21 Best Creme Bouquet Substitutes for Your Next Recipes

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When it comes to baking and creating delightful desserts, creme bouquet has long been a cherished flavoring.

Known for its harmonious blend of citrusy brightness and creamy vanilla undertones, creme bouquet adds a special touch to various sweet treats.

However, what do you do when you find yourself without this beloved ingredient?

Fear not, as we’ve curated a list of 21 Creme Bouquet Substitutes to help you infuse your creations with unique and delicious flavors.

Creme Bouquet Substitutes – 21 Options Available 

One popular substitute for Creme Bouquet is vanilla extract. However, there are numerous other options to consider, each with its own distinct flavor and aroma that can complement different baked goods.

Let’s explore – 

Orange-Vanilla Extract Blend:

Create your own substitute by combining equal parts of pure orange extract and pure vanilla extract.

The orange extract contributes a bright citrus flavor, while the vanilla extract adds the sweet and creamy undertones characteristic of creme bouquet.

Adjust the ratio to your preference, keeping in mind that creme bouquet often has a balanced citrus-vanilla profile.

Lemon-Almond Essence Mix:

Blend lemon essence or lemon extract with almond extract in a 2:1 ratio, favoring the lemon essence.

This combination provides a zesty and refreshing citrus flavor akin to creme bouquet, complemented by the nutty and slightly sweet notes from the almond extract.

The result is a well-balanced alternative suitable for various baked goods and desserts.

Citrus-Infused Vanilla Sugar:

Make a citrus-infused vanilla sugar by combining granulated sugar with grated orange or lemon zest.

Allow the mixture to sit for a few days to let the citrus oils infuse into the sugar.

Citrus-Infused Vanilla Sugar

Use this flavored sugar in recipes where creme bouquet is called for, adjusting the quantity to achieve the desired level of citrus-vanilla essence.

This substitute imparts a subtle and natural citrus flavor with the sweetness of vanilla, mimicking the essence of creme bouquet.

Citrus-Vanilla Yogurt Emulsion:

Create a creme bouquet-inspired substitute by blending plain or vanilla yogurt with a combination of lemon and orange zest.

The yogurt provides a creamy base, while the citrus zest imparts a bright and zesty flavor.

This substitute is particularly suitable for recipes where a slightly tangy and creamy profile is desired.

Adjust the amounts to achieve the desired level of citrus and vanilla intensity.

Lemon-Lime Cream Essence:

Combine lemon extract with lime extract in equal parts, and then add a touch of cream flavoring or a hint of sweetened condensed milk.

Lemon-Lime Cream Essence

This blend offers a vibrant citrus combination with a creamy undertone, reminiscent of creme bouquet.

Adjust the proportions to achieve the desired balance between the zesty citrus notes and the rich creaminess.

Citrus-Infused Milk Syrup:

Make a citrus-infused milk syrup by heating milk and infusing it with grated lemon and orange zest.

Add a touch of vanilla extract and sweeten the syrup to taste with sugar. Allow the syrup to cool before using it in your recipes.

This substitute provides a creamy, citrus-infused essence with a hint of vanilla, offering a similar flavor profile to creme bouquet. Adjust the sweetness and citrus intensity as needed.

Almond-Orange Blossom Water Fusion:

Mix almond extract with a few drops of orange blossom water. The almond extract brings a nutty and sweet element, while the orange blossom water adds a delicate floral and citrus aroma.

Almond-Orange Blossom Water

This substitute provides a unique twist that captures some of the essence of creme bouquet, offering a sophisticated flavor profile. Adjust the quantities based on personal taste preferences.

Lemon-Coconut Vanilla Essence:

Mix coconut extract with lemon extract in equal parts and add a touch of vanilla extract. This combination provides a tropical and citrusy alternative to creme bouquet.

The coconut extract adds a subtle richness, while the lemon and vanilla create a well-balanced flavor profile.

Adjust the ratios to achieve the desired level of coconut, citrus, and vanilla notes.

This substitute is particularly suitable for recipes where a unique and exotic flavor is desired.

Ginger-Cardamom Citrus Fusion:

Combine ground ginger and ground cardamom with a squeeze of fresh lemon or orange juice.

This substitute offers a warm and aromatic profile with a citrusy kick, providing a unique twist reminiscent of creme bouquet.

Adjust the quantities to achieve the desired balance between the spices and citrus notes.

Citrus-Butter Vanilla Blend:

Combine softened butter with a mixture of lemon and orange zest. Add a splash of vanilla extract to enhance the sweet and creamy notes.

Citrus-Butter Vanilla Blend

This substitute is ideal for recipes where butter is a prominent ingredient, such as cookies and frostings.

The citrus zest adds a refreshing twist, while the vanilla contributes a classic sweetness, mimicking the essence of creme bouquet. Adjust the quantities based on the desired flavor intensity.

Citrus-Rosewater Elixir:

Mix together lemon and orange zest with a hint of rosewater. The combination of citrus and floral notes creates a sophisticated and fragrant substitute for creme bouquet.

Be cautious with the amount of rosewater, as it can be potent; start with a small quantity and adjust to taste.

Pineapple-Coconut Vanilla Infusion:

Blend pineapple juice with coconut extract and a dash of vanilla extract. This tropical-inspired substitute provides a sweet and fruity flavor profile, reminiscent of creme bouquet.

Adjust the proportions to balance the pineapple’s tartness, the coconut’s richness, and the vanilla’s sweetness.

Citrus-Honey Almond Drizzle:

Create a drizzle by combining honey with almond extract and a mixture of lemon and orange zest.

Citrus-Honey Almond Drizzle

This substitute adds a natural sweetness from the honey, complemented by the citrusy and nutty notes. Adjust the ratios to achieve the desired level of sweetness and flavor intensity.

Vanilla-Maple Citrus Glaze:

Mix together vanilla extract with a touch of maple syrup and freshly squeezed lemon or orange juice.

This substitute offers a sweet and slightly earthy profile, with a citrusy twist.

Adjust the proportions to balance the sweetness, maple undertones, and citrus brightness. This glaze is perfect for drizzling over baked goods or desserts.

Citrus-Mint Vanilla Twist:

Combine freshly chopped mint leaves with lemon and orange zest, and add a dash of vanilla extract.

This substitute provides a refreshing and herbaceous twist with the bright citrus notes and a hint of sweetness from vanilla. Adjust the mint quantity to control the intensity of the herbal flavor.

Raspberry-Lemon Vanilla Fusion:

Create a raspberry puree by blending fresh or frozen raspberries with a splash of lemon juice.

Mix the puree with vanilla extract to achieve a fruity and aromatic substitute for creme bouquet.

The raspberry adds a vibrant, sweet-tart element, while the vanilla provides a creamy undertone.

Chamomile-Citrus Elixir:

Steep chamomile tea in hot water and let it cool. Mix the chamomile-infused water with lemon and orange zest, creating a floral and citrusy elixir.

This substitute offers a delicate and soothing flavor, reminiscent of creme bouquet.

Adjust the steeping time and citrus quantities to control the intensity of the chamomile and citrus notes.

Coconut-Lime Creamy Infusion:

Blend coconut milk with freshly squeezed lime juice and a splash of vanilla extract.

This creamy and tropical substitute provides a rich coconut base with a zesty lime kick, similar to creme bouquet.

Adjust the lime and vanilla quantities to achieve the desired balance of flavors.

Citrus-Gingerbread Spice Mix:

Combine ground ginger, cinnamon, and a pinch of nutmeg with freshly grated lemon and orange zest.

Citrus-Gingerbread Spice Mix

This substitute offers a warm and spicy flavor profile with a citrusy twist, reminiscent of the traditional spices found in gingerbread.

Adjust the spice quantities to suit your taste preferences.

Honey-Lemon Lavender Infusion:

Mix honey with freshly squeezed lemon juice and a touch of culinary lavender.

This substitute provides a sweet and floral essence with a citrusy kick, offering a unique flavor reminiscent of creme bouquet.

Adjust the lavender quantity carefully, as it can be potent, and experiment with the balance of honey and lemon.

Peach-Vanilla Blossom Blend:

Puree fresh or frozen peaches and mix the puree with vanilla extract. This substitute delivers a sweet and fruity flavor with a hint of floral notes, similar to creme bouquet.

Adjust the peach-to-vanilla ratio to achieve the desired balance, capturing the essence of ripe peaches and creamy vanilla.

Feel free to customize these substitutes based on your preferences and the specific requirements of your recipes.

The key is to balance the different flavors to create a profile that complements the intended dish.

Can I substitute creme bouquet with vanilla extract alone?

While vanilla extract shares some flavor characteristics with creme bouquet, it may not fully replicate the unique combination of citrus and vanilla notes that creme bouquet provides.

Creme bouquet typically contains a balanced blend of citrus extracts (such as lemon and orange) along with vanilla, creating a more nuanced and complex flavor profile.

If you find yourself without creme bouquet and need a quick alternative, using vanilla extract alone can add a sweet and aromatic essence to your recipes, but it won’t capture the specific citrusy undertones.

To enhance the substitution, consider adding a small amount of lemon or orange zest to the recipe to introduce some of the missing citrus elements.

Are there any natural alternatives for creme bouquet?

Yes, there are several natural alternatives that you can use as substitutes for creme bouquet.

While they may not replicate the exact flavor profile, they can offer a combination of citrus and vanilla notes.

Here are some natural alternatives:

Citrus Zest (Lemon, Orange, or a combination): Grated lemon or orange zest can add a burst of citrusy freshness to your recipes. Adjust the quantity based on your taste preferences.

Vanilla Extract: Pure vanilla extract provides a sweet and aromatic flavor, similar to the vanilla component in creme bouquet. You can enhance it by adding a touch of citrus zest.

Citrus Extracts (Lemon, Orange, or a combination): Use pure citrus extracts to infuse your recipes with natural citrus flavors. Combine them with vanilla extract for a well-rounded substitute.

Citrus Essential Oils: Food-grade citrus essential oils, such as lemon or orange oil, can be used sparingly to add concentrated citrus flavor. Be cautious with the quantity, as essential oils are potent.

Citrus Juice: Freshly squeezed lemon or orange juice can provide a natural citrus kick. Keep in mind that juice adds liquid, so adjust other liquid components in your recipe accordingly.

Lemon or Orange Infused Sugar: Make your own citrus-infused sugar by blending granulated sugar with lemon or orange zest. Let it sit for a few days to allow the flavors to meld.

Remember to experiment with these natural alternatives, adjusting quantities to achieve the desired balance of citrus and vanilla flavors in your specific recipes.

Can you make my own creme bouquet substitute at home?

es, you can create your own creme bouquet substitute at home by combining various natural ingredients.

While it may not precisely replicate the commercial creme bouquet, it can still impart a delightful blend of citrus and vanilla flavors to your dishes.

Here’s a simple recipe for a homemade creme bouquet substitute:


  • 1 cup of granulated sugar
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • Zest of 1 orange
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


  • Wash the lemon and orange thoroughly to remove any wax or impurities.
  • Use a fine grater or a zester to grate the outer layer of the lemon and orange, avoiding the bitter white pith.
  • In a bowl, mix the granulated sugar with the freshly grated lemon and orange zest. Stir well to ensure even distribution.
  • Add the vanilla extract to the sugar and zest mixture. Vanilla will contribute a sweet and creamy note to the substitute.
  • Mix the ingredients thoroughly, ensuring that the citrus zest is evenly distributed throughout the sugar.
  • Transfer the homemade creme bouquet substitute to an airtight container. Allow it to sit for at least 24 hours to allow the flavors to meld.
  • Use this homemade substitute in recipes that call for creme bouquet, adjusting the quantity based on your taste preferences.

Keep in mind that this homemade version may not have the exact intensity as commercial creme bouquet, but it provides a natural and flavorful alternative for your culinary creations.

Adjust the ratio of ingredients to suit your preferences and the specific requirements of the dishes you are preparing.

Can I use essential oils as a creme bouquet alternative in baking?

Using essential oils as a substitute for creme bouquet in baking is possible, but caution is crucial due to their concentrated nature.

When opting for this alternative, it’s important to choose essential oils that are labeled as food-grade or specifically deemed safe for internal consumption.

Not all essential oils meet these criteria, so be sure to verify their suitability for culinary use.

Essential oils, particularly citrus ones like lemon or orange oil, can impart a robust and natural flavor to your baked goods.

However, because they are potent, it’s essential to use them sparingly. Just a drop or two may be sufficient to infuse your recipe with the desired essence.

To ensure even distribution, consider mixing the essential oil with a small amount of carrier oil, such as vegetable oil, or another liquid ingredient before incorporating it into your batter or dough.

It’s crucial to be mindful of potential allergies to essential oils, as some individuals may be sensitive to their concentrated nature.

If you are sharing your baked goods, consider checking with your guests or consumers about any allergies or sensitivities they may have.

Checking specific recipes designed for essential oils can provide guidance on the appropriate quantity and method of incorporation.

These recipes often provide specific instructions to help achieve the desired flavor without overpowering the dish.

While essential oils can contribute a unique and intense flavor, keep in mind that they may not replicate the complexity of creme bouquet entirely.

For a more well-rounded alternative, you might consider combining essential oils with other natural substitutes, such as vanilla extract and citrus zest.

Tips For Choosing The Right Substitute

When it comes to choosing a substitute for Creme Bouquet flavoring, it’s important to consider the flavor profile and find a balance between sweetness and citrus notes.

Here are some helpful tips to guide you in selecting the right substitute.

Considering Flavor Profile

The flavor profile of Creme Bouquet is a delightful blend of citrus, vanilla, almond, and buttery notes.

When choosing a substitute, look for flavorings that have similar characteristics.

Citrus extracts such as lemon or orange can provide the refreshing citrus element, while vanilla and almond extracts can contribute to the creamy and nutty undertones.

Experimenting with different combinations can help you find the perfect flavor profile for your baking.

Balancing Sweetness And Citrus Notes

One of the key aspects of Creme Bouquet is its ability to balance sweetness with tangy citrus notes.

To achieve a similar balance in your substitutes, consider using less sweet flavorings and adding a hint of citrus zest or juice.

This will help create a harmonious blend of flavors that can enhance your baked goods.

Exploring Alternative Extracts

If you prefer to explore alternatives to Creme Bouquet, there are a few options available.

Some bakers recommend using bakery emulsion as a substitute, as it offers a similar flavor profile and is specifically designed for baking.

Another option is to use a combination of vanilla extract, almond extract, and a splash of lemon or orange extract to mimic the citrus sweetness of Creme Bouquet.

Additionally, you can consider using floral extracts or flavorings like rosewater or lavender extract to add a unique twist to your recipes.

These extracts can provide a subtle floral aroma that complements the flavors in your baked goods.

Using Natural Ingredients

If you prefer a more natural approach, you can opt for using fresh citrus zest or juice, along with vanilla beans and almond essence.

These natural ingredients can give your baked goods a fresh and vibrant flavor.

Remember to adjust the amounts according to your taste preferences and the recipe you are using.

Testing And Adjusting

When trying out different substitutes for Creme Bouquet, it’s important to remember that every recipe is unique.

Make sure to test your chosen substitute in small quantities and adjust the amounts accordingly.

This will ensure that you achieve the desired flavor balance without overpowering or overwhelming your baked goods.


Finding the perfect substitute for creme bouquet is essential for achieving the desired taste in your baked goods. Whether you opt for bakery emulsion, vanilla extract, or other flavorings, make sure to choose one that complements your recipe.

Remember to store it properly in a cool, dark place and enjoy experimenting with different flavors to add a unique touch to your cakes, cookies, and buttercream creations.

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