When I want to make potent, really healthy edibles or topicals, this cannabis coconut oil is my go-to infusion.
Cannabis coconut oil is the most popular recipe here at Wake+Bake. It's also the basis of most of the recipes in my cookbook, Dazed + Infused.
You can make this cannabis-infused coconut oil and plug it into any of your favorite recipes.
I use this cannabis coconut oil almost every day.
Whether I’m rubbing it into sore muscles, or mixing it into a pain relieving CBD salve, baking it into vegan/paleo edibles, tossing a teaspoon into a smoothie or some coffee, or cracking open a jar of weed lube, I seem to find a way to use cannabis coconut oil in new ways all of the time.
Why Cannabis Coconut Oil?
Coconut oil is an accessible and versatile base for creating strong cannabis infusions, topicals, and medicinal edibles because of its high saturated fat content. It's capable of extracting up to 82% of cannabinoids.
Coconut oil is adaptable to different diets, including ketogenic, vegan and paleo and just plain tastes really good. If you don't have a coconut allergy, making coconut oil infusions is also a great way to ingest cannabinoids.
I spent almost a year of my life trying to put coconut oil in every edible and topical I could think of (and ended up writing several books about it).
No matter what you decide to make, make sure to test your oil's potency first. When using high THC cannabis, the result is very strong and it’s not fun to overdo it on edibles.
Trust me, I had a run-in with a cannabis-infused grilled cheese that I’ll never forget and I want to help everyone avoid that if possible.
Should I put lecithin in my oil or edibles to make them stronger?
If you've ever bought a dispensary edible and looked at the ingredients list, odds are you'll see the word “lecithin”.
While this common food additive and emulsifier might seem like another ingredient, it's usually present because of what it does for you.
While it doesn't technically make the oil stronger in terms of milligrams of THC, CBD or CBG, lecithin could help with the absorption of cannabinoids into the human body.
Theoretically, the small particles in your cannabis oil (or butter) are absorbed more easily, making it more potent and effective with a potentially faster onset.
While we lack a lot of data around this (welcome to cannabis!), readers have reported enhanced effects and it is what the big companies use in their edibles.
I personally use an organic sunflower lecithin and prefer liquid, however, there are many types of lecithin on the market – so feel free to experiment and find what works for you.
You can read more about lecithin and edibles in my in-depth post here.
After incorporating lecithin and using an Ardent gadget to get the right decarb, I found that I only had to use 1/2 of my typical dosage to remain pain-free throughout the day.
Cannabis Coconut Oil Recipe and Tutorial
Step 1: Decarboxylate your cannabis
When you heat cannabis at a controlled temperature, the THCa molecule transforms into the psychoactive and potent molecule THC. (This also goes for CBDa and CBGa. You need to decarboxylate your CBDa into CBD before making CBD infused coconut oil)
I use an Ardent FX or Nova every time I decarboxylate because it effectively transforms over 98% of THCa to THC without any loss.
Most home decarb methods are unreliable and can waste as much as 30% of the THC.
Step 2: Infuse the coconut oil
1. Combine the following in a crockpot on warm or low (warm is usually sufficient in most crockpots):
1 Cup Coconut Oil [I like the big jug of unrefined Nutiva because I use it a lot and the flavor/scent is really delightful. If you don't like the taste of coconut or you'd like to save some money, the refined stuff is a bit cheaper and doesn't have a tropical smell]
1 teaspoon- 1 Tablespoon Sunflower Lecithin: If you reeeeallly don't like the flavor of lecithin use 1 teaspoon. Otherwise, use 1 Tablespoon per cup.
*Try to keep oil near 160°-180f for best results*
For even better (hands-off, no worry, and much less clean up) results, again, I use the FX. It decarboxylates, infuses and strains every last drop out of your oil. No babysitting. Very little clean up. Virtually no oil loss. It's one of my favorite gadgets these days.
1 Cup Organic Decarboxylated Cannabis (about 7g or 1/4 oz.) –
[dosage note: At 20% THC this works out to about 29 mg THC per teaspoon. If you work with stronger cannabis, say 30% THC, each teaspoon would be about 42 mg THC per teaspoon. Make sure to take it slow and always get a rough idea of how strong your oil is by using the dosage calculator. If you're new to cannabis or if you're trying to refine your use, you can check out this post about microdosing and balancing ratios. You can also use cannabis that is high in CBD and CBG to make blends to create a cannabinoid ratio that works for you. I like Sacred Smoke Herbals for CBD and CBG flower to make oil infusions and tinctures.]
Stir every half hour or so.
After about 2 hours of heating and steeping, turn off the crockpot and allow the oil to cool before moving onto the next step.
Step 3: Strain Your Oil
3. Set up your strainer so it fits snugly in a container. Line with a large piece of cheesecloth.
4. Slowly pour plant matter and oil into the strainer.
5. Using a string or twist tie, gather the cheesecloth around the plant matter and secure it.
6. Squeeeeeeze that sh*t. Save this satchel to make High Chai.
7. Pour oil into a pint jar and place it in the fridge until cool. Seal with a lid. Store in refrigerator or in a cool, dark place.
Spread it on toast. Make Dazed + Infused recipes with it. Rub it on your achy body parts.
Dosing this Cannabis Infused Coconut Oil
For this recipe, 7 grams of 20% THC plant material in 1 cup of oil yields an oil that has approximately 30mg THC per teaspoon. Use the THC and CBD dosage calculator and adjust the calculations to reflect the percentage of THC and/or CBD is in your starting plant material.
Bonus Tips For Making Effective Cannabis Infused Coconut Oil Every Time
- Try to use lab tested, organically grown trim or flower whenever possible. I don't want to freak you out, but buying cannabis on the black market is a toxin minefield. Many growers use pesticides and fungicides that are not meant to be used on plants for human consumption. For example, Eagle 20 a popular fungicide is meant to be used on golf courses. When's the last time you thought about eating (or smoking) golf course grass?
- If your oil ever begins to smoke, remove from heat immediately and let it cool a bit before beginning the process again with your crockpot on the lowest setting. It'll probably still “work” but you're likely burning off some of the incredible compounds that evaporate at higher temperatures. If you constantly find yourself overheating your oil in your crockpot or on the stove (guilty), check out the FX (it's virtually smell proof and it decarboxylates AND infuses and can be tossed in the dishwasher for easy cleanup)
- For a more smellproof DIY method, you can make cannabis oil in a mason jar.
- You don't have to finely grind your cannabis no matter what you're cooking in (in my experience, it makes it harder to strain, leaves a bunch of plant material in that makes for a “greener” taste, and doesn't improve potency). However, if you're using buds, you can break them up a bit before you decarboxylate.
- You can also make cannabis infused coconut oil using hash and concentrates.
- Have fun! Don’t fret over your canna-oil when it’s in the pot. People on the internet make this much more complicated then it has to be. Not me… but you know… other people on the internet. I was writing a cannabis cookbook and had to overthink it, but you totally don't. This is a simple process and it should be enjoyable, not stressful. Just follow the instructions above, adapt or substitute for what you have on hand and share what works in the comments below. We can all learn from each other.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Making Cannabis Coconut Oil
Before you make your cannabis coconut oil, here are a few questions you may have.
Can I use this recipe to make CBD or CBG infused coconut oil?
Yes! When I say the word “cannabis”, that includes high THC, CBD or CBG plant material so you can make whatever blends and ratios that work best for you. I use this recipe to make a balanced ratio CBD:THC oil, CBD oil and CBG oil. I also use it to make oil blends that combine all of the different cannabinoids (my personal favorite). If it seems like I'm speaking a different language or if you're having a hard time figuring out your dosage or a ratio that works for you, check out my program, Healthy Cannabis Makeover.
Will making this coconut oil infusion make my house/apartment/dorm smell like weed?
Yes. Decarboxylation and cooking cannabis in the crockpot are smelly endeavors. You can eliminate this smell completely by using a the FX, a Nova Decarboxylator or using the virtually smell-proof Cannabis Oil in a Mason Jar method.
If I don't have lecithin now, can I make the coconut oil now, order lecithin, and add it later?
Yes. If you're chomping at the bit to make edibles but don't have this ingredient on hand, make your oil now, reheat it later, and stir the lecithin in.
Should I add water?
This is a hotly debated topic in the world of homemade edibles, and I've landed on the side of not adding water.
Here's a solid article by BadKat's CannaPharm that talks more about why water is unnecessary and leads to less effective cannabis oil. In my experience, it leaves oil tasting bitter and can make your oil go bad quickly.
My cannabis oil is green, brown or amber colored… is that normal?
The color of your oil will largely be determined by the plant material you use, how small you ground the plant material and how good your straining method is. I've had oils turn out in many different colors from amber, to dark brown, to electric green.
I shoot for an amber colored oil (which just means less plant material made it into the infusion), but in my experience, color hasn't been an indicator on how “strong” an oil is.
In the comments
Thinking about making this recipe? Have questions? Already a huge fan? I'd love to hear what you're creating with this cannabis-infused coconut oil. Let us know in the comments below!
Cannabis Coconut OilPrint Recipe
- 1 Cup Coconut Oil
- 1 Tablespoon Sunflower Lecithin
- 1 Cup organic decarboxylated cannabis (about 7 grams or 1/4 oz)
Combine the following in a crockpot on warm or low (warm is usually sufficient in most crockpots): 1 Cup Coconut Oil [I like the big jug of unrefined Nutiva because I use it a lot and the flavor/scent is really delightful. If you don't like the taste of coconut or you'd like to save some money, the refined stuff is a bit cheaper and doesn't have a tropical smell] 1 teaspoon- 1 Tablespoon Sunflower Lecithin: If you reeeeallly don't like the flavor of lecithin use 1 teaspoon. Otherwise, use 1 Tablespoon per cup. *Try to keep oil near 160° for best results*
Add 1 Cup Organic Decarboxylated Cannabis (about 7g or 1/4 oz.) Stir every half hour or so. After 2 hours of heating and steeping, turn off the crockpot and allow the oil to cool before moving onto the next step.
Set up your strainer so it fits snugly in a container. Line with a large piece of cheesecloth.
Slowly pour plant matter and oil into the strainer.
Using a string or twist tie, gather the cheesecloth around the plant matter and secure it.
Squeeeeeeze that sh*t. Save this satchel to make High Chai.
Pour oil into a pint jar and place it in the fridge until cool. Seal with a lid. Store in refrigerator or in a cool, dark place.
Disclaimer: This is not intended as medical advice. I’m not a doctor. I’m also not a lawyer and can’t defend you if you get busted trying to make this recipe in a state that still considers possession or cultivation of cannabis a criminal act. I don’t agree with this law, but I’d never advocate that you break it. Jail would suck. Instead, I strongly advise that you work to change the law in your state or nation by supporting and being active in grassroots organizations that are trying to legalize cannabis in your area (they’re everywhere). This recipe is heretofore only intended for people who live in states or countries where medical or recreational use of cannabis is legal, who are 21 and older, of sound mind and who understand that operating heavy machinery (cars, trucks, planes, etc.) under the influence of any intoxicant, including THC rich marijuana, is incredibly dangerous, immature, and wholly stupid. Please don’t ever eat and drive. Support public transportation or use the two legs that evolution gave you and walk your sweet ass wherever it is that you need to go.