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The Watkins Co. Extracts & Food Coloring

Have you ever used bath & body products from JR Watkins?  How about laundry soap?  Well, did you know they also have an amazing line of spices, extracts, seasoning mixes and other cooking & baking products? If you didn’t, I’m here to tell you about some of them that I’ve recently had the pleasure of testing out!

Made with high quality ingredients, these extracts and flavorings are backed by the same expertise that has made Watkins Vanilla the choice of generations.

Watkins Baking Vanilla Extract

One of the most staple pantry flavors is of course the Original Gourmet Baking Vanilla™.  Watkins Baking Vanilla Extract is made with the world’s finest vanilla beans and is the original double-strength formula designed to hold-up to baking and freezing. With extra rich flavor this extract enhances everything from chocolate chip cookies to cakes with premium flavor. My family has used Watkins Vanilla since I was a child and I’ve never found another extract that compares. It’s the best choice for baking or cooking when you want that special “real” taste of vanilla without tasting fake.

Watkins Maple Extract, Imitation

The Maple Extract, Imitation is an awesome way to get pure maple flavoring without the extra calories. You can add it to desserts like oatmeal cookies, carrot cakes, frostings and candies. Or, add complexity to savory dishes like barbecue, baked beans and sweet potatoes. Long used as a breakfast sweetener, maple extract is a great addition to oatmeal, muffins, pancakes and French toast batter. My fathers family are from Vermont and one of my favorite nostalgic flavors, especially around the fall, is Maple! A little bit goes a long way, so it is a good value when you’re using it multiple times a week. I love that it doesn’t contain the industrial ingredients, colorants, and artificial flavorings like that of other brands. My husband uses to make his own sugar free pancake syrup because he’s a type 2 diabetic. I love putting it in my morning oatmeal.

Watkins Caramel Flavor Extract

The Caramel Flavor Extract has full, long-lasting flavor that adds creamy sweetness to cinnamon rolls, frosting, chocolate chip cookies and butterscotch desserts. I actually enjoy using this in my coffee instead of buying the creamers with caramel flavoring. Now I can control the flavor strength AND I don’t have to worry about so much extra sugar like when I’ve used some of those thick coffee syrups. Tip: Add some of this flavor to an apples and cinnamon flavored oatmeal for a delicious treat!

Watkins Food Coloring

Need to add some color to your cooking, baking and creations? Watkins food coloring is free from artificial colors and made with pure vegetable juices and spices including beet juice, turmeric and spirulina extract.

Red: Glycerin, invert sugar, water, vegetable juice, citric acid, potassium hydroxide.
Yellow: Glycerin, water, polysorbate 80, turmeric.
Green: Water, glycerin, polysorbate 80, trehalose, spirulina extract, turmeric, sodium citrate.
Blue: Glycerin, water, trehalose, spirulina extract, sodium citrate.

It’s so much fun to be able to do create colorful baked goods and crafts without using artificial dyes! The bottles are easy to use and the small dropper is convenient. Keep in mind since these are from natural juices and spices, the outcome of the colors will reflect this. The red comes out more of a pink-purple – like a beet.  Red #40 and other food coloring aren’t good for your body. These work so nicely and without all the crud! And they’re also GREAT for beauty crafts such as making bath bombs. You and your customers won’t have any artificial ingredients absorbed into your skin while soaking in the tub.

Coloring Tips:

Red Food Coloring: For optimal performance in baking preparation add 2 tsps of cream of tartar to dry mix, then color as desired. Best results seen with recipes that include whole eggs.

Green Food Coloring: Color changes may be noticed if baked at a temperature greater than 350 degrees.

For Coloring Eggs:

EGG PREP: Hard boil eggs with 1 tablespoon vinegar and let eggs cool.
COLORING: In a cup or bowl, ADD ½ cup water, 1 teaspoon Watkins Food Coloring and 1 teaspoon vinegar.
Dip hard-cooked eggs about 15 minutes or longer if a darker shade is desired. Stir every 5 minutes. Transfer to wire rack to dry.

Basic Blending: Lightly squeeze sides of bottle adding color drop by drop to obtain desired shade. Color results may vary in baked goods; test in a small amount of batter before using.

Make It A Part Of Your Pantry

People throughout the U.S. and Canada are familiar with these naturally inspired products. Just ask your mother or your grandmother. Inspiring health and wellness since 1868, Watkins first earned the trust of customers by offering the first-ever money-back guarantee! From humble beginnings in Plainview, Minn., to a multi-national company, one thing has stayed the same: their commitment to making hard-working products from high-quality natural ingredients.