Cannabis Tinctures

cannabis tincture

Cannabis Tinctures

Cannabis tinctures are alcohol-based cannabis extracts—essentially, cannabis-infused alcohol. In fact, tinctures were the main form of cannabis medicine until the United States enacted cannabis prohibition. They’re a great entry point for both recreational and medical consumers looking to ease into smokeless consumption methods.

How to make cannabis tincturescannabis tincture

If you don’t have a full kitchen or just prefer simple, mess-free preparation techniques, cannabis tinctures are a great DIY project. You can make a tincture with a jar, alcohol, strainer, and cannabis. That’s all you need!

Using alcohol vs. glycerin for tinctures

When it comes to making tinctures, high-proof, food-grade alcohol is going to be your best friend. If you wish to avoid using alcohol, glycerin, a plant-based oil, is an acceptable replacement. However, glycerin is not as efficient at bonding to cannabis compounds and will produce a less potent tincture.

Some people try to make a more potent glycerin tincture by first using alcohol, carefully evaporating the (very flammable) alcohol off of the tincture, and then introducing glycerin afterward. You get the potency of the alcohol with the glycerin body. Considering the dangers associated with evaporating alcohol with a heat source, we at Leafly do not recommend this method.

Choosing the right type of alcohol for tinctures

The goal is to find a high-proof alcohol that is safe for consumption. The higher the alcohol content, the better it will dissolve cannabis resin. Everclear is my alcohol of choice when making a tincture, as it is both safe to consume and highly potent.

Products like isopropyl alcohol are not intended to be consumed and should never be used when making a tincture—save that for cleaning your pipes!

Making the tincture

To keep it simple, I like to use this ratio when making a tincture: For every ounce of cannabis flower, use one 750 mL bottle of alcohol (for an eighth of weed, that’s about 3 fluid oz).

This produces a mild effect, great for microdosing. If you want a more potent tincture, reduce the amount of alcohol by a third until you hit your desired potency.

  • Step 1: Decarboxylate your cannabis flower or concentrate (if you’re using flower, grind it to a fine consistency).
  • Step 2: Mix your flower or concentrate in a mason jar with high-proof alcohol (preferably Everclear).
  • Step 3: Close the jar and let it sit for a few weeks, shaking it once a day.
  • Step 4: After a few weeks, strain it through a coffee filter.

And if you don’t feel like waiting several weeks, you can even get away with shaking it for 3 minutes, straining, and storing.

Cannabis Tincture vs Cannabis Oil and RSOcannabis tincture

It’s common for people to question the difference between cannabis tincture, cannabis oil, and Rick Simpson oil (RSO). After all, each is a concentrated cannabis liquid. However, there is a key difference between these extracts that you should know.

Cannabis oil and RSO both feature an oil base (typically olive oil). Oils bind well with cannabinoids (THC, CBD, CBC, etc.), and olive oil provides a few nutritional benefits too. By comparison, cannabis tinctures use alcohol or glycerine (if alcohol isn’t suitable) as a base.

Edible vs Topical

Although not as popular of a method, you can apply marijuana tinctures directly to skin. You won’t feel the mental effects like you would if you consumed it orally, but cannabinoids have shown promise in supporting and soothing the skin. Edible or sublingual consumption, however, are far more common, and for most people will be the preferred ways to use cannabis tincture.

Whether you choose edible, sublingual, or topical application, know that there isn’t a superior option. It’s about balancing the effects with your specific needs.

Cannabis Tincture vs Cannabis Oil and RSO

It’s common for people to question the difference between cannabis tincture, cannabis oil, and Rick Simpson oil (RSO). After all, each is a concentrated cannabis liquid. However, there is a key difference between these extracts that you should know.

Cannabis oil and RSO both feature an oil base (typically olive oil). Oils bind well with cannabinoids (THC, CBD, CBC, etc.), and olive oil provides a few nutritional benefits too. By comparison, cannabis tinctures use alcohol or glycerine (if alcohol isn’t suitable) as a base.

Edible vs Topical

Although not as popular of a method, you can apply marijuana tinctures directly to skin. You won’t feel the mental effects like you would if you consumed it orally, but cannabinoids have shown promise in supporting and soothing the skin. Edible or sublingual consumption, however, are far more common, and for most people will be the preferred ways to use cannabis tincture.

Whether you choose edible, sublingual, or topical application, know that there isn’t a superior option. It’s about balancing the effects with your specific needs.

One of the greatest benefits of cannabis tincture is the ability to customise. You can infuse tinctures with any cannabis strain you can think of, which gives you infinite freedom to tweak the ratio of THC and CBD.

Bear in mind, though, that tinctures made from high-THC cannabis strains are going to be much stronger than smoking a joint or hitting a bong. A tincture can contain up to 60% THC, so don’t underestimate their potency!

If you want a tincture focused on promoting overall well-being, consider a CBD-rich cannabis strain like Tatanka Pure CBD or Joanne’s CBD.

Cannabidiol (CBD) is the non-toxic, non-psychotropic cousin to THC, and it won’t get you high. It does, however, have a reputation for supporting various mental and physical functions, while also mediating the intoxicating effects of THC. With that in mind, you can also choose a 1:1 CBD:THC strain to benefit from the influence of both cannabinoids.

The Benefits of Cannabis Tincture Over Other Consumption Methods

We’ve covered almost every facet of cannabis tincture, from how it’s made to whether it’s safe to swallow. Now, it’s time to wrap up this definitive guide with the benefits of cannabis tincture versus traditional consumption methods. After all, if you can smoke, vape, or eat cannabis, why should you even consider cannabis tincture?

  • Tinctures deliver potent effects that start in minutes.
  • Sublingual consumption gives THC and CBD direct access to your bloodstream, improving its bioavailability.
  • Store cannabis tincture (alcohol) correctly, and it will last years.
  • Discreet and straightforward. You can easily use cannabis tincture at work, home, or while socialising, without drawing attention to yourself.
  • A couple of drops can have the same THC concentration as an entire joint.
  • Easily added to your favourite drinks and dishes in seconds, without any prior preparation.
  • Tinctures offer a precise and accurate way to microdose.
  • Cannabis tincture is much friendlier on the waistline. Each drop is only a few calories compared to eating an entire edible.

And there you have it; a complete guide to cannabis tinctures, with everything you need to know to start making your own. All that’s left now is to try our simple recipe for yourself!

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