Cannabis cooking oil is easy to make at home and can be used in many edible recipes.

Making cannabis cooking oil is the first step in preparing many edibles, from weed brownies to cannabis-infused salad dressings.

Cannabis oil (or “canna-oil”) is simply made by infusing cooking oil with cannabis. Since marijuana is fat-soluble, the active compounds can be extracted using everyday cooking ingredients, such as olive or coconut oil.

The process is simple and doesn’t take longer than a few hours, so many people choose to make their own canna-oil at home.

Eating edibles made with canna-oil is a healthier alternative to smoking since it avoids any possible harm to your lungs. Also, because the high lasts longer, edibles are a good choice for patients with chronic conditions such as pain.

This guide will cover the benefits of cannabis cooking oil, what ingredients to use when making canna-oil, and the best recipes for preparing cannabis oil at home.

Consuming Homemade Edibles

A warning to anyone who has never eaten an edible: Expect a different, more intense high.

“It’s definitely more of a body high,” says Andrea Drummer, edible expert and co-owner of Elevation VIP Co-Op, a Los Angeles-based catering company that provides sophisticated marijuana-infused foods.

While most people report a full-body buzz after taking edibles, it’s not unusual to experience a psychedelic head high as well.

The effects of your cannabis oil will also depend on the strain you used to make it. A sativa dominant strain can produce more of an energetic head high, while an indica dominant strain can relax your body and aid in sleep.

Edibles can take 20 to 30 minutes to kick in and can last for 3 to 6 hours. On the other hand, when you inhale cannabis, the effects begin within minutes, but only last for up to 3 hours.

You may be wondering why edibles pack such a punch compared to smoking or vaporizing. The reason is because when you inhale marijuana, THC quickly enters the bloodstream and travels to your brain.

However, when you eat marijuana, THC enters the digestive system and gets metabolized by the liver. When this happens, THC gets converted into a different chemical called 11-hydroxy-THC, which bypasses the blood-brain barrier and gives you a longer-lasting high.

When people report bad experiences with edibles, it’s usually because they ate too much, causing an uncomfortable high that can last for hours.

“Be very educated on what you’re putting into your body, because that’s important,” Drummer says.

Education starts with properly dosing your cannabis cooking oil. Before you eat an edible, it’s important to know how much THC is in each serving. Also, since edibles take longer to kick in, you should wait at least 30 minutes to observe the effects before deciding whether to eat more.

Types of Cannabis Cooking Oil

(Photo: Pixabay)

(Photo: Pixabay)

Cannabis cooking oil can be made with a variety of different oils. Choosing which type of oil to use depends on your personal preference and what type of edible you’re making.

Keep in mind the higher the fat content of the oil, the more potent the final product will be. This is because cannabinoids and terpenes dissolve into fat, meaning that fattier oils will be better at extracting THC and other active compounds from your cannabis.

High-Fat Vegetable Oils

There are several high-fat cooking oils that you can use to make cannabis cooking oil.

Olive oil is a popular choice since it’s rich in healthy fats and contains antioxidants. It’s also one of the best solvents to extract cannabis, according to a 2013 study.

Canola oil can be infused with cannabis if you want a tasteless oil that can be used in a variety of dishes. It can also be heated to a higher temperature than other cooking oils.

Avocado oil is another good option because it’s high in monounsaturated fats and rich in vitamins A, B and E.

Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is one of the best oils to use when making canna-oil because it contains around 84% saturated fats. This means it can absorb more cannabinoids than other options like olive oil, which only has a fat content of 14%.

Coconut oil also has many health benefits, such as maintenance of healthy cholesterol levels and prevention of heart disease. Cannabis coconut oil can also be used topically or made into gelatin capsules for easier consumption.

Cannabis Butter

In many marijuana edible recipes, you can use cannabis butter (or “cannabutter”) instead of canna-oil to give the food a creamier texture. Like coconut oil, butter is high in fat and will extract more cannabinoids than other options.

However, cannabutter will only keep its potency for about two weeks, whereas canna-oil can last up to a year without spoiling. You can find our recipe for making cannabutter here.

How to Make Cannabis Cooking Oil

(Photo: Vimeo)

(Photo: Vimeo)

Before jumping into the infusion process, there are a few preparation steps you should follow to maximize the potency of your canna-oil.

Heating your cannabis before infusing it with oil will help you get the most bang for your buck. During this process, THCA gets converted into THC, the chemical that gets you high. The name for this conversion process is decarboxylation (or “decarbing”). Although the infusion process will decarb the cannabis anyways, heating it beforehand will make your oil more potent.

The next step is to properly dose your canna-oil. To do this, you’ll need to know three things: The amount of THC in your cannabis, the amount of cannabis needed for the recipe and the amount of cooking oil required. You can plug these numbers into an online THC calculator to determine the oil’s potency.

You can use this calculator again before eating your edible to figure out how many milligrams of THC are in each serving. If it’s your first time eating an edible, start small with about 5 to 10 milligrams and wait to observe the effects. While each edible recipe is different, the average dose per serving is 10-20 milligrams of THC.

Many canna-oil recipes require a double boiler or saucepan. However, the easiest way to make canna-oil is to use a slow cooker or Crock-Pot, since you can let it sit unsupervised while the cannabis infuses with the oil.

While making canna-oil is a simple process, there are a few mistakes to avoid. Firstly, don’t over grind your cannabis. If the cannabis is too finely ground, there will be plant material left in the oil, resulting in edibles with a bad herbal aftertaste.

You should also heat your mixture at a low temperature and make sure it doesn’t boil. If you make your cooking oil using too much heat, it will be less potent and contain less terpenes.

Another tip is to turn on the exhaust fan and put a towel underneath the door to minimize the smell.

Best Recipes for Cannabis Cooking Oil

(Photo: Gamma Man/Flickr)

(Photo: Gamma Man/Flickr)

Making cannabis cooking oil is a simple process that only involves two ingredients: Cannabis and your oil of choice.

However, there are many different recipes you can follow to make canna-oil, depending on what cooking equipment you have available and how much time you want to invest.

Here we’ve curated the best recipes for making canna-oil for you to try.

Decarboxylating Your Cannabis

Many people recommend decarboxylating your cannabis before adding it to a canna-oil recipe. This extra step will increase the amount of THC in your final product and improve the overall taste.

Ground cannabis bud, flower or trim

Baking sheet
Parchment paper

1. Preheat oven to 250°F.
2. Place parchment paper on baking sheet and spread a thin layer of ground cannabis evenly across.
3. Place the baking sheet in the oven and leave for 20-30 minutes.
4. Remove the baking sheet once the cannabis turns brown and let cool.

(Recipe adapted from

Quick & Easy Canna-Oil

This recipe only takes 20 minutes to prepare and is a good option if you want to whip up a batch of canna-oil immediately. Once finished, you can store the oil for up to a year.

1⁄4 ounce of ground, decarbed cannabis
1⁄4 cup of extra-virgin olive oil

Cheesecloth or fine mesh strainer
Wooden spoon

1. Place cannabis in a frying pan or saucepan with the oil.
2. Using a wooden spoon, continuously stir the mixture over a very low simmer for 10-20 minutes.
3. Remove from heat and let cool.
4. Pour the mixture through a strainer and into a bowl.
5. Using a large spoon, press the cooked cannabis to release more oil. Discard cannabis.
6. Store cannabis oil in a tight-sealing container. Refrigerate or keep in a cool, dark place for up to a year.

(Recipe adapted from The Cannabis Kitchen Cookbook)

Canna-Oil in a Slow Cooker

This “set it and forget it” recipe can be used to make canna-oil from any type of cooking oil (olive, canola, avocado or coconut).

1 to 1.5 ounces of ground, decarbed cannabis
2 cups of cooking oil

Slow cooker
Fine mesh strainer

1. Pour oil into the slow cooker.
2. Add cannabis and stir until herb is completely covered in oil.
3. Let sit on lowest heat setting for 3 hours.
4. Turn off heat and allow mixture to cool for 8-9 hours.
5. Repeat heating and cooling process two more times for increased potency (optional).
6. Pour the mixture through a strainer and into a bowl.
7. Using a large spoon, press the cooked cannabis to release more oil. Discard cannabis.
8. Store cannabis oil in a tight-sealing container. Refrigerate or keep in a cool, dark place for up to a year.

(Recipe adapted from Buzzfeed)

Canna-Oil in a Double Boiler

This recipe takes about 2 hours to make and requires a double boiler. The use of olive oil or canola oil is recommended.

3.5 cups of extra virgin olive oil or canola oil
1 ounce of ground, decarbed marijuana

Double boiler
Cheesecloth or fine mesh strainer

1. Pour oil into a double boiler.
2. Heat oil on a medium heat setting.
3. Add cannabis once oil is warm and almost simmering.
4. Stir frequently while keeping oil at a temperature close to simmering. If the oil begins to boil, remove it from heat and lower temperature setting.
5. Continue for 1-2 hours.
6. Pour the mixture through the strainer or cheesecloth and into a bowl.
7. Using a large spoon, press the cooked cannabis to release more oil. Discard cannabis.
8. Store cannabis oil in a tight-sealing container. Refrigerate or keep in a cool, dark place for up to a year.

(Recipe adapted from Weedist)

Best Recipes for Cannabis Coconut Oil

(Photo: Public Domain)

(Photo: Public Domain)

Since coconut oil is high in saturated fats, it will absorb more cannabinoids than most cooking oils, resulting in a canna-oil that is more potent. However, because coconut oil is solid at room temperature, you’ll need to heat it first before using it in a recipe.

Coconut Canna-Oil in a French Press

This recipe uses a French press and saucepan to create a potent cannabis-infused coconut oil.

8 ounces of coconut oil
1/4 ounce of ground, decarbed cannabis

French coffee press

1. Fill a saucepan with water and bring to a slow boil.
2. Place coconut oil in a French press. Cover and place in a pot of boiling water to turn the solid oil into liquid.
3. Mix cannabis into the liquefied coconut oil.
4. Cover French press with plunger and place standing upright in a pot of boiling water for 3 hours. Stir mixture every 30 minutes.
5. Check the water level in the pot every 20-30 minutes and refill as necessary. The water level should be at the same height as the oil in the French press.
6. After 3 hours, press plunger down to strain the oil and pour into a bowl.
7. Store cannabis oil in a tight-sealing container. Refrigerate or keep in a cool, dark place for up to a year.

(Recipe adapted from JeffThe420Chef)

Coconut Canna-Oil in a Slow Cooker

This recipe takes about 3 hours and requires a slow cooker. To make this recipe even stronger, you may add soy lecithin, which will help your body absorb more THC.

1/4 ounce of ground, decarbed cannabis
2/3 cup of coconut oil
1 tsp of soy lecithin (optional)

Slow cooker

1. Place the cannabis, soy lecithin, and coconut oil in a slow cooker and stir.
2. Set on low heat and let sit for at least 3 hours.
3. Let cool with the lid on for a few hours. Once cool, pour the mixture through the strainer and into a bowl.
4. Using a large spoon, press the cooked cannabis to release more oil. Discard cannabis.
5. Store cannabis oil in a tight-sealing container. Refrigerate or keep in a cool, dark place for up to a year.

(Recipe adapted from Whaxy)

Best Foods to Make with Cannabis Cooking Oil

(Photo: Presna420/Flickr)

(Photo: Presna420/Flickr)

The most popular edible to make with cannabis cooking oil is weed brownies. You can find our delicious recipe for marijuana-infused brownies here.

Other popular baked goods that you can make with canna-oil include:

  • Cakes
  • Cookies
  • Pies
  • Muffins
  • Tarts

Cannabis cooking oil can also be used to prepare a variety of savory dishes such as:

  • Salad dressings
  • Biscuits
  • Soups
  • Mashed potatoes
  • Pasta

You can find recipes for all of these edibles and more in the book The 420 Gourmet: The Elevated Art of Cannabis Cuisine