How to Decarboxylate Cannabis

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Introduction: How to Decarboxylate Cannabis

About: we're a couple of medical cannabis farmers that believe in responsible and educated use of cannabis for all! we hope our instructables will teach you useful skills that you can use to grow, process, and medica…

If you're wanting to make edibles or tinctures from cannabis, decarboxylation is a crucial step! Decarbing the cannabis you use in medibles and tinctures will make them safer and more effective.

Decarboxylation happens very slowly when cannabis is cured, but we can use an oven to speed up and complete the process. Decarbing your cannabis allows you to convert the THCA found in your dried buds and trim to THC. This will allow your medibles and tinctures to be more potent and take effect more quickly. Decarbing most often occurs when cannabis is smoked, so this process doesn't have an opportunity to occur when making butters, oils and tinctures - you have to do it beforehand!

Beyond turning the THCA found in cannabis to THC, decarboxylation also has one other awesome benefit: lowering the risk of botulism in your medibles. If you don't properly decarb your cannabis, the moisture from it can cause botulism bacteria to grow in your tinctures, butters or oils. And I'm assuming you probably don't want that on top of why you're medicating with cannabis already. ;)

For more information on decarboxylation and also a nice scientific experiment, I recommend reading this article.

In this instructable I'll cover how we choose to decarboxylate cannabis - there are loads of ways to do it, but this is our preferred method.

Step 1: Tools + Materials

To do this you'll need:

  • an oven set to 220 F/105 C
  • a baking sheet
  • parchment paper
  • sugar leaf trim, ground bud, or kief

If using sugar leaves or kief, no other processing is necessary. If you're using full buds, grind them roughly before proceeding. You want things to be broken down well so the cannabis releases all the moisture it's holding.

Today I'm decarboxylating 40 g of Doctor Who trim - we're going to turn it into coconut canna oil.

Step 2: Prep

Preheat the oven to 220 F / 105 C.

Place a sheet of parchment paper on your baking sheet and spread your cannabis out over it. If you see any large pieces, break them up with your hands.

If you have more cannabis than will fit nicely on one sheet, divide it in half. You just want one fairly thin layer. If you crowd it it will not dry out properly.

Step 3: Decarboxylate

Place the baking sheet in the oven and let it hang out for 25 minutes.

For well dried trim, kief, and bud this should be long enough. However, if the cannabis you're using is more fresh you may want to take it an additional 25 minutes.

A hygrometer can be useful for double checking to see how much moisture is left, too - just put the cannabis in a closed jar or bag with it.

Once the cannabis is nice and dry, let it sit out on the counter until it's entirely cooled. Now you can use it for whatever medible application you'd like!

3 People Made This Project!

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160 Discussions

0
brownsarah
brownsarah

3 years ago

I just started decarbing for my butter, but can someone clarify for me why the process of decarboxilation doesn't happen while I'm cooking my butter. Or is it just making it stronger to first decarb?

0
EdiblesRule
EdiblesRule

Reply 1 day ago

In simple terms, I've found over decarb, then hob in oil seems to produce a better extraction, as I always chuck the waste into brownies and usually they aren't very strong which it's good, but bad at the same time, I know my system works well so I actually just add some of my oil extract in so they pack a better punch

0
JackOfHeartsSRL
JackOfHeartsSRL

Reply 3 years ago

You decarb in the oven before to convert the THCa to THC. The THCa can't be processed by the body. This doesn't happen unless you get the temperature over 100C, higher than the boiling temp of water or butter.

0
martin.j.roast
martin.j.roast

Reply 3 years ago

Butter
is an emulsion of fat in water - thus boliling starts at about 100 deg
C. As it is not pure water, but solution of proteins, salts and
hydrocarbons its boiling point will be higher thus 110-120 deg C

0
brainiakdumdum
brainiakdumdum

Reply 3 years ago

225+º F for those of us in Trump country.

0
jdlavis
jdlavis

Reply 6 months ago

Best thing you guys did was vote that man into the presidency. I just loved watching him take it out in 2016 and look forward to seeing him do it again in 2020 cos seriously if Joe Biden gets in you have got to know it is rigged this time because he is a stammering fool.

0
taurusdbull1
taurusdbull1

Reply 2 months ago

This isn't about politics it's about a medicinal plant that's vital to our health why bring your political views into this

0
taurusdbull1
taurusdbull1

Reply 2 months ago

Why bring politics into this your choice is your choice you don't have to tell everybody we don't care

1
ClanMan
ClanMan

Reply 2 years ago

Max oven temp to decarb varies on who you ask but 220F - 240F or 105C to 115C is the temp you want for 30 - 60 mins depending on dried or fresh material.

0
heyitsme333
heyitsme333

Reply 1 year ago

Cooking the butter or coconut oil sure does do the trick. The proof is in the pudding. Taste and see that the herb is good!! I just threw some old bud in a soup and got whalloped for a number of hours. Mighta been a lot of cbn in it. Dunno.

1
brainiakdumdum
brainiakdumdum

Reply 3 years ago

Because the process is slowed by being suspended in a medium rather than heat being applied directly to the surface area of the solids.

1
Kimi0925
Kimi0925

Reply 3 years ago

Decarbing, removes the acid, makes it more potent, & removes the moisture. It's the same as drying fresh herbs in the oven. When you do it with fresh herbs, it brings the oils out, enhancing the flavor.
You want a dry mix to make your butter.

0
G-Nasty
G-Nasty

Reply 3 years ago

I've been wondering this too! The moisture in the butter may inhibit decarb. However, I'd bet using clarified butter (ghee) would do the trick of decarb as this type of butter contains no water.

0
Jeannetteisred
Jeannetteisred

Question 5 weeks ago

So do I still need to heat my oil when I put the weed that was decarboxylated in the oven in it? Otherwise how does it bind to the oil? Because we have to strain the oil right?

0
EdiblesRule
EdiblesRule

Answer 1 day ago

I decarboxylate then use my grinder once cooled to breat down as much as possible, then I cook on a really low heat with 50% olive oil and 50% coconut oil for 30 mins, basically mashing it down until pretty much all the bits are gone. I like the taste and it goes in easy to puddings, dinners etc, I eat alot of Thai food so it's fine.

Once ready I strain into my sterilised jar using a boiled face wipe of all things, the stuff that's left I chuck into a brownie mix, you always know how good your extraction was because the brownies aren't too strong, enjoy

0
EdiblesRule
EdiblesRule

Reply 1 day ago

And I store it in the fridge, not had any problem with several months

0
imhoffr82
imhoffr82

Answer 27 days ago

You have to heat it as well to 220 degrees which will extract the the and bind it to the fatty acids in the oil. Coconut oil is best for maximum extraction and if you want a little flare but not as potent you can use avocado oil. The oil you use though should have a higher boil rate which means there is more fat molecules for the thc to bind to.

0
Curiouscat1
Curiouscat1

4 years ago

Can you do this on wax paper,foil,or just on cookie sheet??

0
imhoffr82
imhoffr82

Reply 27 days ago

Do nothing with wax ever! You can use regular aluminum foil as long as its not the no stick style that has extra chemicals in it or parchment paper which is the best bet.

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0
Jeannetteisred
Jeannetteisred

Reply 5 weeks ago

NO TO WAX! Wax paper and parchment totally different. The wax can come off of the paper on to ur stuff! Ewww but foil works just fine too