What to Consider When Cooking with CBD and Cannabis

Cannabis Edibles

Read Time: 3:30 Mins.

Three Wells partner Chef Matt of CBDaily Eats will be sharing his extensive culinary insights with our community. Look for future articles and recipes for both THC and CBD infused cooking ideas.

One of the biggest challenges I face as a professional chef when cooking with CBD and cannabis is convincing people that they don’t need to be scared of edibles. They can be a great way to enjoy the medicinal benefits of cannabis if they are prepared and eaten in the right way. If you haven’t tried an edible before, this means taking the time to ask questions, and, being open to learning about the many options in the edible cannabis space. They are very discrete and are becoming one of the more popular ways for mature adults to use and enjoy cannabis. They are my preferred way of using cannabis, and I’m happy to share my knowledge and experience for your own culinary journey.


How Do Cannabis Edibles Affect the Body?

The most common question people ask me is “how long will it take to feel the effects when I eat an edible?” The first thing to understand is that our bodies process cannabis in different ways depending on how you use it. When you smoke or vape, the cannabinoids (like THC and CBD) and terpenes enter your bloodstream through your lungs. This creates an almost immediate physiological reaction, and you feel the effects pretty quickly. When you eat cannabis, our bodies break down the cannabinoids through the stomach, then through the liver, so it’s a much slower process for the cannabinoids to enter the bloodstream. But there are other factors as well. I like to tell people it’s similar to drinking wine, and your body’s reaction depends on what’s in your stomach before you ingest the edible. Are you eating it on a full or empty stomach? Do you have a high metabolism? Do you have a low or high tolerance to THC? You need to understand that ingesting THC affects each person differently. Edibles are often described as creating a more body-oriented sensation, and some people may feel the effects in as little as 20 minutes, while for others it could be an hour or more.


What is the Proper Dosing for Edibles?

The most important rule is to go low and slow. When cooking with CBD and cannabis or for edibles in general, begin with a small portion and wait for a minimum of 20 minutes before eating any more. Many people take a microdosing approach, and there’s nothing wrong with cutting a 10 mg edible in half or even in quarters and seeing how it affects you one piece at a time over the course of a few hours. For safety reasons I also advise people to try edibles at home when you’re in for the night or a few hours before bedtime. Ingesting an edible generally produces a stronger, longer lasting effect so you need to plan accordingly. On the other hand, this is why many people enjoy edibles because they create a different and longer-lasting experience.


What Kind of Cannabis Edible Should I Choose?

We’ve come a long way from the days when you had two basic choices ⎼  a homemade brownie or a cookie. Thanks to the changes in medical and adult-use cannabis laws, we now have access to a buffet of edibles like gummies, drops, chocolate confections, and mints. There are oils, tinctures, salad dressings, olive oils, fruit belts, teas, juices, beers, and cannabis capsules. Companies are also making excellent cookies and brownies, which unlike their homemade predecessors, deliver consistent dosing, taste, and quality. People should feel free to experiment, but if consistency is important, I tell people to consider sticking with a brand or product and dosing regimen they like as it may take the guesswork out of their edibles experience. Again, what’s right for one person may not be right for someone else. Think of it this way; ingesting an edible specifically designed for pain isn’t going to be the right edible for someone seeking relaxation.

Then there’s a whole other world of edibles through delicious, savory foods. When people think of edibles they generally think of something sweet. But for thousands of years, people have been using cannabis for cooking and in teas. Infusing common household cooking items like olive oil, vegetable oil, soy sauce, avocado oil, marinades, and vinaigrettes can go a long way. Imagine being able to infuse your breakfast, lunch, or dinner! Being able to come home from a long day of work and eat a medicated meal is a perfect way to relax and unwind.

Three Wells partner Chef Matt owns a thriving catering business in Los Angeles, CA. He has won numerous cooking awards and ran several of Hyatt Regency’s 5-Star restaurants. Learn more about Matt at www.chefmattcooks.com and read a Three Wells article about one of his events here.