by Kathy Rasmussens
Why you need to Decarb your Cannabis for Cooking
Edibles are more and more popular these days and many people try to make their own. Many beginners make the mistake of not decarboxylating their cannabis, or do it incorrectly. To get the effects of THC or CBD in edibles and topicals, THC / CBD activation called Decarboxylation or Decarbing must be used in preparing your cannabis. It’s the most crucial step in the cooking process as not decarbing will result in a less potent edible.
By slowly cooking your dried buds, you’ll release the THC or CBD from the cannabis. If you opt to smoke or vape you won’t have to worry about decarboxylation since the process occurs by default as soon as the cannabis is exposed to heat.
Decarbing is easy using just an oven on low heat to roast your cannabis. The longer it is exposed to heat, the more THC is used up in the process so don’t let it get to a dark brown colour to maintain potency.
Steps to Decarbing
What you need:
- Baking Tray
- Parchment paper or baking mat
How to do it:
1. Preheat oven to 240ºF. Place oven rack in middle position.
2. To prep your cannabis for baking, use a handheld grinder (or your fingers) and lightly grind. You do not want it to be finely ground – just lightly ground. Spread it evenly onto parchment-lined baking tray.
3. Bake at 250° F for 20 minutes. You can cover it if you want to, but it’s not necessary. The cannabis should be lightly toasted and golden brown. The longer it is exposed to heat, the more THC is used up in the process so don’t let it get to a dark brown colour!
4. Let cannabis cool enough to handle. The cannabis is now ready for your recipe!
There are other ways to decarb.
The Mason Jar Method
There are a few benefits to the mason jar method over decarboxylating on a baking sheet in the oven.
- Mason jar with lid
- Baking tray
- Kitchen towel
- Oven gloves
How to do it:
- Set your oven between 220 – 240ºF and place the oven rack in the middle position.
- Break up your cannabis until to the size of a grain of rice. Put it into the mason jar and screw on the lid lightly.
- Wet the kitchen towel and lay it over the baking sheet. Put the mason jar on the towel to help anchor the jar to the baking sheet and keep it from falling over.
- Place the baking tray in the oven and bake for 60 minutes. Every 15 minutes, carefully remove the mason jar from the oven with the oven gloves and give it a shake to disperse the cannabis evenly.
- After 60 minutes, remove the jar from the oven, and let cool.