How to Make Smell-free Cannabutter (or oil)

Discussion in 'Cooking with Marijuana Recipes' started by meatmuffin, Mar 29, 2012.

  1. meatmuffin

    meatmuffin New Member

    I ended up here because I was trying to find a recipe for pot butter that wouldn't stink up the place. I live in a dingy apartment with poor ventilation; the smell was bound to hang out for a while. I didn't find much but I figured it out on my own and figured I should let the world know (this is real important stuff, ya'll: I'm changing lives.)

    16 oz Canning Jar with lid (Ball, Kerr, or Mason Jars... they sell them at Walmart)​
    Grinding Mechanism (or scissors and more patience than the Dalai Lama. I prefer coffee grinders)​
    Butter (or oil)​
    Oven or Crockpot or Saucepan​
    Strainer (optional-ish)​

    I left the ratio of Weed:Butter open to interpretation. People have wildly different opinions on how much weed you need for a pound of butter and personally, I couldn't care less. I used a 1/4 of fairly potent (not quite high-grade; it was homegrown) bud and half a pound of butter (2 sticks.) I've done this a few times now, it works great. Now, lets get to business:

    1) Grind Weed:
    You want it fairly coarse if you're worrying about straining it. Don't pulverize it. Protip for coffee grinder use: dump the ground weed into a small bowl and use a paint brush to collect all the super-fine residue that's stuck to the walls. If nothing else, its good for morale. Also, if you need to use the coffee grinder to grind coffee afterwards brush it clean, grind some potato and rolled oats for a few seconds, and finish cleaning. It seems to prevent pot-flavored coffee.​

    2) Place weed in jar with butter and seal: thats it.

    3) Place in slow cooker and fill with water:
    IMPORTANT - put a washcloth on the bottom of the crockpot to prevent the simmering from tossing it about and potentially breaking the jar. Theoretically it could still be salvageable but you would've blown your cover (forget about smell free) and risk glass shards in the end product.​

    1) Place in oven set at 250-300 degrees​
    2) Set in large saucepan filled with water and bring to a simmer​

    I prefer the crockpot method for several reasons: It is less likely to just be forgotten about and lead to a house fire. Ovens aren't nearly as sketchy as saucepans because once the water evaporates you're either going to ruin your batch or, worse, end up with a grease fire.​

    4) Set on Low and wait...
    ... and wait and wait. I let mine sit for around 8 hours. I don't think that this is necessary but it doesn't hurt and, assuming you're patient enough, you may reap the benefit of the doubt if you do. Hell, other recipes I've seen called for 24 hours. Truthfully, I didn't notice any difference. Agitate Occasionally. You won't have the luxury of stirring to ensure proper extraction but if you pull the jar out (potholders! Oh god please! I was the idiot who used their bare hands on accident and went to work the next day looking like I participated in the lye scene from Fight Club) shake GENTLY, and place it right back in. I usually do this 4 or 5 times if I'm at home that day. Do it at least twice after the butter has fully melted.​

    5) Strain and Cool
    Cheesecloth is a pain in the ass. I bought a fine mesh, pour-over coffee filter. It was something like 10 bucks. Other than the weed, this is the most expensive part of this endeavor. You can use any method you deem fit or none at all. At this point, its ready to go. I usually store it in the same jar I used to make it (and use some bread to sob up the butter off of whatever I strained it into.)​

    Thoughts on Temperature:
    People are overly-fixated on this idea that there is some temperature that will ruin the THC. This is true: its 380 F. If you use this method you won't run into that problem because there is no way it will get past 212 F (or whatever you've set your oven at.) Water boils at 212, its sitting in a pool of water and no way affected by the temperature of the burner. If you're doing a more conventional sauteed weed butter, remember: Butter's "smoke point" is 392 F. If your butter is smoking, you're breaking down that THC. That's really the only way you can ruin it unless you decide to set your oven to 400 F because you're impatient and think that more heat will make it cook faster and want to end up with a batch of crusty, burnt ghee.​

    More important than the temperature of THC breakdown is the temperature of cannabinoid decarboxylation. Basically: Weed, in its plant form, does not actually contain THC but THCA. That "A" at the end is what classifies it as an acid. It has this little bastard carboxyl group hanging off the end that renders the plant itself fairly benign when consumed without preparation. But, with the miracle of fire, we can knock that sucker off and enjoy all its heady decadence. This is to say there is no perfect temperature but a window of temperatures that'll achieve your goal. Decarboxylation occurs at around the boiling point of water. Convenient! The window you're looking for is between 210 F and 380 F . Thats a pretty easy one to maintain.​

    GODSPEED! GOOD LUCK! Hopefully this will help someone out.
    2 people like this.
  2. The Key

    The Key New Member

    Great detail, if I have a quarter on me on a day I'm home alone I'm definitely gonna try it

    Very helpful, thank you
  3. Kennedy420

    Kennedy420 New Member

    Do you need to worry about the air expanding and the butter steaming or boiling leading to the jar breaking?
  4. meatmuffin

    meatmuffin New Member

    No. The only reason to worry about the jar breaking is if there is nothing (like a soft towel) at the bottom of the slow cooker to dampen the simmering action. The butter cannot boil, physically. The short answer is SCIENCE. The long answer is solutions boi at a higher temperature than their solvent alone. In this case: water boils at 212 degrees and, unless its under pressure, it cannot reach a higher temperature before turning into vapor. The water acts as a medium to keep the butter at 212 degrees, no higher, and so it never gets the opportunity to boil and expand enough to break the glass. Another thing to keep in mind is that canning jars are specifically designed to be boiled, usually in some sort of pressure cooker. This is how they sterilize them in order to preserve things like jam, pickles, etc. The jar doesn't have a perfect seal, either. As the air expands, some of it is released and when it reaches equilibrium the seal is maintained and then, as it cools off entirely, it actually creates a bit of a vacuum seal which is why you hear that "pop" whenever you open a jar of pickles (note: the pop noise only occurs when the container is entirely full, so don't worry when your half-filled jar doesn't make that noise.)

    On that note, something I forgot to include in the original post: its wise to cover the lid of the jar with a bit of tin foil or stabilize it in such a way it can't turn on its side. This could lead to water getting in the jar and while it won't ruin the butter it makes it store for a shorter period of time. More water means turning rancid more quickly. Again, I wouldn't worry about the pressure in the jar: it takes a whole lot of pressure to break a thick glass jar like that and its more likely the seal or the lid of the jar would break rather than the jar itself.
    2 people like this.
  5. Darkehawk

    Darkehawk New Member

    I made my first batch of cannabudder by boiling water and adding both the cannabis and butter to the boiling water. Worked very well but the method you list here would both eliminate the smell and having to deal with the left over water not to mention having to separate the water and budder . I will be trying this method this next month. :)
  6. Nice Guy

    Nice Guy New Member

    This sounds brilliant. Quick question: crockpots on low only go to 170 degrees and 195 on high. Wouldn't that be too low to reach the decaboxlation window necessary to get THC butter and not THCA butter?

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