How to Calculate THC Content for Edibles [Explained]

Homemade edibles are more popular than ever. The benefits are plentiful: delicious taste, potent high, a sense of achievement… the list goes on. There’s just one problem: when cooking at home, there’s no convenient label to tell you how much THC is in each bite.

Edibles can be fun, but if you eat super potent weed brownies without knowing the THC content, you could find yourself greening out. Vomiting and feeling miserable will likely ruin your entire weed experience, so it’s best to avoid this scenario where possible.

Luckily, there’s an easy way to work out how much THC is in the edibles you have made. You can use this formula for sweet treats and even full cannabis meals. Let’s see how to do it.

Step 1: Find the Percentage of Your Weed

Firstly, it’s imperative to know what weed you’re using and how potent it is. The THC content varies from sample to sample. As a result, you can never really know how much THC is in the cannabis you possess unless you have some expensive lab equipment.

According to a 2009 study by the US government, the average THC content of cannabis was 10%. However, a 2016 study, by ElSohly et al., revealed that potency has been rising since 1995. In 2014, it was approximately 12%.

You can never really know how much THC is in the cannabis you possess unless you have some expensive lab equipment.

If you want to get more specific percentages, you can find information using the name of your strain. Give it a quick Google search, and you will likely find information about the average THC content of the specific strain. Here at WayofLeaf, we have plenty of up-to-date reviews on cannabis strains that feature an average THC content, so that you best know what to expect.

Step 2: Calculate the Strength of Cannabutter

When cooking with cannabis, you will typically need cannabutter, canna-oil, or cannamilk. First, you need to work out the strength of the cannabutter. Fortunately, the math for doing so is pretty simple.

The formula for calculating the THC level of your cannabis is as follows:

Percentage strength of the weed x 10 = number of mg per gram

Number of mg per gram x number of grams in the recipe = THC content of the cannabutter

As an example, let’s say you have a cannabis strain with 10% THC. You have decided to make one cup of cannabutter using an ounce (28g) of weed. The math would go something like this:

10% x 10 = 100mg of THC per gram

100mg x 28 grams = 2800mg

So, in one cup of cannabutter, you’ve got 2800mg of THC. That’s a lot, remember, so you may need less cannabis than this.

Step 3: Calculate How Much Is in Your Edible

It’s unlikely that you would use an entire cup of cannabis butter in an edible recipe. Most recipes call for 1-2 tablespoons. For reference, one cup of butter is approximately 227 grams, while one tablespoon is roughly 14 grams. Thus, there are about 16 tablespoons of butter in one cup.

calculate-thc-in-edibles

Let’s say your recipe contains just 1 tablespoon of cannabutter. To work out how much THC is included in that, do the following:

[Number of mg per cup ÷ 16 (number of tbsp per cup)] x number of tbsp in the recipe

It would look something like this:

  1. 2800mg ÷ 16 = 175mg per tablespoon
  2. 175 x 1 = 175mg in the recipe

If you’re making a whole meal, then you can go ahead and assume that you’ll be eating 175mg of THC in total. If you’re making a traybake or gummies that can be cut into smaller portions, then you can divide the mg total by the number of edibles you’re cooking.

For example, if you’re making a tray of brownies cut into twelve slices, then you divide 175mg by twelve. The result is 14.6mg. Thus, there is 14.6mg per slice.

Why You Need to Calculate the THC Content of Edibles

It’s vital to work out how much THC is in the edibles you’re eating. It’s best to do it before you begin making cannabutter since you otherwise risk using way too much. If you bake with too much marijuana, you can end up in an unpleasant situation.

This logic also doesn’t only apply to yourself. If you plan on sharing edibles with your friends, as many people do, then you need to know how strong they are. It’s no use introducing your friend who has never used weed before to marijuana by giving them a super potent edible! They would have an awful time, turn against cannabis forever, and probably think of you as a bad friend.

Luckily, the calculation process is not too time-consuming.

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Things to Consider

Even if you have painstakingly calculated the dosage of your edibles down to every last bite, there is no way to know for certain how edibles will affect you. This is especially the case when trying a new strain. As mentioned previously, every strain has varying THC contents, too. You could get a weak sample one week and a potent one the next.

To make sure you have a good experience every time, no matter the THC content, there are some things to bear in mind.

To make sure you have a good experience every time, no matter the THC content, there are some things to bear in mind.

Here are some other things to think about when chowing down on delicious edibles:

  • Environment: Using weed in a place where you are comfortable is always best. If you’re new to this, it’s crucial. The environment also includes the people you are with, so make sure you gather some good friends. If you have your best buds around, you’re likely to have a good time no matter what.
  • Tolerance: THC affects everybody differently. What gets one person super stoned might barely affect someone else. Your tolerance can also increase the more you use marijuana, so experienced users might need more THC to feel the same effects. This is something to consider when making a batch of cannabutter.
  • Weight: Similarly, your weight and metabolism can affect your experience. Depending on how fast your body can process the cannabinoids, the edibles might take a while to sink in and they may not be as potent. In this case, you might need to up the dose.
  • State of Mind: If you’re feeling bad, weed might not be the best option. For some people, using THC while in a negative mind frame can cause anxiety and paranoia. It’s a little similar to the environment, but more to do with your internal being. If you feel positive and balanced, then you’re more likely to have a pleasant experience with edibles.

All of these things can influence your experience. Alongside calculating the dosage of edibles, you must consider factors like this in order to have the best time possible.

Final Thoughts on Calculating the THC Content of Your Edibles

Whether you desire incredibly potent space cakes or a gentle edible that will calm your nerves a little, you can make an edible that’s perfect for you. One of the best things about cooking CBD edibles yourself is that you get to decide how much cannabis goes in. Using the formula in this guide, you can calculate how much marijuana to add to your cannabutter and how much to include in the recipe.

That being said, it might take a little trial and error. You may find that each batch is different, so be prepared to be flexible and take what comes!

Remember that edibles can take a few hours to kick in. If you don’t feel the effects immediately, sit tight, and give it a while. There’s no sense doing all that calculating just to eat too much and feel sick anyway!

Hopefully, this brief guide has helped you to understand how to calculate the THC in homemade edibles. With this knowledge, you’re ready to be a cannabis chef. Happy cooking!

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