Making pandan extract at home is delightfully simple with extremely rewarding results. You can use this extract to impart the flavor and aroma of pandan to both sweet and savory dishes. And unlike the store-bought kind, it has no preservatives, colorants, or artificial flavors. In fact, it only has two ingredients!

How to Make Easy Pandan Extract at Home

Lately, I’ve been a little obsessed with the pandan plant.Cooking with pandan is just so therapeutic – its vibrant green color, the feel of the leaves, the fragrant aroma, and most of all: how versatile it is. It’s popularly known as the “Vanilla of the East” but in my opinion, it’s so much more than that! It’s a delicious addition to desserts and baked goods but it also works well as an ingredient in savory dishes. Once you learn more about how you can use the flavor of pandan in your cooking, I’m sure you’ll find yourself making this recipe over and over again!

Today I’m going to show you how you can make easy homemade pandan extract – and when I say easy, I mean super easy. You only need pandan leaves, water, a blender, and a strainer or cheesecloth to create aromatic and flavorful pandan extract that’s way better than anything you can find at the store. It’s also free of any unnecessary preservatives, artificial flavors, and colorants – just pure pandan goodness.

What Does Pandan Taste Like

The flavor of pandan is naturally sweet, a bit herbaceous and floral, with the same mellow tones as vanilla and almond. It’s also very fragrant, so it’s pretty easy to identify pandan in a dish just from its delicious smell once you’re familiar with it!

What to Do with Pandan Extract 

This homemade pandan extract is great for when you want to impart a stronger flavor of pandan or when you don’t have any pandan leaves on hand. It will keep for 7 days in the refrigerator and up to one month in the freezer. You can try to store it there for longer, but the aroma will greatly reduce – the fragrance is a huge part of pandan’s appeal so I don’t really recommend that.

For sweet applications, you can use pandan the same way you would use vanilla. Add it to baked goods, cold desserts, and drinks! It works especially well with coconut flavors. In Vietnam, it’s used to flavor honeycomb cake or BánhBòNướng(recipe coming soon!), waffles or BánhKẹpLáDứa, and steamed layer cake or Bánh Da Lợn. In the Philippines, you can find it in BukoPandan, a cold dessert made with condensed milk, pandan flavored jelly, tapioca balls, and strips of young coconut meat.

For savory dishes, add a little extract and a pinch of salt to the water when cooking rice to impart a luxurious taste and aroma. In a pinch, you can also use this to mimic the flavor of Thai pandan chicken by adding a few drops of it to your marinade!

How to Make Homemade Pandan Extract | 2-Ingredient Easy Recipe


  • 15-20 Pandan Leaves frozen works almost as good
  • 3/4 Cup Water


  • Wash your Pandan leaves thoroughly. Pandan leaves are fresh like my homegrown ones, the dirt is usually towards the bottom of the leaves. If you use frozen Pandan leaves which can be obtained at most Asian stores, I recommend washing them as well after thawing.
  • Best way to cut into small pieces is by using a scissor.
  • Depending on the size of your Pandan leaves, add 15-20 leaves to your blender.
  • Add ¾ cup of water and blendthoroughly. 
  • Use strainer or cheese cloth to strain the Pandan juice.
  • After 24 hours, most of the chlorophyll has settled to the bottom. Pour out the water on top very slowly.
  • The leftover after you pour outthe water is your Pandan Extract.
  • Keep refrigerated.  Use up within 7 days.