4 Root Beer Extract Substitutes: What Can I Use Instead Of Root Beer Extract?

root beer extract substitute

If you think that the only reason to drink root beer is to get drunk, you will be disappointed with this article.

The goal here is not to teach you how to get drunk from root beer; instead, we will explore what extracts are used in making root beer and soapy water.

We’ll look at common substitutes for this ingredient and see how well they work as flavorings in your homebrewed beverages.

What is root beer extract?

Root beer extract is a dark brown liquid with a bitter flavor.

It’s also known as sassafras extract because sassafras roots are ground up to create it.

While there are several brands on the market, they all contain an active ingredient called sassafras root, which contains safrole.

Safrole was found to be a carcinogenic compound and has since been banned from any product that contains it.

Root beer extract is a strong flavoring that can be used in any recipe.

You can get the root beer flavor in anything from soda to brownies, and it’s a great way to use leftover soft drinks or root beer popsicles.

Is root beer extract the same as root beer concentrate?

No, root beer extract is not the same as root beer concentrate.

Root beer extract is specifically produced to capture the unique flavor of an authentic root beer, so it will be much more concentrated than simply dissolving sugar into your soda.

Root beer extract has a very strong, spicy flavor and is used in many different types of beverages, such as sodas and cocktails.

However, root beer concentrate even has a more robust flavor.

t beer extract is a flavored liquid that can be diluted with water when needed.

Root beer concentrate is a stronger flavor, which requires less puree to achieve the same level of flavor in your drink.

If you want a root beer concentrate, it is possible to create one using root beer extract and sugar syrup.

Still, it is best to buy readymade concentrated root beer syrup from any homebrew store before considering this option, as it can be pretty tricky to get right.

The concentrate has more of a kick but can be used interchangeably in most cases.

What can I use as a substitute for root beer extract?

If you’re a root beer fan, you know what a shame it is to be without your favorite drink.

Root beer extract is a flavoring used in root beer soda and other drinks.

Plenty of alternatives are available at your local grocery store if you don’t have access to root beers made with real extract but still want something tasty on hand during these cold winter months.

A few favorites include:

Vanilla bean paste

If you need to make something with root beer extract, use vanilla bean paste instead.

Vanilla bean paste is made from vanilla beans and other ingredients like sugar, water, and alcohol (not just a jar of dark brown liquid).

It’s used in baking and cooking because it has more flavor than normal vanilla extract.

In fact, many people who like to bake their desserts prefer using vanilla bean paste to extract because the flavor is more potent.

It’s also great for making homemade ice cream, custards, and other creamy desserts.

If you want to add more vanilla flavor to your baked goods, try using vanilla bean paste instead of extract next time.

It can be found in the baking aisle at most grocery stores.

Orange flower water

Orange flower water is a popular ingredient in Middle Eastern desserts and cocktails.

It can be used as a substitute for root beer extract if you want to add sweetness to your root beer float or other beverage!

To get the same flavor as root beer extract, use 1/2 teaspoon of orange flower water in place of 1 teaspoon of root beer extract when making your homemade soda.

If you’re not interested in making soda, add some orange flower water to your favorite drink instead!


Licorice is a plant native to Asia but grown in many regions worldwide.

Licorice root has been used for centuries as a food flavoring, and it contains glycyrrhizin—a compound that gives licorice its distinctive taste.

Though there are many different types of licorice, they all have one thing in common: they’re sweet!

This makes them perfect for adding some sweetness when making your root beer extract home using real ingredients instead of artificial flavors or extracts.

This is an excellent place to start if you’re looking for something with more flavor than plain sugar syrup (which we’ll cover next).

Ginger juice

Ginger juice is a good substitute for root beer extract because it has a slightly similar flavor, although each has unique characteristics.

Ginger juice is the liquid you get from grating or juicing ginger root.

This is a great option if you’re looking for something less sweet than licorice but still has some flavor.

You can use ginger juice as a substitute for root beer extract in recipes that call for it, although you’ll probably want to scale back on the amount of ginger juice you use.

You may add more sugar or honey if the recipe calls for that.

Ginger juice can be found at most grocery stores and health food stores.

What is the best root beer extract substitute?

Several natural substitutes work just as well if you don’t have root beer extract.

We have mentioned the four common alternatives to root beer extract, from vanilla bean paste, orange flower water, and licorice extract, to ginger juice, which is an ingredient that is very familiar in our kitchen.

  • Vanilla bean paste: This will give your soda a refreshingly creamy flavor.

You can find it at gourmet grocery stores or online.

  • Orange flower water is the secret ingredient in many commercial root beer extracts and will lend a subtle citrusy note to your soda.
  • Licorice: If you’re looking for something more herbal than vanilla, try adding some licorice extract (not syrup), which has an earthy sweetness and mellow bitterness similar to sarsaparilla flavor notes but less intense—perfect for making homemade root beer from scratch!
  • Ginger juice: This is a great way to add pucker and spice to your soda.

You can find it at any grocery store or online.

If you don’t have ginger juice, you can use freshly grated ginger root instead—just be sure to strain out all the pulp before adding it to your recipe.

As you can see, each ingredient has its advantages that someone prefers more than others.

Therefore, there is no exact answer to the question of which is the best substitute for root beer extract because it is totally up to your taste.


I love root beer extract, and I’m sure you do too! But sometimes it’s hard to find in the store.

Or maybe you need a substitute because of allergies or other dietary restrictions.

This post has some great ideas for what to use as root beer extract substitutes.

Hopefully, it has helped you find a good way to use another ingredient instead of root beer extract in your baking or brewing recipes.

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