You’ve heard of cannabis edibles—pot brownies, weed cookies, and CBD gummies need no introduction. But did you know that there’s also such a thing as a cannabis drink?
Cannabis beverages aren’t as well-known as their solid counterparts, but they work the same way, and the benefits are much the same.
Why Drink Cannabis?
Many people start eating cannabis because they prefer it to smoking. It’s healthier for the lungs and the effects can last longer, though it does take longer to hit your system. Cannabis drinks are the same.
Drinks and edibles offer longer-lasting highs because of the way they’re processed. Instead of being absorbed directly into the bloodstream by way of the lungs, consumed cannabis has to go through the stomach and on to the liver, which processes and absorbs the THC, CBD, and terpenes that offer the effects you’re looking to get.
You might even get a stronger high. Scientists have found that the liver metabolizes THC into a chemical called 11-hydroxy-THC, which is more usable by your system than standard THC. That means more of the THC you consume will take effect, and that’s true of cannabis drinks as well as edibles.
If you take cannabis products to treat pain, muscle spasms, or other medical complaints, you might find that a cannabis drink is more effective than smoking. That’s because, in the process of digesting the drink, your system distributes the beneficial chemicals more evenly throughout the body. Better still, you’re likely to feel less “stoned” and more functional.
Convenience and Variety
Cannabis drinks add even more variety to your “canna-menu” (if you will).
Cannabis Drink Options
When all is said and done, there are four basic ways of accessing drinkable cannabis:
- Buy it pre-made
- Use a mix and follow the directions
- Buy some dissolvable THC or CBD and stir it into your favorite non-alcoholic beverage
Make your own from scratch, all the way to the infused ingredient
If you’ve made edibles, making your cannabis drink won’t be that different. The first step is to decide on an infused ingredient.
The DIY Process
Making edible baked goods usually involves preparing “cannabutter,” an infusion of prepared cannabis in melted butter. You can use cannabutter to prepare some coffees, teas, or even hot chocolate drinks.
Cannabis-infused milk is also a popular infused base for hot drinks. It’s powered a trend called the “wellness latte,” which you can make at home if you can prepare a regular latte. You can also use infused milk to make protein shakes, milkshakes, and chocolate or coffee milk.
For non-alcoholic mixed drinks and mocktails, try cannabis simple syrup. It’s similar to regular syrup—essentially sugar water—with the addition of ground or chopped cannabis and glycerin to draw out the beneficial chemicals.
There are plenty of recipes available online, both for how to make infused bases and how to use those bases to create delicious drinks. Experimenting is half the fun, so get to it! Don’t forget to share your favorite cannabis drink recipe and keep the conversation going.