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Why to Decarboxylate CBD and How to Decarb, Make an Oil or Tincture

Updated: Feb 19, 2021

How to Decarboxylate CBD, Make CBD Oil, Make CBD Tincture

What Types of CBD Products Need to be Decarboxylated?

In most cases, when purchasing a finished a CBD product, such as edibles, topicals and tinctures, your CBD will already be decarboxylated through the manufacturing of the CBD into the final product. Extracted distillate oils and isolate forms of CBD will also be decarboxylated through their extraction processes (such as carbon dioxide and hydrocarbon methods). When you purchase a distillate vape or smoke CBD flower or raw concentrate, you are utilizing heat as the activator of the decarboxylation process. Those who prefer to make their own CBD products at home will want to ensure that their CBD flower or raw concentrate is decarboxylated. Decarboxylation is the use of heat and time to change the chemical nature of CBDa into the bioavailable CBD molecule that can be used by the body. What does that all mean? Don't worry, we will explain as simply as possible.

Why Would I Need to Decarboxylate My CBD?

When a hemp plant is growing it contains very little of the chemical we know as CBD. The plant at this time holds mostly CBDa, its native acidic phytocannabinoid form, when in the living plant. When we cut the plant and process it, we are doing so to convert the CBDa into CBD, as CBDa is unable to be processed by the body and thus has little if no effect at all. The case is also the same when it comes to other phytocannabinoids, such as CBG, CBN, CBC, etc. When we convert CBDa into CBD, we are able to maximize the bioavailability of CBD to the body. Every person and many animals, including dogs, cats and horses, have been shown to have an endocannabinoid system (ECS). The ECS is responsible for processing the CBD, and all other cannabinoids, once the molecules reach the body. No matter the ingestion route, the endocannabinoid system processes the bioavailable CBD to balance the mind or body ailment.

What Types of Things Can I Make with Decarb CBD?

When you take the time to decarboxylate your CBD, you will allow the potency of the CBD to increase, thus enhancing the desired effects. Its not a lengthy process but will ensure that whatever you choose to DIY, it will be as effective as you hope. We included a recipe on how to create an oil, a tincture (alcohol based), or you can add it directly to your next recipe, as directed.

Types of things you can make with decarbed CBD:

  • Topicals (lotions, salves, balms, beauty care, etc)

  • Capsules (liquid and tablet)

  • Edibles (savory treats, sweet treats, pet treats, etc)

  • Oils (cooking oils, massage oils, etc)

  • Tinctures (alcohol based or oil based)

Recipe: How to Decarboxylate CBD flower

There are many recipes available for those who want to get very specific on the science of CBD decarbing. For those looking for a simple recipe, we've got you covered here. Materials Needed:

  • An Oven with a steady temp or make sure you also use an oven thermometer

  • Large baking sheet

  • Parchment paper (not necessary, but makes a clean surface to cook and easy transfer)

  • Timer

  • Scissors or grinder

  • Spatula


  • High quality hemp or high-CBD cannabis flower

Instructions: Step 1: Preheat your oven to 270F degrees. The desired range is between 240F and 300F degrees. We chose the number right in the middle for simplicity. Check your oven thermometer to ensure you don't go above 300F as that will degrade the CBD, making it less potent. Step 2: Prepare baking and sheet with parchment paper. Gather buds of flower and trim with scissors to create small, dime sized pieces. This will allow for heat to reach all parts of the flower. Spread into a single layer on baking sheet. Step 3: Place sheet into oven on middle rack. Set timer for 45 minutes. Step 4: After 10 minutes, use spatula to flip flower buds. Repeat until timer completes. Step 5: Flowers will smell wonderfully and be fully toasted around 30 minutes. Your CBD is now decarboxylated. Step 6: Make sure to let the CBD flowers cool down before adding them to the next step in your DIY project.

Want to learn how to make CBD Oil or Tincture? Read the full article here:

Author: A.J. Varela, Biologist

Date: 01/15/21


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