The science of edibles has come an incredibly long way in recent years with all sorts of innovations in the way of THC drinks, cakes, pizzas, lollipops, gummy bears, effervescent tablets, smoothies and milkshakes, mints and hard candies… the list is goes on to exhausting lengths! Virtually anything you can think to eat or drink – they’ve figured out how to put cannabis in it.
The wonderful thing about most of the processes by which cannabis edibles are made in professional, commercial facilities, is that they can be reproduced at home in small batches too!
The best way to make edible is to start with an edible concentrate, which is prepared and able to be mixed into virtually any recipe. One of the benefits to this method is being able to accurately estimate dosages and create uniform and consistent results. We’re going to show you exactly how to make it.
The science of edibles
Remember that, cannabinoids like THC are not water soluble and they are not easily absorbed by the human body. This means that you can’t just eat cannabis and expect it to work! If you eat 100mg of THC without a delivery system, you are likely to absorb a maximum of about 10mg of THC. By creating an infusion of cannabinoids with oils and fats, we create a delivery system that can reach up to near full absorption.
While traditionally butter has been the common delivery system for making edibles, today we’ll use a much better and more potent delivery system that is sure to knock you down and get you the biggest bang per mg of THC.
Remember also, that THCa is the most common form of THC found in flowers, and in well made at-home concentrates. This THCa must be converted into THC by removing 2 oxygen and a carbon from the THCa molecule. This removal of the carboxyl group can be done in a practical way at home leading to the most amount of THC, without over-degrading into CBN.
The carbon dioxide formed by de-carboxylation can be observed in concentrates already infused in oils, by the formation of CO2 bubbles within the solution when the solution is heated to around 240ºC. As the bubbles accelerate, THCa is converting rapidly to THC. At the point that the bubbles start forming slower, is the point at which THC is now being converted to CBN faster than THCa is being converted to THC.
What do you need to make an edible cannabis concentrate?
Start with concentrate of high THCa content when making edibles. Either by purchasing or obtaining shatter or by making anethanol extractionof flowers or traditional hash, at home. If you can get a hold of THC distillate, you can skip the de-carboxylation step entirely.
The transport system we will be using in today’s example is Liquid Soy Lecithin. This solution of bi-layer phosphatidesencapsulates cannabinoids in a way that boosts absorption, but also has the potential to create oil in water emulsions – which is why it works perfect for making gummy bears. Cold-pressed, Coconut oil will be the secondary delivery system in our powerful edible concentrate solution.
In addition, you will need a 100mL glass beaker or similar, and a stainless steal pot large enough to place it in. You will also need a glass stir rod and a very cheap cooking oil like sunflower seed oil, or vegetable oil depending on where you live.
Finally, you will also need a thermometer capable of measuring the lecithin/cannabinoid solution we will be making.
How to make an edible cannabis concentrate
Measure 10g of concentrate and place it into your glass beaker.
Add 20mL of cold-pressed coconut oil to the beaker.
Place the beaker into the stainless steal pot with a paper towel between the bottom and the glass, and set it on top of a hotplate or stove.
Add enough oil to the pot to reach the same level as the solution of coconut oil and cannabinoids you’ve just placed inside the pot.
Heat the solution up slowly, until the solution reaches 235-240ºC, stirring continuously but not vigorously. Maintain this temperature for about 20-35 minutes. CO2 bubbles will quickly form as the conversion takes place.
At the point when the bubbles start to slow their production, remove the glass jar from the stainless steal pot and set it on the stove to cool down slowly on its own.
Once the solution has cooled down to under 80ºC you can safely add the 10g of Liquid lecithin and once mixed, you can now use this edible concentrate to consume on its own, mix into any cookie recipe, add a few drops to a milkshake, or nearly any other food that you can possibly imagine.
In this case, we end up with about 40ML of edible cannabis concentrate with a potency of just under 175mg THC per single mL. This number assumes that the concentrate we started with, contained about 80% THCa to begin with.
Beginners should start with as low as 5mg per dosage, but some users find they enjoy as much as 100mg at a time. 20-30mg seems to be a comfortable average for most regular cannabis users.