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How to Make a Cannabis Tincture

What is a cannabis tincture and how do I make one? This article breaks down everything you need to know on how to make a cannabis tincture.

Jason SanderJason Sander · Jun. 23, 2021 · 6 min read
How to Make a Cannabis Tincture

As conscious cannabis consumers, we are always looking for ways to ingest while avoiding the potentially harmful method of smoking. One excellent way to do this is to make a cannabis tincture. Want to know how? Read on for more.

As cannabis is now viewed more and more as an addition to our overall health, many of us are naturally a little turned off by the traditional inhalation method of smoking. The solution? Tinctures! Cannabis tinctures can be an excellent way to dip your feet into the potentially beneficial world of cannabis, without vaping or smoking.

On top of being an excellent way to consume, tinctures can offer you additional benefits that you likely won’t get from infused foods or concentrates. Tinctures are relatively easily made at home with enough quality flowers and alcohol. Yes, you read that right - alcohol. While cannabis and alcohol don’t exactly go together like peanut butter and jelly, alcohol-based tinctures have been made and consumed for many years - because they can work exceptionally well together!

But, before we get into the meat and potatoes of how to make a cannabis tincture… If you are new to cooking or making infused products with cannabis at home, be sure to check out our guide on the matter to read up before you dive deeper into tinctures.

What is a Cannabis Tincture?

To put it in layman's terms, a cannabis tincture is a liquid infused with cannabis that can be easily consumed - either directly, with a dropper, or as an additive to foods and beverages. To get more technical, a cannabis tincture is an herbal extract that binds essential components like cannabinoids with the alcohol (or glycerine) added to the liquid.


Tinctures are a great way to get the effects of cannabis without smoking. For one, they are about as discreet and convenient as you can get when it comes to ingesting the plant medicine. Tinctures are also fairly easy to make and will keep for several months, even up to a whole year, if preserved properly. Additionally, tinctures are usually more potent than a traditional, single-serving smoke or vape session. Best of all - you can make them in the comfort of your home with a few simple ingredients - the most important of which being high-quality cannabis flower.

Tinctures, Oils, Topicals, and More

Newer consumers tend to wonder if tinctures and oils like RSO (Rick Simpson Oil) are the same. This is a logical question since both are liquids containing beneficial cannabis. While they are similar, oils are exactly as they sound - typically using olive oil, as fatty oils bind well with cannabis. Tinctures, on the other hand, usually use alcohol or glycerin. This is the main difference, although there are other subtle ones as well.

Can I use tinctures as a topical? Yes! You can use tinctures as a topical. While you won’t get the mental benefits you’ll get from ingesting your tincture orally, using cannabis on the skin can help with many conditions. Perhaps most notably, cannabis topicals offer much-needed relief to patients suffering from joint conditions like arthritis - and the science backs this up.

While tinctures can most certainly be used as a topical, most consumers will ingest them orally - either directly, or as a delightful additive to food or drinks. No matter what you choose, it’s imperative to keep in mind that no one size fits all. The best way to consume cannabis is the way it aligns best with your needs while balancing the effects of this amazing plant medicine.

"No matter what you choose, it’s imperative to keep in mind that no one size fits all. The best way to consume cannabis is the way it aligns best with your needs while balancing the effects of this amazing plant medicine."

Alcohol V.S. Glycerine-Based Tinctures

As previously mentioned, tinctures can be made with either alcohol or glycerine. We recommend using glycerine, especially for more inexperienced consumers. While the alcohol in a tincture most certainly isn’t as strong as it would be straight from the bottle, it will still contain some that could affect you in an unwanted way. This is especially true for those of us who need frequent tincture doses.

Glycerine is used primarily in the food industry. It’s a plant-based liquid that has no color or odor, and we always recommend using the food-grade kind for best results. While glycerine-based tinctures are less potent than those of alcohol, you can increase the potency of your tincture by simply repeating the steps below. If you opt to use alcohol, the best choice is to go with high-proof ethyl alcohol, as higher proof binds better with cannabinoids.

While you could go to the liquor store and buy some cheap vodka to use with your tincture, we recommend using ethyl alcohol to ensure your tincture binds with cannabinoids and other components to get the most out of it.

Without further ado, here’s how to make a cannabis tincture.

How to Make a Cannabis Tincture

From start to finish, making a cannabis tincture takes about an hour or two. Before jumping in, be sure to decarb! If you don’t know what that means, we’ve got you covered right here in our article on cooking with cannabis from home.

Here’s what you’ll need:


  • One Ounce (28 grams) of quality, dried and cured cannabis flower - a cultivar of your choosing
  • 750 ml of either food-grade glycerine or ethyl alcohol


  • Glass Mason Jar
  • Cheesecloth or filter paper
  • Funnel
  • Dropper Bottle

That’s it! That’s all you need to make yourself a seriously high-quality tincture right at home. Here are the six simple steps:


  • Once you’ve decarbed your herbs, use a grinder to grind everything down as finely as possible.
  • Pour your glycerine or alcohol into your glass mason jar, then add your ground cannabis flower on top.
  • Be sure the lid is on tightly, and give the mixture a vigorous shake for about a minute.
  • Allow the mixture to sit for at least a month. Some would recommend you let it sit for two to three months. If you want your tincture immediately, shake your jar for a good hour.
  • Lastly, strain the mixture into your dropper bottle with your funnel and filter paper or cheesecloth.

Storing and Consuming Your Tincture

And that’s pretty much it! As you can probably already tell, the hardest part - by far - of making tinctures is waiting patiently for 1-3 months to allow the cannabis compounds to bind with glycerine or alcohol. While waiting, be sure to give the bottle a good shake every few days to keep everything mixed well. While some more experienced consumers will use additional methods to speed up the process - like freezing or heating over the stove - we highly recommend against doing this if you’re a newer consumer.

Three of the worst enemies of the compounds in cannabis are high temperatures, UV rays, and air. For this reason, it’s best to store your tincture in a fairly cool, dry area away from sunlight. The best choice would be a kitchen cupboard, we think.

Now for the best part! Time to consume. If you want to feel the effects of your tincture immediately, you’ll want to use your dropper to place about 2-4 drops under your tongue for about 30 seconds before swallowing. You can also add your tincture to just about any dish your heart desires. If you want the effects of your tincture to last longer, put the same 2-4 drops in food or on your tongue and swallow immediately. The effects don’t kick in as fast, but they last longer. The choice is yours!

HashDash - Education and Community for Cannabis Consumers

We hope you found value in our content about making a cannabis tincture. Did you learn something, or have anything to add? Let us know - @hashdash on all platforms, except for Instagram, where we are @hashdashdotcom.

Check back to our blog often, because we post fresh content every week!

HashDash is building a vast knowledge database of helpful articles and ways to enhance the cannabis consumption experience. We will be surpassing article #100 this summer, which is a pretty big milestone that we’re excited about. Don’t forget to sign up for HashDash to discover your cannabis matches.

Thanks for reading! Please consume responsibly.

Jason Sander
Jason SanderJason is a versatile writer and marketer with over ten combined years of experience working with clients in various industries. He couples this expertise with six years of writing for the cannabis sector as well as a passion for the business side, and the science behind the plant medicine.




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