One of the easiest ways to cook with cannabis is to make cannabutter and one of the easiest ways to make cannabutter is in an Instant Pot. Here’s how. Come learn how to easily make your own cannabis-infused oil, ready to use in medicated edible recipes, topical salves, or even enjoy straight on its own. How to Make Cannabutter in an Instant Pot
How to make cannabutter in an Instant Pot
One of the easiest ways to cook with cannabis is to make your own cannabutter, and one of the easiest ways to make your own cannabutter is in an Instant Pot. We’ve already walked you through how to make cannabutter the old-fashioned way (on the stove), but if you’re looking to cut back on time and effort, it’s time to whip out the Instant Pot, a.k.a one of 2019s most popular kitchen gadgets .
Any chef that’s worth their salt prepares their workspace and ingredients before they start cooking, so here’s what you’ll need before you can make cannabutter in your Instant Pot:
- Instant Pot (duh)
- ½ ounce of your favorite flower
- 1 cup of butter (can be subbed with virtually any fat)
- A grinder
- 16 oz canning jar with two lids
- 2-3 cups water
- Cheesecloth (pantyhose works, too!)
Now that you’ve gathered all the materials, it’s time to roll up your sleeves and get started. (Or should we say it’s time to turn on your Instant Pot and sit on the couch while it works its magic?)
Step 1: Decarb your cannabis
When it comes to decarbing cannabis, you can do it in the Instant Pot or in the oven. Here’s how to do it in the Instant Pot:
- Grind your cannabis until it’s fine (but not powdery)
- Place it in the canning jar with the lid loosely closed
- Add two cups of water to the Instant Pot
- Place the jar in the water. The water should reach the middle of the jar; remove or add water accordingly.
- Once the jar of cannabis is situated, set the Instant Pot for 30-40 minutes on high.
- When the time is up, remove the jar and let it rest.
If you want to use the oven, set the jar in a 225-degree oven for about 30-40 minutes. It’s decarbed once it smells piney and turns dark green in color.
Step 2: Add fat
Cannabutter isn’t cannabutter without the butter, so this step is essential. Although it’s called cannabutter, you can add pretty much any fat you’d like — coconut oil and butter are great for baking with, but if you plan on using your cannabutter in savory foods, you can use olive oil or avocado oil. As long as it’s fatty in nature, it’ll do the trick.
For this step, you’ll want to melt the butter in the microwave, pour the melted butter into the jar (only fill it halfway), stir to distribute evenly, and place a new lid on the jar. Place it back in the Instant Pot, adding water so it reaches the middle of the jar, and cook on the high-pressure setting for 20 minutes.
Step 3: Chill out and let it cool
For step three, allow the Instant Pot to naturally release pressure (this usually takes about 40 minutes – make sure the “Keep Warm” setting is on), remove the jar, and let it cool. Once it’s cool enough to handle with your bare hands, pour the cannabutter through a cheesecloth (or pantyhose!) into a mixing bowl or canning jar. Put a lid on it, and you’re good to go! Refrigeration is optimal for storage.
Since this step involves a whole lot of hanging out, may we suggest passing the time with Edibles 101: A Beginner’s Guide to Cannabis Edibles? You’ll learn how edibles work, how much you should eat, and how long they take to work, among other tidbits of information. If you’re not in the mood to read, there’s always tons of 420-friendly content on Netflix , Hulu, and Amazon.
Some final tips
Whether it’s your first time cooking with cannabis or you consider yourself a professional canna-chef, it never hurts to refresh yourself on the basics:
- Eating cannabis-laced foods tends to be more intense than smoking – your body is digesting cannabinoids directly into your bloodstream instead of filtering them through your lungs.
- For best results, start small and slow. You can always eat more, but you can’t do much once cannabis is already in your system. (These tips can help, though.)
- The effects of edibles can take anywhere from 30-190 minutes to kick in, so time your consumption accordingly!
- The ultimate potency of your cannabutter will depend on a variety of factors, including how long it cooked, the temperature at which it cooked, and the strength of the strain you used . It’s not a perfect science, so making the perfect cannabutter will require some experimentation.
Keep your eyes peeled for more cannabis content from CULTA, and in the meantime, check out the Top Eight Mistakes When Cooking with Cannabis so you know what to avoid when you use your cannabutter.
How to Make Homemade Cannabis Oil (or CBD Oil)
Are you interested in making your own cannabis-infused oil? I don’t blame you! Making homemade cannabis oil is a great way to create a highly healing, concentrated, and versatile cannabis product. It is ready to use in edible recipes, topical salves, or even enjoy straight on its own. Especially if you use organic homegrown cannabis like we do, this is an excellent way to use up any extra or “fluffy” stuff too. It also happens to be very easy to make cannabis oil at home!
Follow along with these step-by-step instructions to learn how to make homemade cannabis oil. We’ll also briefly discuss the science behind cannabis oil, and what types of cannabis to use to make oil. Finally, we’ll go over various ways to use homemade cannabis oil, including some notes about caution and dosing with edibles.
What is Cannabis-Infused Oil
Cannabis oil is made by lightly heating (and thus infusing) cannabis in a “carrier oil”. Cannabinoids like CBD and THC, the most active components in cannabis, are both hydrophobic. That means they don’t like water, and are actually repelled by water molecules. On the flip side, CBD and THC are both fat-soluble. They like to bind with fatty acid molecules – such as those found in oil. When cannabis is steeped in oil, the THC and CBD molecules leave the buds or plant material and become one with the oil instead.
A wide variety of oils can be used to make cannabis oil. However, coconut oil and olive oil are the most popular and common. Coconut oil and olive oil are both pleasant-tasting and very nourishing for skin, making them versatile options for either medicated edibles or topical applications. Plus, they both have strong natural antifungal and antimicrobial properties. This helps prevent mold and extends the shelf life of your cannabis oil. Coconut oil is higher in saturated fat, which may bind fat-loving cannabinoids even more readily than olive oil.
Hemp Oil, CBD Oil, THC, or…
Your choice! You can make cannabis-infused oil with hemp or marijuana, depending on what is legal and available in your area. Or, what you’re desired end-results are. Hemp oil will only contain CBD (or a very minuscule amount of THC), while marijuana-infused oil will likely contain both THC and CBD. The ratio and concentration of THC and/or CBD depends on the strain of marijuana and particular plant it came from.
Generally speaking, THC is psychoactive and CBD is not. But THC does a lot more than change your state of mind! Studies show that THC has even stronger pain and stress-relieving properties than CBD, which is known to help with insomnia, seizures and inflammation. While they each have notable and distinct stand-alone benefits, an oil or salve containing both CBD and THC has the highest potential for a wide array of health benefits (albeit illegal in some places). Known as the “entourage effect”, the synergistic combination of both THC and CBD through whole-plant cannabis consumption and extracts is more powerful than either one on its own.
I personally like to use strains that are high in both THC and CBD to make oil and salves. To learn more about the differences between strains, CBD and THC, see this article: “Sativa, Indica & Autoflowers, the Differences Explained”.
Why Make Cannabis Oil
Cannabis oil is the foundation ingredient for ultra-healing homemade topical lotions, ointments, and salves – my favorite way to use it! Both THC and CBD have excellent anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and antioxidant properties. Studies have shown that cannabinoids have the ability to reduce acne, fine lines and wrinkles, soothe redness and irritation, and balance natural skin oils. Also, cannabinoids (THC especially) are analgesic – meaning they reduce pain. I regularly use our homemade cannabis salve on my knees, ankles, and other aching or inflamed joints and muscles.
Furthermore, making cannabis oil is one of the most reliable ways to create medicated edible cannabis products. Even so, it is extremely difficult to determine the exact potency of homemade edibles or cannabis oil. Because of this, it is suggested to consume with caution in very small doses at first. Cannabis oil can be consumed on its own, or added to other edible cannabis recipes. (I personally prefer to make homemade cannabis tinctures over edibles.)
On the other hand, simply chopping up weed to add to your brownie mix is not a good idea, for many reasons. As we already explored, cannabinoids are fat-soluble. That means that they not only bind with oils during the infusion process, but also that cannabinoids are more readily absorbed and digested in our bodies when they’re consumed with fat – such as oil. If you add raw cannabis to baked goods, it is less likely that the cannabinoids will bind to fats for a consistent and effective edible experience. Using decarboxylated cannabis to make cannabis oil further increases precision and consistency.
Using Decarboxylated Cannabis for Oil
The cannabinoid compounds found in raw cannabis (THCA and CBDA) are not the same as those found in cannabis that has been heated – such as those inhaled (THC and CBD) when you ignite or vaporize cannabis, or when cooking with cannabis. The process of heating and “activating” cannabis is called decarboxylation. It is what makes cannabis psychoactive, and also more potent for medicinal applications.
Yet when it comes to heating cannabis, it is best to do so low, slow, and methodically. There are time and temperature “sweet spots” where raw THCA and CBDA are converted into active THC and CBD. But without a precise process, over-heating or under-heating cannabis can lead to uneven activation of THC and CBD. Even worse, it may even destroy the THC or CBD altogether!
The content (activation or decomposition) of THC with time and temperature. Note that CBD takes about 2x as long at the same temperatures. Graph courtesy of 420 Magazine
Most cannabis oil recipes call for cannabis that has already been properly decarboxylated first. The most common and fuss-free way is to decarb cannabis in the oven, and then add it to oil over a very low heat afterwards – avoiding further decarboxylation. Some folks choose to decarb their raw cannabis on the stovetop simultaneously with the oil infusion process. However, that requires significantly more careful monitoring to hit that time-temperature sweet spot (and not ruin it).
Therefore, our cannabis oil recipe calls for decarboxylated cannabis as well. I provide very brief instructions on how to decarb raw cannabis below, but you can read further information about exactly how and why to decarb cannabis in the oven in this article.
1 cup of loosely ground decarboxylated cannabis. To be more precise, I suggest to use a kitchen scale to weigh out approximately 7 to 10 grams (a quarter ounce or just over), depending on your tolerance.
Episode 33: Cannabutter and Cannabis-infused Olive Oil in an Instant Pot
This week I decided to put the Instant Pot I received for Christmas to the ultimate stoner test: can you use the IP to make cannabutter or cannabis-infused oil?
I stumbled across some tips and a suggested method in a comment on Reddit. I do not remember the link but if you search for it in there, I’m sure you’ll find the same instructions I am about to share below.
Apparently, you can use the IP to not only infuse your fats, but it can also decarb the cannabis too.
I was pretty impressed with the ease of this method. I also felt it didn’t release the scent into my entire house, which was an added bonus. On the downside, I’m not sure the final product resulted in as potent of infusions as I have come to expect with other methods.
For the olive oil, I used 1/8th of cannabis for 1 cup. At maximum infusion, I would have ended up with about 535mg THC. In the butter, I used 1/4th of slightly more concentrated cannabis. At the maximum, this was about 1600mg THC/cup.