Cooking With Pot: The Best Way to Eat Marijuana

Just like relationships, cooking with pot requires the right chemistry and attraction. Before preheating the oven or stove pot to bake with marijuana, learning how to cook cannabis is the first kitchen skill to master. Eating raw or uncooked weed is not going to produce much of a high (more likely a stomach ache or gas), so careful cooking is a must. Once you understand how the plant’s compounds are activated, the herbal goodness can be infused or baked into a variety of foods including dessert!

Adding a touch of the real green goddess’ potent power to a variety of recipes can greatly  enhance your enjoyment of cannabis and the foods you consume. Like most plants and veggies, the best way to eat marijuana depends on the cook. Novice baker, budding chef, or cannabis connoisseur, cooking with pot can be simple and tasty. Of course, it helps to have the right weed for sharing with your (taste) buds and to put a little TLC into your cooking. After all, nobody wants good weed to go to waste because a burned taste or pot taste that overwhelms the flavor profile. That’s why you need chemistry. 

Cooking with pot dates back to cannabis-consuming ancestors who knew that if a plant was safe for animals to eat raw, it was also safe for the tribe. Marijuana consumed through fire and smoke were good together, too. The distinctive plant is also documented in ancient texts, illustrations, art, ceremony and tradition across global religions and cultures. Today, Paleo diet coaches, health-conscious lifestyle influencers and people from all age groups often incorporate cannabis into their weekly or daily diets. From gourmet chefs to home cooks, flower foodies and great Instagrams and food channels are packed with people talking about how to cook cannabis - it’s definitely a blazing hot topic!

An Important First Step Before Cooking With Pot

A meal is only as good as the ingredients that go into it. Consider cannabis as a part of an organic plant-based diet and the cost as the equivalent of shopping at high end markets. Infused and flavored oils and butter can be used in dressings to a variety of fresh and enticing dishes and desserts.

When budget allows, go for the top shelf or premium strains for the maximum enjoyment for your investment. When compared to smoking or vaping flower, cooking with pot means you can create all sorts of healthy oils, infused butters and other activated ingredients for use in cooking and baking. A little home cooking can stretch your stash further than you might think! Cooking and baking with pot is a great way to make it last. Use your desired flavor and you’re halfway home to explore and try out some recipe options by varying degrees of difficulty.

Begin with the freshest high-quality indica, sativa, or hybrid flower. Consider the desired effect and how you plan to cook with it. Next, learn a little more about the different strains, dominant flavors, and scent profiles. Research online or via the app. Talk with your budtender before making your final choices when you pick up. That’s where chemistry comes into play.

The Chemistry of THC and CBD Activation

According to our 420 friendly Nevada friends, Hemper, “Decarboxylation is the process of using the right amount of heat and time to convert chemical compounds (think THC and CBD) in the plant into molecular forms that can interact with your brain’s receptors. Tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA) is the naturally occurring chemical compound found in marijuana. Without heat, THCA is unable to decarboxylate into tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).“

The decarboxylation process that activates the THC and CBD in the cannabis flower, low and slow is the general rule of thumb. When you’re cooking with cannabis, THC, CBD, and other cannabinoids are activated by heat and can produce a variety of effects. Smoking and vaping by inhaling cannabis compounds produces a fast absorption and high, while edibles build more gradually based on digestion and potency, which requires math and very careful measuring of ingredients and portions. Learn more about potency in cooking with pot from Leafly.

Getting Baked 101

Think you’re ready to try something simple? How to bake with marijuana depends on whether you’re craving sweet and relaxing indulgences or a savory, spicy and cerebral experience. It’s the terpenes that give cannabis its dominant scent. Soft, crunchy, or chewy, everyone can enjoy a good pot brownie or fudge. Use your infusions and methods to match your time, tastes, and mood and make something yummy. Start with the classic recipes like Alice B. Toklas’ original pot brownie and fudge or opt for a good old box mix. You can always get decadent and add some ice cream or fresh fruits to the dessert. After all, infused desserts are meant to be enjoyed as an adult treat. You might find yourself Netflixing and chilling, or breaking into a spontaneous dance along during a virtual DJ or mood playlist. If you’re feeling really brave or inspired, go for it and try TikTok. You might even be drawn into a group singalong soundtrack in an enticing ad or viral video.

Why do you build me up…

Remember, it always comes back to the flower and how it makes you feel when you’re consuming the dish and afterwards. If you’re really into cooking with pot for everyday or recreational use, let a machine do the decarbing process of the most important part of your carb-based cannabis treat. Check out the top home Herb Diffusers and Decarboxylators from Hemper

Want some tried and true recipes for how to cook or bake with marijuana without messing it up? Check out the 7 Best  Cannabis Cookbooks for Budding Chefs.