Unnecessary to decarboxylate herb for cannabutter?

Discussion in 'Cooking With Cannabis' started by fearnoevil, Apr 13, 2017.


    fearnoevil Well-Known Member

    I've never actually made cannabutter, although of the many times I've cooked or made brownies, I always sauteed the herb in butter prior to using it. While this certainly helped to activate more of the THC, from the recipes I've read it doesn't seem to come near the real thing.

    Most of the recipes I've read talk about heating the cannabutter mixture for anywhere from 4 to 12 hours, which raises a lot of questions in my mind. For one, wouldn't such long exposure to heat do some definite degradation where the lighter phenols are concerned? And doesn't it turn a lot of the THC into CBNs when heated that long?

    I know from the decarb techs I've read, many advise against heating for over a certain time at a specific temp (like 3hrs @ 212 f.) so as I see it, how is heating cannabutter at say 200 f. for 8-12hrs not going to convert a lot of the THC to CBNs?

    More importantly, most of the recipes I've read keep saying to decarboxylate prior to starting the process, but that doesn't make sense if during the butter making process you achieve sufficient time/temps to do both at the same time? I'd think that if you decarbed first, during the extraction process over such long times, wouldn't you just be converting more of the THC to CBN's (great for sleeping/relaxing, not so much for socializing/partying)?

    Any educated opinons ;?)

    fearnoevil Well-Known Member

    Also, anyone using Ghee (aka clarified butter, often sold at Indian markets as a healthy/organic cooking oil) to make cannabutter? I have both Ghee and organic coconut oil and am planning on making a batch with each to see which is better.

    dux Well-Known Member

    When I was younger we used to make brownies with ground up weed. not once did we ever de-carb but still got knocked on our Ass's !! Maybe it was just super dry brick weed?

    skepler Well-Known Member

    After making non-decarbed brownies for over 20 years, I discovered the coconut oil/butter/ghee methodology here. Some people decarb before making butter/oil. I always wondered about how long it takes dry material to get to temperature for decarbing, and how decarbed is the material to begin with. Because of these unknowns, I make my extraction, and then decarb the oil at 245-250° for 20-25 minnutes. Doing it this way, I can watch the CO2 bubbles come out of the oil during the decarb, and can stop the process when the bubbles stop by immersing the container in water.
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    cindysid Well-Known Member

    I decarb at 240f for an hour then I make butter;. I usually only cook the butter for about an hour Plenty of potency.
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    fearnoevil Well-Known Member

    I guess I'm just stubborn about avoiding over-processing because I'd like to retain as many of the lighter phenols that tend to go first with over-heating or for too long. I guess one way is to just try it without decarboxilating first and see if the process of heating the herb/coconut oil at 215 F for a couple of hours is enough.

    Could be the baking process helped decarb it to some extent (plus there's usually butter or oil in the recipe), and when you consider that the brick weed back in the day wasn't handled with the greatest of TLC, to say the least, maybe the natural exposure to environmental heat helped too. I did the same thing back in the 70's, but then I met an experienced cannabis cook who advised cooking the dried herb in butter before adding it to the brownies.

    I still remember the first time I did that nearly everyone over-dosed as the potency was way better than previous batches (including me, the cook, since I got to lick the bowl and utensils, I barely made it to the party before the meltdown hit, lol, not fun as I recall). That did help me to cut back and use less weed which also made the brownies much tastier without the excess herb, lol. I soon got a rep for the best Alice B. Toklas brownies ever ;?D

    fearnoevil Well-Known Member


    dux Well-Known Member

    If you really want butter with less "green" taste you can water cure your bus too!
    I would do this with bud i planned on cooking with..
    Obviously it only works if your growing your own..
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    sparkygeek Well-Known Member

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    fearnoevil Well-Known Member

    So I tried this with a coconut oil extraction. I put the container with the oil and herb in a coffee pot and put that in an electric wok and vegetable oil. I ran the extraction at around 240 F for an hour, during which I noticed lots of bubbles forming in the herb/oil mix. After an hour it did seem like the bubbles decreased dramatically which is when I pulled it out of the oil bath.

    The solution looked pretty dark, so I added about twice as much distilled water as oil put it back in the oil bath but set at 215-220 F and simmered it for another hour. When I pulled it out of the oil bath the water was a dark ass greenish brown.

    I put this in the freezer long enough for the oil to solidify but didn't allow the water to freeze, then poored off the water through a coffee filter (to catch small bits of the cannaoil), rinsed this off with distilled water and let it dry out. I has a beautiful light greenish yellow color and tastes delicious, with a nice toasted nut flavor.

    I'd post a pick but I just added more distilled water and melted it down to do a second wash because the bottom had a thin coat of brownish stuff embedded in the oil. When it cools I'll take some pics of all the batches I've made so far ;?)

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