Before you read my recipe and review of this medical marijuana edible, check out my post explaining how and why I use medical marijuana.
I decided to try my hand at cooking with cannabis, and when I found this recipe on the Fox News website I knew it was the one for me. This recipe is mostly taken directly from that link, but modified to allow you to customize the potency of your mac and cheese. I also re-organized it and re-phrased most of the instructions for what I consider clarity.
Lazy as I am, I wanted to try using cannabutter purchased from my favorite dispensary Igzactly 420. They carried 3 oz. jars of Butter Bros Cannabutter. That is the cannabutter I used for this review.
- 1 Cup + 1 Tablespoon total butter (see below for butter instructions)
- 1 Cup all-purpose flour
- 4 Cups milk (whole for creamy, skim for healthy, or 2% to compromise)
- 2 Teaspoons salt
- 1/4 Teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 Teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 Pound penne pasta, cooked
- 1 Cup shredded smoked mozzarella cheese
- 1 Cup shredded cheddar cheese
- 1 Cup shredded American or Swiss cheese
- 3/4 Cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/4 Cup breadcrumbs
- 1 baking dish (Mine is 9″ x 13″ x 3″ or so)
- Enough Crisco to grease that baking dish
Cooking with cannabis is pretty easy as long as you keep a few things in mind. The most important thing is to keep your cannabis under 350°F at all times. Otherwise, your oven will get WAY more stoned than the person eating your food. This means you never want to microwave cannabutter. If you want it to soften, just leave it on your counter and be patient. If you want to melt it, do it on medium heat on your stove top.
Another thing to be prepared for is the smell. If you live in an apartment or otherwise close-quarters home, everyone else on your floor (and probably above it) will know that you’re either cooking with pot or smoking a metric ton of it.
Your Butter Blend
Do some math to figure out exactly how strong to make your batch. What you need to decide for this equation is:
- S = How many servings do I want in this batch? (Do I want many small bites, or a few bowls full? How big is my baking dish?)
- D = How strong of a dose do I want in each serving? (in milligrams of THC)
- tD = Total THC dosage for the entire batch (in milligrams)
You can find the THC content of your cannabutter on the label if you buy it pre-made, or you can make your own and estimate its potency with a little research on your chosen strain. If you’re using Butter Bros Cannabutter like I did, it has 635mg of THC per 3oz (1/2 cup) jar.
Once you establish those answers, here’s the equation to calculate how much THC to use in your butter blend:
tD = S * D
Now calculate how much cannabutter you need to reach that number.
- P = The potency of your cannabutter (how many mg of THC per cup)
- x = How much cannabutter to use in your blend
x = tD / P
Yay! Now we know exactly how much cannabutter to use in our blend.
Here’s my mixture’s math using Butter Bros Cannabutter:
- S = 12 (Servings)
- D = 40mg (THC per serving)
- P = 1270mg (my cannabutter’s THC per cup)
tD = 12 * 40mg = 480mg
I want my batch to have 480mg of THC total.
x = 480mg / 1270mg = 0.38
I need 0.38 cups of Butter Bros Cannabutter in my butter blend to get the dosage I want. I’m going to round that up to 2/5 cup since my measuring cups don’t have decimal places. Try to get that much cannabutter into your measuring cup, then fill the rest with standard issue unsalted butter up to the recipe amount (1 cup + 1 Tbsp).
Other Recommended Prep
I’m fairly meticulous in the kitchen, so I like to measure out all my ingredients into little cups and bowls like they do on cooking shows. I also like to do as much cleaning as possible before I have to pass the point of no return, where I’ll need to pay attention to my cooking and not want to worry about cleaning and measuring.
I also recommend shredding your own cheeses as opposed to buying it pre-shredded. If you do, make sure you shred and measure before you start the following steps.
If you like to consolidate ingredients like I do (OCD or hatred for washing dishes?), you can combine the following ingredients before you begin:
- Salt, Black Pepper, and Cayenne Pepper
- Set aside 1/4 cup of the parmesan cheese, then you can mix the rest of the shredded cheese together
- Breadcrumbs + the 1/4 cup of parmesan
All the steps up to here could be done fairly casually, but the rest of this is somewhat timing and attention intensive. That’s why I spent a lot of time on the Prep section.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. If your oven’s temperatures run high, consider running a little lower to avoid cooking out the THC.
- Grease up your baking dish in preparation.
- Cook your pasta. Boil it just long enough to get it al dente or even slightly undercooked. Your pasta will be cooking again in the oven so making it too soft now will make it a mushy mess later. Some people like mushy pasta of course, so work with your preferences. Once you have it strained, set it aside in a bowl lined with a paper towel or two. Try not to leave it out for too long. We don’t want to add a little pool of water to the mixture, but we don’t want the pasta to dry out either.
- In a large pot over medium heat, melt your butter blend together. When you have it nice and smooth, scoop out a Tablespoon of it and set it aside. We’re going to sprinkle that over the top later.
- Add the flour to the butter blend and whisk well for 3 to 5 minutes, while the mixture cooks. You don’t have to whip the crap out of it, but it’s good to keep it moving.
- Rinse out the pot you used to boil your pasta and use it to bring the milk to a light boil.
- Slowly add the heated milk to the butter-flour mixture, whisking to incorporate well. If you add it too quickly or don’t keep it moving enough, the mixture might break and the texture of your mac and cheese will be grainy and unpleasant (it will still get you high of course).
- Add the salt, cayenne pepper, and black pepper. Continue to cook until the mixture reaches a boil.
- As soon as it begins to boil, remove from the heat. Stir in the cooked penne and your cheeses, saving 1/4 cup of Parmesan cheese for the topping.
- Pour the penne mixture into your greased baking dish.
- Combine the breadcrumbs with the remaining Parmesan and sprinkle it on top. Do your best to also sprinkle that last Tablespoon of your melted butter blend evenly over the top.
- Bake 30 to 40 minutes until golden brown and bubbling.
Let it cool before digging in, and cover the dish with plastic wrap or silver foil if you want to refrigerate it for later. I recommend cutting the entire thing into squares before refrigeration to retain your desired dosages and portion sizes. Try to get your squares as equally-distributed as possible or you might over-or-under your dosage. While sometimes you might prefer more or less medicine, it’s best to give yourself as accurate a measurement to start from as possible. That’s why Viagra pills are all the same size and shape.
The Review (The Recipe)
My first serving fresh out of the oven was great. The cheese was stretchy and creamy in all the best ways, and the pot flavor wasn’t overpowering or distracting to me.
When I was reheating the dish in the microwave (because I’m lazy and don’t follow my own instructions), it wasn’t nearly as good nor potent. I recommend dropping a square into an oven-safe dish and just spending the extra 10 minutes or so to heat it up right, but be as lazy as your taste buds and tolerance allow.
The Feeling (Butter Bros Cannabutter)
Butter Bros Cannabutter has the same high as their other products, which is pretty good. The high feels more abrupt when it begins and tapers off a little faster than other confections. The total effects last just as long, but the transitions are different than other brands. I recommend trying one of their streusels or cookies first to make sure you like their style before baking with their cannabutter. I consider their brand above average in the edibles I’ve tried so far.
The recipe is great, but I had to re-organize it to make all the timing and semantics of cooking it work more nicely. I fully expect to make this dish again sometime, but I may have to wait until marijuana is fully legal for recreational use. It’s hard to want to eat the same mac and cheese 12 times by myself without getting sick of it.
See? Stoners can still do math!