How to Make Cannabis-Infused Simple Syrup
Published on 1/19/23
In the modern cannabis market, infused foods and beverages are more popular and varied than ever. Still, almost every single recipe calls for a cannabis-infused fat like cannabutter or canna oil. While these are undoubtedly delicious, you don't always want to consume the saturated fat of these infused treats. For a lower-fat but still super-sweet version of your favorite weedy drinks and desserts, cannabis sugar is a great alternative. Try cannabis-infused simple syrup for an easy-to-dissolve version that's perfect for your favorite recipes.
This infused simple syrup recipe calls for just 4 ingredients; cannabis, sugar, water, and vegetable glycerin, to create an extremely versatile infusion that you can add to almost any sweet treat you'd like.
7-9 grams of decarboxylated cannabis (see below)
3 1/4 cups white sugar
3 cups water
3 tablespoons food-grade vegetable glycerin
Decarboxylate ("Decarb") Your Cannabis
To cook up your THC-infused simple syrup, you must first decarboxylate it to activate the THC. Sometimes called "decarbing," the process is quite simple. Bake raw cannabis at a low temperature to convert THCA, which is present in raw cannabis, into the psychoactive compound we're all quite familiar with: THC. This process happens naturally while smoking weed when we apply a heat source (like a lighter) to the bud or put it in a vaporizer. Though it might be challenging to pronounce, the process of decarboxylating is easy.
- Bake even-sized nugs (don't grind finely to avoid burning) on a baking sheet at 240 degrees Fahrenheit for 25-45 minutes (drier cannabis will require less time).
- Flip the cannabis nugs halfway through to ensure even baking.
- Allow to cool before adding to your infusion.
- Add 3 cups of water to a saucepan and boil over high heat. Once the water reaches its boiling point, turn the heat down to medium-low to simmer.
- Add your decarbed cannabis into the water and mix thoroughly, being careful to avoid splashing the boiling water.
- Add the sugar into the water 1 cup at a time, stirring to dissolve the sugar crystals fully before adding the next cup.
- Once all the sugar is added, cover and simmer over medium-low heat for 20 minutes. Watch carefully and stir often, keeping the water at a very low boil.
- After 20 minutes, remove the lid and add the vegetable glycerin, stirring to combine (be careful here, the vegetable glycerin is very sticky).
- After adding the vegetable glycerin, cook for 7-9 minutes. Stir the mixture continually as it slightly thickens.
- After 7-9 minutes, strain the mixture with a fine mesh strainer and cheesecloth to remove all plant material. Double strain if necessary.
- Enjoy! How long does canna simple syrup last? Your infusion should be good for about one month when stored in the fridge and covered. Discard once the syrup appears cloudy.
Cannabis-Infused Simple Syrup Recipes
Are you looking to turn your favorite cocktail into a California sober (THC-infused) mocktail? Do you love homemade desserts but know they'd taste even better with weed? Cannabis syrup has plenty of applications for stoners with all different levels of sweet tooths.
One of our favorite recipes to show off your cannabis-infused simple syrup is for California Sober Dirty Shirley, which is a grown-up, THC-infused version of a Shirley Temple. Named after the iconic late child actress Shirley Temple Black (who actually had nothing to do with the marketing of the beverage), this drink is originally a mocktail whose popularity has remained consistently common throughout the years, but whose alcohol-infused version the Dirty Shirley has skyrocketed in popularity in recent years. The only thing better than a cocktail, though, is a California Sober cocktail, which features THC instead of alcohol. Here's our recipe for the ultimate sweet cannabis drink:
California Sober Dirty Shirley
1/2 ounce THC-infused simple syrup
1/2 ounce grenadine
1/4 ounce lime juice
5 oz chilled lemon-lime soda or ginger ale, depending on preference
Maraschino cherries for topping
- Fill a tall Collins glass with ice
- Combine cannabis syrup, grenadine, and lip juice and pour over ice
- Top with lemon-lime soda or ginger ale
- Drop maraschino cherries in glass and add a straw if desired
Cannabis-Infused Layer Cake
Another great way to use your infused simple syrup recipe is to use it in your favorite dessert to add moistness and sweetness. Let's take a layer cake, for example.
- After your cake is baked and cooling but still warm, apply your simple syrup to the drop in a drizzle or brush. This will keep your cake from drying out and add more depth of flavor.
- Allow to cool fully. Repeat with other cake layers as necessary or to your desired dosage.
- Spread icing on top of each layer of cake.
- Apply in a stack to your desired height.
- Cover the remaining edges in icing, or leave them unfrosted for a more DIY look.