Many people describe themselves as either a “buyer” or a “doer” - they don’t have the skills to make something on their own, so they buy it versus those DIY, jacks-of-all-trades that would rather put some elbow grease into it. Whether we’re talking about building a shed, making a meal from scratch, setting up a new living room décor or rigging up some very technical sound systems, there are many options for “DIY” or “hire an expert” to get the job done.
A lot of people figure they’re capable of completing a certain task before coming to the sudden, horrifying realization that their project is beyond the scope of their own abilities. Yours truly has been stopped in his tracks on many occasions - the Springtime landscaping or redoing roof shingles comes to mind.
Just because you’re not an expert carpenter, mechanic, interior decorator or computer wiz doesn’t mean you don’t have what it takes to service your own needs. It’s important to keep testing your limits - both known and unknown - because we’re always evolving as individuals and you’ll be surprised at what you can accomplish if you keep pushing yourself. One way in which yours truly has found some new skills and self-appreciation is in the realm of making your own edibles.
Cooking & baking are among the most black-or-white skillsets out there - you’re either really good at it, or you’re terrible. Making your own edibles might seem like a hair-pulling pursuit because you not only have to cook/bake the food ingredients but then add some cannabis to it in a particular way. This doesn’t have to be the case, however, when you learn how to do homemade edibles.
Let’s discuss the pros of buying premade edibles vs if it’s cheaper to make your own edibles. If you find that edibles are expensive - like everything else seems to be - then don’t fret - buying edibles isn’t your only option because you can easily make some classics at home to fit any budget.
Are edibles expensive? They certainly can be, especially if you have a medical condition that requires frequent dosing of cannabis throughout the day. It’s cheaper to make your own edibles if you take multiple edibles throughout the day, everyday because no matter what kind of wholesale pricing you can score at some point the cost-per-potency doesn’t hold up. Speaking of…
The cost of the cannabis product in question, with regards for its pricetag, can help you to determine whether you’re getting a good deal or not.
For instance, if you’re used to purchasing 50 mg of THC gummies that come in a pack of 10 gummies, the first and most easiest calculation is to convert that into a ‘per unit’ potency of 5 mg per gummy. Some products list the potency per unit already, which might mean that it’s 50 mg PER gummy, 50 mg per PACKAGE. It’s important that you understand these values when you’re buying edibles in 2023 because there are a lot of edibles that seem like good deals until you realize they’re sold in “total THC per package”.
With this caveat out of the way, the next thing to do is to calculate the cost of your store-bought edibles to a ‘per unit’ price as well. In the same 50 mg of THC gummies example, let’s say the pricetag was $30 for the package. This means with 10 gummies in the pack, the cost per gummy is $3. Some cannabis products aren’t easy to dissect the potency or cost further - such as a brownie, beverage or any kind of cannabis consumable that doesn’t split into evenly distributed pieces/doses. If this is the case, then assume the cost-per-unit is what you paid for it and the potency is the total amount in the singular edible.
Now that we have the potency and cost per unit, it’s easier to determine if it’s cheaper to make your own edibles or if buying edibles is still the best bang-for-your-buds. Calculating cost-per-potency in raw ingredients for homemade edibles isn’t an exact science - you have to factor in the costs of the inputs and ballpark them to fit the final product(s). That being said, once you’ve whipped up a batch or two of your very own you’ll have a clearer picture just how much/little making your own edibles can yield.
In most cases - unless you’re using premium quality, premium priced raw materials - homemade edibles will always have a better cost-per-potency than store-bought ones. The reason edibles are so expensive is because of the number of ingredients, processes and finishing touches required to produce them. What some folks call “the restaurant factor” certainly applies to buying edibles - a lot of work goes into input selection, crafting the ingredients into a viable product, and getting that product to market.
Another consideration that makes it cheaper to make your own edibles has to do with customization. Whether you’ve got specific nutritional requirements or you’ve got a higher tolerance to THC or CBD than most, making your own edibles grants you full control over how strong they are, their flavors, aromas, textures and how many you get per batch.
Simply put, the main pros of buying premade edibles have to do with convenience, whereas the main benefit to making your own edibles is the control/customization factor. Speaking of pros & cons, let’s brush over the pluses and minuses for both store-bought and homemade edibles in the following sections.
One of the first and foremost benefits of making your own edibles at home has to do with the double-edged bonuses of getting both a big quantity of edibles AND the quality you desire. When you make cannabis edibles at home you get to choose how much, how little, how strong, how weak, what flavors, what aromas and what textures and shapes your edibles should be. Simply put, DIY marijuana edibles allow you to craft whatever kind of experience you’re after, without having to choose the best price for quantity over quality, or vice versa.
Ever hosted a stoner party and had guests argue over what’s better: gummies vs brownies? Either way as long as you’re having fun and getting stoned it’ll probably work out in the end, but to avoid this kind of issue in the future why not make one of each?! When you make your own edibles there’s no limits to what flavors you infuse into your edibles, how big they are, how many there are and what potency they can be. Sure it’s a lot of work to craft your own batch of edibles, but the rewards outweigh everything else by leaps & bounds of tastes, smells and high-flying experiences.
Another way to overcome the fact that edibles are expensive on the open market is to make some fresh weed edibles at your home. The freshness factor is something many of us overlook, but there’s nothing quite like biting into a warm brownie, pulling apart the ooey-gooey chocolate cookies, or getting drunk on the delicious smells of a freshly baked weed pie.
The obvious and most encumbering element of making your own edibles has to be the amount of work required to bring them to life. From a number of raw ingredients to technical/skilled know-how in baking, cooking and even extracting cannabinoids & terpenes from cannabis flowers, homemade edibles aren’t for the faint of heart. You can certainly cut corners and make edibles at home to suit your needs, but if quality & consistency are important to you then get ready to practice, practice, practice.
On the same note, the amount of assembly of ingredients, the processes it takes to render them into a finished product, on top of the steps it takes to properly process cannabis into its active forms can make DIY edibles more of a pain then a medicine. There is a lot of shopping to do to assemble the ingredients you need, then you need to prep said ingredients, then you need to bake/cook them into a final product, on top of storing and preparing said edibles to your guests in a timely & presentable manner. Sounds like way too much stress to make something that is meant to erase your anxieties like edibles do.
This isn’t necessarily a negative takeaway for homemade marijuana edibles, but the truth is that it can take a lot of experimentation, elbow grease and multiple batches of wasted ingredients before you refine your skills at making edibles at home successfully. So, unless you’re a real susie/sammy homemaker already with lots of experience at every kind of kitchen creation, then it might just mean that making edibles at home is beyond the scope of your skills/knowledge.
If there’s one thing we can all agree on with buying edibles it’s the ‘big C’ - no, not that, we meant “Convenience”. Convenience is everything for many online shoppers and stoners in Canada - in a world where every kind of weed is just a click away, you have to provide the necessary levels of convenience to stay alive in the cannabis business. If making edibles at home was cheap, easy and consistent then we’d all do it. Sadly, it’s anything but, so buying premade edible online or at weed shops just makes sense.
One of the most upfront pros of buying premade edibles from a store has to do with the pricetag. Many edibles are very affordable - almost suspiciously so! - leading us to purchase packs of 50 instead of 25, upgrade our carts from the 100 mg THC gummy to the giant 1000 mg THC gummy instead, and so on and so forth. You’d be amazed at the kinds of deals you can score online or in stores if you’re a patient weed shopper. Whether it’s a combo deal for some new gummies, a fire sale on near-expiry weed cookies or a wholesale deal on cannabis beverages, there are tons of priced-to-sell edibles out there.
If chocolate covered, cream-filled strawberry bud bites don’t make your mouth water then you must not be human. There are an untold number of flavor combinations out there to suit any need, tickle any fancy and satisfy any craving for edibles - not to mention all the different levels of THC potency you can choose from. If you need a certain amount of weed, there’s probably a dozen different flavors to entice you. Each level of cannabinoids concentration comes in a variety of tastes, smells, consistencies and price ranges so finding the edible that best fits your needs is as easy as searching “Haute Health” online.
This isn’t true for all edibles you can buy online or in stores, but many stoners have had gripes with the limited variations of cannabinoids & terpenes potencies. Money can buy almost anything, but what about a 225 mg THC pot cookie? How about 45 mg of CBD gummies to help you sleep? If your magical “weed number” is very specific or tied to certain strains of cannabis, then you might be out of luck when you buy edibles. Add to this issue that prices aren’t always based on potency, and you might find that your magic weed number and premade edibles don’t mix.
One of the only problems with edibles - other than their delayed activation as they’re digested - is the issue of consistency. This doesn’t mean that edibles are inconsistent - quite the contrary - what we’re focusing on is their literal, physical consistency can make certain portions of the edibles contain more cannabinoids than others. For instance, if gummies are infused with THC they might be sold as “10 mg per gummy” when in fact during manufacturing the THC contents can get shifted around or collected in certain gummies more than others. This means that one gummy in a pack can have 2 mg while another one has 18 mg when you’re expecting 10 mg per gummy.
One of the final cons of buying premade edibles isn’t as common of an issue, but if you ever have a bad reaction to an edible it’s almost impossible to return the defective product or get your money back. Marijuana edibles really are as final of a sale as it gets - it might look good or smell delicious, but it could be a dud when it comes to how it makes you feel. You can’t return something after you eat it, whereas with cannabis flowers, oils or extracts you can try a small portion of the product and make a decision after testing it out.
These represent just a handful of the pros and cons of buying edibles vs making them on your own. In the end, “to each their own” really does reign supreme for any kind of cannabis products - what’s great ganja for one person might be dud dope for another. As long as you’re satisfied with the weed you need, then keep enjoying it however you can. We hope you found this guide to making edibles at home and learning the pros of buying premade edibles helpful, and we wish you happy, hazy days in the coming Spring/Summer of 2023.