Decarbing Cannabis Tips From The Pros

Decarbing cannabis is a process which removes the psychoactive cannabinoid THC from the plant (without removing essential nutrients, like phyto-cannabinoids) and is necessary for the creation of high-grade cannabis concentrates, like hash oil and shatter (a type of glassy, finely-ground concentrate).

A lot of people have questions about decarbing cannabis. It’s a topic that’s been in the news and in the blogosphere for years, but it’s still a topic that a lot of people have a tough time understanding. So, I’m here to help. In this article you’re going to learn how to do decarboxylation, how it’s different than other methods and how it works. You’ll also learn the benefits of decarboxylation and the issues that can arise if you happen to make a mistake.

Cannabis is tricky. On the one hand, it has its benefits, and it is used for medicinal purposes all over the world. On the other hand, it’s illegal in most countries. It’s not surprising, then, that many people are tempted to take the easy way and decarboxylate it. While decarboxylation is the process that converts THC into its more stable and medically useful acid, THCa, it isn’t the only way to make the herb available for consumption. No matter how you do it, though, there are some things you need to know before you start.

When you decarboxylate cannabis, you are essentially applying heat to activate the cannabinoids and convert them from their acidic form to a psychoactive state. For example, the conversion of THCa to TGCa.

If you skip the cannabis decarboxylation, your brew will not be potent enough and, in most cases, will not meet your expectations. But how do you choose the right time, method and temperature to get the perfect spice?

We will find out in this article. Not only will we talk about proper temperature and timing, but we will also introduce you to the different methods of decanting grass. This should give you everything you need to know to start experimenting with cannabis infusions. Let’s cook!

Photo by Margo Amala via Unsplash

Proper decarboxylation of grass

Depending on the resources you find online, there are many ways to carbonize grass. The most common method is to use an oven and baking trays prepared for the oven.

According to popular opinion, you should put it in a preheated oven at 122ºC for about 30 minutes, and that’s just right.

APPROPRIATE: Simple explanation of cannabis decarboxylation and how to do it yourself

However, you can also decarbonize faster if you increase the temperature, or slower if you decrease the temperature. There is a chart I found on the Green Camp website that is very useful if you want to play with the temperature.

But why would you want to play with the temperature? Wouldn’t it be enough to follow a rule of thumb to achieve consistent decarboxylation of cannabis?

Of course it is!

The reason you want to play with the time and temperature parameters is that some terpenes and flavonoids are heat sensitive.

APPROPRIATE: What do you do with marijuana before you make tincture out of it?

We will talk about the preservation of terpenes during decarboxylation later.

Depending on the purpose of decarbonizing the grass, following a chart will help you be more accurate.


Oven method

First, let’s look at the most common method: using the oven.

It’s very simple.

Preheat the oven to the desired temperature. Let’s take the example of 250ºF. While the oven is preheating, start breaking the cannabis into small pieces. Don’t chop, just chop, but not too fine. Little bits are good.

Place these pieces in an even layer on baking paper. Then place it in the oven and bake for about 25-30 minutes.

Weeds should turn from green to light brown. Once they are done, carefully remove the baking sheet and let them cool slightly.

The grass will now break up and crumble quite easily. So be careful!

Your herb is now ready to be brewed.

Double baking method

Another method is to use a water bath.

They essentially follow the same basic principles, except that the cannabis is in a jar with a lid so it can hold a large amount of terpenes.

Double boiling is essentially a method of decorating pots. You will be given a jug of water; the jug should be about a quarter full.

Then put another pot on top, so that there is a kind of connection between the two pots. The steam from the water below will evaporate and heat the pan above.

This will give you a controlled heat of about 212 degrees F or 100 degrees C. Using the chart below – also from Green Camp – you can see that at this temperature you will cook for about 90-120 minutes.

By putting the lid on the pan – possibly with a small opening – you can trap many of the other gases that are released during heating. These are terpenes, flavonoids, etc.

When the THC is activated and the vapor precipitates into the second pot, the terpenes and flavonoids recombine with the herb and enhance the flavor profile of the decaf.

APPROPRIATE: I used a decarboxylator to make an herbal beer and it was great.

This is especially useful if you find fragrant buds. Take some kind of blueberry or Lemon Haze and add it to your favorite dessert. You’ll be absolutely delighted.

If you understand the subtle chemistry behind it, your incense blends will have a whole new life. But the best teacher will always be experience.

If you have weed, now is the time to start experimenting!

Can decanted grass be preserved?

Sure, but it will deteriorate with time. It’s probably best to use it as soon as it’s ready for use.

If you plan to store the grass, it is best to keep it fresh. The decarboxylation process continues over time. In fact, if left for an extended period of time, the herb will decarboxylate completely on its own.

In some cases this can take months! Who has time for that?

It is not advisable to store grass that has already been cleared, as it will continue to decompose until it is no longer viable.

Photo Yarygin/Getty Images

Net sticky result

Making dyes is a science that many people enjoy! It’s just as much fun as growing weed, and when you start processing weed at will, cannabis reaches a whole new level!

For many people, this task seems daunting, and I’m not going to sugarcoat it. When you first try to do it yourself, you doubt at every step what you are doing.

I left the spice in the oven until it turned black and steaming. It happens to all of us sometimes.

But that’s okay!

All you have to do is jump in, experiment, make your own tinctures and learn the art of adding depth to your cannabis activities.

I hope this article has given you the confidence to start making your own infusions. Trust me, it’s worth learning!

This article was originally published on and is reprinted with permission.The whole decarbing process can be a bit terrifying to newbies, but the good news is that it’s easier than you think. In this post we’ll go through the basics to get you started and how to use the simple decarboxylation technique that works almost every time.. Read more about lowest temp for decarboxylation and let us know what you think.

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