How to Make Your Own Cannabis Tincture
If you’re looking for a smoke-free way to consume cannabis, tinctures may be the perfect option for you. Made by steeping cannabis in alcohol or glycerin, tinctures are easy to make at home and can be added to a variety of foods and drinks. Not only are they discreet, but they also provide a consistent and precise dosing experience.
In this step-by-step guide, we’ll show you how to make your own cannabis tincture easily right in your own kitchen. So, whether you’re a seasoned cannabis connoisseur or a curious newbie, get ready to explore the world of cannabis tinctures and learn how to make your own award-winning tincture.
Why Make Your Own Cannabis Tincture?
Making your own cannabis tincture at home has several advantages over buying it from a dispensary. Firstly, making your own tincture allows you to control the quality of the ingredients you use.
You can choose a high-quality strain of cannabis, the best extraction method, and the best alcohol or glycerin for your tincture. By doing this, you ensure that your tincture is free from harmful additives and is made with the best ingredients possible.
Secondly, making your own tincture is a more cost-effective option than buying it from a dispensary. Buying cannabis tincture from a dispensary can be expensive, especially if you would like to have a large quantity. By making your own tincture, you can save money and make larger batches of tincture for a fraction of the cost.
Thirdly, making your own tincture allows you to customize the strength to your individual needs. With store-bought tinctures, you’re limited to the strengths that are available. But when you make your own tincture, you can tailor the strength to your specific needs and preferences.
This is especially important for those who are using cannabis for medicinal purposes and need a specific strength to manage their symptoms.
Lastly, making your own tincture is a fun and rewarding experience. It allows you to experiment with different strains of cannabis, extraction methods, and dosages to find the perfect tincture for your needs. Plus, it’s a great way to connect with the cannabis community and learn more about the plant and its many benefits.
Overall, making your own cannabis tincture is a cost-effective, customizable, and rewarding option that provides a high-quality cannabis experience without the need for smoking or vaping. So, whether you’re new to cannabis or a seasoned user, making your own tincture is definitely worth considering.
Choosing the Right Strain for Your Tincture
Choosing the right strain of cannabis is crucial when making a tincture. Different strains have different chemical compositions and can produce different effects, so it’s important to choose a strain that will give you the desired effects you’re looking for.
Firstly, consider the cannabinoid profile of the strain. Cannabis contains over 100 different cannabinoids, but the two most well-known and researched are THC and CBD. THC is the psychoactive component of cannabis and is responsible for the “high” associated with cannabis use, while CBD is non-psychoactive and has a range of potential therapeutic benefits.
If you’re looking for a tincture that will give you a strong psychoactive effect, you’ll want to choose a strain with a high THC content. If you’re looking for a tincture that has more therapeutic benefits and less psychoactivity, you’ll want to choose a strain with a higher CBD content.
Secondly, consider the terpene profile of the strain. Terpenes are aromatic compounds found in cannabis that can affect the flavor, aroma, and effects of the plant. Different strains have different terpene profiles, which can produce different effects.
For example, some strains are more uplifting and energizing, while others are more relaxing and sedating. Some common terpenes found in cannabis include limonene, which has a citrusy aroma and is thought to have anti-anxiety effects, and myrcene, which has a musky aroma and is thought to have sedative effects.
Lastly, consider the growing conditions of the strain. Cannabis can be grown indoors or outdoors, and different growing conditions can affect the chemical composition of the plant. For example, indoor-grown cannabis tends to have a higher THC content and a more potent effect, while outdoor-grown cannabis tends to have a lower THC content and a more mellow effect.
Overall, choosing the right strain of cannabis is essential when making a tincture. Consider the cannabinoid and terpene profile of the strain, as well as the growing conditions, to ensure that you’re getting the desired effects from your tincture.
Decarboxylation: The Key to Activating Your Cannabis
Decarboxylation is a crucial step in the process of making a cannabis tincture. Cannabis contains a compound called THCA, which is not psychoactive. In order to activate the THC and other cannabinoids in cannabis, the plant material must undergo decarboxylation, which involves heating it to a specific temperature for a certain amount of time.
The process of decarboxylation involves removing a carboxyl group from the THCA molecule, which transforms it into THC. This is important because THC is the psychoactive component of cannabis that produces the “high” associated with its use.
Without decarboxylation, the tincture will not be psychoactive and will not produce the desired effects. Use our guide to learn “The Art of Decarboxylating Cannabis”.
Overall, decarboxylation is a key step in the process of making a cannabis tincture. It’s important to take the time to properly decarboxylate your cannabis in order to activate the THC and other cannabinoids and produce a tincture that will have the desired effects.
Alcohol vs. Glycerin: Choosing Your Extraction Media
When making a cannabis tincture, you have two main options for the extraction media: alcohol or glycerin. Both substances have their advantages and disadvantages, and the choice ultimately comes down to personal preference and intended use.
Alcohol is a popular choice for making cannabis tinctures because it is a highly efficient solvent that can extract a wide range of compounds from the plant material. It also has a long shelf life and is easy to use. However, there are some downsides to using alcohol as an extraction method.
Firstly, it can be harsh on the stomach and may cause irritation or discomfort for some people. Additionally, alcohol-based tinctures can have a strong taste and smell that may be unpleasant for some users. Lastly, alcohol is highly flammable, so it’s important to take precautions when using it.
Glycerin, on the other hand, is a non-alcoholic option that is gentle on the stomach and has a sweet taste. It is also safe for children and people with alcohol sensitivities to use. However, glycerin is not as efficient of a solvent as alcohol and may not extract as many compounds from the plant material.
This means that glycerin-based tinctures may not be as potent as alcohol-based tinctures. Additionally, glycerin-based tinctures have a shorter shelf life and may need to be refrigerated to prevent spoilage.
Overall, the choice between alcohol and glycerin as an extraction method comes down to personal preference and intended use. If potency and efficiency are the most important factors for you, then alcohol may be the best option.
If you are looking for a gentler, sweeter tincture that is safe for children and people with alcohol sensitivities, then glycerin may be the way to go. Regardless of which method you choose, it’s important to follow proper safety precautions and ensure that your tincture is properly labeled and stored.
High-Proof Alcohol: Which One Should You Use?
If you choose to make an alcohol-based cannabis tincture, it’s important to use high-proof alcohol to ensure an effective extraction. High-proof alcohol is preferred because it is able to extract more cannabinoids and terpenes from the plant material, resulting in a more potent tincture. But with so many different high-proof alcohols available, which one should you use?
The most readily available and common types of high-proof alcohol used for cannabis tinctures are Everclear and rum. Everclear is a popular choice because it has a high alcohol content (up to 95% ABV) and is available in many states. However, it can be difficult to find and may be illegal to purchase in some states. Rum is a less common choice, but some people prefer it because it has a slightly sweet taste and can add flavor to the tincture.
When choosing a high-proof alcohol for your cannabis tincture, it’s important to consider the alcohol content and availability in your area. It’s also important to look for high-quality, pure alcohol that is free from additives and impurities. You can check the label to ensure that the alcohol is food-grade and safe for consumption.
Another, even better option is to acquire food-grade ethanol. This substance can have an ABV content up to 99.97%. The downside of this media is that you may not be able to purchase it in your area. However, you can purchase it online.
It’s also important to keep in mind that using high-proof alcohol can be dangerous if proper safety precautions are not taken. Alcohol is highly flammable and can pose a risk if not handled carefully.
Be sure to work in a well-ventilated area and keep flames or sparks away from the alcohol. Additionally, it’s important to label your tincture properly and keep it out of reach of children and pets.
Overall, when choosing a high-proof alcohol for your cannabis tincture, it’s important to consider factors such as alcohol content, availability, and purity. By choosing high-quality, pure alcohol and following proper safety precautions, you can ensure a safe and effective extraction for your cannabis tincture.
Mixing Your Cannabis and Alcohol/Glycerin
Once you have decarboxylated your cannabis and chosen your preferred extraction method (alcohol or glycerin), it’s time to mix the two together to create your cannabis tincture. Mixing your cannabis with alcohol or glycerin is a simple process, but it’s important to follow the correct ratios and techniques to ensure a potent and effective tincture.
To mix your cannabis and alcohol, start by placing your decarboxylated cannabis in a jar. Add enough high-proof alcohol or glycerin to cover the cannabis completely, and then give it a good shake to distribute the liquid evenly. The ratio of cannabis to alcohol/glycerin can vary, but a common ratio is one ounce of cannabis per 750 milliliters of liquid. However, you can adjust the ratio to your preference based on the desired potency.
After you have mixed your cannabis and alcohol or glycerin, it’s important to let it sit for 4-8 weeks to allow the compounds to fully extract. Store the jar or bottle in a cool, dark place and shake it every other day to ensure that the cannabis is fully submerged in the liquid. The longer you let the mixture sit, the more potent your tincture will be.
Once your tincture is ready, it will need to be strained.
Straining Your Cannabis Tincture
After your cannabis tincture has steeped for at least 4 to 8-weeks, it’s time to strain it. This step is crucial for eliminating any residual plant matter from the mixture. Follow these guidelines for filtration:
- Begin with a fine mesh strainer or cheesecloth: Use either a fine mesh strainer or a layer of cheesecloth to filter your tincture initially. This initial filtration helps remove most of the plant material, resulting in a purer product. (Chronic Tip: Double the cheesecloth for a more refined first filtering.)
- Fine filtering through a coffee filter: Use an unbleached coffee filter to remove the majority of any remaining plant material. Ensure that you strain the tincture into a clean container to maintain its purity and prevent any potential contamination. (Chronic Tip: Overfiltering may remove too much of the beneficial ingredients.)
After straining your tincture, it’s time to reduce the mixture to increase its potency.
Reducing Your Cannabis Tincture
You need to allow the alcohol to evaporate (or use a low-heat distilling method, not recommended) in order to reduce its content by about half. This increases the potency of your tincture and reduces the bite of the alcohol if that is your choice of solvent.
Simply open your container of tincture and let it sit out. Using a fan blowing over the open container can speed up the process slightly.
Use a rubber band or glass marker to mark the level of your tincture. Once it has reduced by half, transfer it to its final storage container(s).
The Importance of Storing Your Tincture Correctly
Proper storage of your cannabis tincture is crucial to maintain its potency and effectiveness. Storing your tincture incorrectly can lead to a loss of potency, flavor, and aroma, and can even cause spoilage or contamination. Here are some tips to help you store your tincture correctly:
- Choose the right container: It’s important to choose a dark glass container like a dropper bottle for your tincture. This will help ensure it remains fresh and potent as light can degrade the compounds in the tincture.
- Store in a cool, dark place: Heat and light can degrade the cannabinoids and terpenes in your mixture, so it’s important to store your tincture in a cool, dark place. A pantry or cupboard is a good choice, as long as it is not near a source of heat or light.
- Keep out of reach of children and pets: Cannabis tinctures can be dangerous if ingested by children or pets, so it’s important to store them in a secure location that is out of reach. Consider using a lockable storage container or keeping the tincture in a high cabinet.
- Label your tincture mixture: Be sure to label your mixture with the date it was made, the strain used, and the dosage information. This will help you keep track of how long the tincture has been stored.
- Check for spoilage: Over time, your tincture may begin to spoil or develop mold. Check your tincture regularly for any signs of spoilage, such as a strange smell, cloudiness, or mold growth. If you notice any of these signs, it’s important to dispose of the tincture and make a new batch.
Overall, proper storage of your cannabis tincture is essential to maintain its potency and effectiveness. By choosing the right container, storing it in a cool, dark place, keeping it out of reach of children and pets, labeling your tincture, and checking for spoilage, you can ensure that your tincture remains safe and effective for your personal use.
Dosage: How Much Cannabis Tincture Should You Take?
When it comes to dosing your cannabis tincture, it’s important to start low and go slow. The ideal dosage will depend on several factors, including your body weight, the potency of the tincture, and your tolerance to cannabis. Here are some tips for dosing your cannabis tincture:
- Start with a small dose: A good starting point is 1-2 drops of tincture per dose. Wait at least 30 minutes before taking any additional drops, as it can take some time for the effects of the tincture to kick in.
- Increase the dosage slowly: If you find that the initial dose is not providing the desired effects, gradually increase the dosage by 1-2 drops per dose. Continue to wait at least 30 minutes before taking any additional drops.
- Keep track of your dosage: It’s important to keep track of how much tincture you are taking and the effects it is having on you. This will help you determine the ideal dosage for your needs.
- Be aware of the potency: The potency of your tincture will affect how much you need to take. If you are using a high-potency tincture, you may need to take fewer drops per dose.
- Consult with a healthcare professional: If you are new to cannabis or have any health concerns, it’s important to consult with a healthcare professional before using a cannabis tincture. They can provide guidance on dosing and ensure that the tincture is safe for you to use.
Overall, dosing your cannabis tincture is a personal process that will depend on your individual needs and tolerance. By starting with a small dose, increasing slowly, keeping track of your dosage, being aware of the potency, and consulting with a healthcare professional if needed, you can find the ideal dosage for your personal use.
Tips and Tricks for Making the Best Cannabis Tincture.
Making the best cannabis tincture is not an exact science, and there are many factors that can affect the final product. However, there are some tips and tricks that can help you create a high-quality tincture that is potent and effective. Here are some tips to keep in mind when making your cannabis tincture:
- Use high-quality cannabis: The quality of your cannabis will have a big impact on the quality of your tincture. Choose high-quality buds or trim that are free of mold and contaminants.
- Decarboxylate your cannabis: Decarboxylation is a crucial step in the tincture-making process, as it activates the THC and other cannabinoids in the cannabis. Be sure to decarboxylate your cannabis before making your tincture.
- Choose the right extraction method: There are many different methods for making cannabis tinctures, including using alcohol or glycerin as the solvent. Consider the pros and cons of each method and choose the one that works best for your needs.
- Use the right type of alcohol: If you are using alcohol as the solvent for your tincture, choose a high-proof alcohol that is free of impurities. Grain alcohol, such as Everclear, is a popular choice.
- Strain and store your tincture correctly: Once your tincture is ready, be sure to strain it properly to remove any plant material. Store your tincture in a cool, dark place to maintain its potency.
- Experiment with different strains and dosages: Everyone’s body chemistry is different, so it’s important to experiment with different strains and dosages to find what works best for you. Keep track of your dosages and the effects they have on you.
Overall, making the best cannabis tincture is a process that requires attention to detail and experimentation. By using high-quality cannabis, decarboxylating properly, choosing the right extraction method and alcohol, straining and storing your tincture correctly, and experimenting with different strains and dosages, you can create a potent and effective cannabis tincture for your personal use.
A Step-by-Step Cannabis Tincture Recipe
Here is a quick and simple step-by-step recipe for making cannabis tincture using alcohol or glycerin as the solvent:
- 1/4 to 1 ounce of high-quality cannabis
- High-proof alcohol, such as Everclear or glycerin
Begin with decarboxylated cannabis.
- Place your decarboxylated cannabis in a glass jar.
- Pour enough alcohol over the cannabis to cover it completely.
- Seal the jar and shake it well.
- Store the jar in a cool, dark place for 4-8 weeks, shaking it every day or two.
- After the 4-8 week steeping period, strain the tincture through a cheesecloth or fine mesh strainer then strain once again through an unbleached coffee filter.
- Bottle your tincture in a dark glass dropper bottle and store it in a cool, dark place.
Cold Brewed Cannabis Tincture
If you don’t care to wait 4-8 weeks for some top-quality cannabis tincture, then try this method for Cold Brewed Cannabis Tincture. You can enjoy your tincture in little more than a day if desired.
Start with your choice of decarboxylated cannabis. Use only 190-proof or stronger alcohol or food-grade ethanol.
- Place cannabis and ethanol in the freezer for 24 hours or as long as a week.
- Take both ingredients out of the freezer and put the cannabis in a mason jar or similar sealable glass container.
- Poor just enough ethanol over the cannabis to cover it completely and seal the jar.
- Shake it up for a couple of minutes.
- Place it into the freezer for 15-30 minutes.
- Remove and shake for a couple of minutes.
- Repeat the process 3-5 times.
- Strain while cold.
Use the straining and bottling procedures from the previous guide.
Begin with a small dose of your newly formulated tincture and increase slowly to find the right dosage for your needs. Enjoy your homemade cannabis tincture!
Chronic RL and the L&C Team