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How to Decarb Weed in the Microwave

Decarb weed in microwave

The process of decarboxylation is essential if you’re looking to get the best out of your stash. Finding the best method to get it just right may be a little tricky, but it’s not impossible. If you’re looking to learn how to decarb weed in the microwave, you’ve come to the right place. Grab your freshly ground herb and let’s get into the weeds of it.

Photo: Unsplash

Can You Decarb Weed in the Microwave?

Smoking a joint
Light ‘er up (Source: Unsplash)

You absolutely can. But the process is considered dangerous by some. This is largely due to the fact that heating your weed up too much or too quickly can ruin it.

Microwaves offer the quickest heating solution for food, drink, and of course, weed. It produces a much faster and more concentrated heat than other methods. So of the various ways to decarb your weed, this would be the fastest, not counting simply lighting up. But the same reasons that make it quick also make it rather dangerous.

The psychoactive effects of cannabis are heat-activated. What this means is that the inactive cannabinoids, such as tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA) and cannabidiolic acid (CBDA), are activated when subjected to the right intensity of heat. This process converts them into their active forms, which are THC and CBD.

Fresh weed
Lean, green, toking machine (Source: Unsplash)

Another side-effect of microwaving weed is it dissipates terpenes. These compounds are what give plants their smell. Too much heat diminishes the flavor and significantly alters the smell of weed.

As such, microwaving can make your weed – and the resulting high – stronger. This is important for recreational stoners, naturally. But it is especially important for anyone using marijuana for medical purposes since, without activation, the weed won’t offer nearly as many benefits.

Decarbing is, therefore, an essential step in your prep. It boosts the potency and quality of your stash. And in the long run, this will prevent wastage and save you a pretty penny.

The Dangers of Decarbing in the Microwave

Weed in a container
Locked and loaded (Source: Unsplash)

Unfortunately, there is no hard-and-fast rule on how to decarb weed in the microwave. This is due to variations in both the weed being heated and the microwave it is being heated in. And overheating your weed can cause it to go from its standard form, to stronger, to being rendered useless due to the THC degrading all in a matter of minutes.

But many experienced stoners do, still, use microwaves. Even Snoop Dogg is known to microwave his blunts before smoking them.

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Despite the dangers, if you figure out the unique microwave settings for your favorite strains, you can use this method without disastrous results.

How to Decarb Weed in the Microwave Properly

Kitchen microwave
The backbone of the modern kitchen (Source: Unsplash)

In simplest terms, you can decarb weed in the microwave by heating it in short intervals and watching it extremely closely to make sure it does not burn. In essence, you’d be mimicking what happens when you toke, vape, or hit a bong, wherein heat is applied in small amounts at regular intervals.

Most commonly, stoners recommend heating weed on high up to a maximum of 90 seconds at a time. Those on the safer side advocate for 30-second intervals. Between each round, check your weed. Does it still have its fresh, pungent smell? Then you’re on the right track. If it isn’t quite there yet, mix it up, and pop it back in for another round, this time just a bit shorter.

If, however, your weed begins to look burned or smell charred, you’ve gone too far. You’re looking for the stage right before it hits that point.

A tiny stash (Source: Unsplash)

Once you hit the sweet spot, be sure to cool and store your freshly decarbed weed appropriately.

Troubleshooting Your Decarb

Decarbing weed in the microwave can seem too risky if you’re unsure of the settings. Even more so if it’s your first time or if you’ve tried it and burned up some premium marijuana in the process.

But there are ways to prevent such mishaps.

Glass of water
Keep it moist (Source: Unsplash)

For starters, the biggest issue is your weed will dry out too fast when being heated excessively. This will cause it to burn. To keep moisture in the microwave, you can use an age-old trick people have used since the dawn of the appliance: a humble glass of water.

Keeping the glass beside your weed will keep the air around it moist and prevent it from drying out.

Weed grinder
Preparation is key (Source: Unsplash)

A second important bit of wisdom many stoners have shared is that decarbing weed in the microwave works a lot better if you make sure to grind it to a moderate consistency first before laying it out flatly and evenly on whatever plate you are heating it on. This way, all the weed is evenly heated and you won’t have to deal with an inconsistently activated batch.

A third tip you can incorporate to prevent burning your stash is to reduce the heat setting and work in even shorter intervals. You’ll end up cooking your weed for longer this way, but at least you can be sure you’ll get to it before it burns up.

Of course, in the event of total uncertainty, you can always opt for an alternative method. The most common of these would be using an oven on a low-temperature setting and decarbing your weed slowly, the old-school way.

Making Your Weed Work for You

Decarbing your weed is the best way to enhance the potency, flavor, and benefits of your marijuana. It can elevate your toking experience to brand-new heights.

But for the modern savvy stoner, patiently waiting around an oven for an hour might not be accessible. Learning how to decarb weed in the microwave is, therefore, a great way to ensure you can toke and go as necessary.