Choosing Your Method
When infusing any kind of cannabis with any kind of oil “low and slow” is going to be your best option for heat. Though CBD rich hemp flowers can be infused cold (see notes below) heating your carrier oil + cannabis mixture will help the speed the process along – But within bounds, as high heat means running the risk of damaging your end infusion. That means selecting a process for making CBD oil that offers good temperature control, and for that we have two recommendations:
The Double Boiler Method:
A double boiler is a common culinary setup for making delicate sauces, working with chocolate, or any fashion of cooking where direct contact with heat can cause problems – This makes a double boiler perfect when learning how to make CBD oil.
Though dedicated double boiler setups can be bought they can also be replicated at home easily enough with a pot filled half-way with water, and either a wide steel bowl or another pot; you want your second vessel to be able to fit snugly (but not air-tight) into the first.
Place your water-filled pot onto the stove top and set your secondary pot/bowl on top, turning the burner on to medium-low. As the water in the first pot begins to heat it turns into steam, which gently transfers warmth into the second container.
Into this container place your oil of choice and your hemp/cannabis plant. Stir to combine and leave to steep – How long depends on your personal preference, but we recommend a minimum time of at least 2 hours. Keep an eye on it during the steep, and never let the temperature exceed 200°F – Any higher and you run the risk of cannabinoid compounds (namely your cannabidiol) evaporating into the air.
The Slow Cooker Method:
Similar to the above, if kept on the “low” setting a slow cooker is also a good method infusing your CBD oil with gentle heat. For this you’ll need a slow cooker (obviously) and a tall, wide-mouth jar.
Fill your jar with your oil and hemp plant before setting it down into your slow cooker. Now fill your slow cooker with water until it reaches roughly half-way up the outside of the filled jar. Turn your slow cooker onto the low setting and let steep for several hours; we recommend 4 as a minimum in this extraction process. This method doesn’t require intense watching but check in every so often to ensure the water hasn’t evaporated out of the slow cooker – If it’s looking a little low just gently pour in a bit more.
It’s worth noting here that both of these methods for making CBD oil (and any process involving both cannabis and heat) will make your entire living space smell riotously of weed. If you have ever decarbed cannabis on your own or been in the presence of someone making edibles you understand what this sentence means – If you have not, then know that warm infusing your own CBD oil at home also means letting every neighbor you have know that you’re cooking with weed.
The Room Temperature Option
If you live in an area where cannabis use hasn’t been legalized, this can cause some concerns – Though your CBD oil is completely legal under federal law, differentiating the smell of CBD and THC isn’t something local law enforcement is usually trained on. If smell is an issue, you can also do a cold infusion of your CBD oil – Simply combine your decarbed plant material in a jar, secure the lid tightly, and store in a dark location for a minimum of two weeks.
While your CBD infusion sits, make sure to stop in once every day or two to give the container a shake – This will help prevent the hemp flowers from settling in a fashion that makes the cannabinoids more difficult to leech out. While this method certainly is an option for those needing a bit more stealth in their CBD oil infusion technique this process isn’t entirely effective, and it certainly isn’t fast; for those needing to do a cold extraction of their CBD, we recommend looking into recipes for alcohol-based tincture products instead.