Here is a typical scenario for a newbie in the kitchen getting ready to make edibles:
- Spend hard-earned money to purchase enough herb to make edibles! Here: a batch of brownies.
- Go to the kitchen and add the herb to your favorite brownie recipe.
- Sample the finished brownies and taste the weed and wait.
- Feel frustrated because the brownie not only tastes a little odd, it isn’t psychoactive.
- Never try it again because of No. 1.
The missing step? Decarboxylation.
Decarboxylation is a chemical process that converts THCA to THC, the active ingredient in cannabis that provides the intoxicating effect. Raw marijuana leaves are loaded with THCA, but it needs to be heated in order to create THC.
If you smoke marijuana you get high. But if you were to eat it, you won’t. Simple as that. So in order to activate the essential goodness of the plant, it needs time and heat — that’s decarboxylation.
Decarbing At Home
There are too many theories and methods for the most effective way to decarboxylize marijuana to go into here. Many experts argue over time and temperature and I guarantee whatever I write here will be disputed by a host of home chefs. But, in general, here’s how to do it:
- Set your oven to 225 degrees.
- Place herb in covered container (Pyrex works well)
- Bake for 30-45 minutes
- Let cool.
Now the THCA has been converted to usable, active THC.
There are ways to do it in a crockpot and other methods. But if you are just starting out, this is the easiest way.
Making It Even Easier
There are a couple of products on the market that make this process even easier and provide a consistent end product every time.
The MagicalButter machine is a versatile countertop botanical extractor. It makes infuses butter, oil and other liquids at the push of a button. It is a time-saving device and you will never have to guess if you did it right.
NOVA is a precision decarb device. Place cannabis in the the slick device, seal the lid, hit a button. About 75 minutes later, you’ve got a fully activated product. This device is great for patients who rely on a specific regular dose.
If you plan on cooking with cannabis at home, we recommend you bone up on decarboxylating. You will save yourself from making a lot of mistakes. And in the long run, you will save time, money and temper tantrums.