There seems to be a great deal of confusion online over mint extract and peppermint extract. You have probably seen both in the grocery and wondered what the difference was. If you have gotten into baking or candy making, you may have even asked if you can use one in place of the other.
If you have pondered these questions, you are reading the right article.
In this piece, we look at :
- Can I use peppermint extract instead of mint extract?
- What you can substitute for mint extract.
- What is the difference between peppermint and mint extract?
- Is peppermint oil the same as mint extract?
So, can I use peppermint extract instead of mint extract?
You most certainly can use peppermint extract in place of mint extract. Be aware, though. It will give you a much more robust and pronounced flavor due to having a higher menthol content.
Mint extract is a blending of peppermint and spearmint flavoring. The spearmint is responsible for the cooling flavor of mint, while peppermint gives it its zest.
Some find one or the other objectionable in specific flavor pairings, but that is essentially a matter of taste.
What can you substitute for mint extract?
The most universally usable substitutes for mint extract would be fresh mint leaves or peppermint extract. Other possible replacements that you can use depending on the desired taste would be:
What is the difference between peppermint and mint extract?
Peppermint (Mentha piperita) is a hybrid of spearmint and watermint whose natural oils can have a menthol content as high as 60%. Pure peppermint extract can be pretty fiery.
Mint extract is a blending of peppermint oils with those extracted from spearmint. The cool freshness of the spearmint helps balance the peppery burst that gives peppermint its name. The two together deliver a classic mint taste that is neither too warm nor overly medicinal.
Is peppermint oil the same as mint extract?
Peppermint oil is not the same as mint extract. Peppermint oil is the pure essential oil drawn from the plant through the use of high temperatures. It is thick, doesn’t evaporate very quickly, and, most notably for cooking, peppermint oil has a flavor intensity four times as strong as mint extract.
Mint extract is alcohol-based. It can be created by either dissolving peppermint and spearmint oils in alcohol or soaking the leaves from the plants. Mint extract is much milder in flavor and evaporates very quickly when exposed to heat.