Decarboxylate weed is the crucial step, especially if you are about to cook your buds (or shake – stems and leaves) to make weed edibles, which are a lot of varieties: CBD or THC tinctures, or THC infused candies, brownies, cheesecakes or whatever else eatable: find weed recipes in our cookbook app – anyway they all require the weed, the buds or shake – stems and leaves and they work good too, to be decarboxylated in advance, and packed into a butter or oil for storage and for further use in weed edible recipes.
Decarboxylation (as it follows from the name) is a chemical process that removes a carboxyl compounds and mainly releases from the cannabis plant carbon dioxide which is CO2. The reverse reaction is called carboxylation and is basically a part of photosynthesis, which is the addition of CO2 to a compound.
When you cure cannabis it is decarboxylation that happens, when the THCA acid (where “A” stands for “acid” and it is not yet a THC) which dominates in trichomes in a raw plant, slowly turns to be a THC. You smoke – this is the same chemical process, but we need now to make the half-way, to generate THC, and keep it, but not to burn or otherwise destroy it. This is a simple yet comprehensive guide on how to activate THC in your stuff for cooking the best cannabis edibles from it.
Why do I need to Decarboxylate weed?
Sometimes referred as “to decarb” – sort of a fancy word:
— Hey dude! for how long d’you decarb in the oven, man?
It is already a very well known information that it’s heat you need to activate THCA in cannabis, by burning it down you convert THCA into THC, consequently the latter one is affecting the consumer’s brain in the desirable way but not THCA itself. Technically speaking there are two processes running when you bake it, firstly the THCA-molecules turn to be a THC (decarboxylation) and then secondly under more heat THC changes from solid state into gas (vaporization) and you puff it and it absorbs into body and then blood delivers it into brain and finally it hits into your mind! Bham! The same release of water and carbon dioxide naturally occurs during the drying process (curing) and the same runs but instantly when you burn one down.
It’s alright when puffing, yet it’s still recommended to decarboxylate weed for smoking too, and this is called to cure. Why so? Because it’s a waste of material: burning in flame in a blunt is too fast and too hot, a whole lot of your THCA does not react. When you cure before smoking you get more of THC in the same blunt, which evaporates completely kind-of skipping Phase-I. It’s also important to worry about trichomes’ colour when you grow as it is milky or amber by the reason.
For the edibles decarboxylation is even more critical, and without it it’ll be waste of time and material. Unless you want just a yummi, but obviously you’re not for that reason here. Long story short, the Decarboxylation will allow your edibles and tinctures to be potent.
How to Decarboxylate weed?
Basically it’s heat that your need. Not too hot to prevent THC from being destroyed and this temperature limit is 350℉ (176℃), neither too cold in order to ignite the THCA conversion into THC compound. And you wish to hold it around 220-235℉ (105-112℃) during the entire process. Because the heat regime is sooo critical, I’d recommend using your own calibrated cooking thermometer (the one used for candy-making or steaks) and be in charge when doing, consider rolling in advance before you start, hahahaha ))
The note is that the main factor is temperature. Prepare everything ready in advance, grind buds gently, do everything with care – and keep an eye on temperature. Since its value lies between 220-235 Fahrenheit (104-112 Celsius) and all will be fine. Do not hesitate to use a cooking thermometer, maybe the most useful gear for cannabis edibles. And a quick stir every 10-15 minutes may be helpful for the best decarboxylation too.
To start it – Grind your stuff. Unless this is a trim or shake by itself already, which btw can fit to all your CBD/THC edibles very nicely (and recommended at times!) with the pretty same effect but just a bit more of stuff you need to get the same high amount of THC or CBD whatever of these two you’re chasing, or both XD
Preheat the oven to 220 Fahrenheit which is about 105 Celsius. It is always preheated for marijuana edibles. For regular edibles it is very often too (as soon as you start being a gourmet, and you are! because you read this page). Some sources state 240℉ as the main temp, anyway it is lower than a cannabis vaporization point. Keep it below 240℉, and starting from 220℉ is just safer.
Cooking slowly is always the proper approach for the cannabis edibles as soon as they are sooo critical to heat you’d better still do experiments bravely but applying some caution. Keeping notes is another perfect idea to master your skills.
Place a sheet of parchment paper on your baking sheet and spread your cannabis trim out over it into a one fairly thin layer. It may not dry out properly if you crowd it.
Place the baking sheet into the oven and let it hang out for 25-35 minutes. Always stay below 235℉ (112℃) it’s important. If a trim is dry enough it rarely takes longer than 20-25 min, but for a completely raw plant, it may take even a double amount of time. As many 420 Chefs, as many tricks and opinions, and you try experimenting by yourself to discover the best way of your own. It’s only you who knows your stuff well, an it’s you having preferences for your favourite CBD edibles.
Once the cannabis appears nice and dry in the oven, take it from there, and let it rest in room temperature until being entirely cooled. Now you can use your great decarboxylated weed for whatever cannabis cooking application!
Find out more related posts about CBD edibles, THC and other serious stuff:
Cultivating Proper Trichomes – colour matters!!