How to Activate THC Through Decarboxylation

If you want to make potent cannabis oils, butters, and tinctures from raw herb, you’ll need to decarboxylate it first. Here's how to do it.

Start with premium cannabis flower (aka the bud). Like anything else, higher-quality ingredients lead to higher-quality end products—in this case, that includes taste, the potency of your infusion, and the quality of your high. Weigh out a little more than you need to account for loss in water weight during cooking. Or, if you plan on making multiple infusions, decarb all the flower you’ll need at once.

  1. Preheat the oven to 275°F for 1 hour to ensure a consistent temperature. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.
  2. Using scissors, snip off any large stems. With a sharp knife, chop the cannabis into pea-size pieces.
  3. Spread evenly in a single layer on the pan. Bake for 20 minutes—no peeking!
  4. Remove the pan and place it on a cooling rack. Once the decarbed flower is completely cooled, store it in an airtight container in the freezer until you’re ready to make your infusions. The flower loses its potency over time, so use it soon.

See Also How to Make Cannabis Butter

Note: Cooking with cannabis creates quite the aroma. Use a contained decarboxylation machine or a sous vide machine to reduce the smell of fresh green.