Your Guide To The Ultimate Thanksgiving
While turkey, mashed potatoes, and cranberry sauce are something to savor all on their own, there’s one thing that can make these Thanksgiving staples even better: a touch of cannabis.
Cannabis-infused Thanksgiving dishes are something that can make your Thanksgiving dinner all the MERRIER. Of course, before you serve a cannabis-infused dish, you’ll need to check with your guests (or fellow guests, if you’re headed to a potluck) to make sure they’re all down to get high off your food.
But once you’ve got the green light, you can use our simple recipes to create a Thanksgiving meal that will be one for the books! Let’s check out our ultimate guide to a cannabis-infused Thanksgiving, full of recipes for cannabis-infused Thanksgiving staples that are sure to delight you.
Cooking Cannabis-Infused Food
Before we get into our cannabis-infused Thanksgiving recipe guide, we wanted to give a couple of general notes on cooking with cannabis. If you’re already an experienced cannabis chef, feel free to skip to our recipes below!
1) On Decarbing Your Cannabis
- Low Potency
- Poor Taste
Decarboxylation is a process that allows the Tetrahydrocannabinolic Acid (THCA) – a nonreactive cannabinoid – that naturally occurs in raw cannabis flowers to convert into Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) – the cannabinoid in cannabis that causes a high. If you need any help with this step we’ve published our Cannabis Edibles and Concentrates (click here to learn more).
When you smoke cannabis, decarboxylation happens naturally due to heat. But if you were to eat raw cannabis without decarboxylating it first, you would mostly consume THCA rather than THC. So, failing to decarboxylate (or “decarb”) your cannabis before making an edible can lead to a weak or inactive edible.
Some recipes for cannabis-infused butter or oil include steps that “decarb” to create THC during the ganja infusion process. While this can be effective, we recommend “decarbing” your cannabis before infusing it into butter or oil, since this generally leads to a better taste.
How To Decarb Cannabis
One of the easiest ways to “decarb” cannabis is by heating it in your oven, here are the steps:
- To use this method of decarboxylation, first, preheat your oven to 245° F (118° C).
- Then, place your cannabis buds on a baking tray lined with parchment paper (parchment paper helps prevent sticking).
- Next, place your tray in your preheated oven to “decarb” for thirty to forty (30 – 40) minutes.
- Every ten (10) minutes remove your tray and gently shake it to mix your cannabis buds and ensure even exposure to heat.
- After a total of thirty to forty (30 – 40) minutes, remove your cannabis from the oven and allow it to cool.
2) On Cannabis Testing Strength
If you’re new to cooking with cannabis, understand that it can be hard to know how strong your cannabis-infused butter or oil is without trying it. While many infusion recipes will include how much cannabis you should use, consider this a guideline rather than a definitive amount.
Even when you use the same amount of cannabis as a recipe suggests, the resulting strength of your infusion can VARY depending on how strong your strain is and how your cannabis bud is exposed to heat during the cooking process.
Then, additionally, how strong you want your butter or oil to be is very personal. Everyone’s tolerance level is different. You may find that you want your cannabis butter or olive oil to be either more or less potent than the suggested amount of cannabis in your recipe provides.
Because of all this, we generally recommend testing the strength of your infused ingredients before adding them to recipes (especially if you’re new to cooking with cannabis). You can prepare your cannabis-infused butter or oil a few days BEFORE you plan to cook your Thanksgiving meal, then try a small amount to test its potency and effects.
That way, you’ll have time to adjust your recipe if you need to. You may decide you want to change the amount of cannabis you use in your recipe, decide to switch to a Sativa versus Indica strains, go with a higher Cannabidiol (CBD) or lower CBD blend, and so on.
Or, you may just have confirmation that your recipe turned out perfectly the first time! Whatever your results, we recommend making your cannabis-infused butter or oil in ADVANCE, so you’ll have time to make whatever changes you want before serving your recipe to your guests at the big meal.
Cannabis-Infused Thanksgiving Recipes
There are so many ways you can infuse classic Thanksgiving dishes with cannabis. One of our favorite ways to easily make any recipe a cannabis recipe is by incorporating a bit of cannabutter (cannabis-infused butter) into your dish.
Just by adding a bit of cannabutter, you can quickly make any meal into “green cuisine.” Below, you’ll see our recipe for cannabutter and many stoner-friendly Thanksgiving recipes that incorporate it!
- Place one (1) cup of water and one (1) cup of butter in a saucepan or stockpot. With your burner on low heat, heat your butter and water until the butter is melted and the mixture is well combined.
- Add one (1) cup of coarsely ground cannabis to your butter and water mixture, keeping your burner heat on low. Stir to combine. Allow your mixture to simmer uncovered for two to three (2 – 3 hours), stirring occasionally to ensure your butter does not burn. Your mixture should simmer and never come to a full boil.
- Remove pot from heat and strain the cannabis buds from your cannabis-infused butter using a fine-mesh strainer. Press into the plant matter in the strainer after your initial pour to ensure you squeeze out all the butter.
- Allow your cannabutter to come to room temperature, then enjoy it! Your cannabutter can be used immediately or can be stored in the fridge or freezer until you’re ready to use it.
While we have many recipes that include cannabutter listed below, feel free to use a bit of this cannabutter in any of your favorite Thanksgiving recipes! This delectable cannabutter works well with savory side dishes like casseroles or green beans, and in sweet recipes like apple pie or brownies. More about cannabutter here.
Creamy Cannabis-Infused Mashed Potatoes
- 2 Pound Yukon Gold Potatoes
- 1/2 Cup Whole Milk
- 1/2 Cup Heavy Cream
- 8 Garlic Cloves (Crushed)
- 5 Tablespoons Unsalted Regular Butter
- 3 Tablespoons Cannabutter (More or Less, Depending on Potency)
- 2 Teaspoons Salt
- Black Pepper (to taste)
- Peel potatoes and cut into one (1) inch cubes.
- Add potatoes to a large pot and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to low and simmer for twelve (12) minutes.
- While your potatoes are simmering, combine milk, heavy cream, and garlic in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer over low heat. Remove from heat once it simmers, then strain your cream mixture to remove garlic.
- Once your potatoes have simmered for twelve (12) minutes, remove from heat, and drain. Transfer your drained potatoes back into your pot.
- Mash potatoes with a potato masher.
- Add your cubed butter, cubed cannabutter, and salt, and stir to combine.
- Gradually add your cream mixture to your potatoes little by little until fully incorporated.
- Season with black pepper to taste.
- Serve and enjoy!
Delectable Cannabis-Infused Pumpkin Pie
- 1 (8 oz) Package Cream Cheese (Softened)
- 2 Cups Canned Pumpkin (Mashed)
- 1 Cup Sugar
- 1/4 Teaspoon Salt
- 1 Egg (Plus Two Egg Yolks – Slightly Beaten)
- 1 Cup Half-and-Half
- 2 Tablespoons Melted Regular Butter
- 2 Tablespoons Melted Cannabutter (More or Less Depending on Potency)
- 1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
- 1/2 Teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
- 1 Piece Pre-Made Pie Dough
- Whipped Cream (Topping)
- Preheat oven to 350 F° (177 C°).
- Place your pre-made pie dough into a nine (9) inch pie pan and press down along the bottom and sides. Pinch and crimp edges to create a pie crust pattern. Place the pie shell in the freezer for one (1) hour. Remove from the freezer and fit a piece of aluminum foil inside the pie crust to completely cover the shell. Fill the shell with pie weights (or use dried beans or uncooked rice if you don’t have pie weights). Bake for ten (10) minutes. Remove from oven and remove pie weights and aluminum foil. Bake for another ten (10) minutes or until the pie crust is dried out and beginning to color.
- While your pie crust is baking, make your pie filling. In a large mixing bowl, beat cream cheese with a hand mixer. Add pumpkin and beat until combined. Add sugar and salt and beat until combined. Add eggs and egg yolks, half-and-half, melted butter, and melted cannabutter, and beat until combined. Lastly, add your vanilla and cinnamon, and beat until combined.
- Pour your pie filling into your prepared pie crust. Bake for fifty (50) minutes or until the center of the pie has set.
- Cool to room temperature. Cut and serve, topping with whipped cream if desired.
Zesty Cannabis-Infused Cranberry Sauce
- 12 Ounces Fresh Cranberries
- 3/4 Cup Sugar
- 1 Tablespoon Orange Zest
- 1/2 Cup Freshly Squeezed Orange Juice
- 1 Stick Cinnamon
- 1 Tablespoon Cannabutter (More or Less, Depending on Potency)
- Rinse cranberries well and place in a heavy-bottomed saucepan with your sugar, orange zest, orange juice, and cinnamon stick. Stir.
- Place pan over medium heat. Cover with a lid and cook for fifteen (15) minutes, stirring every five (5) minutes to ensure your sauce doesn’t burn at the bottom of the pan.
- Remove pan from heat and remove the cinnamon stick.
- Add in cannabutter and stir until fully melted and combined.
- Allow your cranberry sauce to come to room temperature and serve.
Infusing the main event of your Thanksgiving dinner, your turkey, with cannabis is SIMPLE. Just use any turkey recipe that calls for butter during the basting process and swap in a bit of cannabutter in place of some of the recipe’s butter to create the ultimate cannabis Thanksgiving main course.
When basting your turkey, be sure to work the basting marinade that gathers in your pan (including your cannabutter) under the skin as well as on top of it.
- 2 Tablespoons (1/4 stick) Unsalted Butter
- 2 Pounds Turkey Necks and/or Wings
- 2 Cups Diced Onions
- 1 Cup Diced Peeled Carrots
- 1 Cup Diced Celery
- 6 Cups (or More) Low-Salt Chicken Broth
- 1 Cup (2 Sticks) Butter (Room Temperature and Divided)
- 2 Teaspoons Minced Fresh Thyme (Plus 15 Fresh Thyme Sprigs)
- 2 Teaspoons Minced Fresh Tarragon (Plus 5 Large Fresh Tarragon Sprigs)
- 2 Teaspoons Minced Fresh Rosemary (Plus 5 Fresh Rosemary Sprigs)
- 2 Teaspoons Minced Fresh Sage (Plus 5 Fresh Sage Sprigs)
- 1 14 – 16 Pound Turkey
- 4 Cups Low-Salt Chicken Broth (Divided)
- 1/4 Cup All-Purpose Flour
- Melt butter in a heavy large deep skillet over high heat. Add turkey necks and/or wings and sauté until deep brown, about fifteen (15) minutes. Add onions, carrots, and celery and sauté until vegetables are deep brown, about fifteen (15) minutes. Add 6 cups chicken broth and bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer uncovered forty-five (45) minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Pour gravy base through a strainer set over four (4) cup measuring cup, pressing on solids to extract liquid. If necessary, add enough chicken broth to the gravy base to measure four (4) cups. Gravy base can be prepared two (2) days ahead. Cool slightly then refrigerate uncovered until cold, then cover and keep chilled. Rewarm before using.
- Mix one-half (1/2) cup butter and all minced herbs in a small bowl, season herb cannabutter with salt and pepper. Transfer two (2) generous tablespoons to another small bowl and reserve for gravy; let stand at room temperature.
- Set rack at the lowest position in oven and preheat to 425° F (218° C). Rinse turkey inside and out; pat dry. Starting at the neck end, slide a hand between skin and breast meat to loosen skin. Rub four (4) tablespoons herb cannabutter over breast meat under skin. Place turkey on rack set in a large roasting pan. Sprinkle the main cavity generously with salt and pepper. Place four (4) tablespoons of plain butter and all fresh herb sprigs in the main cavity. Tuck wing tips under. Tie legs together loosely. Rub remaining herb cannabutter over outside of turkey. Sprinkle turkey generously with salt and pepper.
- Place turkey in oven and roast twenty (20) minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350° F (177° C). Roast turkey thirty (30) minutes; pour one (1) cup broth over and add one (1) tablespoon plain butter to roasting pan. Roast turkey thirty (30) minutes; baste with pan juices, then pour one (1) cup broth over and add one (1) tablespoon cannabutter to the pan. Cover turkey loosely with foil. Roast turkey until a thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh registers 175° F (79° C), basting with pan juices and adding one (1) cup broth and one (1) tablespoon cannabutter to pan every forty-five (45) minutes, about one hour and forty-five minutes (1 hour and 45 minutes) longer. Transfer turkey to platter; let stand thirty (30) minutes – the internal temperature will rise five to ten (5 – 10) degrees.
- Strain pan juices into a bowl; whisk in gravy base. Melt reserved two (2) tablespoons herb butter in a heavy large saucepan over medium heat; add flour and whisk constantly until roux is golden brown, about six (6) minutes. Gradually add pan juice-gravy base mixture; increase heat and whisk constantly until gravy thickens, boils, and is smooth.
- Reduce heat to medium; boil gently until gravy is reduced to four-and-a-half (4 1/2) cups, whisking often, about ten (10) minutes. Season gravy with salt and pepper.
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