THC edibles are trending more now than ever due to their potent powers, and ease for DIY’ing at home. By infusing common recipe bases, like oil, butter or honey, the possibilities are seemingly endless for THC edibles options. Not to mention, you’ll only need a small amount of cannabis flower or oil to do so. To help navigate the growing world of homemade THC treats, we’ve put together the only guide you’ll need to make DIY edibles.
How To Make THC Edibles?
Most at-home THC edible recipes begin with the same simple base. An oil, or liquid, that’s been infused with cannabis. Meaning once you know how to make THC butter or oil, any recipe or meal that calls for these ingredients, can essentially be canna-infused. Also increasing in popularity is the infusion of cannabis into a simple syrup that can be used in hot-drinks or other recipes that could use some sweetening plus elevating. Here are the simple steps to follow to create your THC bases for a variety of baked goods, treats or recipes. Keep in mind, anywhere that cannabis flower is used, you can substitute with equal amounts of THC concentrates, like distillate, wax, etc.
How To Make THC Butter?
Just like heat is necessary to get THC’s benefits from smoking, vaping, or dabbing…it’s also the first necessity for DIY edibles and THC butter, too. To release the beneficial cannabinoids found in cannabis, the flower must be decarboxylated or heated up, first. Follow the steps below to do so, before moving on to infusing your butter.
- Choose your amount of cannabis flower. For reference, the standard cannabutter recipe is 3.5 grams to 1 cup of butter. Feel free to adjust to your tolerance, or increase the recipe for bulk batches.
- Preheat your oven to 220℉ (105℃) and cover a baking sheet with parchment paper or foil. Break apart your cannabis flower, and spread loosely on the baking sheet.
- Heat the weed for approximately 30 minutes, shaking the tray every 10 minutes. You’ll know the weed is properly decarboxylated when it goes from green to a light golden brown.
- On a stovetop, melt your desired amount of butter in a double boiler. Add up to a cup of water to avoid scorching, when necessary.
- Add your decarboxylated weed to the butter and simmer in a consistent temperature between 160℉ – 200℉ for 45 minutes – 3 hours. Never allowing the butter to boil.
- Once your butter has been successfully infused, place a cheesecloth over a mesh strainer. Place the strainer over a glass measuring cup.
- Pour the butter and plant material into the cheesecloth strainer, and let the mixture flow into the measuring cup below. Avoid squeezing the cheesecloth for excess butter, to avoid undesirable plant material from sifting through.
- Pour the measuring cup of infused butter into your desired storage container or jar. Refrigerate or freeze the butter, which will stay good for 2 months in the fridge and up to 6 mon
How To Make THC Honey?
Now that you know how to make THC butter, the process to make other infused oils or liquids is that much easier. You’ll again decarboxylate your cannabis flower with the same method used for butter. Using the same ratio of 3.5 g to 1 cup of honey, as well. Once your weed is activated through decarboxylation, follow the simple steps below to infuse your honey.
- In a double boiler, heat your honey over low heat.
- Once heated, add your decarboxylated cannabis flower and mix thoroughly.
- Allow the mixture to continue simmering on gentle heat for approximately 40 minutes, stirring often.
- Place a cheesecloth over a mesh strainer, and put over a measuring cup or directly over a funnel and jar that you plan to store your infused honey in.
- Pour the honey and cannabis flower mixture into the cheesecloth and strainer, and let it freely drain into the jar or measuring cup. Avoid squeezing the cheesecloth to keep unwanted or bad-tasting material out of the honey.
- Store your infused honey in a cool and dark space, for 1-2 months.
How To Make THC Syrup?
THC simple syrup is a versatile infusion that can be added to a number of recipes, or drinks. Most commonly it’s added to coffees, teas, or cocktails. It can also be used to sweeten up any recipe or meal, by blending it with common sauces or using it as a drizzle or topping. Some consumers even take the THC syrup sublingually, or like a shot, similar to cough medicine syrups you may be used to.
With this method, you’ll again start with decarboxylating the cannabis flower you’ll plan on infusing into the sugary-sweet liquid. When your buds are ready for infusion, you’ll follow the steps below to make your THC syrup.
- Combine equal quantities of water and sugar in a saucepan.
- Bring the mixture to a boil to allow the sugar to dissolve completely into the water.
- Reduce heat to a medium-low setting, and add your decarboxylated cannabis flower.
How To Make THC Gummies
THC gummies are one of the most popular edible choices. They have a somewhat long shelf-life, are delicious to consume and are relatively simple to make. When learning how to make THC gummies, you’ll come across many different methods that all produce the same result. So, if you’ve set out to learn how to make THC gummy bears, we have the recipe for you. We found the recipe below, to be the most simple and successful.
This technique uses a cannabis tincture or oil, which can also be substituted with infused coconut oil. To infuse coconut oil, you’ll follow the same recipe for ‘cannabutter’ that we’ve already reviewed but with coconut oil versus butter.
One special item you’ll need to buy to make THC gummies are silicone molds in classic gummy bear shapes, or whatever shape you choose.
How To Make THC Infused Gummies
- Spray your silicone molds lightly with oil. Remove any excess oil with a paper towel.
- In a saucepan, whisk together the packet of jell-o with the 4 packets of gelatin.
- Add your ½ cup of water and cannabis infused oil or tincture.
- Bring the mixture up to a light boil, then immediately drop to low while stirring constantly.
- Let the mixture simmer for approximately 5 minutes, until you see all liquids consistently blended.
- Pour the mixture into a measuring cup, for dispersing into individual molds.
- Refrigerate the gummy molds for 15-20 minutes to solidify.
- Pop out of the molds, to store and enjoy! Store gummies in the fridge for up to 1 month.
How To Make THC Candy
Ingredients & materials:
- In a saucepan combine the sugar, corn syrup and water.
- Bring to a boil and continue stirring until the temperature reaches 250℉.
- Stop stirring the mixture once it’s reached 250℉ and let it rise until 305℉. This occurs very quickly, so keep your eye on the thermometer.
- Once the mixture has reached 305, remove from heat, and add your cannabis tincture, optional extract and food coloring.
- Stir completely, and pour into the candy molds. If making lollipops, add your sticks just prior to the candy hardening.
- Once the candies have hardened, remove from molds and enjoy!
Like we’ve already mentioned, once you’ve made your THC butter, THC honey, or other liquid base…you can quite literally add or use the infusion in any other recipe. Including baked goods, like THC brownies and THC cookies. So learning how to make THC cookies is quite easy. Find your favorite cookie or brownie recipe, and substitute its normal amount of oil or butter, with your canna-infused version. If you’d like to lessen the strength of your edibles per serving, you can use just ½ or ¼ of your cannabase to the un-infused version. For example, if cookies call for 1 cup of butter, you can use ½ cup of THC butter and ½ cup of regular butter.
How To Make THC Tea
If you’ve already made THC butter, THC coconut oil, or THC syrup, making a THC tea is simple from there. Simply melt or add the THC infused bases into the hot water you’ll be using to prepare your tea. But there’s also a method where you can infuse tea with THC from ground cannabis flower or even trim, leaves and stems. The simple process is outlined below –
- Use a mortar and pestle, or something similar, to grind up at least 1 gram of cannabis flower.
- Add ½ teaspoon of butter to the flower, to act as a soluble fat for absorption sake.
- Put the butter and cannabis mixture into an empty tea bag or tea infuser.
- Boil water, and then simmer on medium-high heat. Place the filled tea bag or infuser into the water. Let it simmer for up to 30 minutes.
- Remove the pot from the stove and pour into a cup. Flavor with milk or sugar, as you would with any other cup of tea. Or, add in a flavored tea bag to steep for an extra infusion of flavor into your cup of THC tea.
How Much THC In Edibles?
How To Calculate THC In Edibles?
To calculate THC amounts in edibles, we’ll assume that the cannabis flower used contains 10% THC to simplify the method. If you know the percentage of THC in your strain, or use our THC percentage chart, you can adjust the following formula accordingly –
- 1 gram of cannabis = 1000 mg
- X 10% THC = 100 mg
- 1 gram of cannabis = 100 mg THC
Now, you’ll figure out the total amount per the number of grams you used in your butter or oil base. Because 3.5 grams is the standard amount of cannabis flower to oil, we’ll use this as an example.
100 mg THC x 3.5 g cannabis = 350 mg THC in 1 cup of butter or oil
Lastly, to figure out your ‘per dose’ mg amount just divide the total amount of butter or oil that was used in the recipe. So, if you used 1 cup of butter or oil with 350 mg to make a batch of 15 cookies, each cookie contains approximately 23 mg of THC. If you only used ½ cup of the butter, you’ll divide 350 by ½ first, equaling 175 mg. Then 175 mg divided by the total amount of pieces the recipe makes.
How Long Does THC Edibles Stay In Your System?
Jay-Z announces new line of cannabis products dubbed Monogram
Rapper and entrepreneur Jay-Z is launching his own cannabis brand in partnership with Caliva, the California-based weed company that hired the star as its chief brand strategist last year.
Named Monogram, Jay-Z’s line of marijuana products launched its website and social media accounts on Friday.
“Monogram marks a new chapter in cannabis defined by dignity, care and consistency. It is a collective effort to bring you the best, and a humble pursuit to discover what the best truly means,” Monogram’s website highlights.
No further information on the specific products that will be sold under the Monogram brand has been released yet.
However, according to the website, the flower used in Monogram’s products is grown in small batches, with a board of “cannabis experts” tasked with grading and hand-selecting each flower that goes into the line.
The New York rapper joined Caliva in 2019 as a brand strategist, which entailed overseeing the creative direction of the company. Furthermore, Jay was focused on Caliva’s social equity efforts as he aimed to increase economic participation of people disproportionately harmed by marijuana prohibition in the newly legal industry.
As for when consumers can expect to try Jay-Z new products, a spokesperson told the New York Daily News Monogram still hasn’t set its dispensary release schedule. The line will “definitely be available across all of California,” according to the spokesperson.
In other news, basketball star Shawn Kemp who played for the Seattle SuperSonics is also showing his love of pot. Kemp is set to open Seattle’s first black-owned marijuana dispensary this Friday. The Sonics legend named his dispensary Shawn Kemp’s Cannabis and is hoping to serve as a model for others in the black community who might be interested in foraying into the legal marijuana business in the area.
“I’m looking forward to welcoming Sonics fans on a regular basis, starting with opening day. I hope that Shawn Kemp’s Cannabis will be an inspiration for people to get involved with the legal cannabis industry, especially people of color,” the Reign Man said in a press release.
Analysis: Legal weed in Texas would generate over $500 million in tax revenue per year
Legalizing marijuana in Texas could generate over half a billion dollars in tax revenue per year and create more than 40,000 new jobs, according to the results of a report released by Vicente Sederberg LLP earlier this month.
Legal cannabis sales in Texas would reach about $2.7 billion annually based on the fact that there are more than 1.5 million residents over the age of 21 that consume pot on a monthly basis, the analysis calculated.
The estimated tax revenue was calculated under the assumption Texas would tax marijuana sales at the same rate as Colorado at 20.6%. This would amount to $1.1 billion in taxes per biennium, while Texas could collect an additional $10 million per year through the issuing of marijuana business licenses.
The report notes Colorado has raised nearly $13 million on average per year just from license and application fees. Furthermore, the report indicated that current taxpayer dollars that go towards marijuana arrests and prosecutions amount to $311 million per year – money that Texas would save should it legalize pot.
“States across the country are seeing the benefits of legalizing and regulating cannabis. It is inspiring lawmakers in prohibition states to reexamine the efficacy and costs of their current policies and take a closer look at the alternatives,” said Shawn Hauser, a partner at Vicente Sederberg.
“The goal of this report is to provide a snapshot of the economic benefits Texas would experience if it started treating cannabis more like alcohol for adults 21 years of age and older,” he commented on the new report.
Aside from the tax revenue that legal weed in Texas could generate, the report highlighted marijuana’s job creation potential. An estimated 20,000 to 40,000 new jobs would be available in the newly legal industry, with tens of thousands of additional indirect positions, the report estimated.
Hauser also pointed out the added economic benefits of legalization in Texas given current uncertainties provoked by the coronavirus pandemic.
“Texas is leaving an enormous amount of money on the table by keeping cannabis illegal,” according to him.
Texas was once known for having the strictest drug laws in the U.S., but the state has softened its stance on cannabis in recent years. A very limited medical marijuana program was established in 2015, while, more recently, cannabis possession arrests in the state have been significantly declining after hemp became legal.
Cannabis Businesses Invest in Their Futures with Political Donations
Cannabis companies have been making political donations for years, and in 2020, those donations have continued to grow. In fact, some companies are investing aggressively to shape the future of the cannabis industry either by donating directly to campaigns and politicians or through political action committees (PACs) that support cannabis-friendly candidates and legislation.
So far in 2020, the Center for Responsive Politics reports that the leading cannabis companies, cannabis-related companies, and cannabis trade associations making donations to federal candidates, parties, and outside groups are (in order of 2020 donation amounts to date):
- Canty Ventures
- National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA)
- Have A Heart
- Beyond Broadway LLC
- Sea Hunter Therapeutics
- Cannabis Trade Federation
- Dan Kopp & Co
- Acreage Holdings
Compare that list to the list of large cannabis company donors in 2019, which included Curaleaf, Parallel Brands (formerly Surterra Wellness), Tweed Inc. (part of Canopy Growth Corporation), Canndescent, and Trulieve. Even ancillary cannabis companies like Dama Financial, WeedMaps, and Acreage Holdings donate large sums of money in 2019 according to data from the Center for Responsive Politics.
State Donations in 2020
There are a number of legalization (adult-use and/or medical use) and decriminalization measures on state ballots in 2020, and cannabis companies, ancillary companies, and professional associations have been actively donating directly to related campaigns and initiatives at the state level.
In Arizona, Harvest is the biggest donor in support of legalization (Prop. 207) followed by Curaleaf, MedMen, Cresco Labs, Copperstate Farms, Arizona Dispensaries Association, Herbal Wellness Center, and Oasis Dispensaries.
Mississippi’s medical marijuana initiative on the November ballot (Initiative 65) has received donations from the CEO of Heritage Properties (George Walker III), Ghost Management Group (which owns Weedmaps), and the owner of ABKO Labs (Robert Lloyde II).
Ghost Management Group and its Weedmaps subsidiary also donated to support Montana’s and New Jersey’s legalization initiatives. In addition, New Jersey’s legalization Question 1 on the November ballot received donations directly from The Scotts Company (the maker of Scotts Miracle Gro), Pashman Stein Walder Hayden (a New Jersey cannabis law firm), and Compassionate Care Research Institute (a New Jersey dispensary).
Keep in mind, these donations don’t include the donations that cannabis companies and ancillary businesses donate to PACs or that they invest in lobbying. The Center for Responsive Politics reports that the biggest investments in lobbying from cannabis companies, ancillary companies, and trade associations in 2020 have come from the Cannabis Trade Federation, National Cannabis Roundtable, Canopy Growth Corp, Curaleaf, Global Alliance for Cannabis Commerce, Parallel Brands, Cronos Group, Charlotte’s Web, NCIA, Acreage Holdings, Dama Financial, Trulieve, California Cannabis Association, and Oregon Cannabis Association.
Political Donations from Cannabis Interests Are Not New
One of the biggest political donation stories happened in California when cannabis businesses donated aggressively to former Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom’s campaign to become the state’s governor in the 2018 election. According to the Los Angeles Times, he secured hundreds of thousands of dollars in donations from cannabis cultivators, processors, and retailers.
By May 2018, Newsom had raised nearly $500,000 from cannabis companies, but he wasn’t the only politician in California to receive money from cannabis interests. At the time, the state’s Treasurer, John Chiang, and Attorney General, Xavier Becerra, also secured donations from the cannabis industry
And of course, these donation numbers don’t even include the many donations from PACs that businesses and individuals working in the cannabis industry donate to. Many of these funds go directly to specific candidate’s fundraising efforts. For example, the Coastal Pacific Political Action Committee held a fundraiser in June 2017, and six days later, the PAC donated $50,000 to Newsom’s campaign.
Another noteworthy political donation happened in Florida over the course of multiple years. The Miami Herald reported that Surterra donated $1.1 million to Florida political candidates and committees between the summer of 2016 and March 2018. Trulieve donated $564,000 during the same period, and Curaleaf donated $469,000.
In Illinois, the doors for cannabis companies to make political donations opened in March 2017 when a federal judge ruled an Illinois provision that did not allow marijuana companies to make campaign contributions in the state was unconstitutional.
According to the Chicago Tribune, the provision prevented contributions to political committees that were established for the purpose of promoting candidates for public office. Since that decision was made, cannabis companies like PharmaCann and Cresco Labs have donated significant amounts to the state’s political candidates and committees.
Business and individual donations to marijuana-friendly political candidates have also become standard in Nevada and Colorado. During the 2016 elections, dozens of marijuana cultivators, processors, and dispensaries donated $75,000 to Nevada legislators according to the Nevada Independent.
Looking back further in history, Florida Senator Rob Bradley received his first donation from a cannabis company in 2015 when Costa Farms donated $10,000 to his political committee.
Similarly, cannabis businesses have actively contributed to Colorado political campaigns for years, and many of those businesses have been holding political fundraisers to support their preferred candidates. PBS reported back in 2014 that Colorado’s congressional delegation had received $20,000 during the first nine months of 2014 from marijuana businesses. Also in 2014, a fundraiser to support political candidates that was held by Tripp Keber of Denver, Colorado’s Dixie Elixirs & Edibles generated $40,000 in donations.
What’s Next for Political Campaign Donations from Cannabis Businesses?
As the cannabis industry continues to grow and more states legalize medical and/or recreational cannabis, laws will continue to evolve. Cannabis businesses and ancillary businesses should absolutely be concerned about which politicians are making those laws.
With that said, it’s safe to assume that political donations from the cannabis industry will get larger and more frequent in the coming years. Let’s put the donations from cannabis companies to political campaigns into perspective. During the first half of 2019, the cannabis industry gave more than $200,000 to members of Congress, which was up from $248,504 donated throughout all of 2018. Compare that to the $42 million that pharmaceutical companies donated to political campaigns across the United States in 2018.
With those numbers in mind, it’s guaranteed that political donations from cannabis and cannabis-related companies will continue to grow. Savvy businesses are paying attention and getting involved in an attempt to influence the regulations that could make or break their companies’ futures.
Originally published 8/24/17. Updated 10/23/20.
Susan Gunelius, Director of Email Marketing Strategy for Cannabiz Media, is also President & CEO of KeySplash Creative, Inc., a marketing communications company offering, copywriting, content marketing, email marketing, social media marketing, and strategic branding services. She spent the first half of her nearly 30-year career directing marketing programs for AT&T and HSBC. Today, her clients include household brands like Citigroup, Cox Communications, Intuit, and more as well as small businesses around the world. She has been working with clients in the cannabis industry since 2015. Susan has written 11 marketing-related books, including the highly popular Ultimate Guide to Email Marketing for Business, Content Marketing for Dummies, 30-Minute Social Media Marketing, Kick-ass Copywriting in 10 Easy Steps, and she is a popular marketing and branding keynote speaker. She is also a Certified Career Coach and Founder and Editor in Chief of Women on Business, an award-winning blog for business women. Susan holds a B.S. in marketing and an M.B.A in management and strategy.
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