lanphier, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
5 / 35

Easy Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

After trying a few buttercream frosting recipes, this easy buttercream frosting takes the cake with its unmatchable homemade taste. With a few simple variations, you can come up with different colors and flavors. —Diana Wilson, Denver, Colorado
6 / 35
Rum Vanilla Cranberry Sauce Exps Thca18 188538 D09 22 3b 5

Rum Vanilla Cranberry Sauce

Cranberry sauce is one of my favorite things—this jazzed-up version combines vanilla with rum to create a rich flavorful sauce that's far from the usual! —Ashley Lecker, Green Bay, Wisconsin
7 / 35
Vanilla Glazed Gingerbread Biscuits Exps Tohon19 236597 E06 12 1b 2

Vanilla-Glazed Ginger Scones

Gingerbread is a flavor that works with all sorts of delicious holiday baked goods. To glaze these ginger scones, just dip a fork or spoon into the glaze mixture and then drizzle over the tops. —Colleen Delawder, Herndon, Virginia
8 / 35
Chilean Monkey Tail Punch Exps Tohdj20 242720 B07 31 1b 1

Chilean Monkey Tail Punch

Stories vary surrounding the origins of this punch's unique name. Some say it was initially served in a bottle depicting a monkey with a long tail, but others suggest it was named after a funny incident with a Chilean president in the early 1900s. Whatever the origin, coffee and spirits will make this sweet chilled drink warm you right up this Christmas. It also goes by "cola de mono." —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
9 / 35

Poached Pears with Vanilla Sauce

This dessert is a great ending to a special-occasion meal. Whole pears are lightly spiced and chilled, then served with a heavenly custard sauce.—Al Latimer, Bentonville, Arizona
10 / 35

Vanilla Citrus Cider

My mom used to make cider for the holidays, so I based my citrus-vanilla variation on her recipe. I think it hits the spot! The longer the cider simmers, the stronger the flavors will be.—Kristin Weglarz, Bremerton, Washington
11 / 35

Vanilla Cheesecake

To me, there is nothing better than a simple, elegant cheesecake where the vanilla takes center stage. And when I'm feeling decadent, I'll add the rich chocolate ganache topping. —Ellen Riley, Murfreesboro, Tennessee
12 / 35

Mini Chocolate Chip Sandwich Cookies

I love baking cookies to give as gifts to my family and friends. I created this recipe for my annual holiday cookie platter and it received rave reviews from both children and adults. If the buttercream doesn't come together after all of the butter has been incorporated, add some shortening one tablespoon at a time until the mixture starts to transform. —Julie Thomas, Saukville, Wisconsin
13 / 35
Best Ever Bread Pudding Exps Thn17 205266 D03 22 6b 5

Best Ever Bread Pudding

The secret to incredible bread pudding with a soft middle and crisp edges starts with leftover dinner rolls. I picked up the rich brown sugar sauce recipe from my friend Kathryn Gartmann. A big drizzle of it takes this dessert over the top and really makes it the best bread pudding ever. —Maria Petrella, Taste of Home Prep Cook
14 / 35

Vanilla & Cinnamon-Kissed Apple Latkes

Latkes are crispy fried pancakes, often made with potatoes. But this sweet version with apples, orange juice, cinnamon and vanilla falls in the dessert realm. —Candy McMenamin, Lexington, South Carolina
15 / 35

Hoka Cheesecake

The Hoka Cheesecake, named for a beloved local theater, is pretty addicting. It's one of the first recipes I learned when I moved here. For a finishing touch, I sprinkle a few crust crumbs on top. —Beth Ziegenhorn, Oxford, Mississippi
16 / 35

Berries with Vanilla Custard

What a simple, delectable way to enjoy fresh raspberries. For a change, also try the custard with strawberries or peaches. —Sarah C. Vasques, Milford, New Hampshire
17 / 35

Vanilla Bean Angel Food Cake

Angel food cake is everyone’s favorite blank slate for making awesome desserts. Serve it with a simple glaze or pile on fresh fruit, chocolate sauce or nutty sprinkles. —Leah Rekau, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
18 / 35

Vanilla Crescents

These cookies are especially cozy at Christmastime, but are wonderful all year long. Try them dipped into hot tea or coffee.—Cara McDonald, Winter Park, Colorado
19 / 35
Potluck Candied Sweet Potatoes

Potluck Candied Sweet Potatoes

To make it easier to bring this traditional southern staple to a potluck or gathering, I updated it so that it can be cooked in a slow cooker. It's hard to go wrong with candied sweet potatoes when it comes to pleasing a crowd. —Deirdre Dee Cox, Kansas City, Missouri
20 / 35

Pear-Stuffed French Vanilla Toast

My handyman, who is originally from Nicaragua, shared this classic breakfast dish his mother use to prepare. He says he makes it frequently for his children and they clean their plates! —Gail Borczyk, Boca Raton, Florida
21 / 35

Frozen Greek Vanilla Yogurt

It's simple and easy to make your own frozen Greek yogurt—you might even want to get the kids in on the fun. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen, Greendale, Wisconsin
22 / 35
Pina Colada Zucchini Bread Exps Ugfbmz17 42315 C04 28 5b 1

Pina Colada Zucchini Bread

At my husband's urging, I entered this recipe at the Pennsylvania Farm Show and won first place! I think you'll love the cakelike texture and tropical flavors. —Sharon Rydbom, Tipton, Pennsylvania
23 / 35
Vanilla Frosting Exps Diyd19 22592 B03 15 1b Rms 3

Vanilla Frosting

Don't know how to make icing for cake but don't want to settle for store-bought frosting? This four-ingredient easy vanilla frosting recipe is the perfect topper for your cakey creations. The homemade taste just can't be beat. —Mary Faulk, Cambridge, Wisconsin
24 / 35

Creamy Caramels

I discovered this caramel recipe in a local newspaper years ago and have made these soft buttery caramels ever since. I make them for Christmas, picnics and charity auctions—and they are so much better than store-bought caramels. Once people have a taste, they ask for the recipe. —Marcie Wolfe, Williamsburg, Virginia
25 / 35

Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream

We don't want to brag, but as far as vanilla ice cream recipes go, this one is the best. And with only four ingredients, it just might be the easiest, too. No ice cream maker? No problem. Just follow the directions below to learn how to make homemade ice cream by hand. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
26 / 35

Cream Wafers

My sons used to help me make these cookies, and now my oldest granddaughter helps. When the smaller grandchildren are home, they help, too. The cute little sandwich cookies are tender, buttery and melt-in-your-mouth good! —Linda Clinkenbeard, Vincennes, Indiana
27 / 35

Creamy Butterscotch Pudding for 2

One day when I had a craving for something homemade, I tried from-scratch pudding. It’s much better than the store-bought kind! —EMR, tasteofhome.com
28 / 35

Vegan Vanilla Cupcakes

We love using this simple vegan vanilla cupcake recipe as a base to layer on extra flavor. Stir in grated orange zest and chopped pecans, vegan chocolate chips and cinnamon, or your own favorite mix-ins. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
29 / 35

Skillet Cinnamon Rolls

I love using cast iron to get a nice crust on these skillet cinnamon rolls! The pan also makes an impressive serving dish on the table without it looking as if you tried too hard. —Danielle Williams, Newport, Rhode Island
30 / 35

Vanilla Almond Hot Cocoa

Treat your family to this comforting, homemade cocoa as you decorate the tree or open holiday gifts. Vanilla and almond extracts make it taste even more special. —Vicki Holloway, Joelton, Tennessee
31 / 35
Glazed Apple Maple Blondies Exps177812 Th143193d04 10 1bc Rms 7

Glazed Apple-Maple Blondies

My 6-year-old son and I conjured up this recipe to use up the last of the apples we picked from the local apple orchard. Serve it with a dollop of sweetened whipped cream. —Heather Bates, Athens, Maine
32 / 35
Exps31716 Fm153592b03 24 6b 1

Blueberry Quick Bread with Vanilla Sauce

This loaf is chock-full of blueberries—two whole cups! When you pour the vanilla sauce over the bread, it makes it moist--almost like a pudding. I suggest serving a robust cup of coffee with this delicious treat. —Sue Davis, Wausau, Wisconsin
33 / 35
Sweetened Whipped Cream

Sweetened Whipped Cream

Whipped cream recipes don't have to be hard. This one can even be made ahead. Slightly underwhip the cream, then cover and refrigerate for several hours. Beat briefly just before using.
34 / 35
Vanilla Wafer Cookies Exps7138 Ch2661980b02 02 4b Rms 5

Vanilla Wafer Cookies

These buttery cookies bake up chewy and crispy at the same time. Sprinkle these vanilla wafers with colored sugar or leave them as-is. Their simplicity is beauty enough! —Edith MacBeath, Gaines, Pennsylvania
35 / 35
Blue Ribbon Butter Cake Exps Ghbz18 37065 B08 15 1b 12

Blue-Ribbon Butter Cake

I found this buttercake recipe in an old cookbook I bought at a garage sale and couldn’t wait to try it. I knew it had been someone’s favorite because of the well-worn page. —Joan Gertz, Palmetto, Florida

Caroline Stanko
As an Associate Digital Editor, Caroline writes and edits all things food-related and helps produce videos for Taste of Home. When she’s not at her desk, you can probably find Caroline cooking up a feast, planning her next trip abroad or daydreaming about her golden retriever, Mac.