Make your own cannabis infused olive oil with two simple ingredients! Follow our recipe to preserve the terpenes while activating the cannabinoids. Cannabis-infused oil is the most versatile way to start making edibles. Learn how to make it and its benefits with Leafly. This gentle method of making cannabis-infused olive oil preserves all of its aroma and benefits through the use of sous vide.
How to Make Cannabis-Infused Olive Oil
Making your own cannabis-infused olive oil is surprisingly easy to do at home with some basic kitchen equipment. We’ve already written about how to infuse coconut oil, and if you tried that method and it worked well for you, there’s no reason why you couldn’t do your olive oil the same way. But since there’s more than one way to cook an egg, we are going to share another method we’re into. This low temp stovetop method helps to preserve some of the terpenes while activating the cannabinoids!
Yield: 1 cup olive oil
Prep time: 15 min
Cook time: 6 hours (with intermittent monitoring)
It’s not possible to figure out the potency of your infused oil unless you send it to a lab to get tested after it’s made. That can be quite expensive, so be cautious if you plan to ingest the oil. Start with a very small amount and wait up to two hours to see how you feel before ingesting more.
Ingredients and tools:
- 1 cup Olive Oil
- 7g Cannabis
- Kitchen thermometer
- Colander or strainer
- A metal or glass bowl (to strain the oil into)
- Double Boiler (No double boiler? You can make one using a saucepan with a bowl on top)
- An air-tight container for storing your finished product
Heads up- don’t be surprised if your kitchen and surrounding rooms smell all good and weedy as you’re making your infusion.
1. Set up your double boiler by adding water to the bottom pan and placing your bowl or smaller pan on top. As the water in the lower portion of the double boiler heats up, the steam from the water will gently heat the ingredients in the top portion.
2. Turn the heat on your stove to low.
3. Chop or grind your buds and weigh to 7g if necessary.
4. Add your chopped or ground nugs and olive oil to the top section of your double boiler.
5. Monitor the temp to be sure it does not get above 220 degrees & keep an eye on the water level in the bottom of your double boiler, adding more as needed. If you smoked a joint before you started this process, we’d recommend putting a repeating alarm on your phone so you don’t forget, because let’s face it, time is a pretty slippery concept to the stoned mind.
6. Remove from heat after about 6 hours.
7. Line your strainer with the cheesecloth (we think 4 single sheet layers is perfect) and place it in a larger bowl.
8. Pour your oil into the strainer. Once it has strained through, you can gather the edges of the cheesecloth and twist them down to squeeze out the remaining oil.
Ta-da! What’s left in the bowl is your green gold! Use it for cooking or DIY skincare products.
Tip: If you plan on using your weed-infused oil for cooking, transfer to an airtight bottle. Aromatic herbs can be added to the oil, such as chile flakes, garlic, or a sprig of thyme to give it some extra flavor if you’re feeling fancy.
How to make cannabis cooking oil
Cannabis cooking oil is versatile and easy to make. You can infuse any type of oil, such as canola, vegetable, olive, peanut, sesame oil, and others—all you need is some weed, cheesecloth, and a sauce pan or slow cooker.
Consuming food made with cannabis cooking oil is similar to consuming edibles or anything made with cannabutter —compared to inhalation methods, effects will take longer to kick in, and they will usually last longer and be stronger.
As will all cannabis edibles, we recommend to “start low and go slow”: Eat a little bit and wait at least 45-60 minutes until effects kick in, and only eat more if you want stronger effects.
Benefits of using cannabis cooking oil
The great thing about using cannabis-infused oil is that you can add it to anything: sauté some veggies, fry up some morning eggs, mix it in a salad dressing, or whatever else you can think of.
Keep in mind that it’s difficult to calculate the potency of homemade edibles. However, compared to other cannabis infusions, such as making cannabutter to add to a batch of brownies, cannabis cooking oil is easier to measure out. You can add a lot to a salad dressing or just drop a little bit in a skillet to cook in with your whole meal.
Types of cooking oils to infuse with cannabis
There are many types of oils you can infuse with cannabis:
When picking a base cooking oil, consider how you’ll use it and what foods you’ll cook with it. You can use a neutral oil like canola or vegetable oil, or something with a specific flavor, like sesame or peanut oil. It all depends on your flavor preferences and the dishes you plan on cooking.
Additionally, oils have different consistencies at room temperature, so consider how you’ll be storing the oil.
If you’re looking for an oil that can be used in a stir fry as well as a pie crust, coconut oil is a great option—it adds great flavor to veggies and remains solid enough at room temperature to hold up as a pie crust.
Vegetable and canola oil are great options if you want something with a mild flavor. They are also versatile and work with most recipes that call for oil.
For something a little more robust in flavor, infuse olive or avocado oil with cannabis. Both stand up well to the cannabis flavor and can be stored in your pantry.
Recipe for cannabis cooking oil
- Baking sheet
- Parchment paper
- Saucepan, stock pot, d ouble-boiler, or slow cooker
- Mesh strainer or cheesecloth
- Container for cannabis oil
- Cannabis grinder (optional)
- 1 cup cooking oil of your choice
- 1 cup (7-10 grams) of ground cannabis, decarboxylated
When making cannabis cooking oil, we recommend a 1:1 ratio of cannabis to oil. If you want milder effects, use less cannabis.
- Decarb the cannabis. We recommend decarboxylating your weed first, and then putting it in oil. Decarbing turns THCA in the plant into THC, the psychoactive compound that will get you high. Set your oven to 245ºF and put buds on parchment paper on a baking pan. Heat for 30-40 minutes.
- Grind or break up the cannabis. Grinders break weed down to the same consistency and will save you time, but you can just as easily break up the weed with your hands. Keep in mind that anything small enough to fit through the mesh strainer or cheesecloth will end up in your finished product, so don’t grind the weed into a fine powder.
- Heat oil and decarbed cannabis.Add oil and decarbed cannabis to double-boiler, slow cooker, or saucepan, and simmer on low for 2-3 hours. Make sure the temperature of the oil stays between 160-200ºF.
- Strain and store the oil. Put mesh strainer or cheesecloth over container for oil and pour the oil/cannabis mixture through it. Do not squeeze it out—this will add more chlorophyll to your oil and make it taste more vegetal. Discard the plant material. The oil will have a shelf life of at least two months and can be extended with refrigeration.
Tips for reducing odor when making cannabis oil
As it takes hours to infuse coconut oil, a weed odor may build up in your kitchen.
Turn on a vent or fan while infusing the oil to keep the smell down, or open a window. If you’re concerned about the neighbors smelling it, stick to the fan or vent.
How to cook with cannabis cooking oil
After you have your cannabis-infused oil of choice, be sure to try a little before you make an entire meal to get a sense of how potent it is. This will give you a good sense of how much to use when cooking.
Also, be sure not to heat the infused oil too hot when cooking a dish, which can burn out the THC, leaving you with plain cooking oil.
Cannabis-Infused Olive Oil
Before cannabis can be used in a recipe, it must be activated or decarboxylated to maximize all of its benefits. Traditionally, decarbing meant heating the buds in a low oven for two to three hours, a process that can destroy flavor. Decarbing using sous vide, on the other hand, preserves the floral and fragrant flavors known as terpenes. After decarbing, you’ll gently infuse the cannabis in olive oil, creating an aromatic ingredient you’ll be able to use in both sweet and savory recipes, from aglio e olio pasta to chocolate pretzel cookies and a citrus-infused cake. You’ll need an immersion stick circulator, cannabis grinder, vacuum-sealable bag, and avacuum sealer for this recipe. Note: As cannabis regulation continues to evolve across the United States and around the world, please consult your local laws.
3 ½ grams cannabis flower (see Notes below), about 1⁄8 ounce
3 tablespoon distilled water
1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Set the immersion circulator to 200°F and place in a medium saucepan filled halfway with water. Grind the cannabis buds into small pieces and place in the vacuum-sealable bag with the distilled water. Using the vacuum sealer, seal the bag completely. When the circulator reaches 200°F, drop the sealed bag into the water and decarb for 30 minutes, rotating the bag every 5 to 10 minutes.
Transfer the bag to a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking and to preserve the terpenes; let cool. Set a fine-mesh sieve over a bowl; strain and reserve the cannabis, discarding the liquid.
In a small saucepan, combine oil and cannabis in a small saucepan and bring to a gentle simmer over medium heat; continue to cook for 20 minutes, stirring often. Remove saucepan from the heat and let steep for 30 minutes more.
Strain the mixture through a fine-mesh sieve into a resealable heat-proof food container with an airtight lid. Keep refrigerated and use within 30 days.
Choose a strain of cannabis that complements or contrasts with your recipes. Like wine, the attributes are wide ranging, from sweet and earthy to citrusy and berry-like. Also consider the desired effect; certain strains are championed for their anti-inflammatory abilities while others are known for maintaining focus. A dispensary can steer you in the right direction.
Each tablespoon of Cannabis-Infused Olive Oil contains about 29 mg THC, based on the use of a 20 percent THC strain. Plan accordingly to substitute for a portion, but not all, of the olive oil in a recipe.
This recipe was developed in partnership with Kitchen Toke, the first media company dedicated to teaching people about culinary cannabis for health and wellness.