How to make CBD Oil – A step by step Guide

how to make cbd oil

In this guide we want to show you how to make CBD oil, so you are able to make good, potent and especially healthy CBD oil at home. It’s not as difficult as you might imagine. With a relatively small pre-investment in necessary utensils, raw material (hemp flowers) and the necessary know-how, you will be able to supply yourself with CBD oil.

But one thing in advance. This manufacturing process can be very dangerous if not carried out correctly, as extremely flammable and unhealthy vapors emerge, which may represent a danger to your health. However, nothing can happen to you if used properly. Also, you should consider all security measures.

A personal note: Some of us still make our CBD oil in this way because a few years ago there was a greater need for it. And after many CBD Oil productions with some bad performances and many good ones, the wealth of experience has increased a bit each time.

Many different hemp varieties have been used and the technique has continued to improve. Now, a few years later, making CBD is like cooking for the family in the afternoon, and it was the best decision to engage, learn, and implement the production of CBD oil for private use. So let’s get started.

Necessary equipment and preparation

Make CBD oil concentrate with alcohol as solvent

For the production of CBD oil at home we use the extraction process with high percentage alcohol. Because cannabinoids can be dissolved in alcohol and the cost of the accessories remains affordable for most.

The CO2 extraction process requires an expensive system that is only for commercial use. Therefore, this method is not suitable for domestic use.

Cannabinoids can also be dissolved in oil. But this takes much longer (weeks) and the CBD concentrate cannot be separated from the solvent (oil).

Starting material Hemp Flowers

Dried Hemp Flowers
Dried Hemp Flowers

The first and most important, of course, are the hemp flowers.

These are the source of cannabinoids and basically they already contain everything we need for the CBD oil.

With the extraction method we extract (as the name implies) the CBD oil (Extract)  and respectively separate the resin (contents of the trichomes) from the remaining plant material.

Where do you get hemp flowers from?

Depending on where you live you may find it easy or difficult to get dried hemp flowers. Unless you are growing your own hemp plants, you should look out for a hemp farmer or wholesaler who sells hemp flowers (dried) in at least 0.5 – 1 Kg portions.

Look for the CBD content of the hemp strain and also inspect the content of other cannabinoids such as THC, CBG, CBN, CBD etc. The THC content of hemp plants is generally less than 0.3%, so the flowers of this plant can legally be offered and purchased in most of the world’s countries

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What should be considered when buying hemp flowers?

However, the CBD content of hemp varieties can vary greatly. Depending on the breed and the purpose of the hemp variety, the CBD content can range from almost nonexistent to 5%. Most commercially available hemp varieties have a CBD content of approx. 1.2 – 2%.

Generally, the higher the CBD content of a variety, the more expensive the hemp flowers.

The Cannabinoid content of a Hemp Strain

Since the % figure refers to the CBD content of the whole plant in relation to biomass, one need not worry that the homemade CBD oil also contains this amount of CBD in %. The extraction is a method of separating the hemp plant biomass from the cannabinoids, a concentrated mass (CBD concentrate) remains after production which will have a CBD content of 20-40%.

The Price of hemp flowers

The price per KG of hemp flowers of course depends on the seller, the hemp variety and the amount that you want to buy. According to our own experience, the price for one kilogram of hemp flowers is $ 100- $ 300. That should be appropriate.

The more you buy, the cheaper it should be. There are farmers or traders who sell only from an order of at least 20KG. But that is not the case with many.

Sentica Hemp flowers
Finola Hemp Flowers
Kompolti Hemp Flowers
Finola Hemp Flowers 2
Popular Hemp Varieties for CBD oil production:
  • Finola
  • Fedora
  • KC Zuzana
  • MV Kompolti Premium
  • Futura
  • Ferimon

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Further equipment for the production of CBD Oil

  • Portable cooking plate or rice cooker
  • Fire-proof glass container
  • Large container (at least 2 liters capacity) made of glass, plastic or metal
  • Infrared thermostat
  • Fine mesh strainer for the first (coarse) filtration, big enough to catch the plant material
  • Funnel, at least one and kitchen roll or coffee filter (for the 2nd filtering (fine))
  • Disposable Rubber Gloves (Optional)
  • A respirator which can filter alcohol fumes (Optional)
  • Modern electronic water still (Optional)
  • Syringes – To absorb the still warm concentrate and for accurate measurement of portions
  • Alcohol – at least 90% without impurities (at least 2 liters) Ethanol or Isopropyl

How to Make CBD Oil: The Procedure

This guide to making CBD oil is designed to give readers an insight into how to make CBD oil yourself. However, improper use can lead to dangerous situations.

Therefore we do not ask you to do this and warn against dangers in production. The dangers are mainly in health-damaging and highly flammable alcohol fumes.

The production should be carried out very conscientiously and take place only outdoors with sufficient air circulation. There must be no open flames nearby as they may ignite the alcohol vapors.

hemp flowers pre crushed
crushed hemp flowers 2
crushed hemp flowers
1. Crush the hemp flowers

Take about 300 grams of hemp flowers and crush them. If they are dry enough, you can do it by hand, as they will crumble nicely. Or you use a blender with which you also make smoothies or vegetable juices and shred the flowers carefully with it.

2. Put the shredded hemp flowers in the container

Take the shredded hemp flowers and place them in a large container (min. 2 liters). If you have shredded the flowers in the Blender, rinse the container from the blender with the alcohol, so you do not waste the cannabinoids that are in it. Simply empty the alcohol and cannabinoids into the container in which you have placed the shredded hemp flowers.

3. Add the alcohol to the shredded hemp flowers

Now fill the container with the hemp flowers with 2 liters of alcohol. According to our experience, about 2 liters of alcohol are needed to dissolve the cannabinoids efficiently from 300 grams of flowers.

4. Dissolve the cannabinoids from the hemp flowers

Now use a wooden spoon or something similar to stir the hemp flowers in the alcohol to evenly bring the alcohol around all plant parts and wash out the cannabinoids.

Do this for about 5 minutes, after which all soluble cannabinoids, terpenes, and chlorophylls should be flushed out of the plant material and are now in the alcohol.

hemp flowers with alcohol
hemp flowers in alcohol
5. First filtering of cannabinoids from plant material

Now take the large fine mesh strainer and a second container with more than 2 liters in size. Place the strainer on the container and empty the alcohol cannabinoid mixture through the strainer into the 2nd container.

This is the first filtering and should remove all coarse plant parts. Press the plant material properly to get as much alcohol out as possible to avoid wasting cannabinoids.

You can also sprinkle that squeezed plant material with a bit of alcohol to make sure you get all the cannabinoids out.

You can throw the plant material that was washed out by the alcohol in the trash. It is not recommended that you consume it. This has no more active ingredients anyway.

6. Second filtering of the cannabinoids from the remaining plant material

Now you have in the second container about 2 liters of green/brown alcohol/Cannabinoid mixture, which now goes into the 2nd Filtering.

This process takes much longer than the first filtering because the dissolved cannabinoids have to go through a much finer filter.

For this filtering process, use a funnel and place it in a large bottle (preferably made of glass) and place a coffee filter or piece of kitchen roll at the top of the funnel so that the alcohol/cannabinoid mixture flows through it.

Do this until the entire liquid has flowed through such a filter. If necessary, regularly replace the filter, as it can quickly become full of plant particles and thus slow down the filtering process.

cbd oil filtering 1
cbd oil filtering 2
7. The reduction – The alcohol is separated from the CBD oil

Now you have a filtered solution containing alcohol and cannabinoids almost exclusively with the exception of terpenes and chlorophyll. Now the cannabinoids have to be separated again from the alcohol.

Of course we do not want alcohol in our CBD oil. This process is also called “Reduction”. The alcohol is completely separated by heating and evaporating from the cannabinoids.

Pour the filtered mixture into a container that can be heated on the electric hob or rice cooker. (If you use a still, you can now put the solution in the container for the water.)

Make sure that there are no open flames in the area and carry out this process outdoors to have enough air circulation. Since the alcohol is high percentage, this also has a low boiling point. This is around 70°C.

Therefore, you must turn on the hob or the heat source even to the lowest level to reach this temperature. The alcohol quickly starts to boil and evaporate.

If you have a respirator, use these for this process or do not try to be close by and inhale the fumes. This process can take a while but the alcohol will evaporate and evaporate completely.

You will lose the alcohol and have to buy another alcohol for another CBD oil production process unless you use a still. With this you can catch a large part of the alcohol used and reuse it for another production.

Use the infrared thermometer during this process to measure the temperature of the cooking plate and the liquid.

The temperature of the solution will not rise above the boiling point temperature (around 70°C) as long as there is alcohol in it. No matter how hot the hot plate is underneath.

However, for a good quality of the final product and to save energy, you should keep the temperature in the range (100-180 ° C). There is also another test to determine if there is still alcohol in the oil.

Take a small needle and immerse it in the CBD oil. Use a lighter to light the oil on the needle. If the oil burns, there is still alcohol in it. If the oil does not burn but is liquefied or smokes, there is no alcohol in it.

cbd oil alcohol method boiling
CBD Oil Alcohol Method Alcohol evaporated
CBD Oil Alcohol Method pre Decarb Process
8. The alcohol was removed – preparation for the decarboxylation process

Once the alcohol has evaporated, the temperature in the remaining CBD oil will increase. Here you have to proceed with sensitivity.

Make sure that the heat source you used for the reduction is about 140°C so as not to burn the CBD oil when the alcohol has evaporated. Also, to be on the safe side, once the alcohol has evaporated and the temperature rises, you can remove the container from the heat source or turn off the heat source a little earlier.

Because the decarboxylation of the CBD oil must also be carried out, the alcohol boils at about 70°C and bubbles emerge in the solution. If the alcohol has completely evaporated and the temperature has not increased, there will be no more bubbles.

As long as you see bubbles at 70°C, there is still alcohol in the solution. Now comes the point. But if you raise the temperature to around 120°C, bubbles will appear again. These bubbles do not come from the alcohol, but from the decarboxylation process.

9. The Decarboxylation Process – Turn CBDa into CBD

The decarboxylation process serves to turn CBDa into CBD or THCa into THC. The “a” behind the cannabinoid stands for acid. So to get CBD, CBDa needs to be converted to CBD using this process.

This process is actually only at a certain temperature over a period of time to act on the oil. Heat the remaining oil to around 120-140°C to start this process. Small bubbles should be visible.

These bubbles are the carbon dioxide molecule being released, turning the CBDa into CBD. Regularly check the temperature to be sure that you do not burn the oil or initiate this process incorrectly.

cbd decarboxylation process
CBD Oil Decarb Process
10. Pick up the CBD oil – Filling the Syringes

When the CBD oil stops bubbling, the decarboxylation process should be completed and the oil is ready. Allow the oil to cool slightly but not too much. It should still be liquid. Then take a syringe and soak up the oil.

When the oil is completely cooled, it becomes very viscous in most cases. Similar to Vaseline or jam. The color is very dark green/brown, which also differs with the taste and effect of each hemp variety.

You probably will not get all the CBD oil from the containers with the syringes. The remaining CBD oil can be obtained from the container with hemp seed oil or coconut oil.

Put a little bit in the pot with the remaining CBD oil and wash the container clean. The CBD oil will dissolve very well in the oil you have added.

This will give you a diluted but very good CBD oil. It is a little less potent as the syringes but certainly as good as what most CBD traders sell. Just put this diluted CBD oil in a small lockable container. The most suitable are drip bottles. This makes it very easy to dose.

CBD Oil in Syringes 1
CBD Oil in Syringes 2
11. Storing the CBD oil

Always store your CBD oil airtight and protected from light, cool and dry. This ensures a long life and little loss of potency. This allows the CBD oil you manufacture to be stored for many months or even years.

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Addendum to the production of CBD oil

On average, about 300 grams of hemp flowers can yield 10 to 20 grams of pure, fully extracted CBD oil (extract).

This method of CBD oil production by the alcohol Extractions method can be used for any cannabis strain and all cannabinoids. Whether you want to produce CBD, CBG, CBN, THC, CBC oil, this can be done. Of course, the appropriate cannabis/hemp strain is required.

Each cannabis/hemp variety has a different cannabinoid profile and therefore a different effect on our individual endocannabinoid profile. This enormously increases the therapeutic potential in our opinion.

Therefore, it is necessary to continue researching, testing and trying to get a better understanding of this wonderful plant whose products, like  CBD oil, can do so much good to us.

We hope you enjoyed this little tutorial and maybe there is one or the other of you taking this opportunity to make his/her own homemade CBD oil. Let us know and send a sample 🙂

Author profile

As a passionate writer and researcher, the cannabis expert is an important cornerstone of The Hemp Oil Benefits. He has been writing for large but also smaller websites in the industry for many years. His experience and expertise is a welcome addition to our team. Learn more about us.

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