How to make cannabis butter?

How To Make Cannabis Butter?

Whether you’re looking to use it for medicinal or recreational purposes, cannabis butter is an essential base for many culinary preparations, especially for stoners chefs!

Be a chef, use cannabis butter!

In this article, I’ll explain step-by-step how to make your own cannabis butter at home. You’ll also learn how to correctly dose THC to achieve the desired effects. Ready to bake?

Ingredients and Tools to Make Cannabis Butter

how to make cannabis butter
Woman making cannabis butter manually – Old school method

Making cannabis butter at home is very easy, and even beginners can do it. You need to use fresh, good-quality ingredients to make a tasty, flavor-rich cannabis butter.

The recipe I’m about to share with you is simple to make and requires just a few ingredients.

So here are the ingredients you’ll need to make cannabis butter:

  • Cannabis: Half an ounce (14 grams) of dried, decarboxylated cannabis, finely ground. The quality of your cannabis will directly affect the potency and taste of your butter, so choose a strain that fits your desired outcome.
  • Butter: Two cups (approximately 454 grams) of unsalted butter. Unsalted butter is preferred because it allows you to control the flavor and salt content of your final product.
  • Water: Adding water helps to regulate the temperature and prevents the butter from burning. You’ll need enough water to create a layer over the butter in your pan, typically about 2 cups.
  • One teaspoon sugar or honey (optional).

STORE – You can find all these ingredients in any supermarket. Make sure the cannabis you use is fresh and free of impurities. You can buy cannabis in the dispensaries I recommend. Once you’ve got all the ingredients, you’re ready to start the recipe!

Hey, wait! What about the tools? Once again, super easy:

  • Grinder (for cannabis),
  • Saucepan or slow cooker,
  • Cheesecloth or fine mesh strainer,
  • Storage container (preferably glass),
  • Spatula or spoon for stirring.

My Cannabis Butter Recipe: 7 Easy Steps to Follow

1. Decarboxylation

  • Preheat your oven to 245°F (118°C).
  • Spread your finely ground cannabis on a baking sheet in a thin, even layer.
  • Bake the cannabis for 30-40 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes to ensure even decarboxylation.
  • Decarboxylation is crucial as it activates the THC and CBD in the cannabis, which are not psychoactive in their raw form.

2. Melting the Butter

  • In a medium saucepan or slow cooker, add the butter and an equal part of water.
  • Heat on low until the butter is melted. The water helps to prevent the butter from scorching.

3. Adding the Cannabis

  • Once the butter has melted, add your decarboxylated cannabis to the saucepan.
  • Stir the mixture gently to ensure that the cannabis is evenly distributed throughout the butter.

4. Simmering

  • Maintain a low heat (ideally between 160ºF and 180ºF; too high temperatures can burn the butter and reduce the effectiveness of the cannabinoids).
  • Let the mixture simmer for 2 to 3 hours, stirring occasionally. This slow infusion process is key to extracting the cannabinoids into the fat of the butter.

5. Straining the Mixture

  • After simmering, let the mixture cool slightly for safety.
  • Place a piece of cheesecloth or a fine mesh strainer over a bowl or container.
  • Pour the butter mixture through the strainer to remove all the plant material.
  • Squeeze out as much butter as you can from the plant material. Be careful, as it may still be hot.

6. Cooling and Separating

  • Allow the strained butter to cool at room temperature.
  • Once cooled, cover it and place it in the refrigerator to solidify.
  • The butter will separate from the water and rise to the top. Once solidified, you can lift the butter off the water, discard the water, and your cannabis butter is ready to use.

7. Storing Your Cannabis Butter

  • Store the cannabis butter in an airtight container in the refrigerator or freezer.
  • In the fridge, it should last several weeks. In the freezer, it can last up to 6 months.

How to Calculate the THC Doses for Cannabis Butter?

cannabis butter
This cannabis butter looks good

Calculating the THC dosage in homemade cannabis butter can be a bit tricky because it depends on several factors:

  • The potency of the starting cannabis material,
  • How well the THC is extracted,
  • How evenly the THC is distributed throughout the butter.

However, I can guide you through a basic calculation to estimate the dosage.

Understanding THC Potency in Cannabis

The first step is to know the THC percentage of the cannabis you’re using. This is often provided by the dispensary or can be found on the packaging, as you’re in a country where cannabis is legally sold.

If you don’t have this information, it’s much harder to estimate the dosage accurately, but for the sake of this example, let’s assume a THC percentage.


CALCULATION – Let’s say you have cannabis with a THC content of 20%. This means that for every gram of cannabis, there is 200 mg of THC (since 1 gram is 1000 mg and 20% of 1000 mg is 200 mg).

Steps for Calculation

  1. Calculate Total THC: First, calculate the total amount of THC in your starting material: 14 grams of cannabis at 20% THC contains 2800 mg of THC (14 g * 200 mg/g).
  2. Estimate Extraction Efficiency: Not all THC will be extracted into the butter. Extraction efficiency can vary, but a common estimate is about 60%. So, if you have 2800 mg of THC, you might effectively infuse 1680 mg of THC into the butter (2800 mg * 0.60).
  3. Determine THC per Serving: Decide how many servings you’ll divide your butter into. For instance, if you plan to make 32 servings (which is common for a batch of brownies), divide the total infused THC by the number of servings: 1680 mg THC / 32 servings = 52.5 mg THC per serving.

Important Considerations

  • Tolerance Levels: If you’re new to cannabis edibles, a dose of 5-10 mg per serving may be plenty. For more experienced users, 10-25 mg may be more appropriate. Adjust the size of your servings accordingly.
  • Inconsistent Distribution: It’s possible that the THC won’t be perfectly distributed throughout the butter. To help ensure even distribution, stir the mixture thoroughly and consistently during the infusion process.
  • Testing: If you want to be sure about the dosage, you can have the finished product tested at a lab, though this option may not be available to everyone.
  • Start Small: It’s always best to start with a small portion and wait to see the effects before consuming more. The effects of edibles can take up to two hours to be felt and can last much longer than smoking or vaping.

Remember, these calculations are estimates and the actual potency can vary. Always consume responsibly and in a safe environment, especially if you are trying out a new batch with unknown potency.

Tips for Improving the Flavor and Aroma of Cannabis Butter

Improving the flavor and aroma of cannabis butter is all about the quality of the ingredients, the preparation process, and a few culinary tricks. Here are some tips to help you enhance the taste and smell of your cannabis butter:

1. Quality of Cannabis

Start with high-quality cannabis. The strain you choose will greatly affect the flavor and aroma. Look for strains known for their robust terpene profiles, which contribute to the scent and taste.

2. Decarboxylation

Properly decarboxylate your cannabis to activate the THC without burning it. This process should be done by heating the cannabis at a low temperature (around 240 °F or 115 °C) for about 30–40 minutes. This will also help in reducing the grassy taste.

3. Fat Content

Use a fat source with a high-fat content, such as unsalted butter or coconut oil. Fats are excellent carriers for THC and other cannabinoids and can absorb the flavors well.

4. Slow Cooking

Infuse the butter with cannabis on a low heat for a longer period. This slow infusion process helps to extract the cannabinoids without bringing out the bitter flavors.

5. Water Bath

Consider using a water bath method, where you add water to your butter and cannabis mixture. The water helps to regulate the temperature and can prevent the butter from burning. After the infusion, cool the mixture and the butter will solidify on top of the water, separating from any unwanted plant material.

6. Straining

Strain the mixture with cheesecloth or a fine mesh to remove plant material. This will help in getting smoother butter and removing bits that can affect the flavor negatively.

7. Herbs and Spices

Infuse the butter with herbs and spices to complement the flavor profile of the cannabis. Classic combinations include rosemary, thyme, or lavender for savory dishes, and cinnamon or vanilla for sweet recipes.

8. Storage

Store the butter correctly. Keep it in an airtight container in the refrigerator or freezer to preserve the terpenes and prevent the butter from going rancid, which can impact the taste.

9. Clean Equipment

Ensure all your equipment is clean and free from any previous food smells or residues that could transfer to the butter.

10. Trial and Error

Experiment with different strains and preparation methods. Each strain can have a vastly different flavor profile, and part of the fun can be finding the perfect match for your palate.

11. Ventilation

Keep your kitchen well-ventilated during the infusion process. This can help prevent the entire house from smelling strongly of cannabis, which some may find unpleasant.

12. Lecithin

Consider adding lecithin to your recipe. Lecithin is an emulsifier that can improve the texture of your butter and may also increase the bioavailability of cannabinoids.

By following these tips, you can significantly improve the taste and aroma of your cannabis butter, making it a more enjoyable addition to various dishes.

Need Help? Watch this video

Great recipe from Canadian Grower

The effect of cannabis butter

thai chef cooking with cannabis butter
This Thai chef is cooking with cannabis butter

The effects of cannabis butter are largely dependent on the concentration of cannabinoids, primarily THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (cannabidiol), which are the most abundant in most cannabis strains.

These effects can vary widely from person to person based on individual tolerance, the amount consumed, and the potency of the butter.

Here’s a breakdown of what to expect:

Psychoactive Effects

  • THC is the main psychoactive component of cannabis, and when ingested through cannabis butter, it can produce feelings of euphoria, relaxation, altered time perception, and increased sensory awareness.
  • The onset of effects is slower compared to smoking or vaping because the THC must first pass through the digestive system and then the liver, where it is metabolized into 11-hydroxy-THC, a potent form of THC.
  • The effects can take anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours to begin and can last for several hours, often much longer than the effects of inhaled cannabis.

Medicinal Benefits

  • CBD is non-psychoactive and is known for its potential therapeutic properties. It can modulate the effects of THC, often reducing anxiety or paranoia that some users experience.
  • Cannabis butter can be used to manage symptoms such as chronic pain, inflammation, insomnia, and loss of appetite.
  • It may also provide relief from stress and anxiety, although the effects can vary and should be approached with caution, especially by those who are new to cannabis edibles.

Dosage Considerations

  • It’s crucial to get the dosage right with cannabis butter. Due to the delayed onset of effects, there’s a risk of overconsumption, which can lead to discomfort or intense psychoactive experiences.
  • Beginners should start with a low dose, typically between 5-10 milligrams of THC, and wait to see how they feel before consuming more.

Side Effects

  • Potential side effects include dry mouth, red eyes, increased heart rate, coordination issues, and delayed reaction times.
  • Overconsumption can lead to more severe side effects such as anxiety, paranoia, and panic attacks. In some cases, it can also cause nausea and vomiting.

Long-Term Effects

  • With regular long-term use, tolerance to the effects of THC can develop, requiring higher doses to achieve the same effects.
  • There is also a potential for psychological dependence with regular use.

Culinary Use

The effects of cannabis butter can be influenced by the other ingredients in the dish. For example, fats can increase the absorption of THC, potentially enhancing its effects.

Cannabis butter can be a versatile and enjoyable way to consume cannabis, especially for those seeking to avoid smoking. However, due to the potency and variability of effects, it should be used responsibly, with careful attention to dosing and the individual’s response to THC and CBD.


The information provided regarding cannabis butter is intended for educational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. The legal status of cannabis varies by location, and it is the responsibility of the individual to be informed about and comply with all applicable laws regarding the possession, use, and production of cannabis and cannabis products in their region.

When handling and storing cannabis butter, it is imperative to ensure that it is kept out of reach of children and pets to prevent accidental ingestion. Always store cannabis butter in a secure, clearly labeled container that indicates its contents and potency to avoid any potential misuse or confusion.

By reading this information, you acknowledge that you are responsible for any consequences that may arise from the making, consumption, or storage of cannabis butter. The creators, distributors, and publishers of this content will not be held liable for any adverse effects or legal repercussions that result from the use of or reliance on this information.

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