Explore the world of cannabis edibles and cooking with our in-depth glossary. Uncover the secrets of this culinary art and elevate your understanding of cannabis-infused cuisine. Dive into the basics of cannabis edibles, from the science behind decarboxylation to the art of dosing. Understand the different types of cannabis edibles and their effects on the body.
Abbreviations and Acronyms
AVB – already vaped, bud. Describes cannabis flower that has undergone dry herb vaporization. Learn more about AVB here.
CBD – cannabidiol, a non-intoxicating cannabinoid. Learn more about CBD here.
CBDA – cannabidiolic acid, a non-intoxicating cannabinoid acid. It is present naturally within the plant. The process of decarboxylation converts CBDA into CBD. Learn more about CBDA here.
CBG – cannabigerol, a non-intoxicating cannabinoid. Often called the ‘mother cannabinoid.’ Learn more about CBG here.
CBGA – cannabigerolic acid, a non-intoxicating cannabinoid acid. It is present naturally within the plant. The process of decarboxylation converts CBGA into CBG.
CBN – cannabinol, a slightly intoxicating cannabinoid acid. Frequently called the ‘sleep cannabinoid’ due to its soothing properties. It is not naturally present in the plant and comes from THC degradation. Learn more about CBN here.
CO – cannabis oil is a general term used to categorize various types of cannabis oils. Learn more about the different kinds of cannabis oils available here.
ECS – endocannabinoid system, a system in every human body that interacts with cannabinoids from plants. Learn more about the ECS here.
FECO – full-extract cannabis oil, a potent cannabis plant extract obtained by evaporating the alcohol from an alcohol-based tincture. Learn more about FECO here.
IP – an Instant Pot, a device that can be used for decarboxylation, infusion, or both. Learn more about using the Instant Pot here.
MBM – a Magic Butter Machine. Learn more about the MBM here.
MCT – medium-chain triglyceride is an oil often used in cannabis preparations. Learn more about MCT oil here.
QWET – quick wash extraction technique, a method of making a cannabis tincture. Frequently called the ‘Golden Dragon’ or a freezer tincture. Learn more about the QWET method here.
RSO – is an acronym for Rick Simpson Oil. Similar to FECO but prepared with unsafe solvents like isopropyl alcohol and naphtha. Learn more about RSO here.
THCA – tetrahydrocannabinolic acid, a non-intoxicating cannabinoid acid. It is present naturally within the plant. The process of decarboxylation converts THCA into THC. Learn more about THCA here.
THC (Δ8) – delta-8 tetrahydrocannabinol is a mostly synthetic derivative of cannabis that provides a less intoxicating experience than delta-9. Learn more about delta-8 THC here.
THC (Δ9) – also called delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol, the most common intoxicating cannabinoid found in cannabis. Learn more about delta-9 THC here.
THCV – tetrahydrocannabivarin, a non-intoxicating cannabinoid.
Balanced High – A cannabis with balanced amounts of CBD and THC resulting in a mildly euphoric buzz versus a couch-locked high or head-high.
Cannabidiol (CBD) – One of many chemical compounds found in hemp and cannabis plants. CBD does not produce a high, but many people claim it has calming effects and medicinal qualities.
Cannabinoids – Chemical compounds found in the cannabis plant.
Cannabis – Refers to the plant and the drug. Same as marijuana and pot.
Cannabutter – Because cannabis flowers must be de-carboned and paired with fat to produce a high, one of the most traditional methods for cooking/baking cannabis into food involves the infusion of cannabis into butter. Oil is also common. Various cannabutter machines are available to help make the best cannabutter more efficient.
Concentrate – The good stuff (like CBD and THC) is extracted from the cannabis plant to create shatter, distillate, wax, and oil products. Some concentrates can be smoked/vaped independently, and others are used to develop MIPs. Solvents like CO2 and butane are commonly used for extraction, but solventless extraction is also employed.
Couch-Locked High – A buzz from cannabis that results in a heavy euphoric feeling in the body versus a head-high.
Decarb (decarboxylation) – Eating or drinking raw cannabis buds will not result in a buzz. You must first de-carbon the flower, which you do by cooking the buds. Heat is required to activate the THC and CBD in cannabis (and then it’s added to fat, like butter or oil, since naturally-occurring THC/CBD is fat-soluble).
Dispensary – A store that sells cannabis products for smoking or ingestion. Similar to a liquor store.
Edible – Also called MIPs. Edibles are food products that contain either CBD, THC, or both.
Flower – Also called a bud. The part of the cannabis plant most often smoked whole or ground.
Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) – A Food and Drug Administration designation that says an ingredient added to food is usually considered safe and exempt from Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act requirements. Some hemp-derived foods have been successfully marketed as GRAS.
Hash – Sometimes called hashish or hash oil. Hash is made by separating the trichomes (sometimes referred to as resin) from the cannabis plant to create a brown, sticky substance that can be smoked or processed for ingestion. Some people say it results in a more potent, more intense high.
Head High – An energetic buzz from cannabis that affects your thinking more than it affects the feeling in your body.
Hemp is a cannabis plant harvested chiefly for industrial and culinary uses and CBD oil production. When consumed, hemp flowers do not cause a high. For those looking to cook with hemp, which is high in fatty acids and nutrients/minerals, see hemp seeds and hemp oil.
Hemp Seeds – Hulled hemp seeds are also called hemp hearts. Said to have a nutty or earthy taste, hemp seeds are high in essential fatty acids, iron, zinc, and magnesium.
Hemp (Seed) Oil – Oil produced from hemp seeds with a very low smoke point. Ideal for dressings and cold sauces. Hemp oil does not always contain CBD. Look for products labeled with “CBD hemp oil” if that’s what you’re after.
Indica – Cannabis strains start by falling into one of two big categories – sativa or indica. Indica plants are short and have broad leaves. When smoked, indica flowers smell skunky. The high is usually described as a chill, couch-lock high. However, research is beginning to show that the different side effects thought to result from the type of cannabis strain may result from other factors.
Kief – A word used to describe a few different things (trichomes, trichome tips, dry resin, and even the soft bits left over after cannabis flowers are ground) but is generally understood to mean cannabis powder.
Marijuana – Same meaning as the words “cannabis” and “pot” and used to refer to the plant and the drug. Some consider the term derogatory and prefer to use the word “cannabis” instead.
Marijuana Infused Product (MIP) – A food or beverage, usually a consumer-packaged good (CPG), infused with THC to produce a high in the consumer.
Pulp – Cannabis leftover after making cannabutter or canna-oil using cheesecloth. Some incorporate the leftover pulp into breadcrumbs or soups and sauces.
Resin – Cannabis plants (and others) have resin glands that produce a dark, oily substance that naturally protects the plant during its growing cycle. This part of the plant has a high concentration of cannabinoids.
Sinsemilla – The (seedless) female cannabis plant that produces the large flowers used to smoke or ingest.
Strain – A strain is a type or variety of cannabis plant. So many plants have been cross-bred that thousands of strains exist, but most originate from the sativa and indica strains.
Sativa – Cannabis strains start falling into one of two big categories – sativa or indica. Sativa plants are tall and skinny with pointy leaves. When smoked, sativa flowers smell sweet and spicy. The high is usually described as an upbeat head high. However, research is beginning to show that the different side effects achieved from different cannabis strains may result from other factors.
Terpene – An oil released from the trichome that gives the flower its color and flavor. More than 100 cannabis terpenes have been identified that range in taste and odor from lemon to wood. Weather, dirt, fertilizer, and other factors affect the terpenes produced, which are different in every plant variety. It’s not just cannabis that produces terpenes. Fur trees and citrus fruits do, too. Terpenes are often discussed in wine tasting.
Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) – One of many chemical compounds found throughout the cannabis plant (though in varying amounts throughout the plant). THC produces a psychoactive effect when smoked or ingested.
Trichome – A microscopic epidermal hair on the flower of the cannabis plant that produces resin, cannabinoids, and terpenes.
Trim – The parts of the cannabis plant left over after harvesting the flowers. Sometimes used to make kief or resin, then used to make cannabutter or hash.
The world of cannabis edibles and cooking is vast and exciting. Whether you’re a seasoned cannabis enthusiast or a curious newcomer, understanding the ins and outs of cannabis-infused cuisine can enrich your culinary experiences and broaden your horizons. So, why not dive into the delicious world of cannabis edibles?