How the heck do you use vanillin?


So a couple months ago I ordered some vanillin. I expected it to be liquid like most extracts, but it turns out it’s not. It’s more like very thick hair conditioner! And it’s in this tiny little bottle with a tiny little neck. How the heck is one supposed to use this stuff?

I could certainly use a toothpick to get some out, but it wouldn’t be a measured amount… and it would be very difficult to get more out like a tsp or whatever. Has anyone baked with this stuff and figured out how to measure/use it?


If you have a scale you could weigh it, or perhaps if you heated it up a bit it would flow more freely so you could pour it into a measuring spoon?


yeah maybe heating… I dunno though, I’d be concerned with heating up the entire bottle every time, causing some sort of bacterial growth issue. At the moment I’m thinking I’ll just have to use the tinniest spoon-like thing I have and spoon it out a bit at a time until I have a measurable amount that I’m looking for. Maybe next time I need to make sure it’s in another form factor like powder?


The powder is easy to deal with for sure.

I was thinking about mixing some of the powdered vanillin I have with distilled water or vegetable glycerine (if it dissolves) so I can experiment more easily with flavoring individual serving sizes. I did the same thing with the sucralose when I first got it, but I’m comfortable enough now that I use my miniature measuring spoons instead.


What kind of vanillin did you buy?

For my vanilla, I bought one of the double-strength vanilla extracts from LorAnn, and poured it into an eyedropper bottle. At that strength, measuring in drops is practical, and dead easy. (One drop per serving of Soylent, two drops of orange oil, is all I need.) There’s alcohol in vanilla extract, but at double strength, it’s half the alcohol for the same amount of vanilla flavor.

Is your vanillin too thick for an eyedropper?


I bought Amoretti Natural Vanillin. Yeah it’s not a liquid at all… it’s like super thick hair conditioner. Can’t even shake it out of the bottle, will have to reach in with a small object and scoop some out. I had expected liquid just like vanilla extract. :frowning:


This is exciting! I added 360 mg of ethylvanillin powder (which should equate in strength to about 1.8 g of “normal” (methyl) vanillin powder) to 2 L of Soylent 1.4 and it eradicated the taste. It doesn’t even have a strong vanilla flavor. It’s more, day I say it, neutral. I think vanillin may have been the key masking flavor for the people who liked 1.0-1.3 but don’t like 1.4 or 1.5; sunflower oil was drastically reduced from 1.4 to 1.5, so that can’t be the whole story.

I also added extra sucralose (1/64 tsp), so what I ended up with tastes a lot like a melted vanilla milkshake. Probably not quite that sweet, but sweeter than I wanted. Next time I’ll try adding vanillin without any extra sweetener to see how that turns out.

I had previously only experimented with much smaller amounts of vanillin. If you experiment with a single serving, which is smarter than what I did, I’d keep adding it until the offensive flavor is undetectable. If you keep track of how much you add, then it should be easy to scale it up to a whole pitcher.

I’ve got about two boxes of 1.4 left, so I’ll probably sacrifice a few bags to experiment with different vanillin blends.

Edit: I’m halfway through the pitcher and 360 mg is too much per pitcher, for me at least. I find myself missing plain old 1.4. :frowning:


Great news… I need to figure out how to measure the vanillin I’ve got so I can try this with a bag of 1.5. Maybe I can yet turn it into something we can actually drink comfortably.


This is a bit off-topic, I know. But I hope they don’t add vanillin back into Soylent-proper. I’m pretty sure it made Soylent unworkable for me because it made me feel really tired: The Soylent Side Effect Experiments Thread