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Create Flavours, Unit 11 Windmill Business Park
Windmill Road, Kenn, Clevedon
North Somerset, BS21 6SR, UK




MAY: Vanilla

18th August 2021

The history of vanilla:

Vanilla is grown in hot, moist climates – places 10-20 degrees from the equator. Mexico is thought to be the original home of vanilla but it is now more commonly found in Madagascar, Indonesia, Papua New Guinea and India.

Vanilla is the only orchid bearing edible fruit, however the vanilla taste we’re all so familiar with isn’t eaten straight from the plant, but naturally fermented to get the best out of the fruit.

Vanilla offers a depth and sense of luxury to a product, enhancing existing flavours and creating a rounded finished flavour.

Core vanilla flavourings:

Often regarded as the world’s most popular flavouring, vanilla is a core flavour found in all food and beverage categories. According to Google’s “A Year In Search Report 2020”. The second top question asked in the UK was “where does vanilla flavouring come from?”.

According to a survey by the Ice Cream and Artisan Food Show, 84% of UK ice cream parlours report that vanilla is their best-selling ice cream flavour. The second and third most popular flavours were Mint Chocolate Chip (20%) and Chocolate (18%). Innova Market Insights report that “Market opportunities for the classic flavour show no signs of stopping, as the unique simplicity and versatility of vanilla drives demand.”

Our analytical flavourists have developed a complete range of vanilla solutions. From a perfumed Tahitian vanilla extract to a almond buttery Madagascan natural flavouring. We can created bespoke flavourings to suit your application.

Typical vanilla flavour profiles:

In its most generic form, the taste of vanilla is often described as woody, fruity and smoky. Regional vanillas have more nuanced profiles for example:

Common evaluation descriptors of vanilla include:

  • Beany
  • Balsamic
  • Fruity
  • Smoky
  • Almondy
  • Buttery, Milky
  • Creamy
  • Phenolic (medicinal, clove-like)

Tahitian vanilla tends to be more perfumed with a floral, anise-type profile whereas Madagascan vanilla has more of a buttery, bean, almond taste.

Flavour pairings:

Over 200 volatile compounds have been identified that contribute to the overall flavour and aroma of vanilla – the most prevalent being vanillin. The taste of vanilla itself means it’s the world favourite stand-alone flavour but it also offers seemingly unlimited pairing possibilities. Vanilla flavouring works well with alcohol profiles, berries, stone fruits, tropical fruits and creams. In the savoury sector it can also be used alongside rich meats such as duck as well as creating creaminess in Marie rose dressings for seafood. Vanilla beans are naturally fermented therefore can be successfully paired with other fermented foods such as coffee, chocolate, miso or balsamic vinegar.

Our natural vanilla flavouring solutions:

At Create Flavours, we have a wide range of vanilla flavourings – spanning from synthetic vanilla, 95/5 natural flavourings which can be depicted on pack and named vanilla extracts such as Madagascan, Indonesian, Mexican and Tahitian. Whilst extracts are available, the prices can be volatile depending on the weather and harvest quality. For cost-effective solutions we also offer vanilla as natural flavourings too. 

Our range of vanilla flavourings are designed for all applications, although primarily dairy, bakery, sports nutrition and confectionery. Natural vanilla flavourings feature in our masking flavourings and also in our ‘DairyBuild’ products with advanced heat-stability.

If you are looking for a cost-effective vanilla flavouring for your product development, please get in touch with our team.