Can a butter fly? A course on canna-butter
Canna-butter, also known as cannabis-infused butter, has been growing rapidly in popularity alongside the legalization of cannabis in recent years. As more states legalize both medical and recreational marijuana, a whole new market around cannabis edibles has emerged. One of the key ingredients used to make many weed-infused foods and drinks is canna-butter – butter infused with THC, the primary psychoactive compound in cannabis.
In this blog post, we’ll take a closer look at the budding canna-butter industry, exploring how it’s made, its growing market size, and even a simple recipe to try infusing your own cannabis butter at home. This versatile ingredient opens up a world of possibilities when it comes to cooking with cannabis.
How Canna-Butter is Made
Canna-butter is created through a process of decarboxylation and infusion using cannabis flower or trim and butter or oil as the base. Decarboxylation activates the THC so that it can have an effect when consumed. This involves heating the cannabis to a specific temperature for a set amount of time.
Once activated through decarboxylation, the cannabis gets combined with butter or oil and infused, usually by simmering over low heat for anywhere from 30 minutes to several hours. This allows the cannabinoids like THC to leave the plant material and dissolve into the fat molecules in the butter or oil. Various tools like slow cookers or double boilers can be used to properly regulate temperature during infusion.
Getting the technique just right takes practice, but the basic science behind activating cannabinoids and binding them to fats is what transforms simple butter into versatile, ingestible cannabis oil or canna-butter. The possibilities are endless when it comes to cooking and baking with this potent ingredient.
The Growing Market for Canna-Butter
The market for cannabis products, including edibles made with canna-butter, is expanding rapidly as legalization continues to spread. By 2025, sales of cannabis edibles in North America are projected to reach over $4.1 billion according to one report by Arcview Market Research and BDS Analytics.
Canna-butter is appealing to consumers as it provides an alternative way to consume cannabis without having to smoke or vape. When spread on food or used to cook cannabis-infused dishes, the effects also come on more gradually and last longer compared to other consumption methods. This versatility and flexibility are a large part of why the canna-butter market just keeps growing.
In states like California and Colorado where recreational use is legal, canna-butter products have sprouted up everywhere from specialty cookbooks to cannabinoid therapy recipes. There is also a thriving underground market trading in homemade edibles made using quality cannabis butter as the base. Major marijuana publications like High Times now regularly feature recipes that use canna-butter too.
How to Make Canna-Butter at Home
Interested in crafting your own cannabis creations using this popular ingredient? Making high-quality canna-butter at home is easier than you think. Here is a simple starter recipe:
- 1 ounce decarboxylated cannabis flower
- 1 pound unsalted butter
- Herb grinder
- Using a herb grinder, grind the ounce of cannabis flower to increase surface area.
- Melt the butter in a saucepan or slow cooker set to just under 300°F.
- Add in the ground cannabis and stir well. Keep temperature around 200°F.
- Simmer the mixture for 2-3 hours, stirring occasionally.
- Strain out the plant material by pouring through a cheesecloth.
- Place strained butter back in fridge to solidify into canna-butter.
Adjust amounts of butter and cannabis to achieve desired potency. Now you’re ready to cook and bake with homemade canna-butter!
Recipe Ideas with Canna-Butter
Now that you have your own batch of canna-butter, the options for using it are endless. Stick to about 1 teaspoon to start out to accurately dose the effects. Then you can experiment with every meal from baked goods to savory dishes:
Baked Goods: Spread it on banana bread, brownies, cookies, etc or substitute canna-butter for oil or butter in your favorite recipes. The flavor pairs well with anything chocolate or nutty.
Breakfast: Sauteed veggies scrambled with eggs is delicious when cooked in canna-butter. Spread it on toast with jam for a more classic wake and bake breakfast.
Dinner: Due to its high fat solubility, canna-butter excels when used to cook rich dishes like agnelotti stuffed pasta in sage brown butter sauce, seared scallops, or risotto.
Desserts: From pie crust and cheesecake to classic marijuana-infused soda popsicles, sweets of all kinds benefit form swapping out regular butter for the cannabis version.
Snacks: Make cannabutter popcorn by drizzling the melted butter over freshly popped corn for an easy anytime snack.
The savory, earthy herbal flavor pairs quite well with all sorts of recipes. Experiment and track the potency level that is right for your needs.
Canna-butter opens up amazing new possibilities for cooking and creating with cannabis. As more states move towards legalizing both medical and recreational marijuana along with its derivatives, expect products like cannabis-infused butter to continue gaining popularity. Not just for the high, but for the medical benefits as well.
Hopefully after learning the simple science behind how it’s made and even a starter recipe to DIY it at home, you are ready to start unleashing your inner canna-butter chef!