What is Shake & is it Good to Smoke?

What is Shake & is it Good to Smoke?

Published on 7/21/20

Updated: January 31, 2022

Let's face it, all cannabis is not created equal. The difference between splashing the cash on top-shelf, sticky-icky varieties of cannabis and the more affordable, buy-in-bulk type mid you'll get from street-level dealers are worlds apart. That's been one of the best parts of the legal cannabis boom; The rise of craft-growers and wonderful, top-notch cannabis strains has been second to none. Regardless of the quality of the weed you're buying or what boutique dispensary you get it from, every strain of cannabis has shake.

As the cannabis industry evolves and weed businesses look to cash in on every part of the plant, the crumbs of bud leftover at the bottom of weed bags have turned into its own entire product category. That's where shake comes in! But when you walk into a dispensary and see a cheap bag of shake next to grams, eighths, and ounces, do you really know what you're looking at and how to use it once you get home? That's where we here at Where's Weed have your back.

This article is going to go in-depth on what shake is, dig into the nitty-gritty details on how it can be used best, and answer all of your burning questions when it comes to cannabis shake and it's usefulness to you the consumer. We'll answer questions like what is shake weed? Is it worth buying? Should you roll it into joints or save your leafy stash for edibles?

What Is Marijuana Shake?


When cannabis is packaged for sale - whether it's at a legal dispensary or traditional plastic baggie you'd get on the street - it comes in the form of small THC-packed weed buds or nugs. But just like when you pick a flower at the park, even nature's most beautiful fauna has a tendency to crumble under a little pressure.

So no matter how much bud is in your bag or jar, every bit of friction, pressure or movement puts stress on your nugs and causes flakes of weed to fall off the bud to the bottom of your container. Those leftover leaves, trichomes, and bud scraps are called shake. Once all the nugs are gone, smoking that shake is the most common practice. After all, most people aren't exactly made of money, so wasting something like cannabis that wasn't widely legal at the time was just dumb. However, just like other weed products, there are countless ways to use your shake scraps other than just packing a bowl, rolling a joint ot blunt, or firing up your favorite bong.

With legal cannabis now being a widely spread and popularized cash-cow, however, dispensaries are now big players when it comes to shake. After all, most dispensaries has handling, packaging, and selling pounds of cannabis per day, so there's bound to be some shake produced in that process. It only make sense for them to sell that shake to consumers on a budget.

Buying Shake From Dispensaries

Now that you can define shake, it's time to go out and buy some. These days, you don't need to buy a zip of weed (that's an ounce for all you newcomers) to find a couple of grams of shake. Instead, legal dispensaries across the country are now offering bulk quantities of shake as discount options for smokers who favor quantity over quality.

At its heart, the shake vs bud conversation is about how much THC is in weed. Of course, how much weed gets you high depends on the THC quantity. While a pre-packaged jar of nugs might clock a THC percentage of 25 percent or higher, shake is usually slightly less potent as the outer layers of bud and sugar leaves that make up shake often carry fewer THC-rich trichomes.

To make up for that potency discrepancy, shake sold at dispensaries is usually packaged in bulk quantities like half and full ounces. The basic trade-off here is quantity or quality, right? You might not be able to afford some of that top-shlef, designer bud with THC levels through the roof, but you'll likely be able to get a large amount of shake from that same stain for less than the bud would cost. That's the core trade-off here.

So with all of that in mind, let's look at some great ways to get the absolute most out of the shake you have, whether it's from a dispensary or your own personal collection.

What To Do With Shake

Alright, so now that we've established what is weed shake and broken down (no pun intended) how you'll get it, it's time to talk about what exactly to do with shake.

First, like any other cannabis flower, you can always just roll up and smoke your shake weed. But while bong rips and bowl hits are great for ground-up nugs, shake is better smoked in a blunt or joint thanks to its already-grown consistency and typically lower potency. If you're having a party or get together, buying shake from dispensaries and pre-rolling a bowl of joints is a great way to spread the wealth without breaking the bank. In the legal weed industry, large quantities of shake are often packed into pre-roll joints anyways, giving companies a way to sell the less-desirable product without showing customers the leafy greens inside.


If you're tired of smoking and need a new way to consume, shake is also a perfect vehicle to experiment with edibles. Like traditionally ground bud, you can mix your shake with butter or oil and low heat to infuse the leftover weed into cookies, brownies or even homemade gummies. Because edibles often give users a stronger effect than smoking, cooking your own shake-infused edibles is a great way to get the best bang for your buck from your bag of cannabis shake.

Just like edibles, shake is also great for making tinctures or concentrates. For easy tinctures, use high-proof alcohol like Everclear to soak and infuse your shaky stash. For concentrates, you'll need a lot of shake and some heavy-duty equipment to produce a viable product. For home growers with some time on their hands, ethanol and solventless extraction techniques are a great way to use up THC-packed trim and shake.

At the end of the day, like all cannabis products, there is no wrong way to use shake and it all comes down to personal preference and intended effect. No matter how you choose to consume your cannabis crumbs, finding the best fit for your shake weed is a surefire way to make sure you're getting the most out of every bag of bud you buy.

Have you ever smoked shake? What's your favorite way to consume it? Let us know in the comments below!

Where's Weed