Easy Toasted Vanilla Syrup Recipe (Starbucks Copycat)

The toasted vanilla syrup recipe is what Starbucks used to prepare an iced toasted vanilla oatmilk shaken espresso. It made its debut in spring of 2022.

And is, sadly, discontinued! I loved that drink so I’m sharing this recipe so you can still enjoy it or the flavour without Starbucks. 

Why this recipe? Because I use a toasted vanilla bean and toasted white sugar to authentically recreate the “caramelized vanilla” taste. 

I love using this in my lattes and iced coffees or in my cold brew. It’s perfect for a fun twist on a classic vanilla syrup.

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Ingredients Needed

  • Vanilla Bean: I purchased my vanilla beans off Amazon. They are affordable and good quality.
  • White Sugar: for this recipe we will use toasted white sugar but you can use regular if you’d like. You can use a different sugar like brown sugar or coconut sugar. It will change your flavour profile. 
  • Himalayan Pink Salt: Or use any salt to bring out the flavour.
  • Pure Vanilla Extract: Add to give the syrup an extra strong vanilla taste.
  • Water: Please use the clear kind.

Why Do You Use Toasted Sugar?

In order to make an authentic tasting toasted vanilla syrup I found that it needs a light caramelized flavour. The Iced toasted vanilla oatmilk shaken espresso is described as “a caramelized vanilla” so using toasted sugar for this recipe makes it taste like the real thing. 

I have tested it with just white sugar and using toasted white sugar. Hands down the syrup made with toasted sugar has more depth of flavour and a richer taste.

How to Make a Toasted Vanilla Syrup Using Toasted Vanilla Bean

Prepare your toasted vanilla syrup using toasted sugar, water, salt and vanilla extract. 

Step 1: Toast Sugar

If you’re using toasted sugar:

Place 1 cup white sugar into a glass pan. Bake at 300F for about an hour. Stir every 30 minutes. Once it has turned to a light brown colour, remove from the oven and cool.

Use in recipe or substitute for white sugar. 

Step 2: Make Toasted Vanilla Bean Powder

Chop the vanilla bean into small pieces and cook in a dry pan over medium low heat until fragrant and dry looking. 

Remove from the pan and cool slightly. Then crush it using a rolling pin and a cutting board or a pestle and mortar.

Step 3: Cook Syrup

Bring the sugar and water to a boil, turn the heat to low and add in vanilla bean powder. Let simmer for 5 minutes, then stir in the vanilla extract and salt. 

Pour into a glass container. Strain before using. But while it’s sitting in the fridge leave the powder in the syrup to create a stronger flavour. 

I like to strain it as I use it. That way it can infuse until it’s all gone.

Best Dairy Free Milk to Use With Toasted Vanilla Syrup

I like to use a barista blend of oat milk or almond milk: the nutty quality to both types of milk blend well with a toasted vanilla syrup.

Starbucks currently uses Earth’s Own, Oat Drink Barista Edition. I like to use Oatly or Oatsome.

Drinks To Try with Your Syrup

Iced Toasted Vanilla Oat Shaken Espresso

Iced Toasted Vanilla Oatmilk Shaken Espresso

Iced Coffee with Toasted Vanilla Syrup

  • Add about 1-2 tablespoons of toasted vanilla syrup to your glass.
  • Then pour in iced coffee
  • Top with your favourite milk.

Iced Toasted Vanilla Latte

  • Double shot of espresso, 1/2 cup strong coffee or espresso substitute
  • 1 cup heated and frothed oatmilk
  • 2 tablespoons of toasted vanilla syrup

Prepare each ingredient and pour into a large mug.

Toasted Vanilla Syrup

Ingredients

  • 1 raw vanilla bean toasted and crushed
  • ½ cup white sugar or toasted sugar*
  • ½ cup + 2 TBSP water
  • ½ tsp toasted vanilla bean powder
  • ¼ tsp pink Himalayan salt or salt
  • ¼ tsp vanilla extract

Instructions

Toast & Crush Vanilla Bean

  • Chop the vanilla bean into small pieces.
  • Toast by cooking over medium low heat in a dry saucepan for about 2 minutes. Stirring constantly. When it is done it will look dried and browned. It will also be very fragrant.
  • Let it cool until dry. Then crush using a cutting board and a rolling pin or with a pestle and mortar.

Cook Syrup

  • Add just the sugar and water to a small sauce pan. Cook and stir until all the sugar has been dissolved and is boiling.
  • Then turn the heat down to low and add in the ½-¾ tsp toasted vanilla bean powder. Let simmer for about 5 minutes.
  • Remove from the heat and stir in the extra vanilla extract and the salt. Pour it into a glass container and store in the fridge.
  • When you use for your drinks make sure to strain it using a fine mesh strainer. While it’s in storage, leave the bean powder in the syrup so it can continue to infuse with the syrup.

What is in the Starbucks Toasted Vanilla Syrup

The ingredients in the Starbucks toasted vanilla syrup are: 

“Toasted Vanilla Flavored Syrup [Sugar, Water, Natural Flavors, Preservative Potassium Sorbate, Citric Acid]”

Which means the toasted vanilla taste probably comes from the “natural flavors” portion. They don’t specify what is in it, but guessing from the name it’s probably a toasted vanilla bean.

What Does Starbucks Toasted Vanilla Syrup Taste Like?

It has a sweet toasted caramelized vanilla taste to it. However, when it’s used in the Starbucks Iced Toasted Vanilla Oat Shaken Espresso, it’s not overly sweet. 

And with a Starbucks copycat toasted vanilla syrup, you have the freedom to use it however you want. I love using this toasted syrup in my homemade iced lattes, iced coffee and cold brew.

If you’ve tried the Iced Toasted Vanilla Oatmilk Shaken Espresso than you know how amazing the Starbucks Toasted Vanilla syrup tastes!

Why You’ll Love This Syrup

You’re going to want to make this toasted vanilla syrup recipe for everyday use.

It elevates a basic cup of coffee or cold brew latte. Add it to your hot lattes as a twist on a traditional vanilla latte.

it’s made with a whole vanilla bean, cane sugar (or white), and water.

Ingredients Needed

  • Vanilla Bean: You’ll need a whole bean to toast so we have that flavour. I purchased mine from Amazon. I’m sure you could find them elsewhere online or in store.
  • Vanilla Extract: Adds more concentrated vanilla flavour.
  • Cane Sugar: Use cane sugar or granulated sugar. You want it to be light so don’t use brown.
  • Water
  • Salt: I like to use pink Himalayan salt but any kind works. Brings out the taste.

How To Toast Vanilla Bean

Step 1: Chop & Toast

First prep your vanilla bean to toast it.

Split it in half and scrape out the seeds.

Step 3: Chop it up into small pieces. 

Step 4: Then cook on medium heat stirring fairly often for about 1-2 minutes. When they are done they will smell very fragrant and will have lightened a bit in colour. 

Step 5: Remove from the heat. 

Step 6: Use a spice grinder, pestle and mortar or a cutting board and a rolling pin to crush it into fine pieces.

Step 2: Once it has boiled and all the sugar is dissolved, turn down the heat to low. Add in the vanilla bean powder and the salt. Let it simmer for 6 minutes. 

Step 3: Remove from the heat and add in the vanilla extract. Pour into glass container and store in fridge until ready to use. Make sure to strain it when you add it to a drink!

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