How to Make Cannabis Oil
With a wave of cannabis legalization sweeping the nation, there are more options than ever before when it comes to consuming cannabis-based products. It’s no secret that cannabis oil can become a bit costly. Buying high-quality cannabis oil is an option that may not be available to everyone.
Did you know that you can easily make your own cannabis oil at home? It’s easier than you might expect.
If you’re interested in learning how to make cannabis oil from the comfort of your own kitchen, this article is written just for you. Read on to discover just how easy making your own cannabis oil can be.
Making Your Own Cannabis Oil
There are several different methods of making your own cannabis-infused oil, butter, or ghee, that can then be used in your favorite recipes. There is also highly-concentrated cannabis oil, which is sometimes referred to as Rick Simpson Oil (RSO) or Phoenix Tears.
For this article, we’ll be covering how to make cannabis oil that can be used for cooking, applied to the skin, or taken under the tongue like standard CBD oil tinctures.
Before You Begin
Before you start on your homemade cannabis oil recipe, you’ll need to decide what kind of cannabis you’ll be using. You’ve got three options: THC-rich cannabis flower, CBD-rich cannabis flower or a blend of both.
Those interested in making cannabis oil that doesn’t elicit psychoactive effects will want to purchase high-quality CBD flower. Hemp that contains less than 0.3% THC is legal under federal law, and CBD flower can easily be purchased online.
For individuals interested in cannabis oil that offers the euphoric effects typically associated with cannabis, taking a trip to your local dispensary will provide several options for high-quality, THC-rich flower that you can use in your cannabis oil recipe.
If you’re looking to blend the best of both worlds, you can use a combination of the two. Some strains contain a perfectly balanced ratio of THC to CBD, while others tend to be primarily dominant in one cannabinoid compared to the other.
First Things First: Decarbing Your Cannabis
Before you begin making your own cannabis oil, you’ll need to make sure it goes through the process of decarboxylation. What exactly is decarboxylation? While it might sound complicated, it’s actually quite simple.
Before cannabinoids like CBD and THC are activated, they’re in an acidic state. Decarboxylation is the process of turning CBDA(cannabidiolic acid) and THCA(tetrahydrocannabinolic acid) into their active forms. Applying heat causes this conversion, which is what happens when you smoke or vaporize CBD or THC flower.
To make your own cannabis oil, the first step after acquiring your cannabis is to decarb it.
How to Decarb Your Cannabis
Baking cannabis flower in the oven is the most common way most people decarb at home. Here’s what you’ll need:
- Baking sheet
- Foil or parchment paper
- Cannabis flower
- Preheat your oven to 250°F. Make sure that you don’t go any higher than this, as higher temperatures can destroy those precious cannabinoids and terpenes.
- Line your baking sheet with foil or parchment paper.
- Place your ground up cannabis flowers(or broken up buds) onto the lined baking sheet, ensuring that all flower material is distributed evenly.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes to ensure even cooking. Remove from the oven and allow the cannabis to cool.
That’s it! Your cannabis flower is now activated and ready to use to make your own cannabis oil. When you notice that your cannabis flower has turned from green to brown after baking it, don’t worry! This is exactly what it should look like.
Making Cannabis Oil
One of the easiest ways to make cannabis oil is on your stove. All you’ll need are a few supplies you likely have on hand and some high-quality, decarboxylated cannabis.
Ingredients and Supplies:
- ¼-1oz cannabis flower (use less or more depending on your own personal needs)
- 1 cup olive or coconut oil
- Cheesecloth(or alternative that will allow you to strain your oil after it cooks)
- Mason jars for storage
- Place the oil of your choice in the saucepan and heat gently. If using coconut oil, heat until just melted. If using olive oil, heat until just warm.
- Add the decarboxylated cannabis to the saucepan and stir. Reduce the heat to low.
- Simmer the oil and cannabis on low heat for 1-2 hours, stirring occasionally.
- Remove the mixture from heat and allow to cool slightly before preparing to strain. If using coconut oil, keep in mind that it will solidify if allowed to cool too long.
- Once your oil is slightly cooled, strain it through the cheesecloth into your Mason jars. To avoid making a mess, strain into a large bowl and then transfer to Mason jars.
That’s it! You’ve successfully learned how to make your own cannabis oil.
How to Use Your Cannabis Oil
Now that you’ve got your very own stash of pure, homemade cannabis oil, there are plenty of ways to put it to use.
You might consider using it to replace the oil in your favorite recipes. Any recipe that calls for coconut or olive oil can easily be replaced with cannabis oil. Use it to lightly sauté veggies or in your favorite baked goods, but keep in mind that it will have a notably earthy taste. Also remember that, when heated at overly high temperatures, your cannabis oil will lose some or all of its cannabinoid content. That said, avoid using cannabis oil to fry anything and keep your heat low when using it to sauté.
You can also use cannabis-infused olive oil to make your own salad dressings. Simply replace the oil your recipe calls for with your cannabis oil. Cannabis oil can also be used in pasta sauces and is a fabulous addition to homemade pesto sauce. It’s easy to add to coffee or your favorite tea as well.
Consuming cannabis oil isn’t the only thing it’s good for. You can also use your cannabis oil as a massage oil. If you do, you might want to consider adding your favorite essential oils to enhance its wellness-promoting properties. Lavender oil, for example, smells amazing and is excellent for promoting a sense of calm and relaxation.
Before jumping into using the cannabis oil you’ve made, be sure to test it out for potency. Start with a few drops and wait a couple of hours to see how it affects you. If it’s too potent, simply add approximately ¼ cup of oil and mix well. If you’re using coconut oil and it has solidified, slowly simmer it over the stove with an extra ¼ cup until just melted. You can do this over and over again until your oil is the potency you desire.
Be sure to label your bottles accordingly and enjoy the fruits of your labor!
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Todd Smith is Joy Organics Chief Partnerships Officer. With over three decades’ experience in the wellness and nutritional industry, Todd co-founded Joy Organics and works diligently to support small CBD businesses across the country.