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Making your own herbal medicine at home is easy

 Once you get comfortable with the concept of cannabis as a household item you will find that you use it for everything.  I love having a large strain library and variety of extract options to choose from for medicine making, flavor enhancement, home spa products, and entertaining guests.  Amassing a solid collection of cannabis based items is easy to do once you have your basic staples on hand.  In parts I & II of the Cannabis Kitchen Gadget Guide you will find everything you need to create all of the recipes in my blog  (Cannabis for Curious Creatures) and any others out there on the great wide web.  I even threw in a few discount codes, shopping tips, and DIY tutorials!  Enjoy.



The Ultimate Cannabis Kitchen Tool Guide


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1.) A Cute Apron 


Because messes are inevitable.  An apron will come in handy for everything from harvesting and trimming (if you plan to grow at home) to protecting your cloths while dealing with messy extracts.  Make one yourself with this super adorable and free pattern.


Tips and Tricks

Trichome residue can get into the fibers of your apron while trimming.  If it gets really stiff or sticky feeling soak it in hot water and vinegar before throwing it in the wash.

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2) An Electric Scale 


In your cannabis kitchen you will be measuring your extracts, flower and butters by weight.  Get yourself a nice digital scale that can weigh in ounces and grams with an easy to read display screen.  Be sure to keep extra batteries handy.


Tips and Tricks 

You get what you pay for with scales so do your research.  Some don't calibrate as well or experience interference when a cell phone is nearby.  You'll also find that a large surface area is helpful. 

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3) Some Foxy Oven Mitts

Protect your paws!  While you won't necessarily be dealing with things that are hot you will be handling things that have been very warm for a long period of time.  It will be important to have a few pot holders and oven mitts handy.  You can make your own with this simple little pattern.

Tips and Tricks 

As a general rule of thumb I always have 2 square or round pot holders  and two pairs of mitts.  If you can find a silicone oven mitt I highly suggest grabbing one.  They are excellent for opening hot infusion jars.

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4.) Yer Basic Cookie Sheet 

None of that non stick nonsense.  Go for a sturdy cookie sheet with a decent surface area.  You might want one with a lip along all four walls so you don't end up with cannabis flower all over the bottom of your oven.


Tips and Tricks 


Some people like to line their cookie sheets with wax paper before decarboxilating cannabis.  This just makes it a little easier to clean up.  Another  option is a silicone sheet liner which can be washed and reused.

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5.) A stock pot 


Trust me on this one.  It really comes in handy when you least expect it.  I found mine at Fubonn Market on 82nd st here in Portland Oregon but you can get killer deals on large stock pots at your local asian food market.


Tips and Tricks 


Before you know it this pot will end up coated with a thick sticky residue.  You can clean it by throwing some olive oil and coarse salt into the pot and using a cloth to rub it into the walls in a circular motion.

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6.) Cotton Cheesecloth

It's certainly re-usible but you will really want gobs and gobs of it on hand.  Go for an organic cotton that is durable and not likely to tear.  You can buy enough to get you started here.



Tips and Tricks 


You can always re-use your old cheesecloth but there are some tricks to keeping it clean.  Be sure to soak them in a hot water, dish soap, and vinegar solution before washing.  They make great rags too!
 

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7.) Glass Pump Bottles 


You're going to be filling this with a liquid solvent so you will want to go with glass.  You can find a really nice one and everything else for your packaging needs here.   Just be sure to grab a food grade spray pump to match.
 



Tips and Tricks 

I always have one of theses full of olive or fractionated coconut oil and another full of a strong alcohol like Everclear.  This is helpful for breaking down the sticky buildup that accumulates on you kitchen tools and keeping sticky solvents like honey and glycerin from sticking to the walls of mixing bowls and measuring cups.

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8.) 3 Glass Mixing Bowls

Truly you could get by with one but if you have multiple projects going on at once it can be a little tricky to clean and prep in between.  I've found 3 to be my magic number.  Stainless steel bowls work just as well but I find that glass dishes hold in heat a little longer.


Tips and Tricks 

You can spray these lightly with oil from your pump bottle if you're using them for baking or thick sticky solvents.  If you find that you develop a thick residue on the inside spray it with alcohol and let it sit before washing with hot water. 

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9.) Measuring Cups 


While you'll be sorting your flowers and butters by weight many of the liquids used in your cannabis kitchen will be measured by volume.  Get yourself a nice wide liquid measuring cup with a handle and you're in business.




Tips and Tricks 

You'll want to make sure that the cup is glass because you're going to be heating it up from time to time.  To keep things like honey from sticking to the walls you can spray it lightly with your glass oil pump bottle.

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10.) A Slow Cooker 

Whether you're making botanical butter or your trying your luck at topicals, your slow cooker is going to be your brand new BFF.  Be sure to go for one that has a heat setting and timer function.

Tips and Tricks

Beware, some cheaper brands of slow cookers leach harmful chemicals out of their inner lining.  I prefer to buy mine from Hamilton Beach because they have excellent standards for their ceramic inserts.  


11.) A Mesh Strainer 

You're gonna want one with a nice solid handle. Bonus points if it rests across your sink on it's own and can fit into your double boiler to scoop out items resting at the bottom.


Tips and Tricks 

I find that these can be a little tricky to clean.  Get yourself a stainless steel mixing bowl that fits the wire portion of the strainer inside.  Soak the strainer in your hot water, vinegar, and dish soap solution before washing.


12.) Wooden Spoons

If you venture into tincture making at all you will be working with all kinds of different solvents.  Choose quality wooden or bamboo spoons that won't leave behind that icky plastic residue.  You can even make em cute!

Tips and Tricks 

To disinfect your spoons after using them on fatty substances like butter you can soak them in a hot water and vinegar solution.  This also helps the wood from absorbing sticky resinous residue.


13.) Storage Containers 

When in doubt always go for glass.  Pick containers that have a nice pop when you break the seal.  Extra points if they can withstand high heat and refrigerators.



Tips and Tricks 

I like to have a few stackable sets of different sizes. If you are having trouble getting your hard butter out of the container you can run it under hot water for a moment and it should pop right out.

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14.) A Double Boiler 


If you can't find a proper double boiler I find that a nice stainless steel bowl will work just as well.  You'll want lots of room for mixing make sure to go for one that is wide rather than deep.

Tips and Tricks 

I found my stainless mixing bowl at Fubonn as well and it fits perfectly into the top of my stockpot.  It helps to buy these two items together for this exact reason.

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15.) A Vice 


This will become the most crucial part of your at home tincture press.  You can find one at just about any hardware store.  Be sure to pick one of a medium to large size.


Tips and tricks

The goal is to fit one of your large canisters into the vice without having to unwind it all the way.  If you're not doing large batches of tincture you can get away with a high quality potato ricer instead.

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16.) Metal Canisters 

Get yourself some no frills, flat walled, stainless steel containers.  You'll want to make sure that you can fit one inside of the other with at least a quarter inch difference.  Go for something that you can fit your hand into.  It is critical that they are easy to clean. 


Tips and Tricks 

You'll also want to make sure that the material these canisters are made from is nice and sturdy.  You can use a coaster or mason jar lid lined with a napkin to protect the bottom of the can from being dented by your vice press. 

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17.) Tincture Bottles 

If you plan on getting into tinctures at all you're going to want to pick up a few amber or cobalt tincture bottles.  I try to always have a few .5, 1, and 2oz options on hand.  They are critical for calculating safe dosage and very easy to use.  I buy mine wholesale at Specialty bottle.

Tips and Tricks 

Tincture bottles are notoriously annoying to clean. Soak them in a large bowl of rubbing alcohol to soften the stickers and then add hot water to disinfect the insides and dropper tops.  Rinse really well before use.

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18.) A Magical Butter Machine

I swear by the awesomeness that is the Magical Butter Machine.  It does the exact same job as a crock pot in half of the time with even better results. It also cuts down on the busy work.  Just pour your ingredients in the basin, set the timer, and go.  You can buy one with a $25 discount here


Tips and Tricks 

These machines have their very own cleaning function.  How cool is that!?  Be sure buy  it directly from the magical butter website though because your Amazon order will not come with the same great customer service. 
 

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19.) Jars and Lids

Your absolute #1 favorite friend in the cannabis kitchen will be your collection of wide mouthed mason jars.  Be sure to get yourself plastic as well as metal lids if you want to avoid solvent related rust issues. 

 

Tips and Tricks

You should be able to buy plastic lids at any super market with canning supplies.  If you can't track them down you can always line a metal lid with plastic wrap to form an airtight seal. 


20.) Blank Labels 

Before you know it your medicine will stack up.  Be sure to keep a few sheets of blank labels or some scotch tape handy along with a marker.  This way you will never have to wonder what strain that butter in the freezer is.

Tips and Tricks

If you live in Portland you can find these by the boatload at Scrap.  Blank address labels are the perfect size for tincture and 10ml roll on bottles. 
 


21.) A Mixology Kit

Once you have your own tincture strain library the possibilities are endless.  You can mix and match terpene profiles to make cannabis cocktails like a boss. You'll just need your basic bar tending tools on hand.  

 

 

Tips and Tricks 

Get into it!  Go out and get yourself some aromatic bitters and a citrus zestier too.  You won't regret it. Tincture cocktails are a life changing thing.  
 


Now that you have all of these lovely kitchen tools you'll need things to put in them



About Mary J Poppins

Hello, I'm Mary J Poppins, herbalist, cannabis connoisseur, and founder of the Sativa Science Club.  Armed with 10 years experience in the herbal medicine industry, a deep love of nature, and a passion for education I'm out to do what I love to do best; get people to geek out on plant medicine. 

Keep an eye on my blog, Cannabis for Curious Creatures for product reviews, DIY tutorials and scientific insights.  Even better, join us at an upcoming class or pop up party in PDX!