When you use cannabis you will always be left with remaining stems. Here’s how to best use them and avoid just throwing them away.
In this modern day in age, we can all do with saving some cash, especially when it comes to smoking cannabis. One really good hack for sticking to your budget is by reusing and recycling. Just like you can save Kief from your grinder, there are some very creative ways to use your stems instead of tossing them in the bin.
Leftover Cannabis Stems
We all have wondered when our stash gets down to stems and dregs if there is any THC in the stems? Although smoking the stems alone is possible, this definitely isn’t the best bang for your buck and well they taste absolutely horrible in my opinion. Even though stems pose the same risk to your lungs as smoking the bud itself, they hold less THC value. Instead of the same high, you would get from the bud, you will get a nasty wood chip taste and most likely a nasty headache.
Instead of smoking them, learn how to extract the THC and feel super proud that you have added a new skill to your cannabis trick bag.
Brew Some Tea
When you look into weed-cycling, it is important to know that cannabis stems do contain THC. Once you know this, the options are endless for reusing them. But start slow and with something easy, like brewing yourself a good old cup a tea.
Try this simple recipe:
- ¼ to ½ cup of stems (ground or broken up, your choice)
- 3 cups of water
- Tea bag of your choice (I like rooibos or green tea)
- Coffee filters
- 2 to 3 teaspoons of a favorite alcohol
If you prefer to stay away from alcohol (like me) then you can try a ½ cup milk (dairy, soy, almond or coconut) or a half teaspoon of butter or coconut oil. Remember like with all cannabis cooking, it is necessary to first decarboxylate your cannabis.
First, begin by filling the kettle with water (a stovetop kettle or a small pot). Then add the milk, butter or oil, but if you are using alcohol then you must first wait until the water is boiling and off the burner before adding it. Add the broken or ground stems to the boiling water and stir for 10 minutes, this will infuse the liquid.
If you are using ground stems than consider using a reusable tea bag to make the straining process easier. If not, simply place the coffee filter over the kettle’s spout or into a funnel if using a small pot. After mastering how to extract THC from stems for brewing tea from this recipe, try something a little more challenging. If you have a tea party and invite some friends over for a cuppa, I can guarantee they won’t even ask if stems have got THC, because they will be baked off your new brew.
Infuse Your Booze
Even though the cannabis industry today offers a whole range of wines and bud beers to try. Learning how to extract THC from stems to infuse your booze is a great DIY project to use your leftover stems. There are recipes for infusing ground bud that provide a reasonable foundation that you can follow for infusing alcohol with THC from stems. You can simply increase the amount by a quarter cup for a deeper high if you wish.
Another option, if you want to do the cheaters method and you have got the time, you can take a bottle of strong clear alcohol, such as vodka or tequila. For every 30ml of liquid, grind up 1.5 grams of stems. Leave the bottle to sit in a dark room for three weeks, occasionally shaking to stir up the contents. Because this will produce a very intense taste, think about taking only a ¼ to ½ shots of the finished products at a time.
Also, try blending the infused alcohol with your favorite mix, like vodka and coke or a bloody Mary mix. When you have cannabis-minded guests over for a session, give them the breakdown on the question they will definitely be asking after having a shot, “Really? Cannabis stems have got THC in them?”
Extract Bubble Hash
Even the most experienced cannabis users have wondered if stems contain THC. It is definitely worth experimenting and taking the time to find out. If you decide to make some bubble hash, it may very well be worth your time and you will never wonder if there is THC in stems again.
Start by first collecting broken down stems or putting them in a blender. Just remember it should be almost double the amount you would use for making hash if you were using just bud. Place the stems into a mason jar with 90% isopropyl alcohol. Shake the closed jar for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Strain the mix with a coffee filter into a Pyrex glass container or bowl. Adjust a fan to blow onto the mixture and wait until all the liquid has evaporated.
This waiting period could be over 3 hours. It will be best to wait at least 24 hours before enjoying the product. Once the waiting process is over, scrape the container and enjoy the smoke. Now you have added yet another way to extract THC from stems to your bag of tricks.
Get Baked By Baking
Now that you know that stems do indeed contain THC you have opened up a world of opportunity in baking too. If you are stuck with leftover stems, you can experiment with new recipes. Make cannaoil or make cannabutter from the stems. Simply adjust your recipe by increasing the number of stems in comparison to ground bud.
Remember to adjust your seasoning and flavoring depending on what you decide to make. The stems will have a much more potent and woody taste compared to regular flowers. Learning that cannabis stems contain THC may make your edibles cheaper to make and more effective than you ever thought possible.
What To Do When Not Extracting THC
Sometimes it doesn’t matter that you know stems contain THC. Getting crafty with your stems don’t have to end with simply extracting THC. Stems grouped together can make for a workable screen or filter for a piece. Depending on their size, another neat trick is to glue or weave the stems together to make baskets. Or you can carve them sharp to make skewers for your next cannabis cookout.
Though knowing the answer to do cannabis stems have THC is an absolute yes. It may seem a waste of a valuable high not to use them up through infusion, baking or brewing. Nonetheless less, by committing to using the whole product. You will be enjoying your green while keeping the world a little greener too.
Written by MCSB Team, Sep 2018
~ Medical Cannabis Seed Bank