Simple Homemade Orange Extract

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homemade extract in bottle

Making Your Own Orange Extract

Love all things orange or want to add an extra boost of orange flavor to your recipe? A little orange extract is a great way to do this. You can make extract yourself easily with just 2 ingredients.

Use this in your baking recipes, cooking (like orange chicken) or in your favorite cocktails. Use orange extract in place of vanilla extract in recipes that already have orange in them. This would also amp up your orange juice flavors in recipes.

washed fresh oranges

What You Need for Pure Orange Extract:

  • vodka

  • orange peels

placing peels into wide mouth jar

Does Extract Use Zest?

We are using orange peels to make this extract. You don’t want the white under the skin (called pith) on your peels. If you are more comfortable zesting, you can zest.

How Does Homemade Extract Compare to Store Bought?

The amount called for in a recipe, would be the same as if it were store bought making it easy to exchange your natural flavor for the one you get from the store.

pouring vodka over orange peels

What Are The Ingredients for Orange Extract?

There are just 2 ingredients, orange peels and vodka You do you need to use expensive vodka. Vodka is flavorless, so an inexpensive vodka works perfect to extract the flavors of the orange peels.

If you have a grain allergy, check your vodka to ensure it is made from potatoes.

labeling bottles

How Do I Store My Extract?

You can store the extract with the peels and use from there. Because of storage space, I used these cute bottles and labeled them (we have several different extracts) and they are perfect for storage for us.

straining extract into bottle

Can I Use Other Alcohols Besides Vodka?

You can do whatever you want if you want additional flavors in your extract. To just have an orange flavor to the extract, you will want to use a tasteless alcohol, like vodka. But makers choice!

Bottle of extract with an orange and jar of orange peels

How Long Does it Take Before I Can Use the Extract?

For the best flavor, let the extract sit for 4 to 6 weeks. You will want to tip the jar every once in a while. The longer it sits, the flavor will grow. You do not have to worry about the peels going back as they are being preserved in alcohol.

holding bottle of orange extract
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Easy Homemade Orange Extract

Course: Seasoning
Cuisine: American
Author: Regina Sober


  • 5 washed oranges
  • 11 ounces vodka give or take


  • Wash and dry the oranges, removing the stickers.
  • Lightly peel the oranges, only removing the orange skin and not the white pith below (it's bitter).
  • Place in a jar and fill half full.
  • If you don't have enough oranges to fill the jar half full, put in what you have, you can add more later.
  • Push the peels down as far as they can go, you want to cover them in vodka.
  • Fill the jar with vodka (of if you are adding more peels, add vodka to cover the peels you have.
  • Put the lid on the jar and let it sit for 4-6 weeks, Swirling it every few days during that time.
  • After 4-6 weeks, strain the extra and place in a bottle (label the bottle).
  • Use in place of store bought extract, same volume.


YouTube video
Learn to make delicious homemade orange extract! Get steps and answers to add fresh orange flavor to your baking, cooking, and cocktails.

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