Is Vanilla Extract Flammable? Will it catch fire?

Vanilla extract is popular for ice cream, baked goods, and other desserts. It’s made by steeping vanilla beans in alcohol like vodka. In this article, I will answer the question: is vanilla extract flammable?

Vanilla extract is flammable. It has a flashpoint of 178°F (81°C) (the temperature at which the liquid will burst into flame). If the liquid is heated above this temperature, it could ignite and burn. However, once the flames are out, the vanilla will not continue burning on its own accord. Because of this, the vanilla extract should not be stored in a cupboard above the stove.

In addition, its high alcohol content makes it highly combustible. The alcohol in vanilla extract makes it flammable, which means it can be ignited and burned. Do not use vanilla extract to substitute for fuel or other combustible liquids.

Is Vanilla Extract Flammable

Is Vanilla Extract Flammable

Vanilla extract is flammable. The alcohol content of the vanilla extract is what makes it flammable. Because of this, it has a very low flash point (the lowest temperature at which something will ignite). If you were to light up a match or lighter close enough to some vanilla extract, it would catch fire quickly once it reached its flashpoint.

The chemical reactions during the extraction process make the vanilla extract highly flammable. However, note that the amount of alcohol in vanilla extract is so minimal (less than 1%) that it doesn’t produce enough vapors to ignite.

Because of this, it’s important to keep your vanilla extract away from any light or heat sources so that it doesn’t accidentally ignite while you’re cooking with it.

Why Is Vanilla Extract Flammable?

Vanilla extract contains alcohol. Alcohol, as a flammable substance, can be vaporized into a gas. The alcohol in vanilla extract evaporates when you heat it, and the vaporized alcohol can then ignite, leaving behind other compounds that can catch fire if exposed to an open flame or spark.

Vanilla extract is flammable for a few different reasons:

First, it’s a strong alcohol solution. Alcohol-based extracts are highly flammable, so you should never use an open flame near them.

Second, the natural vanillin in vanilla will combust when exposed to heat or flame. It means that if you’re cooking with vanilla extract, you must always keep any flames away from it.

And third, the alcohol in vanilla extract makes it especially combustible, even more so than other types of alcohol (like rubbing alcohol).

Is Pure Vanilla Extract Flammable

Pure vanilla extract is the dried seeds of the vanilla plant, with alcohol added to preserve the extract. It has a flashpoint of 113°F (45°C), which means it will ignite and burn at this temperature or lower. So, leaving your bottle of pure vanilla extract sitting out in the sun could catch fire and start burning.

Additionally, the pure vanilla extract should be stored in a cool place, away from direct sunlight or any open flame, heat sources, or ignition source.

Also, you can store pure vanilla extract in a cool, dark place like a pantry or cupboard.

Does Vanilla Extract Go Bad

The shelf life of vanilla extract depends on the brand you buy. Pure vanilla extract’s shelf life is about three years. Vanilla extract is typically made with alcohol; it can last longer.

However, if you don’t keep the bottle sealed tightly, the alcohol will evaporate and leave behind just a bunch of flavors that may or may not taste like vanilla extract anymore.

Store your bottle in a cool, dark, and dry place at room temperature and keep the cap tightly closed; it could last for years.

Is There Alcohol in Vanilla Extract?

Is There Alcohol in Vanilla Extract

Vanilla extract is made with a small amount of alcohol and water, and it’s common for the bottle to add a few drops of vodka. The ratio depends on the brand you’re buying, but most commercial brands will have between 35% and 50% ethanol by volume (the rest is water).

The purpose of using alcohol in vanilla extract is to help preserve it. Without this preservation method, you’d need to keep your extract in the fridge or freezer at all times, which would be less than ideal if you were using vanilla to make whipped cream or ice cream.

How much alcohol is in vanilla extract

Vanilla extract is a liquid made from soaking vanilla beans in alcohol. Alcohol is usually a mixture of ethyl alcohol and water, the most popular form of vanilla flavoring.

A typical bottle of commercial vanilla extract contains about 35 percent alcohol by volume. However, some brands contain less than 20 percent alcohol, while others may have more than 60 percent alcohol, depending on the brand.

How to Extinguish Vanilla Extract Fire?

Vanilla extract fires are one of the most common kitchen fires that occur.

Here’s what you should do if your bottle of vanilla starts burning:

1. If possible, turn off the heat source or remove the pan from the burner entirely before attempting anything else. If this isn’t possible due to where the fire started

2. Use a fire extinguisher. If you have one nearby, use it immediately.

3. If you do not have a fire extinguisher, consider baking soda, sprinkle it over the flames, and follow up with water from a spray bottle.

4. If you are using a water bottle, point it at the base of the flames and squeeze until they go out.

How Long Does Vanilla Extract Last

The shelf life of the vanilla extract depends on the quality of the vanilla extract you buy. The higher quality it is, the longer it will last. Higher-quality extracts are often made with real vanilla beans instead of artificial flavors or essences, so their flavor is more intense than lower-quality extracts.

Pure vanilla extract has about two years of shelf life, while imitation vanilla extract is good for about one year. Vanilla extract is significantly shorter than before opening. After opening your bottle, use it within three months for the best results. Vanilla extract can last for up to two years when stored properly.

And if you’re using a glass bottle for your vanilla extract, make sure it’s tightly sealed to prevent moisture from getting inside and ruining the flavor of your liquid.

Furthermore, don’t expose your bottle of vanilla extract to light or heat; it can break down the chemicals that give it its flavor over time.

The temperature you store your vanilla extract also affects its shelf life. Keep it in a cool, dark place away from direct heat or sunlight; it should last for at least two years.

Can You Get Drunk Off Vanilla Extract?

Can You Get Drunk Off Vanilla Extract

You can get drunk off vanilla extract. If you drink an excess of it, it will affect your body like drinking beer or wine, you’ll feel relaxed and happy, but you could also experience nausea if you have too much. The concentration of alcohol in vanilla extract depends on which brand you buy; some have more than others.

You can get drunk off vanilla extract if you’re using a brand with at least 25% alcohol content.

And don’t forget that just because something has alcohol doesn’t mean you’ll get drunk; you have to drink enough for significant amounts of alcohol in your system.

It is not guaranteed that you’ll get drunk; your body will process the alcohol differently depending on your age, size, and metabolism.

Fire Hazard of Vanilla Extracts

These fires are typically caused by the spontaneous combustion of ethanol-based solutions and vapors produced during extraction.

In other words, these extracts have an inherent risk of igniting on their own if they’re heated too quickly or exposed to too much light or heat.

Fires involving alcohol can spread because they are difficult to extinguish with water alone.

Vanilla extracts should be stored away from heat sources such as stoves and ovens because they may ignite when exposed to direct heat above 130 degrees Fahrenheit (54 degrees Celsius).

Do not light a match near your carpeting if you spill pure vanilla extract on your carpeting. Use a damp cloth to wipe up the spilled liquid until it disappears completely, then use another cloth dipped in baking soda to neutralize any remaining odors caused by burning alcohol fumes emitting from the spot.

How to Handle Extract Spills and Leaks?

It is important to note that any time you spill or leak an extract, the immediate focus should be on containing the spill so that it doesn’t spread or get into places you don’t want it to go.

If you have a large amount of extract in your kitchen, it is also a good idea to wear protective clothing like an apron or rubber gloves before handling the spill.

Here are some tips:

1. Use an absorbent material like paper towels or napkins to wipe up the excess liquid from the floor or countertop. Then, mop over the area with water to ensure all residue has been removed before leaving for the day. You can also use a damp cloth if there is not much liquid. 

2. Next, use fresh paper towels or napkins to clean off any residue from your hands.

3. If there is still excess liquid on your countertop after using paper towels/napkins, you may need to rinse off your countertop with water and then dry it thoroughly with another set of paper towels/napkins.

Preventing Vanilla Extract from Catching Fire

Preventing Vanilla Extract from Catching Fire

Vanilla extract is a staple ingredient in many kitchens, but keeping the extract from catching fire is not always easy.

Here are some tips for preventing vanilla extract from catching fire:

1. Don’t store your vanilla extract in a container made of aluminum or glass; these materials are highly flammable and can cause the fire to spread quickly.

2. Keep your bottle at room temperature; storing it in the refrigerator or freezer can cause condensation outside the bottle, increasing the risk of spillage and leading to ignition.

3. If you notice any spills around your bottle of vanilla extract, clean up as soon as possible with water only, no soap.

4. Never leave the bottle unattended while cooking or baking.

Does Heating Causes Evaporation of Vanilla Extract?

The main component in vanilla extract is alcohol, so when you heat the vanilla extract, the alcohol evaporates first. That’s what causes it to lose its flavor and smell.

Heating vanilla extract causes evaporation of the product. The vanilla itself is made up of vanillin, a compound with a low boiling point. It means that when it’s heated, it can evaporate easily. Don’t heat it to keep your extract from losing its flavor.

Pure Vanilla vs Vanilla Extract: which is more flammable?

Pure vanilla extract is highly flammable, releasing explosive fumes when mixed with air and exposed to an ignition source.

It also has a flashpoint of just 80 degrees Fahrenheit (25 degrees Celsius), so it can easily ignite if you drop it on the kitchen countertop or try to light a cigarette near an open flame. 

The main ingredient in pure vanilla extract is alcohol, typically ethanol or ethyl alcohol. The second most important ingredient is water, which helps dissolve the other ingredients into a solution.

Other ingredients include glycerin, sugar, and natural vanillin, which gives the extract its distinctive flavor and aroma. Pure vanilla extract isn’t fermented like wine but undergoes an extraction process similar to coffee or tea.

Vanilla extract has many uses, but it’s mainly used as an ingredient in desserts such as ice cream and cookies. It’s also used in baked goods such as cakes, bread, pastries, puddings, and custards. 

Health Hazard of Vanilla Extracts

Health Hazard of Vanilla Extracts

Vanilla extract contains ethyl alcohol, which can be dangerous if ingested in large quantities. Although vanilla extracts are generally safe when used as directed by manufacturers, they contain alcohol (ethanol) and other chemicals that may cause adverse health effects if consumed in large quantities or over long periods.

Possible health Hazard of Vanilla Extracts include:

1. Burns: Vanilla can cause severe burns when it comes into contact with the skin for even a short time. In some cases, burns require hospitalization for treatment.

2. Allergic reactions: Some people may experience allergic reactions after exposure to vanilla extracts or imitation vanillas, especially if they have been exposed to those substances before with no reaction.

The allergic reactions may include hives (urticaria), swelling of the lips and tongue (angioedema), breathing difficulties (bronchospasm), nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain (gastrointestinal).

Vanilla extract is more concentrated than vanilla beans, which means you don’t need to use as much of it when cooking or baking.

However, a little vanilla extract goes a long way and can give your dish a rich taste without adding too much sugar or fat.

Related Post: Is Chocolate Flammable?


Vanilla is a good flavor but Is Vanilla Extract Flammable? It is flammable in large quantities, and it can catch fire very easily. It comes kind of close to being a pretty good fuel source.

So you need to be careful while cooking with it. However, if you’ve had any experience with the stuff catching on fire, you’ll know that it can lead to some seriously impressive infernos.

The recommended safeguarding measures to combat these flammabilities are storing vanilla extract in a cabinet or a well-ventilated place to prevent accidental ignition.