Homemade edibles are a great way to get high without having to smoke, and they can be a lot of fun to make too. Whether you’re a first-time cannabis user or a seasoned pro, there’s one thing you need to know before you start cooking your flower: decarbing is vital.
If you’re not familiar with the decarbing process, it might seem intimidating at first. Don’t worry, this article will discuss what decarbing is, how to do it properly, and our favourite tips and tricks to make perfect edibles.
What is Decarboxylation?
Decarboxylation is the process of heating cannabis flower that activates cannabinoids like CBD and THC in it.
Decarboxylation is essential when making edibles, infused oils, topicals, and tinctures because it will activate the THC or CBD compounds in the plant. This is because these two cannabinoids are present in other forms (THCA and CBDA) in raw cannabis, but they are not as powerful and won’t deliver the desired effects. Decarboxylating process involves heat, which lets cannabis change these inactive cannabinoids into active ones.
Why Is Decarbing Important?
To get the “high” you want from smoking weed or eating edibles, you need to decarboxylate your cannabis. This means heating it to a specific temperature so that the non-psychoactive THCA cannabinoid is turned into the psychoactive THC cannabinoid.
When you are making edibles, decarbing should be the first step. If done incorrectly, you could waste your cannabis or get edibles that will not deliver your desired effects.
What Temperature Should You Decarb Flower At?
The temperature can affect how fast decarboxylation happens. You want to use the right temperature so that the process doesn’t take too long or your flower burns.
Different cannabinoids and terpenes require different decarboxylation temperatures. For example, THCA needs to be heated to about 220ºF for 30 to 45 minutes. The whole process can take a little longer, depending on which decarbing method you use and the quantity of cannabis.
The best way to decarboxylate cannabis is to use the least amount of heat possible. Low heat preserves the therapeutic cannabinoids and terpenes in the plant. Terpenes can be lost when exposed to high heat levels, so caution is essential.
Different Ways to Decarboxylate Cannabis
Decarbing cannabis is a relatively simple process because the basic idea behind decarboxylating cannabis is to heat it. There are many ways you can decarb at home, but here are our favourites:
1. Using an Oven
To decarb cannabis in an oven, you need a baking sheet, parchment paper and cannabis flower. Then, follow these easy steps;
a) Set the oven to 235 degrees Fahrenheit (120 degrees Celsius).
b) Meanwhile, place the parchment paper on a baking tray and spread your marijuana across it. Make sure to break up any large pieces with your hands. You can also use a grinder. Just make sure that your flower isn’t too fine. Otherwise, you’re risking burning your cannabis.
c) Place your tray into the oven. Every 10 minutes, check on your flower and mix it around to make sure it bakes evenly.
d) After approximately 35 – 40 minutes, take it out of the oven and let it cool.
2. Stovetop and Mason Jar
If you want to reduce the smell of weed in your kitchen that decarbing inevitably produces, a mason jar is a good option. The jar will keep the smell and the mess to a minimum.
To decarb cannabis using a stovetop and mason jar, follow these easy steps:
a) Grind your cannabis roughly and place it inside your mason jar. Seal the jar tightly. b) Pour water into your pot until it is halfway full. Place the jar inside the pot, and turn on your stovetop at low or medium heat.
c) You will need to let the jar and water simmer in the pot for about 90 minutes. Keep an eye on the water level so it doesn’t evaporate.
3. Oven and Mason Jar
This method is similar to the one above, but placing the mason jar in a pot, you put it in the oven. This technique is ideal for anyone who wants to keep the smell to a minimum but also doesn’t have 90 minutes to decarb their cannabis. Here’s how you do it:
1. Preheat the oven to 250 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Meanwhile, put your grinded cannabis in the mason jar. Make sure to close the top of the container tightly to minimize the smell.
3. Once the oven is preheated, place the jar on the oven rack. Make sure that it’s not touching the sides of the oven to avoid glass exploding.
4. Bake the cannabis for around 30 minutes or until it is dark brown.
What Are the Dos and Don’ts of Decarbing?
● Make sure the cannabis is spread out to distribute the heat evenly.
● To preserve the terpenes in your herb, use low heat.
● When it starts to turn a toasted colour, take it out to prevent it from burning.
● Do not over-grind your cannabis. It could easily burn.
● Do not try to decarb your weed at a too high temperature. You might burn off the psychoactive compounds you’re trying to preserve.
● Don’t lose patience and take your flower out before the timer goes off, or you won’t get fully decarbed weed.
Get Your Heat On!
Decarboxylating cannabis might seem complicated, but it is simply the process of heating raw cannabis flowers to activate the cannabinoids within the plant to enjoy the full benefits. And remember, this is an essential step before making any edibles or infused oils.
We hope this blog was helpful to you. As you decarb your cannabis, keep these tips in mind for the best results. If decarbing still seems like too much work, you can always check out Leaf Lab’s selection of edible products.
Looking to learn more about cannabis? Check out our blog for more articles on your favourite cannabis topics.