One of the latest—and some say greatest—ways to ingest medicinal cannabis is juicing. There are many reported health benefits to juicing cannabis and it appeals to many patients because it does not get you high. Heat is required to trigger the psychoactive properties of THC and juicing bypasses that completely. It is easy to create a completely innocent, healthy cannabis juice. Here are a few things you should know first.
Blender vs. Juicer
The biggest decision in juicing is which machine to choose. It is possible to juice cannabis in a blender and this is a good place to begin if you want to experiment. For those who really want to get into juicing, a masticating juicer is your best bet. These can range from $100 to several thousand and are designed to juice the driest vegetables and leafy greens. If kale and wheatgrass smoothies are on your wish list as well, a decent juicer is a good investment. Follow the juicer’s instructions for leafy greens and you are done!
Blending Cannabis Juice
If you decide to stick with your trusty blender over a juicer, a decent one will be able to create cannabis juice:
- Remove the stems from 4-5 fresh cannabis fan leaves.
- Rinse well and add them to the blender.
- Add 1 cup of distilled water.
- Cap the blender and give it a few good rounds on the pulse setting.
- Switch to liquefy and watch your fresh cannabis juice form.
- Strain out the big pieces of pulp and enjoy!
Pulp or No Pulp
Many medicinal cannabis juicers prefer to leave some pulp in the juice, as the pulp has extra fiber and nutrients that are beneficial. It does make the juice thicker and can be harder to drink if you are not used to it. Strain the juice as many times as you like. One trip through the strainer will remove most of the pulp.
Choosing & Prepping the Cannabis for Your Juicer
Juicing cannabis for its medicinal benefits requires a few decisions. Most importantly, begin with a type that is preferred for medical use, such as high-CBD cannabis. The cannabis also needs to be fresh. Dried leaves are a waste of time. Fresh from the plant is best and if you must store the leaves, place them in the refrigerator in a loose plastic bag. Don’t expose them to any heat.
Some people will add fresh buds to their mix as well, but this is not necessary. Besides, juicing is a great way to use up leaves that may be discarded. If plants have been sprayed with anything, be sure to rinse the leaves thoroughly.
Storing Cannabis Juice
Fresh cannabis juice can be stored for up to three days in the refrigerator. To extend its shelf life, freeze the juice in an ice cube tray and pop out cubes as needed. With this method, the juice can be used for up to three weeks.
Masking the Taste
Let’s face it, the taste of raw cannabis is not for everyone. If you love a straight shot of wheatgrass juice, you may not have a problem with it. For everyone else, it is an acquired taste you may or may not get used to.
To make cannabis juice easier to drink, mix it with other juices. Carrot is a favorite and some people recommend a blend of one part cannabis to 10 parts carrot. That’s great, but let’s make it more interesting! Choose light, sweet fruits that will offset that bitter cannabis flavor. Banana, mango and peach are great places to start. Add a little sweetener and milk or yogurt and you have the foundation for a great-tasting cannabis smoothie.
Peachy Green Smoothie
- ½ large peach, chopped
- ½ banana, sliced
- 3 cannabis juice ice cubes
- 1 tbsp agave nectar or honey
- 3 ounces milk or ½-cup yogurt
Place the ingredients in a blender. Pulse to chop everything up, then liquefy until smooth.
Adapt this recipe however you want. That’s the best part about juicing…there are no rules! Try soy, almond or coconut milk or a flavored yogurt (blueberry with peach is delicious). If the mix is too thick, add more milk or two plain ice cubes and blend again. You can also begin with just 4 or 5 large cannabis fans and skip the cubed juice completely.