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Cooking with cannabis is super easy, fun, and affordable. Whether you are a master chef or have no cooking experience, our top 10 tips for cooking with cannabis can help you infuse cannabis buds or concentrate into your favorite sweet and savory recipes.

1. Choose the Right Cannabis Strain

Whether you are starting with dried flower or concentrates like kief, hash, or shatter, you need to consider your strain’s chemical profile. Each batch of cannabis has a unique level of cannabinoids and terpenes, although most products will only list the cannabinoid percentage on the label.

Take some time to research the cannabis strain's potential effects and terpenes, which are thought to affect how cannabinoids interact with the endocannabinoid system. This can help you choose the best strain for your desired effects.

In some cases, you will use a mix of flower or concentrate such as cannabis trim from different strains or a blend of extract types to make homemade edibles. This can make it difficult to determine the exact level of cannabinoids and terpenes in the final product.

2. Skip the High with CBD Flower and Concentrates

If you don't want to experience the high of THC-infused cannabis edibles, there are many CBD hemp flower and concentrate options you can use as an alternative to THC-rich nugs. Cannabidiol (CBD) does not produce a high and won’t make you fail a drug test. 

CBD products are widely available online and generally legal to ship across the country. However, some states have begun restricting the sale of hemp-derived delta-8, delta-10, and other THC analogs that can cause some mild intoxication.

3. Choose the Right Oil or Fat

Cannabis cooking is nothing without its two main ingredients, cannabis and a cooking oil or fat, such as butter, olive oil, and coconut oil. You can use peanut, avocado, sesame, vegetable, or canola oil, depending on your preference. Each has a different smoke point, infusion rate, bioavailability, cost, and shelf life.

4. Grind Your Weed

Cannabis dried material should be broken down into a fine consistency, ideally in a weed grinder, although there are many ways to break down weed without a grinder. A grinder helps grind your weed into a fine plant material but does not completely pulverize it like a blender or food processor.

If you're using a cannabis concentrate, it can help to spread it out over a flat surface to increase its surface area. This is helpful for decarboxylating cannabis, which we will discuss below. Gently apply a lighter to your extracts like shatter or wax to make them more pliable.

5. Decarb Your Cannabis

Cooking cannabis isn't as simple as adding the herb or concentrate straight into a mixing bowl with your other ingredients. First, you need to “activate” the plant's compounds by heating the material, a process called decarboxylation. The same process occurs when you're lighting up a joint.

Here’s a handy guide on how to decarboxylate your weed.

6. Watch Out for High Temperatures

No matter the cooking method you use, pay close attention to your temperatures throughout the cooking process. Invest in a baking thermometer to maintain control of temperatures. Cooking at very high temperatures can decrease cannabinoid potency and terpene levels. Terpenes have a relatively low boiling point.

7. Mix Ingredients Thoroughly

You don’t want to have a bad trip because one part of your edibles had too much THC while another didn’t. This can happen if you don't mix your ingredients well. Creating a homogeneous mixture can help avoid THC overconsumption

8. Strain Carefully

After the infusion process is over, you will need to strain the infused cannabis oil with a cheesecloth or other straining material. However, applying too much force when straining can yield a higher concentration of chlorophyll, making the edible have a more bitter flavor.

9. Calculate Your Edible Dosage

Cannabis edibles are one of the trickier products to make with exact precision unless you're getting your edible tested by a laboratory. However, there are ways to get a close estimate of your expected THC level. 

Use our free edible dosage calculator to find the right dosage.

10. Keep Your Edibles Fresh

Once you’ve cooked up your delicious cannabis-infused edibles, you need to properly store your edibles to keep your weed edibles fresh. The same rules apply when storing cannabis flower or any cannabis infusion.

Keep your edibles in a dry, cool, and dark location. An airtight container or resealable bag is a good storage option in your pantry or fridge. Make sure to keep your edibles away from kids and pets and clearly label them to prevent unintentional consumption.

Cannabis Recipes for Beginners

Now that you have a good sense of making your own weed edibles, you need a bit of inspiration to kick off your culinary journey. Our blog resource center has tons of tips and tricks for making cannabis edibles and fun and easy recipes like these:

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Karen Getchell, expert cannabis writer
Karen Getchell

Karen gained expertise in developing training programs and technical documentation as a Senior Editor at Cisco Systems. She began her journey in cannabis as a patient, searching for a way to heal herself. When she perfected a method for making cannabis oil, other patients began to seek her out. An early adopter of CBD medicine, she started her CBD-infused-products business in 2014. Over the last two decades, Karen has taught hundreds of patients and caregivers how to select strains, infuse oils, and extract cannabinoids.

When she isn’t teaching cannabis cooking classes, Karen works as a cannabis business consultant, writes for online cannabis publications like Cannabis Training University, Leafly, and Weedmaps, and runs a CBD-infused-product business.

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