Throwing a Danksgiving: A Guide to a Cannabis Filled Holiday

A table with a large assortment of food.
Photo from Pixabay.

For many folks, cannabis is becoming a welcome part of the Thanksgiving meal. But if you’re interested in including cannabis in your Thanksgiving tradition, whether with family or friends, there are several things to consider before sending out your Danksgiving invites.
Do you want to infuse every dish with cannabis, or do you want to have a mixture of infused and non-infused so you can invite both sober and stoner friends? Do you know how to decarb and cook with cannabis, or how to test its strength? What classic Thanksgiving recipes would work well for an infused meal?

Whether you want to do only cannabis-infused recipes or want to merely provide an add-on like an infused oil or an infused honey so people can titrate their own desired level of cannabis, we’ve got you covered.
Read on!

Decarb your cannabis in the oven

Decarbing cannabis, which applies heat to the cannabis flower, helps activate the CBD and THC and release it into a usable form so the psychoactive or medicinal effects can affect the body. To decarb cannabis and retain the CBD and THC, the most important things to pay attention to the time and temperature. Also, make sure everyone in your house is okay with it smelling like cannabis for a while; cooking cannabis often releases a strong smell!

If your oven has minimal temperature variability, you can cook it in your oven at 240 degrees F. We recommend using a thermometer to make sure your oven stays above 220 degrees and don’t open your oven often to check on it.

Break up your cannabis flower (don’t grind it: if the powder is too fine, it will burn) and cook it on parchment paper in a single, consistent layer. If you want a higher THC content, aim for an hour; if you want a higher CBD content, go for 90 minutes.

Your cannabis should be golden brown when it’s finished. If at the end of the time, it’s green, leave it in for a few more minutes (no longer than 10mn). You can also decarb your cannabis in the microwave (not preferred because the temperature variance is often too great) or in water (preferred by cannabis chefs, but a very involved process. If you want to experiment with these methods, read more here. 

Cooking with cannabis

Research the type of flower you want – CBD is better for a subtle vibe, whereas a THC-rich strain will definitely affect your head. If you are familiar with the difference between indicas, sativas and cannabinoids, that’s great; if not, start with deciding between THC and CBD. A lot of flowers smell similar to how they taste, so if you smell a flower and think it would taste good in your butter, there’s a good chance it will.

Testing cannabis’s strength

To avoid any poor (or even disastrous) outcomes, test the potency of your weed. You can use an edible dosage calculator to evaluate how strong your particular recipe will be. This dosing edibles beginner’s guide is also very helpful.

Ideally, you’ll know the freshness of your cannabis, the quality of your flower and you’ll mix everything so it’s evenly distributed. All of these can affect your recipe’s strength!

Titrate the doses

A standard THC serving is 10mg per edible. But if you’re doing an entire Thanksgiving meal with infused dishes, consider a much lower dose so your guests can enjoy all your meals without worrying about getting too high.

To help empower your guests to make wise choices for themselves, take the total amount of THC in each recipe, divide it by the number of servings for that recipe, and note the dosage on a small card for your guests!


Photo from Unsplash.

Supplies: decarbed cannabis in the amount you desire (divided mgs by serving, or using a calculator mentioned above), the amount of unsalted butter you desire or that your recipe says, ¼ water, cheesecloth or mesh strainer, and a saucepan.

Melt your butter over extremely low heat, then add water and cannabis. Simmer on low for two hours and then cool. Once the butter has cooled but isn’t solid, strain through a cheesecloth or mesh strainer and then use immediately or save!

Infused oil

Photo from Pixabay.

The infusion process for oil as opposed to butter is the same! You can choose a variety of different oils such as olive or coconut, or even try ghee.

Infused honey

Photo from Unsplash.

Supplies: a thick creamy honey-like manuka, canna-coconut oil, microwavable small bowl and spatula/whisk.

To start, microwave your honey in 15-second increments until it’s stirrable. Then microwave the canna-coconut oil (also in 15sc increments) until it’s just barely liquified.

Pour the oil into the honey slowly as you stir the honey, and continue to stir for several minutes until the honey and oil are blended. As it cools during the next 10 minutes, continue to stir several more times. If using it right away, it’s good to go! If storing, keep it cool–room temp if you’re using it regularly; keep it in the refrigerator if you’re using it over the next month or so.

Cannabis-infused turkey marinade

Photo from Unsplash.

You’ll need: your favorite marinade recipe (or google one to try something new!), a marinade injector (dollar stores carry these), and cannabis-infused olive oil.

Mix all your spices and herbs together, then add the cannabis oil with the rest of the ingredients and mix till they’re all emulsified. Inject your turkey four hours before cooking so it has time to infuse: you’ll want to inject into the breast, legs, and thighs; try injecting in different areas.

Cannabis-infused mashed potatoes

Photo from Unsplash.

You’ll need: your favorite mashed potatoes recipe and cannabutter.

Boil potatoes and cook for around 15-20 minutes, till tender. Mash the potatoes and mix in the cannabutter with the remainder of your ingredients–we recommend regular butter too as well as milk, salt, pepper, garlic powder and a dollop of sour cream.

Cannabis stuffing

You’ll need: your favorite stuffing recipe and ⅔ cup cannabutter (less if you want it less potent).

Melt your cannabutter, then add your seasonings, spices, and veggies in a saucepan and saute until tender. Toss your bread and broth and then mix with the melted butter and veggies and either stuff your turkey or cook separately at 350F for 35 minutes.

Cannabis-infused apple pie

You’ll need: your favorite apple pie recipe and 1-2 tablespoons cannabutter.

Let’s not forget dessert! Unless you’re a pie connoisseur, we recommend using store-bought crusts for an easier experience. You can make the apple pie according to the recipe and dot the top of the pie (before you put on the top crust) with the cannabutter, or replace 1-2 tablespoons of regular butter with the cannabutter.

Other ideas

You can put cannabis in almost any traditional or non-traditional Thanksgiving dish: try cannabutter muffins, hummus with cannabis olive oil, ranch dip with canna-mayo, salad with infused oil dressing, cannabis casserole bake, pot brownies (classic), cannabis-iced cupcakes – the sky’s the limit!

RELATED:5 Tips on Safely Consuming Cannabis to Avoid Getting Sick

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