Vanilla Vs Vanilla Bean Vs French Vanilla

Vanilla Vs Vanilla Bean Vs French Vanilla Ice Cream — What’s The Difference?

Although vanilla ice cream is the only ice cream flavor you like, you still have a few options. You can get vanilla, vanilla bean, and French vanilla ice cream. How do vanilla, vanilla bean, and French vanilla ice cream differ from each other? French vanilla ice cream is based on egg yolks, while the others are based on cream. Vanilla bean ice cream contains vanilla bean specks, while the other two are usually flavored with vanilla extract. To make things a little less confusing, we’ll also cover some basic information about vanilla and its available forms to help make the comparison easier.

What Is Vanilla?

The vanilla pod is the fruit of tropical climbing orchids, which grows in the form of dark brown pods filled with many tiny seeds. These seeds are extracted from the pods and used as flavoring agents.

The vanilla bean, vanilla paste, vanilla powder, and vanilla extract can all be found in online and local stores. Vanilla was once considered an exotic ingredient. Today, vanilla and vanilla-derived products are widely available across the globe.

In addition to baking and confectionery, vanilla can also be used to make hot and cold drinks, as well as savory sauces. Vanilla beans grow in different places, and each one has its own different flavor notes.

Most Common Types Of Vanilla And How They Taste

  1. Known for its rich, creamy, sweet flavor and mildly spicy notes, Madagascar vanilla is also referred to as bourbon vanilla.

  2. Known for its smokey and rich flavor, Mexican vanilla also has notes of cinnamon, chocolate, black pepper, and nutmeg.

  3. In contrast to Madagascan and Mexican vanilla, Tahitian vanilla is fruity and floral. It is sweet, with hints of spice.

Common Vanilla Byproducts

Vanilla can be found in many forms, but the best form is the vanilla bean, which is highly aromatic and flavorful. However, real vanilla beans are rather expensive and are not as widely available as vanilla byproducts. Professional and amateur cooks and bakers alike can add vanilla flavor to various recipes by using vanilla byproducts.

Most Popular Vanilla Byproducts Made From Vanilla Beans

  1. In baking and confectionery, vanilla extract is made by soaking vanilla beans in alcohol. It is best to get vanilla extract without any additives – just vanilla beans, alcohol, and water.

  2. It contains the seeds scraped from the vanilla pods and has a very intense vanilla flavor. Vanilla bean paste is based on sugar and water.

  3. Authentic vanilla powder is a dark brown powder made from ground vanilla beans. It is very potent and is best used in baking.

  4. Various drinks can be prepared with vanilla syrup, a syrup made with vanilla extract.

Vanilla Vs Vanillin 

You may have wondered what vanillin is and how it differs from vanilla if you’ve ever encountered it.

It is a white, crystalline powder that has a similar taste and aroma to vanillin. Vanillin is an organic compound that is just one of the molecules that contribute to the complex flavor of vanilla.

Similar to vanilla flavor, vanillin can be both natural and synthetic. In other words, vanilla contains vanillin, but vanillin doesn’t always come from vanilla.

Natural Vs Imitation Vanilla

If you want to buy vanilla byproducts, make sure they are made with natural vanilla rather than imitation vanilla.

As an imitation vanilla is made from artificial vanillin, its flavor is not as deep and complex. It is also degraded at high temperatures, so it should not be used in baking.

It’s worth buying extracts, syrups, and powders made with natural vanilla beans since they contain a very strong flavor, and you won’t have to use much of them.

Different Types Of Vanilla Ice Cream

Different types of vanilla can be used to create unique vanilla flavors. As a result, you see different vanilla ice cream labels in stores.

Despite the fact that the French did not invent ice cream, they were the first to flavor it with vanilla. Thomas Jefferson introduced vanilla ice cream to the United States.

The popularity of vanilla ice cream spread rapidly around the world. Today, vanilla ice cream is the world’s most popular ice cream flavor.

Based on how they are labeled and what vanilla products were used to make them, these are the most common types of vanilla ice cream:

  1. Ice cream with vanilla flavor

  2. Ice cream with vanilla bean flavor

  3. Ice cream with French vanilla flavor

Various ice cream brands label their vanilla ice cream as vanilla-flavored ice cream, which is essentially the same thing as vanilla ice cream.

What Are The Differences Between Vanilla, Vanilla Bean, And French Vanilla Ice Cream?

Every time you’re in the ice cream aisle, you probably notice the different types of vanilla ice cream available to you, and you probably love them all.

Is there a difference between vanilla, vanilla bean, and French vanilla ice cream? Let’s find out!


Cream, whipping cream, milk, sugar, and various sweeteners are commonly used in the preparation of vanilla and vanilla bean ice cream. The difference between French vanilla ice cream and other types of ice cream has nothing to do with vanilla.

French vanilla ice cream differs from other ice creams in that it contains egg yolks along with the traditional ice cream ingredients, affecting its flavor, texture, and color. Vanilla ice cream manufactured commercially may also contain preservatives and various additives, such as flavor enhancers and texture enhancers.

Types Of Vanilla

Check the ingredient list in your ice cream to discover what type of vanilla flavoring you’re getting. Vanilla bean, French vanilla, and vanilla ice cream all contain vanilla, but they’re not necessarily the same.

While vanilla bean pods are less aromatic than seeds, they give vanilla bean ice cream its signature speckled appearance. Vanilla bean ice cream can also contain artificial or natural vanilla flavoring.

There is no need to have vanilla specks in French vanilla ice cream, unlike vanilla bean ice cream. Vanilla bean ice cream may contain artificial or natural vanilla flavoring.

Some people believe that French vanilla ice cream is vanilla ice cream made using vanilla beans originating from France, as mentioned earlier in this article.

It is not true, since the word ‘French’ implies that vanilla ice cream is made with an egg yolk base as is the French way of making ice cream.


Both vanilla ice cream and vanilla bean ice cream taste similar, despite the fact that the first is made with vanilla extract and the second with vanilla seeds.

It is believed that vanilla bean ice cream has a brighter, deeper vanilla flavor because vanilla beans have a stronger flavor than vanilla extract.

While you may not be able to taste the difference between naturally and artificially flavored vanilla ice cream, or vanilla ice cream and vanilla bean ice cream, you will most likely notice how French vanilla ice cream tastes different.

The egg yolks used in the preparation of French vanilla ice cream give it a custard-like flavor. The more egg yolks the manufacturer adds to the ice cream, the stronger the custard flavor.


There is a slight difference between vanilla ice cream, vanilla bean ice cream, and French vanilla ice cream.

Vanilla ice cream has a creamy off-white or beige color. Vanilla bean ice cream should have black flecks.

Some brands may also use the ground vanilla pods instead of pods to provide the authentic look of vanilla bean ice cream. These black specks are the seeds from the vanilla bean.

French vanilla ice cream has a pale yellow color due to the egg yolks in it. The more egg yolks you add, the yellower the ice cream will be.

You might be wondering why vanilla ice cream comes in shades of white and yellow if vanilla beans themselves are dark.

The most common use for vanilla extract is to flavor ice cream. Vanilla extract has a dark brown color and is very powerful.

As a contrast to the amount of white ingredients used in making ice cream, such as milk and cream, it is very small amounts added to the mixtures.


There is no difference in consistency between regular vanilla and vanilla bean ice cream; the only difference is the bean particles in vanilla bean ice cream.

Due to the egg yolk base, French vanilla ice cream has a richer and smoother consistency than other vanilla ice creams.


Generally, vanilla ice cream is made by mixing cream, milk, sugar, and vanilla extract. The exact method of preparation will vary by brand.

Manufacturers add vanilla seeds instead of vanilla extract to vanilla bean ice cream in a similar manner to regular vanilla ice cream.

French vanilla ice cream is prepared differently from vanilla ice cream or vanilla bean ice cream.

Similarly to regular vanilla ice cream, French vanilla ice cream can have natural or synthetic vanilla flavoring. The only essential ingredient, however, is egg yolks.

First, egg yolks are used to make a custard base for French vanilla ice cream.

French vanilla ice cream has an egg yolk base, while vanilla ice cream has a cream base, along with vanilla bean ice cream.


The easiest way to enjoy vanilla ice cream is right out of the tub, but ice cream can also be used in many other ways, whether it’s regular vanilla, vanilla bean, or French vanilla.

  1. Making milkshakes is one of the best ways to use vanilla ice cream. You can add various ingredients, such as berries, cookies, coffee, cocoa powder, cinnamon, whipped cream, etc., to customize your drink.

  2. We love chocolate chip cookies, but you can use any cookie you like. Vanilla ice cream pairs well with nearly all cookies, so you can make ice cream sandwiches using your favorite vanilla ice cream and cookie. Ice cream sandwiches can also be made with waffles!

  3. Try iced coffee with some vanilla ice cream if you’re craving something sweet and refreshing. Pouring hot coffee over vanilla ice cream is also a good idea – how about an affogato?

  4. Vanilla ice cream makes a delicious dessert on its own, but it is also a great addition to many other desserts. This is true for brownies or apple strudels.

Do you prefer vanilla ice cream, vanilla bean ice cream, or French vanilla ice cream? 

Whether you choose vanilla, vanilla bean, or French vanilla ice cream depends on your preferences, so there is no definite answer. Vanilla ice cream is plainer than the other two, and it doesn’t have such a rich and creamy mouthfeel as French vanilla ice cream, but it pairs well with other desserts.

A richer flavor and smoother texture with a custardy feel can be found in French vanilla ice cream. You can use vanilla bean ice cream if you don’t want any egg yolks in your ice cream, or if you want something lighter with a bright vanilla flavor.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *