Remember the first time you made “special brownies”? It was probably a little on the wonkier side of cooking. A slow cooker may have been involved and you for sure ended up with some snacks being more potent than others. That's because making edibles used to consist of a lot of eyeballing measurements, hoping you found the right mix of material and milk to unlock enough compounds to let your edible take you for a (safe) ride. Thankfully, as edible possibilities expand, the technology used to help invigorate them continues to grow as well.
We’ve now entered the era of decarboxylation. Knowing how to decarboxylate your material (don’t worry, it's way easier to do than pronounce) will help unlock its power thanks to steady heating. From conserving material to preventing bad trips, using modern cooking tools to decarboxylate your most important ingredient is essential for anyone who routinely consumes edibles.
Let’s take a look at what makes decarboxylation so important, and spotlight a few products that are helping to usher in this new method of enhancing the way we enjoy edibles.
WHAT IS DECARBOXYLATION?
Get out your notebook and #2 pencils, this WILL be on the midterm
Scientifically speaking, decarboxylation is a chemical reaction that removes a carboxyl group and, in turn, releases carbon dioxide.
Now, how does that relate to dry herb and why should you care?
Because decarboxylation significantly increases the potency of your material.
Heat is the most important factor in decarbing. It activates far more compounds than the process of aging does. When you smoke or vape, decarboxylation naturally occurs when the material makes contact with the flame or heating element. But if you decarb your material BEFORE using a pipe or vape, you can actually up your material’s potency levels.
While decarboxylation is usually used for making edible treats, it can also enhance material before vaping or smoking. Decarbing your material does more than just allow you to feel its effects, it unlocks the full potential of your material’s compounds and flavors.
Now that you’ve got a PHD in decarboxylation, it's time to put it to good use.
THE ARDENT NOVA LIFT DECARBOXYLATOR
Skeptics of decarboxylation devices will argue that they could just put their material in the oven to activate it. While you might have some small success doing this, to fully ensure complete and total decarboxylation, steady heating and a sterile environment are crucial.
The NOVA Lift Decarboxylator is the first ever in-home decarboxylation device, making it possible to activate your material so it can go straight from the NOVA Lift into your recipe, pipe, or vape. With the NOVA Lift, there is no extraction necessary. Your material is activated right inside with no mess or clean up. Since the NOVA Lift Decarboxylator increases potency, only a little bit of material is needed each session.
Some users may worry that decarbing your material removes its unique flavor profile. Thanks to the engineers at Ardent, this won’t ever happen. The NOVA Lift operates at the lowest temperature possible to maintain your materials profile perfectly so you can enjoy the maximum benefits it has to offer. While your material is decarbing inside the NOVA Lift, it is housed in a completely sterile environment. The heating action of the NOVA Lift is calibrated to kill spores and microbes without burning.
Ardent engineered the NOVA Lift to be quiet and odorless, making your decarb experience an easy one. To use the NOVA Lift Decarboxylator, users just have to open the top, insert up to an ounce of material, press a button, and in two hours your material is fully activated and ready for consumption. If you’re an avid edible consumer, the NOVA Lift Decarboxylator is nothing short of a miracle. It fully extracts the powerful compounds of your material all while saving you money and keeping your doses steady.
THE MAGICAL BUTTER MACHINE
After you’ve decarboxylated your material TO THE MAX (sorry, just trying to “cool” the scientific talk up a bit), you can combine forces with the Magical Butter Machine to create perfectly dosed dry herb butter and tinctures. Ingesting material has evolved from run-of-the-mill confections to pretty much any kind of food and drink. The Magical Butter Machine expands your edible possibilities and allows you to experiment with whatever you can think to infuse all while performing like a normal kitchen appliance.
This machine is just as simple as the NOVA Lift Decarboxylator. Just put your material in and pour your melted butter over the herbs. You can add lecithin as well for a potency boost. Once you’ve added the butter and material, choose 160°F and press the two-hour button. Once the device is finished, use the included Purify filter bag to strain and boom, you’ve got magical butter!
If you’re aiming for something other than food, you can choose one hour for oily concentrates and four or eight hours for a tincture.
Armed with your decarboxylated material and the Magical Butter Machine, the possibilities are endless. But what really makes this machine so special?
Just like the NOVA Lift, the Magical Butter Machine was designed exclusively for the creation of material consumables. Crock-Pots and ovens require constant monitoring and deliver uneven results. With next-gen engineering, the Magical Butter Machine creates not only a better edible but a hassle-free one as well. Users also have the freedom to explore different kinds of edible treats. The Magical Butter Machine is able to produce oily liquid concentrates that can be used for lotions and salves while tinctures can be capped and prepared for easily transportable daily use. A “Freestyle Mode” allows users to explore tons of possibilities to enhance everything from soda to salad dressings.
SO WHY DECARBOXYLATE?
Aside from the expanded dry herb consumption possibilities, decarbing your material helps to create evenly dosed edibles and conserve your material. If you’re reading this, you’ve probably gone through a “bad trip” due to a hastily prepared brownie or cookie, all while your friend who split it with you feels nothing. This situation is no more with the NOVA Lift Decarboxylator and Magical Butter Machine. Your butter will be evenly dosed each time thanks to you being in full control of the recipe. Users just beginning to make their own edibles won’t have to worry about overdosing their goods and freaking themselves out when the effects of their infused gouda start to kick in.
Conservation of materials is a great reason to decarboxylate your material. Think of a bowl or cone. After you’re done inhaling, it will still continue to burn a bit, wasting your material and your money. If you were to take that same amount of dry herb and use the NOVA Lift Decarboxylator plus the Magical Butter Machine you could almost double your usage. The use of butter specifically allows you to control your dosage with unmatched precision. And the human body is more readily accepting of a pre-bonded mixture of material and fats into the bloodstream, making for a more efficient delivery system.
If you’re interested in prolonging your supply, having evenly dosed edibles, and enjoying a hassle-free cooking experience, decarboxylation should be your new favorite science project.
Charles Mockler is a vaporizer critic and writer at The VaporNation Blog, a leading source for expert opinions and information about vaporizers. His blogs are read by tens of thousands of people each month. He specializes in the latest technology trends including induction heating and decarboxylation.
Charles' goal is to provide readers with reliable, helpful, and balanced opinions on vaping. He does not recommend vaping to those who don't already smoke, but his articles do offer advice for existing vape enthusiasts including reviews and how-tos about the latest vaporizers. Charles has reviewed and tested a myriad of vaporizers and recommends people do as much research as possible before buying any vaporizer.
Charles was introduced to vaping after moving to Los Angeles during the vaporizer boom. A fan of "true vaporization," he prefers convection vapes with ceramic ovens. His articles include What is an Induction Vaporizer?, How to Decarb Dry Herb, and 8 Best Electric Dab Rigs of 2018.
A graduate of the University of Montana, Charles now resides in the Greater Los Angeles area where he reviews vaporizers and hosts a podcast about the Los Angeles Clippers.