Ready to try your hand at creating cannabis-infused foods? Medicated treats are very popular among legal cannabis consumers as they allow for discreet dosing and a longer duration of action. But don’t let their popularity mislead you — creating medicated foods is an actual science. Here are three guidelines to help you get started.
Know your dose
While many cannabakers use their own home-made cannabis butter for their edibles, beginners don’t need to. Many dispensaries offer ready-made cannabis butter with the approximate dosage labeled. This is great, especially if you’re not great at math (or patiently waiting for your butter to finish). It can be a bit costly, but in general it will offer a better flavor than cannabutter that is made from scraps and trimmings.
If your local dispensary doesn’t offer pre-made butter, knowing the dose of your homemade butter is still important. Online dosage calculators exist to help make the math a bit easier — just search for “cannabutter dosage calculator” to find a good one. You’ll want to know the strength of the entire batch, so that you can then scale it down to the smaller units you’ll be using in recipes. Be sure to label your dosage and store your cannabutter responsibly.
Know your recipe
Now that you know how potent your butter is, it’s time to pick a good recipe. For best results, you’ll want to use a recipe that you’ve already tried before — something that you know tastes good, but perhaps is a bit too rich to over-indulge in. (The extra richness can help to cover the taste of the herbs if you’re using a larger amount of lower-quality cannabis.)
While cannabutter can be added to almost any recipe, it’s best to use it in place of the butter or oil that the recipe calls for. Be mindful of your dosage, and mix with unmedicated butter as necessary to achieve the dose you want. Stronger is usually not better — less potent edibles allow you to eat more of them in one sitting without couch lock!
Know your limits
Even the most experienced cannabis consumers will occasionally consume too much. For beginners (especially beginners to infused foods), it’s especially important to pay attention to your own limits. One of the most common mistakes beginners make with cannabis-infused foods is not waiting long enough before taking more. While other methods of cannabis consumption provide quick relief of symptoms, cannabis-infused foods must be partially digested before the effects are felt. This process can take even longer if you’ve recently eaten. It can take up to two full hours before the effects start.
The second most common mistake that beginners make is thinking that the effects will be similar to smoking cannabis. While the body is still receiving the same chemical compounds, eating them does not compare. Even if you’ve smoked cannabis every day for the past ten years, it’s best to start with a half dose of infused food and wait the full two hours. The effects can be quite different!
As with other forms of cannabis consumption, cannabis-infused foods are not for everyone. The effects can be more pronounced, more prolonged, and may even sneak up on you. But with a little preparation and care, you can create yummy cannabis treats from the comfort of your own home.