Cannabutter, also known as marijuana butter and cannabis butter, is the primary ingredient in delicious edibles. Whether you are a medicinal user or a weekday stoner, everyone loves to eat great foods while getting high.
We tend to think of edibles as brownies, cookies, and cakes, but virtually any food can be transformed into an edible when you use cannabutter or cannabis oils. The extraction of the THC is infused in the fats of the butter and breaks down in your body producing a different, full-body high than smoking. Spread onto or cooked into any of your favorite foods, cannabutter is a 1:1 substitute to regular butter. Follow this recipe, and make cannabis culinary masterpieces with ease.
- 1 lb (4 sticks) unsalted butter
- 1-3 cups water
- 1 ounce of ground bud or 2-3 ounces of high-quality cannabis trim (make sure it is dehydrated)
Please note, this recipe is already very potent. You may decrease the amount of marijuana if you want a lighter recipe. Edibles are often stronger than cannabis you smoke, so if you are unsure of your tolerance, it is always better to use less marijuana. You can eat more edibles, but you can’t take them back once consumed.
Feel free to use any unsalted butter. However, we do not recommend using margarine. The chemical makeup and fats of margarine are not the same and will not produce the same results. THC is fat soluble (it attaches itself to the fat) and requires the higher fat content of butter.
This step is necessary to make your butter more potent, especially when using recently harvested cannabis or clippings. If you skip this part, the cannabis will still partially decarboxylated while cooking the butter. However, it will yield a less potent butter. #whywasteweed?
Decarboxylation activates the psychoactive properties of your cannabis. When you heat it, the THCa converts to THC which your body can absorb. This typically happens when you smoke marijuana. If you eat uncooked marijuana, it will have no effect and may result in a stomach ache.
Be aware during decarboxylation produces a potent odor, so be thoughtful about where you do this. If you live in an apartment building, you might think carefully about how to vent or mask the smell of marijuana.
- Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Preheat oven to 225° F (107° C)
- Lightly grind your buds or trim and spread it over the baking sheet.
- Bake for 1 hour. Do not panic if you see steam or vapors rising; it is burning away the moisture, not the THC.
- Remove the cannabis from oven and wait for it to cool. It should now have a slightly brown tint.
- Crumble any remaining pieces with you fingers. There is no need to make a powder, but you do not want big chunks either.
Now it’s time to get cooking! We have two options.
When you’re making cannabutter, the key is heating it “low and slow.” It is important to heat for several hours, never letting it boil. This allows for full activation of the THC without burning the bud.
Stove Top Method:
- Add water and butter to a medium-sized saucepan. Set stove to medium heat.
- Melt the butter, then reduce heat to low.
- Add your decarboxylated cannabis. There should be at least an inch of clearance between your floating marijuana and the bottom of the pan. If necessary, add more water.
- Maintain low heat and simmer for 2-4 hours, stirring occasionally. The butter may reach a light bubble, but never let it boil
Slow Cooker Method:
- Set slow cooker low. Add water, butter, and cannabis.
- Cover slow cooker with lid and let simmer 8 to 24 hours, Stirring occasionally. The longer you cook it, the more potent your butter will be.
Why use water instead of cooking cannabis directly in butter or oil?
The truth is, you don’t have to use water, but it keeps the temperature of the butter better regulated to avoid scorching the cannabis and helps filter out chlorophyll, dirt, and other plant fibers than ruin the flavor and texture of the butter. The water also reduces the famous skunky smell of the marijuana that could overwhelm the flavors of your dish.
Adding more water will not change the potency of the cannabutter since we filter the water out later. The cannabinoids are fat soluble and stick to the fats of the butter when the butter hardens and separates from the water.
Prep for consumption
- Pour the hot butter mixture into a refrigerator-safe, glass container, using a cheesecloth to strain out all plant matter.
- Use a spatula or tongs to squeeze or press liquid. It’s hot, so do not try wringing it out with your hands.
- Discard the leftover plant material.
- Cover and refrigerate butter mixture overnight. Once hardened, the butter separates from the water.
- Lift the infused canna-butter from the water. You may need to use a knife to loosen the edges.
- Discard remaining water.
Store the cannabutter in an airtight container or plastic wrap in the refrigerator until ready to use.
Do not microwave to soften. Always set it out on the counter and raise it to room temperature over time to maintain its potency.
We highly suggest using water in your recipe, but this does reduce the shelf life of the butter. Over time, your cannabutter may mold. The butter will last up to a week in the refrigerator or up to 6 months in the freezer. Only leave it in the fridge if you plan to use it soon.
Time to eat
Just remember, edibles tend to be stronger than smoking, and each person reacts differently. Limit your portion sizes. Additionally, edibles often take up to 2-3 hours to take effect, so don’t get fooled into thinking “it’s not working!”
Now you are ready to turn any recipe into a delicious edible. You can substitute cannabutter 1:1 for regular butter in any recipe. The possibilities for marijuana edibles are limitless: spaghetti, muffins, christmas cookies, mashed potatoes, morning toast, fried eggs, popcorn…
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