There's never been a better time to get into edibles. Aside from our copious amounts of free time and the government deeming weed “essential,” there's the reality that due to the respiratory nature of the coronavirus, it's probably not a good time to be smoking anything right now. It is, however, a great time to get high and snack, so why not do both at the same time?
Despite the perks, edibles tend to occupy a divisive corner of the cannabis world. Not only do brands struggle to comply with soul-shattering legal and political scrutiny like dosing caps, ingredient restrictions and child-proof packaging laws, the edibles themselves don't exactly have the best reputation with novice users.
Deep down, there's a sense of fear that surrounds the use of edibles, spurred by countless Maureen-Dowd-esque horror stories from confused newbies who accidently ingested way too high a dose, and were then locked into navigating an unmanageable high for an uncomfortable amount of hours.
What these people don't know, it seems, is that edibles have come a LONG way from the magic brownie space cakes of yesteryear. In fact, edibles are technically the safest way to control the level of your high, with their extremely clear dosing restrictions and growing focus on microdosed products.
In hopes of clearing the antiquated stigma that's tainted people's perception of a really great way to experience cannabis, here is our guide to everything you should know about buying edibles.
Introduction to edibles
Prior to 2016, Prop 64, and the veritable dismantling of the edibles industry, the edibles market was a very different place. Funky mom and pop brands regularly rolled out fun products like dosed ice creams, 1000 milligram coffee cakes, cannabis lattes and anything else you could possibly concoct. Creativity flowered as these little companies branded their magic products in wild packaging. It was a beautiful time.
Flash forward to now, none of those brands exist. Along with legality came a slew of restrictions on edibles in California, namely a 10 milligram per serving dosage cap, a ban on any products with dairy or that require refrigeration, and packaging laws stringent enough to deflate any marketing team's attempts at artful presentation.
The edibles market today is made up of a handful of brands who managed to weather the storm, and is mitigated mostly to products that fall into the following three categories: chocolates or caramels, baked goods and gummies or hard candy.
What dose works best for you?
Nothing is more important than dosing when it comes to choosing an edible, especially for those nervous about getting too high. To better understand dosing, let's cover the main types of edible doses you'll encounter:
Microdose: 1 milligram — 5 milligrams THC
Microdosing is the key for novice users looking to explore the world of edibles. These products, like Kiva's Petra Mints and Dosies Sublimes, offer 1 milligrams — 5 milligrams of THC per serving, making it virtually impossible to take too much when following instructions.
The most prominent trend in the edibles of today, microdosing is about feeling good, not getting obliterated. They're great for productive work days, family obligations, first dates and anything else where you want to take the edge off yet remain focused. Start with 2.5 milligrams of THC and work your way up SLOWLY, meaning every 2 hours adding to the dose if you feel so inclined. If you're completely new to cannabis, not just edibles, start with 1 milligram of THC.
Medium Dose: 5 milligrams —10 milligrams THC
This level of dosing is great for anyone comfortable with being a bit stoned. Blurring the line between wellness tools and recreational pot products, medium dose edibles like CHILL Chocolates are for getting high enough to feel distinctly, well, high, without feeling like you're out of control. Great for hanging out with friends, going to a concert, hiking, and all those kinds of activities we can't partake in for a while.
Macrodose: Anything above 10 milligrams THC
Stoner psychonauts, assemble! Macrodosing is reserved for people who are extremely familiar with getting high, and extremely familiar with the high of edibles in particular. Under no circumstances should a person new to edibles take a dose over 10 milligrams. If you're not new to edibles, however, Punch Edibles and Madame Munchie are great go-tos for an extra-terrestrial experience.
What makes a good edible?
Now that we've mastered the art of dosing, it's time to talk about what to look for when you're choosing an edible to buy. What makes one edible better than another seemingly similar product? There are two main factors at play here.
- The first, and perhaps most important, is the ingredients. Though it's easy to get blinded by persuasive budtenders and cute packaging, always check the ingredients on an edible. If you can't pronounce what's in it, don't put it in you.
- The second factor to look at is price point. When it comes to edibles, you get what you pay for. If a product seems unusually affordable, there's a reason it's so cheap. To ensure a fun trip, spring for a quality product. A higher price means better ingredients, better weed and thus, a better high.
How to save money on edibles
The best way to save money on edibles is to make them yourself. While the process may seem daunting, it's actually quite simple, and can be a lot of fun.
While there's a million recipes for cannabutter online, some brands have taken the work out of baking with cannabis with products like Heavenly Sweet's 2000mg THC butter, Madame Munchies 100mg THC peanut butter or chocolate hazelnut spread, and Vireo's infused olive oil.
If you're the DIY type, or just find yourself unusually bored in isolation, there's also machines like the LEVO Oil and MagicalButter that can weedify any carrier (like oil, butter, honey, etc.) with the mere push of a button. These devices are life changing, and sure to open a whole world of weed infused DIY products to spice up your lifestyle.
Where to get your favorite edibles on Weedmaps
Now that you're an edible pro, who's thoroughly convinced that edibles aren't scary, here's a rundown of some of our favorite edibles available right now on Weedmaps.
While Platinum is famous for their high quality, full spectrum vapes and fire 1/8ths and prerolls, their edibles are killer, too.! Chocolate bars like Raspberry Lemon Crunch and gummies like their Indica Peach Mango Gummies are sure to quench any summer sweet tooth.
Chill Chocolates make you feel just that: chill. Each 100mg bar, with flavors like spicy dark chocolate and caramel, come in at 10 milligrams for a medium dose, and a range of THC to CBD ratios suitable for any occasion.
Heavenly Sweet makes a ton of edibles, all offering a fun experience in the form a 100 milligram bar at 10 milligrams per serving. While their Squookies, and Fruity Treats are tasty, their savory selection offers a break from all the sugar. We're especially fond of the Ranch Crackers.
La familia: Product of Los Angeles
California's first Mexican brand of edibles, La Familia, has a beautiful line of sweets that play on cultural favorites like horchata and hot chocolate with Fresas Con Crema chocolate bars, Churro Krispies and Abuelita Hot Chocolate Cookies (all 100 milligrams).
Madame Munchie is a woman and LGBTQ owned-and-operated brand inspired by owner Kim Geraghty's experience growing up in France. Her handcrafted macarons and other French delights are borne from a focus on high quality ingredients and the top shelf flower they grow at Geraghty's Mendocino Farm.
Boy oh boy, do Punch Edibles live up to their name. Each tiny, 100 milligram chocolate bar or fruit snack will surely knock you out before it'll fill you up. The 90 milligram Sour Hybrid Fruit Snacks are particularly delicious, and even more effective.
Featured image by Gina Coleman/Weedmaps