How to Get a Healthier High With DIY Cannabis Tea
And yes, you will get high. Quite.
Cannabis is playing a big role in quarantine coping methods right now. But while a non-addictive, hangover-free herbal remedy is ideal during these times of increased, sedentary anxiety, the act of smoking is not. The solution? Don’t smoke your weed. Drink it.
Cannabis-infused tea takes out the loads of sugar and fat that usually come with eating edibles, while still providing a full infusion of cannabinoids from flower. It also gives your lungs a break. If you happen to have cannabis butter, infused honey, or a tincture on hand, your work is essentially already done. Just add to your tea of choice the same you would any honey or sugar.
If you don’t, no worries. All you need is a gram of ground flower and about 20 minutes to spare.
We’ve put together a step-by-step guide as simple as possible when it comes to that whole pesky decarboxylation thing. You unfortunately can’t just drop some weed in a tea bag and start steeping (unless you love the taste of soggy weed and don’t really want to get high). But you don’t have to go all out to make a quick single-serving of decarboxylated buds either. You got this.
- 1 gram of ground cannabis (Sour Tangie or any citrus-scented strain works well)
- 1 tablespoon of unsalted butter or coconut oil
- Teabag of your choosing (classic English Breakfast is always good)
- 4 cups of water
- Any other ingredients for flavor such as honey, milk, sugar, cinnamon, etc.
- Cheesecloth or a fine strainer
Makes about three regular mug-sized cups of tea. Recommended dosing: one cup per person, and not within two hours of heading out to drive or operate serious machinery.
Step 1: Boil 4 cups of water in a medium-sized pot. Once it’s boiling, add the tablespoon of butter or coconut oil and allow it to completely dissolve. THC needs something fatty to stick to under high heat — that's how we separate the good stuff from the plant material.
Step 2: Add your gram of ground cannabis into the boiling pot, and turn the temperature down to a simmer.
Step 3: Allow this mixture to simmer for fifteen minutes. For really great weed or really passionate cannabis-foodies, it can be worth it to simmer at as low a temperature as possible for a longer period of time in order to preserve the more nuanced flavors of that strain. Terpenes are the first to burn off when things get too hot, too fast.
Step 4: Now it’s time to strain out the little bits of cannabis. There’s too much water to strain straight into your mug (unless it’s enormous), so grab a bowl or ideally an empty teapot. If you’re using cheesecloth, secure it around the top of the teapot or bowl with a rubber-band or string. You can always ask your quarantine mate to hold the cheesecloth in place around the top, or solo chefs can anchor it on all sides with something heavy. Carefully and slowly pour the boiling mixture through the cheesecloth and into your chosen vessel. You can always just use a metal strainer, but it needs to be a fiiine strainer unless you’re cool with leafy bits in your teeth.
Step 5: Add your teabag into the teapot, along with any desired extras like mint, lemon, honey, or a cinnamon stick and stir well. It'll help moderate that herby flavor. Steep for about three minutes.
Step Yay: Remove the teabag, stir well to incorporate the infused butter throughout, and pour yourself a cup.
There is going to be a subtle weed-y flavor no matter what, but you can add some more milk and sugar to balance it out. Many find pre-made chai has a strong enough flavor to complement the herbal notes. Remember that your body will still digest it like an edible, so be patient. Depending on whether you’ve eaten recently and your body’s metabolism, it could take up to an hour and a half to feel effects.
Sip safely out there.