Can you imagine if your favourite coffee tasted differently each time you bought one? Or if the caffeine content varied greatly from batch to batch? Luckily most food and beverages are consistent in taste and aroma. But if they weren’t, you probably wouldn’t enjoy them for much longer.
However, when it comes to cannabis, inconsistencies are common when you’re trying to produce a product. A lot of the production process depends on the individual plant strains and the potency of CBD vs THC. This is especially true when it comes to attempting CBD distillation.
Unpredictability in taste and smell is, unfortunately, part of this distillation process. ‘Distillation’ meaning where you’re isolating the CBD and THC from the rest of the plant. That process of separation will remove any leftover impurities, as well as any non-CBD cannabinoids from the plant.
So if you’re wondering how to make CBD distillate, we’re going to make the process much easier for home production. We’ll take you through 2 different processes you can do yourself, the first, if you already have CBD oil on hand.
Second, if you’re starting with CBD-rich flowers or hemp, then we’ll walk you through the steps of how to make the flowers into CBD oil first.
No matter what you’ve got on hand, we’ve got you covered!
How To Make CBD Distillate From Oil
Get excited because the resulting concentrate should be a clear and very viscous liquid. So, where to start?
This first section is for making CBD distillate from oil, so skip to the end if you need a recipe for extracting CBD oil from flower first.
For our purposes, we’ll be using a distillation method known as “short path distillation.” It’s named for the short path that the oil takes before it’s distilled. A DIY distillation set-up is possible, but not recommended due to the difficulty in its assembly. Distillation kits can be found online starting at $1000 and easily set up.
This recipe will take 2-4 hours depending on the amount of raw material, number of passes and the distillation kit you’ve been using.
Winterized CBD oil
Short-path distillation kit
Step 1: Fill flask and apply heat
Begin by filling your flask with CBD oil and gradually heating it to 130 -180°C (depending on your flask, oil purity, and location).
In short path distillation, the oil is exposed to high temperatures within a vacuum. The flask in which the oil is fed into is gradually heated, evaporating away undesired cannabinoids and terpenes.
Step 2: Fractioning
Apply your vacuum pump to assist in drawing the vapors up and through a fractionating column – a glass column filled with glass beads or downward-facing indentations.
The fractionating column allows the oil to condense and evaporate again. This process increases their CBD concentration while also filtering out everything else.
Step 3: Distill and harvest
As the vapors continue to increase in concentration, they rise higher and higher due to the difference in boiling temperatures between the ethanol and the CBD mixture.
The highly concentrated CBD vapors will eventually travel high enough to reach the condenser. This is a tube that cools down and condenses the vapours into CBD distillate, at which point you are ready to harvest.
Starting With Cannabis Flower or Hemp
When you’re starting with cannabis hemp or flower, you’re going to follow these 2 recipes to be able to decarboxylate your weed and then extract the CBD oil.
To decarb your flower or hemp, here’s a useful guide. Decarboxylation is the process of “activating” your cannabis for consumption. In its “raw” form, cannabis is filled with cannabinoid acids, inactive cannabinoids that your body has difficulty interacting with.
Through the decarbing process, the acid forms of cannabis’ most 2 main cannabinoids, THC-A and CBD-A, transform into bioavailable CBD and THC. Otherwise you won’t receive the benefits of these compounds!
To extract CBD oil from your hemp or flower, you can find that guide here. The main thing to note here is that CBD Distillate from flower requires a process called winterization in order to achieve the purity that distillate is known for.
Without this process, the distillate might burn when placed in a vape pen due to the high amount of waxes and lipids present in the crude extract. You can learn more about that in the guide above.
Final Thoughts On How To Make CBD Distillate
CBD distillate is a versatile cannabis concentrate and now that you’ve read our guide, you can make it at home by yourself! Enjoy distillate in a variety of discreet ways from medicated meals to eating it as is.
If you’re looking for an even more discreet method of consumption, then CBD isolate aka CBD crystals might be your concentrate of choice.
If you’re not sure what CBD isolate is, we’ve created a guide that breaks down what CBD crystals are, how they can be used, and how you can make it yourself with the distillate that you’ve created!