Yield: One 8-inch two-layer cake
Prep time: 40 minutes
Total time: 2 hours 55 mins
(If you need to make cannabis oil first, that should take at least an hour and a half for decarboxylating the cannabis and infusing the oil.)
Long before precision-made THC gummies and artisan weed chocolates became household names with cannabis fans, the world of edibles was dominated by pot brownies and the iconic, astronomic, spacecake. But if you’ve ever sat in an Amsterdam coffeeshop and tried to wash down one of those pre-wrapped space cakes/bricks of unclear origin, you might wonder, why bother?
The good news is that baking a cake — including one that will get you baked — is really easy and the end result is almost guaranteed to be better than those store bought lumps of baked dough.
Here’s how to have your weed, and bake it into a cake too.
Why should I bake a weed cake and not just smoke a joint?
If your usual way to get high is to spark up a joint and feel the THC kick in almost immediately, then you may wonder why bother with the hassle of making edibles. This is understandable, especially when you have to factor in the hour or so that it takes to start feeling the effects of edibles and the high that can take a lot longer to wear off.
But edibles aren’t there to take the place of joints and the experiences aren’t interchangeable. Edibles produce a much different high and can be a great change of pace from smoking. They can also be a fun way to entertain guests or create the perfect gift for a fellow cannabis fan or somebody who is canna-curious but doesn’t like smoking.
Is a strong edible an ideal daily indulgence? Maybe not for everybody, but they do produce a unique, potent, full-body high that tends to leave a giant grin on your face like a kid who just got the biggest piece of birthday cake and doesn’t need to share.
Common edibles mistakes
Stop us if you’ve heard this one: A would-be spacecake astronaut takes a hearty bite of fluffy, cannabis-infused cake and…nothing happens. About an hour later they decide to take another bite — or two — only to realizethat the original dose is kicking in and there is no rescue shuttle on its way.
This is a very common mistake with edibles, and even some veterans can get impatient and wander down this path. Keep in mind that edibles can take more than an hour to kick in. Take your time, start with a low dose, and wait at least an hour and a half to refuel.
Arguably the other most common mistake is forgetting to decarboxylate your weed before making your edibles. The cake may still be delicious, but the weed won’t get you high. Here’s why.
Why decarboxylation is key
Decarboxylation is a process in which heat is applied to weed to convert the naturally-occurring-but-rather-tame THCA into THC, and your couch into a lunar module. Decarboxylation happens instantly when you smoke cannabis, but if you’re eating cannabis, you’ll need to decarb first. This is quite an easy process. Simply place your ground-up cannabis on some foil or a baking sheet in your oven for about 30-45 minutes at around 220-245°F (105-120°C).
Make sure to crack a window, though. While in space no one can hear you scream, back on Earth your roommates can smell the aroma of decarbing weed overtaking the house.
How to make cannabis oil and cannabutter
Before you’re ready for liftoff, one more crucial step is needed — making a cannabis infusion.
Cannabinoids like THC and CBD are fat soluble, which means they must be eaten with a fat in order to be broken down by the body.
With an infused fat like olive oil, coconut oil, or butter, you can easily convert any recipe to a cannabis recipe just by replacing the oil or butter with your infusion.
And while many people may say that cake should only be made with butter, the recipe we’re sharing here calls for vegetable oil.
How to infuse vegetable oil with cannabis
Here’s what you’ll need to make some cannabis oil:
- 1 cup or around 7-14 grams of ground, decarboxylated cannabis
- 1 cup of vegetable oil
- Double-boiler, saucepan, or crockpot
- Storage container
The method you use for your infusion is really up to you. The saucepan method is quite simple, you just heat up the oil and the decarboxylated cannabis in a saucepan at around 130-150°F (55-65°C) for about an hour, making sure to stir it often so it doesn’t scorch.
With a slow cooker, put the cannabis and oil together and cook at the same temperature for about an hour. If you’re working with a double boiler, just put water in the bottom pan and add oil to the top section, stirring in the cannabis and cooking it at the same temperature for about an hour.
With each method, after about an hour take the oil off the heat and let it cool. Then strain it through a cheesecloth into a jar. Make sure to squeeze the cheesecloth a few times to get all of the oil out.
All that’s left to do now is to put it in a sealed container well out of reach of any children that may be in the house.
One thing to keep in mind when making cannabis oil is the potency. If you’d like a more mild batch, then consider using less cannabis — closer to 6 or 7 grams. It’s really up to you. Alternately, you can make a potent batch and then when using the oil in a recipe, use half infused oil and half non-infused oil so it isn’t too strong. It all depends on your tolerance and how strong you want the cake to be.
The cannabis cake recipe
You could craft your own cannabis cake recipe from scratch, complete with a 1,000 word backstory on your family history going back to the drafting of the Magna Carta, or just tweak an already crafted recipe.
There are lots of space cake recipes out there in the cosmos, but we decided to tweak this delectable chocolate cake from Martha Stewart. She certainly knows her way around baked goods, and as a friend and colleague of Snoop Dogg and a former convict, we figure she can be counted on for just about anything.
How to make chocolate space cake
- 1 1/2 cups unsweetened cocoa powder, plus more for dusting
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking soda
- 1/4 cup cannabis-infused vegetable oil
- ½ cup vegetable oil
- 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
- 3 cups sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 3 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 1/2 cups hot water
Preheat the oven to 350°F(175°C) and liberally grease two 8 inch cake pans with butter. Line the bottoms with parchment paper and butter paper and dust with cocoa.
In one bowl, sift the cocoa, flour, baking soda, baking poser, salt, and sugar. Using a mixer set to low speed, beat in the oil, buttermilk, vanilla, eggs, and hot water. Beat for about two minutes or until smooth.
Pour the batter into the pans and bake for 45-55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the middle of the pans comes out clean.
Remove the marijuana cakes from the oven and let them cool on wire racks. After about 20-30 minutes, flip the pans over to remove the cakes, and then let them cool top side up. Gently slice off the top of one of the cakes.
This step is a bit of a crossroads. You can use a frosting recipe of your choice to ice both of the cakes and stack them, or go in a totally different direction: Take the un-iced chocolate cakes and eat them as is or with some whipped cream or hot fudge topping, or just take a gigantic chunk and plop it into a bowl with a big scoop of ice cream.
However you decide to serve the marijuana chocolate cake, remember the wise words of the space cake elders: Don’t overdo it. Eat a nice-sized piece and give yourself an hour or so to see what happens.
And once the space cake does kick in, relax, enjoy the ride, and don’t be in a hurry to come back down to earth.