Frequently Asked Questions

Find out more information about our products, shelf life, ingredients, availability and vanilla in the frequently asked questions below.

  • Availability

    • Do you still make Parisian Essence?

      Since Coles and Woolworths deleted Queen Parisian Essence from their range, we have had to stop producing it in the 100ml size.

      We do still produce 500ml commercial sized bottles, if you would like to order one please get in touch with our team via email: orders@queen.com.au

    • Do you still make Rum or Brandy Essence?

      Since Coles and Woolworths deleted Queen Rum and Brandy Essence from their range, we have had to stop producing them. We understand they were both much loved, heritage Australian products and we sincerely apologise for the inconvenience.

    • I’m a chef/restaurant owner/manufacturer, do you have commercial sizes of your products?

      A range of Queen products, including our Vanillas, Colours, Glucose Syrup, Maple Syrup and Extracts are available in larger volumes. Please browse the information available on our Commercial page, then get in touch via our Contact form to arrange a quote.

    • I’m a deli/health food/cake decorating/online shop owner and would like to stock Queen products. Where can I find out more information?

      We’d love to assist you in stocking Queen products. First browse our Products section to discover which products in our range you would be interested in stocking, then get in touch via our Contact page. If you can give us as much info as possible, such as the products you’re interested in and the quantities, it will help our team greatly in sending you more information.

    • I can’t find a particular product at my local supermarket. Where can I buy it?

      Have you tried using our Product Locator? All you need to do is enter your postcode and a listing will show the supermarkets nearest to you stocking the product you’re after. Please note – this is for Australian customers only.

    • Where are Queen products sold?

      Our products are sold in Australia and New Zealand. In Australia, our products are available in Woolworths, Coles, IGA supermarkets and small retailers while in New Zealand our products are available in PAK’nSAVE, New World and Countdown. Unfortunately we do not have a great deal of influence over which stores stock our products. Our team work hard to get and keep our products on shelf but ultimately it is the retailer that decides which products they want in their stores. You could try asking the store manager at your local supermarket to add this product to their range, or fill in a customer feedback form. To find your nearest stockist, try using our Product Locator.

  • Product Information

  • Product Issues

  • Queen Company

  • Queen Vanilla

    • Why do vanilla extracts contain alcohol?

      Queen Vanilla extracts are made by combining pure vanilla beans with a mixture of alcohol (sugar cane-derived ethanol) and water. This allows the flavour compounds from the pure vanilla bean to infuse into the alcohol/water mixture, which then forms the pure vanilla extract. While vanilla beans can be extracted without alcohol, it is very slow, ineffective and results in a lower quality vanilla extract. At Queen we want to produce the very best vanilla for your baking, which is why our extracts are made through the alcohol extraction method.

      Does the alcohol cook out?
      The highest percentage of alcohol Queen Vanilla contains is 35%. This means that if you use 1 tsp Queen Vanilla extract in your baking (5ml), you would at most add 1.75ml alcohol to your cake (a tiny amount). The high temperatures achieved during baking will cause most of this alcohol to evaporate out of your cake with the flavor remaining intact, as the alcohol is simply a carrier for the flavor.

      What alcohol free vanilla do you have in your range?
      Queen Finest pure vanilla beans are the only alcohol free vanilla in our range at this time.
      Queen Imitation Vanilla Flavour is another option for your baking but this is not a vanilla extract, only an imitation vanilla flavour and contains less alcohol.

      In conclusion;
      In short, alcohol is the most effective way to extract the true flavour from the vanilla bean that you love in your baking. That rich aroma when you crack open a bottle, and the incredible flavour when used in baking are all achieved by the extraction process that we have perfected here at Queen over the past 120 Years!

    • Why does your Red Label Vanilla say ‘Essence Extract’? Is it real vanilla extract?

      Our Red Label Vanilla is one of our oldest Vanilla products. For a long time, the term ‘essence’ implied the natural concentrated form of Vanilla. Over time, the term ‘extract’ has come to be used to describe pure vanilla instead. We keep the word essence on the label so that our long-standing customers still recognise this Vanilla as the one they have been buying for 30+ years, however this product is a true Vanilla Extract from premium quality Vanilla Beans.

    • Why are Vanilla Beans so expensive?

      The process to grow and cure Vanilla Beans is very time and labour intensive. It takes 3 years for a vanilla vine to bear fruit and once the vine flowers, each flower must be pollinated by hand within 12 hours of opening. After pollination, the vanilla pod will grow and take 9 months to reach maturity, at which point it must be hand picked at peak ripeness, right before the pod splits. After harvesting the vanilla pods, these green pods are then cured and stored for the Queen Vanilla flavour you know and love to develop. With more than 12 months needed to produce a single vanilla bean, it is a costly process but truly worth it for the wonderful flavour it brings to desserts and baking.

    • What is the shelf life of my Queen Vanilla product? How do I store it?

      Store all Queen Vanilla products, including Vanilla Bean Paste and Vanilla Bean Pods in cool, dry conditions away from heat and sunlight, such as the pantry. To help keep to its full shelf life, ensure the lid of your Vanilla Bean Paste is clean and screwed on properly when stored, and use a clean spoon to measure out the paste each time. There’s no need to store Queen Vanilla products in the freezer or refrigerator. Queen Vanilla Extracts and Vanilla Bean Pastes and Pods will keep for 4 years and 6 months.

    • How can I substitute another type of Vanilla product, such as Vanilla Bean Paste into a recipe that calls for Vanilla Extract or a whole Vanilla Bean?

      Here’s a handy reference to understand the differences in our vanilla products. Luckily it is hard to ‘overdo’ vanilla in recipes, so don’t worry if you add a little more than the recipe calls for.

    • What is Bourbon Vanilla?

      The use of the term ‘bourbon’ to describe a vanilla bean means that the bean is grown in Madagascar or other islands in the Indian Ocean, such as Comoros and Réunion. The term does not describe that the alcohol ‘Bourbon’ has been used, but instead is derived from the old name for Réunion, which was known as the Île Bourbon. Sometimes vanilla from this region is simply referred to as Bourbon Vanilla, other times Madagascan Bourbon Vanilla or simply Madagascan Vanilla. It is a strong, creamy, woody, intense vanilla that gives a wonderful vanilla flavour in all types of dishes.

    • What are the best way to use Vanilla Extract, Vanilla Bean Paste, Vanilla Bean Pods?

      Vanilla Extract, Vanilla Bean Paste and Vanilla Pods can all be used in a range of ways, while there is no absolute for each, here are a few ideas to make the most of these different vanilla types:

      • Vanilla Extract – Excellent for everyday baking such as cakes, biscuits, tarts, breads, pies and cooked dishes. Gives a pleasant, mild vanilla flavour.
      • Vanilla Bean Paste – Ideal for a strong, aromatic vanilla flavour in everyday baking such as cakes and biscuits. The vanilla bean seeds are especially pretty in cream-based treats such as buttercream icing, shortbread, custards, meringue and creme brulee. It is also delicious in smoothies and milkshakes.
      • Vanilla Bean Pods – Vanilla Bean Pods can be used in the same way as Vanilla Bean paste and are great for making home made vanilla sugar as well. Depending on the recipe, you might find our Vanilla Bean Paste gives a stronger vanilla flavour.
      • Vanilla Bean Grinder – Perfect for finishing cakes, desserts or even over coffee. The vanilla beans are lightly dried to allow for easy grinding.
    • Is Queen Vanilla Fairtrade?

      Our Fairtrade Vanilla Extract with Seeds is produced with Fairtrade certified vanilla. Fairtrade certification means farmers receive a higher dollar value for their crops and improved terms of trade, giving them the opportunity to improve their lives and plan for the future. Our Fairtrade Vanilla Extract offers our customers a powerful way to reduce poverty through their every day shopping.

    • Where can I learn more about your Vanilla Programs?

      Please discover more about Queen Vanilla and our Vanilla Programs over in the Queen Vanilla section.

  • Recipe eBooks

  • Shelf Life & Storage

    • Storage – Vanilla

      Store all Queen Vanilla products, including Vanilla Bean Paste and Vanilla Bean Pods in cool, dry conditions away from heat and sunlight, such as the pantry. To help keep to its full shelf life, ensure the lid of your Vanilla Bean Paste is clean and screwed on properly when stored, and use a clean spoon to measure out the paste each time. There’s no need to store Queen Vanilla products in the freezer or refrigerator.

    • Storage – Colours and Extracts

      Our Colours and Extracts are best stored in cool, dry conditions away from sunlight such as the pantry, even after opening.

    • I can’t find a best before date listed on your product. Where is it?

      A lot of our products have a very long shelf life, meaning for a long time we didn’t label a best before date on them. Approximately 2 years ago we started labelling best before dates on our products to assist people in knowing how long to keep them for. Our Colours, Essences and Vanillas have a shelf life of approximately 4 years and 6 months. If you are unsure of when you purchased the product, it is probably best to discard it.