How to Make Cannabis Oil On Your Own At Home
So you want to make cannabis oil? Eating cannabis can be a fun and potentially healing experience for many people. Fortunately as the popularity of cannabis oil grows, there are more exciting products and applications for this liquid gold than ever. Plus, cannabis oil is actually pretty easy to make in the comfort of your own kitchen. This article will explore what cannabis oil is, how to make it and what kind of benefits you may be able to expect from a cannabis-infused meal.
What Is Cannabis Oil?
Cannabis oil refers to the extraction of the naturally-occurring oils in the cannabis sativa plant, and is a delivery system for the two most sought-after cannabinoids: cannabidiol (CBD) and delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). The term “cannabis oil” can be applied broadly to both CBD- or THC-rich oils, so some cannabis oils will get you high, while others won’t.
Hemp Oil Vs. Cannabis Oil
Confusion can arise when it comes to the dizzying variety of cannabis products, and cannabis oils are no exception. There is a common misconception that hemp oil is similar to cannabis oil, however they are quite different. Pretty much the only thing they have in common is that they’re both derived from the same species of plant: cannabis sativa. Below is a breakdown of three oils. Don’t get them confused.
THC, or Marijuana Oil
Cannabis is the beloved variety of cannabis sativa which has earned many nicknames over the years, like marijuana, Mary Jane, pot, and weed. What makes cannabis so sought-after is the abundance of the THC cannabinoid present in the leaves and buds of the plant. THC is the psychoactive component of weed that produces the feeling of being “high”. Oil made from cannabis, sometimes called THC oil or marijuana oil, will contain high levels of THC, although concentrations will vary based on the strain, growing conditions and even individual differences in the plant. THC oil may also contain significant levels of CBD. Because THC is classified as a Schedule 1 drug, THC oil is illegal at the federal level in the United States. Only in states which have legalized marijuana, such as California and Colorado, is THC oil legal.
While hemp may be less popular with some crowds, it definitely holds its own as a highly versatile and commercially-important plant. Industrially-grown hemp is used as a sustainable alternative to destructive industries, such as paper manufacturing (replacing the need to fell entire forests) and clothing production (since materials such as cotton are extremely chemical-intensive crops).
Oils derived from the hemp plant will contain high levels of CBD, which is why these are sometimes called CBD oils. Because hemp naturally produces only trace amounts of THC, CBD oil will not produce psychoactive effects. Hemp has been legalized at the federal level, so any CBD oil derived from hemp plants will be legal, although the THC level in plants must remain below 0.3 percent. However, CBD oil derived from marijuana plants – even if it doesn’t contain THC – is still illegal.
Hemp oil itself does not contain any cannabinoids whatsoever. Derived only from the seeds of the plant, hemp oil is a product widely available in grocery stores across the country. Hemp oil is considered a superfood, rich in omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants, and can even be used as a nutritional supplement.
Cannabis Oil Benefits
There are many reasons to make cannabis oil on your own. There are many reported health benefits associated with cannabis oil rich in CBD, including resolving symptoms associated with Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases, depression, migraines and inflammation. THC-heavy cannabis oil can be helpful in suppressing nausea and vomiting, particularly in regards to chemotherapy treatment. It’s also been linked to aiding glaucoma patients, and helping with low appetite (think: munchies).
What Kind of Marijuana Is Best to Make Cannabis Oil?
Although dairy-based butter has been the gold standard for cannabis oil, other types of oils, including those derived from coconuts, avocados or olives, can work as well. One of the benefits of working with plant-based oils is that these can also be used as skin moisturisers – with coconut oil being especially popular for this use. Keep in mind that the flavor of the oil you choose will affect the overall flavor profile of your cannabis oil.
For best results, opt for the freshest marijuana flowers you can find. As always, consider the source: was it grown organically, or are there potential additives and pesticides lurking within? The strain is another important consideration, which will affect the potency and psychoactive effects. Keep in mind that any imperfections in the weed, as well as the terpene profile of particular strains, will be present and will likely be detectable in your finished oil.
How To Make Cannabis Oil
Before you begin, a word to the wise: your house will smell very dankly of weed by the time your finished product is ready for consumption. (The smell will be contained once you put a cork in the bottle and air your place out).
The most important, and challenging, aspects of making cannabis oil is the infusion. But with a little practise and attention, you should easily be able to master the process.
The ingredients list for your cannabis oil is blissfully short: you only need your freshest cannabis flowers and your oil of choice. Use a 1:1 ratio – so if you have one cup of buds, use one cup of oil.
Pull out your trusty pot or saucepan. You can also make cannabis oil in a slow cooker if you have one on hand. You will also need a strainer or cheesecloth, and a weed grinder. You may also dice your marijuana with a kitchen knife if you don’t have a grinder. If you happen to have a candy thermometer, this will be helpful as well (but is not absolutely necessary).
Steps To Make Canna Oil
First, you will need to grind your marijuana. Keep in mind that a little grinding goes a long way: don’t go overboard. The finer your plant matter, the more may wind up in your final product, resulting in sediment that collects along the bottom of the jar and will affect the color and flavor profile of your oil. The goal of cannabis oil is to be as pure as possible. Bigger chunks of marijuana will provide you with all the infusion you need, without allowing any into the final product.
Next, pour the oil and cannabis into your pot, saucepan or slow cooker. The cooking temperature is key: the goal is to slowly infuse the weed into the oil using low heat. Scorching or boiling will result in rancid oil and will annihilate the active compounds – the cannabinoids – in the process. Keep an eye on your pot, ensuring it doesn’t ever go above 245 degrees fahrenheit. Using a thermometer is ideal to keep track of your temperature, but if you’re eyeballing it, just keep your stove on low-medium temperature and ensure it doesn’t approach a boil. Adding small amounts of water can help bring the temperature down if need be.
If you’re using a saucepan or pot, the cooking time is generally 3 hours, whereas a crock pot can be set on low and left for about four hours (but up to six, if you’ve got the patience).
The last step is to strain the oil through your cheesecloth or metal strainer, and bottle the resulting oil. While the remaining plant material can’t be dried out or smoked, it can be used in other recipes such as pesto.
How To Cook With Your Weed Oil: Cannabis Oil Uses
Cannabis oil can be an extremely versatile cooking ingredient. We encourage you to expand your horizons – think beyond the basic pot brownie or weed cookie! There is a whole world of culinary delights for you to discover. Adding a little oil into your favorite cocktail (gin and weed tonic, anyone?) or matcha latte, salsas, even drizzling atop veggies roasting over the grill are but a few of the many recipes to try. Of course, the best part is eating the finished product.
The Effects Of Cannabis In Edibles Versus Smoking Or Vaporizing
The way you consume marijuana has a big impact on the experience. Inhalation, whether through joints, bong hits or vaping, gives an immediate psychoactive (or high) effect.
When consuming weed in edibles, the effects take much longer to come on, sometimes as much as an hour or longer. Everyone metabolizes at different rates, based on body weight, hydration level and other factors. So even if your friends are “feeling it” and you aren’t, it’s recommended to wait an hour before consuming more than your initial dose.
And eating weed extends the effects much longer than smoking, lasting up to 12 hours. Since cannabis oil is a concentration of weed and can therefore be potent, its wise to proceed with a fair amount of caution to ensure you don’t go overboard.
Cannabis oil is a versatile, delicious way to enjoy both CBD and THC-infused oils. As marijuana products are becoming increasingly accepted by the public and legalized by state governments, more cannabis oil products are hitting store shelves – however it’s just as easy to make batches in your own home. When enjoyed responsibly, cannabis oil is something that can compliment many a tasty meal.