March 10, 2011

What Are Weed Tinctures and How to Make Them

March 10, 2011
tincture

What Are Weed Tinctures And How To Make Them

As the cannabis market continues to expand, consumption methods do as well.  While tinctures have been a method for delivery for cannabis consumers for a while, they seem to be growing in popularity along with edibles and other more discrete methods.  Tinctures are one of the best methods of delivery in terms of the ability to measure dosing, and also offer medical marijuana patients who are unable to eat or inhale cannabis a nice alternative that still provides them with the effect they are seeking.  What are Weed Tinctures?

Marijuana tinctures are a liquid concentration of cannabis, where the THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and other cannabinoids are leached out and dispersed into alcohol.  Tinctures are typically stored in a bottle with a dropper, and are consumed by dropping just a few drops either under your tongue or on the inside of your cheek.  

The effect from a tincture is typically felt much faster than from an edible because they are more of a sublingual delivery as opposed to being ingested.  Although the high varies with respect to the type of cannabis strain  used, tinctures are known for delivering a peak rather rapidly and then bringing a steady high over a long period of time. Unlike eating weed, you won’t be waiting around for an hour and a half, wondering if you’ve peaked yet and if it’s safe to go about your daily activities, or if you should resign your seriously-baked-self to the house.

Additionally, tinctures don’t have a smell (unless you open the bottle!), so you can discreetly carry  them with you wherever you go, and you won’t have to worry about finding a place to smoke. Let’s face it, even with a medical marijuana card, it makes sense to avoid the stress of a run in with the law and having to explain yourself.

How to Make Cannabis Tincture

Using alcohol, oils, or glycerin as a base, marijuana can be extracted and made into tinctures.  You can find other methods for making tincture out there, but we are going to learn how to make the most potent form today using pure grain alcohol. 

Cannabis Tincture Recipe

Supplies:

  • Pure grain alcohol of 90% strength or higher (Everclear)
  • Your cannabis flower of choice that is already been decarboylated
  • A small glass jar with lid
  • Brown medicine bottle with eyedropper

Instructions:

1) Decide how much tincture you would like to make. I recommend starting with 7 grams of cannabis flower and 4 ounces of Everclear or other pure grain alcohol. 

2) Weigh out the amount of decarbed weed you would like to use.  Then, measure out the alcohol and place it in the jar.

3) Put the weed into the glass jar with the alcohol and allow it to soak. Secure the lid of the jar and shake it, and then place in a cool, dark place for 1 hour.  Repeat this process for 3 hours.  There are recipes out there that call for the infusion to sit for various periods of time.  If you choose to let the tincture set for several days or weeks, just make sure to gently shake the mixture each day. The longer your tincture sits, the more potent it will become, but at the same time, the more chlorophyll will be released and the more unpalatable it will become. Feel free to experiment to find the right balance of time, potency, and chlorophyll you’re comfortable with.

4) After the soaking period is done, strain out the plant material through a cheesecloth and put the liquid in a dark brown medicine bottle with an eyedropper. This will protect the tincture from sunlight to keep the THC from breaking down, and allow you to dose easily.

5) Store in a cool, dry place.  Enjoy!

Using Tincture to Make Edibles

Cannabis tinctures can be incorporated into all sorts of foods to create tincture edibles, such as ice cream, soup, gelatin, and even mashed potatoes with gravy.  Juices and salad dressings are also options of foods tinctures can be added to.  If you choose to consume your tincture this way, you will likely not got the quick onset but will still get the long term effect.

Making Edibles With Alcohol Tincture

You can make edibles with an alcohol (cannabis) tincture by adding drops of the tincture to a food or drink.  You cannot use the tincture as a substitute for cannabis butter or cannabis cooking oil in edible recipes, however. Pot enthusiasts do enjoy using alcohol tinctures to dress up their favorite drinks or even create cannabis cocktails to better fit their lifestyle. 

How To Concentrate a Tincture

Start by testing the tincture and making sure you have a good dosing system.  tinctureIf you purchased the tincture at a shop the dosing information should be listed and if you made it yourself make sure you know how many doses to take for your desired effect. If you need the tincture to be more potent, you can concentrate the tincture by allowing some of the alcohol to evaporate.  This step must be done while the cannabis plant matter is still in the mixture (before you’ve strained it and placed it in your dropper bottle). 

Marijuana Tincture FAQs

Is Tincture a Concentrate? 

While many consumers and industry professionals do consider tinctures to be a form of cannabis concentrates, several states with recreational (adult-use) cannabis legalization, such as Oregon, classify them to be edibles.  Perhaps this is because tinctures are created using decarboxylated cannabis flower in the same manner that edibles are.  

What Alcohol is Used for Tinctures?

Experts agree that using a pure grain alcohol (such as Everclear) is the best for making the most potent tinctures.  People have used other liquors (such as vodka) to make tinctures, and you can do as well if that is more appealing for your pallet and flavor preference. 

How Do You Determine the Strength of a Tincture?

The strength of a tincture all depends on the ratio of decarbed cannabis flower to pure grain alcohol.  The more cannabis flower you use, the stronger the tincture will be.  As with many things in cannabis, it is important to start small and then work your way up with doses as needed. 

Does Tincture Get You Drunk?

Unless you drink the entire bottle at once, tincture will not get you drunk even if it is made from pure grain alcohol.  Tincture is designed to be delivered through an eye dropper or other type of small dropper to ensure that doses are small and easily countable.  

How Much Tincture Will an Ounce Make?

If you are sticking to the recipe we have provided, an ounce of cannabis flower could make approximately 16 (fluid) ounces of tincture.  Depending on how potent you want your tincture to be, you could use more or less pure grain alcohol to create the tincture.  

How Long Should Tincture Sit Under the Tongue?

Tincture should set under the tongue (or on the inside of your cheek near your gum line) until it is dissolved, which usually takes just a couple of minutes or less.  

How Much is a Bottle of Tincture?

A bottle of tincture that is purchased in a medical marijuana dispensary or cannabis retail shop can cost anywhere from $20-$80.  This cost can greatly vary depending on source, potency, size of bottle, and a variety of other factors such as brand and retailer.  You can find out more by talking to your local shops, or by checking CBD tinctures sold online.

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