Cannabis baking is a popular trend right now, ranging from delicious pot brownies to scrumptious weed cookies. With the widespread legalization of cannabis across America, there are several easy edible recipes to choose from. This is an amazing alternative for people who don’t necessarily want to smoke cannabis – and would much rather enjoy a nice snack with the same enjoyable effects.
Decarboxylation – a step before baking
Decarboxylation is an important preparation step before baking with weed, as ingesting raw cannabis will not give the “high” effect. Instead, the raw cannabis must be prepared to activate the cannabinoids (THC and CBD) by extraction initiated via heating. Heating will convert the non-active parent compounds THCA (tetrahydrocannabinolic acid) and CBDA (cannabidiolic acid) to THC and CBD, respectively. The extracted cannabinoids dissolve into an oily liquid, which can be used for baking.
Research shows the non-active parent compound THCA converts more quickly into THC compared to CBDA converting to CBD. Recent works have plotted decarboxylation rates at temperatures between 80°C (176°F) to 145°C (293°F) for up to 120 minutes. For optimal THC extraction, at temperatures above 100°C, almost all of the parent compound THCA was converted to THC in under 30 minutes. For CBD-rich strains, CBDA took longer to convert into CBD (>30 minutes). 1 2
Baking with weed basics: cannabis oil and cannabutter
Baking usually requires butter or oil, and cannabinoids like THC and CBD are able to dissolve in fats. Both cannabutter and cannabis oil are relatively easy to make. Therefore, infusing them into butter and oil is a smart way to incorporate weed into a delicious edible.
Check out the recipes below on how to make cannabis-infused oil and cannabutter:
How to make cannabis oil
Oil is a key ingredient in the kitchen, so storing cannabis-infused oil will come in handy for any type of edibles cooking.
How to make cannabutter
Butter is a staple when it comes to baking, so infusing cannabis will be a perfect way to quickly whip up some tasty edibles. Note that it should be prepared slowly at a low temperature to avoid degradation and breakdown of the active THC/CBD.
Our 5 most popular baking recipes
There are endless baked goods to make with weed. Explore these popular recipes now:
Pot brownies are by far the most popular edible choice. The rich chocolate flavor masks the subtle taste of cannabis, making them a delight to eat.
2. Space cake
Who doesn’t love a cake? There’s no doubt that some good old-fashioned space cake will leave a grin on your face.
A crowd pleaser! Share the love between your family and friends today with some weed cookies.
Plain, boring toast for breakfast? A hint of weed in your bread will get you a nice sense of euphoria to start your day.
5. Red velvet cupcakes
A delicious and easy way to finish off a meal, weed cupcakes will give you your daily dose of happiness.
Common mistakes when baking with weed
Raw cannabis has no active THC, so consuming edibles made with raw cannabis will not produce the desired effects. Decarboxylating is an easy and essential step to all cannabis edibles.
Carelessly preparing cannabis
Heating cannabis at very high temperatures will break down and degrade the active THC. Choose recipes that require minimal heating.
Adding too little or too much
Adding too little or too much cannabis-infused oil or cannabutter may have no effect or too much, respectively. Always start slow.
Not stirring after incorporating cannabis oil or cannabutter
Stirring will evenly distribute the active ingredient in your baking batter. It will also reduce the amount of cannabis taste in your final recipe.
Choosing poor quality bud
The better your cannabis, the more cannabinoids it will have, so choosing a quality flower is important to achieve the desired experience.
How edibles work
Edibles come in many different forms – including baked goods or candies. They are becoming more popular across the states where cannabis is legal for recreational and/or medicinal purposes. Fortunately, edibles seem to be safer, as they do not carry the same risks as cannabis smoking, making them an attractive alternative. Edibles also avoid smoking-related issues, such as odors and social stigmas, as they can be consumed discreetly. 3 4
The onset of effects after eating an edible varies, as it depends on the type of edible and the person consuming it. Compared to smoking weed, which directly introduces the cannabinoids to your lungs, which then rapidly distributes them to the brain, edibles are ingested and therefore need to go through the digestive system in order to reach the bloodstream to exert their effects. Oral absorption of cannabinoids is quite slower than other routes of administration, with research observing peak concentrations at approximately 1 to 3 hours after ingesting, with earlier research observing the onset of effects occurring much later. Due to the delayed onset of effects after eating, there are challenges with dose titration. 5 6 7
While edibles take longer to kick in compared to smoking or vaping, they can last much longer. Research shows that the ingestion of a THC-containing chocolate cookie exerted long-lasting and less-intoxicating effects than smoking. Participants with a history of cannabis use in an older study described these positive effects when given cannabis-infused brownies, with peak responses occurring on average after 3 hours following ingestion, with effects dissipating within 24 hours. More recent work shows that the duration of effects can last around 6 to 8 hours. Furthermore, edibles have also been shown to enhance analgesic effects for people suffering from chronic pain conditions. 8 9 10
The onset and duration of the effects of weed predominantly depend on the dosage (the amount of THC). The effective dose range is very wide and variable, as it depends on the person and their level of tolerance (e.g., a person who has never tried edibles versus a person who is a frequent cannabis user) to edibles. For some individuals, 2.5 mg was a sufficient dose, while others required higher doses. Therefore, a low dose is recommended for new users, which can be gradually increased up to a dose they find effective and favorable. This will encourage and promote the development of tolerance over time. An easy tip to remember is to “start low, go slow, and stay low”. 11