The Green Scene

10 Test Kitchen-Approved Cannabis Recipes

Mango gummies, a spin on Space Cake, and other edible delights.

April 14, 2023
Photo by Mark Weinberg

Of all the made-up holidays (lookin' at you, No Sock Day, which falls on May 8 for those curious), April 20 aka 4/20 is one I can get behind. With rumored roots in police code and Bob Dylan songs, a 2017 Time article finally set the record straight: 4:20 p.m. was the time that a group of California high schoolers (shocker!) known as the "Waldos" would meet to "smoke a doobie," says Dave Reddix, one of the group's members.

Today, their extracurricular of choice lives on in the form of festivals, documentaries, indie magazines, and of course, plenty of snacks. Over the years, we've teamed up with edibles expert Vanessa Lavorato—founder of Marigold Sweets—to dream up cannabis-infused drinks, apps, main dishes, and desserts that are perfect for 4/20 snacking and beyond. While we love to make and enjoy these treats, it's also important to address the complicated relationship the U.S. has with cannabis and incarceration. To read more on the topic, check out the articles below:

Here are 10 of our favorite homemade edibles to celebrate the season.

Note: If you're considering enjoying the recipes below, please consult and follow the legal restrictions for controlled substances where you live. Because there are so many variables with homemade edibles, go slowly. You may want to start with half a serving and determine your tolerance and ideal dose from there. And always wait a couple hours to feel the effects.

1. Cannabis Coconut Oil

Consider this one of the mother sauces of cannabis cooking. "Nearly pure fat, coconut oil effortlessly binds to the cannabinoids in weed and has a higher smoke point than some other oils," Vanessa says. Whip up a batch of this to keep on hand for future canna-bakes.

2. Cannabis Pineapple Punch

Inspired by a recipe found in a tin at an antique market, this pineapple punch relies on the power of grain alcohol to "strip the plant resins from the cannabis flower," says Vanessa. The resin is then suspended in the alcohol tincture, and the addition of fat (aka sherbet) helps the body to fully absorb the cannabinoids.

3. Teeny-Tiny Cannabis Cookies

Teeny-tiny cookies are a perfect dessert regardless of the circumstances. Here, Vanessa infuses the cookies with a microdose of THC for the canna-curious among us—each cookie sandwich doses at 3 milligrams of THC, meaning each cookie doses at 1½ milligrams of THC. She notes that if you’re making the cookies on their own and are new to edibles, you should start with one or two cookie sandwiches (that’s two or four cookies), then wait a couple hours to feel the effects.

4. Shiitake Wedge Salad With Cannabis–Blue Cheese Dressing

Okay, so we know salad doesn't exactly scream "celebratory," but we promise that Vanessa's cheesy, mushroom-covered, perfectly dressed wedge situation will change your mind. The dressing uses her Cannabis Coconut Oil, which you may already have on hand if you prepped some immediately after reading the first recipe in this list.

5. Cannabis-Infused Stuffed Peppers

This vegetarian-friendly dish combines melty Gruyère, nutty farro, and sautéed mushrooms with Vanessa's signature weed oil (see above). While this dish is designed to make personal portions, it's also on the heavy side, which means it'll take longer to feel the effects of the cannabis. "Edibles take time to digest, so a heavier dish will release over a longer period than a lighter one," Vanessa says. "Our livers metabolize THC in a different way than when we smoke: THC converts to 11-Hydroxy-THC in our bodies, which lasts longer and feels more potent than inhaled cannabis."

6. Deviled Eggs With Cannabis & Horseradish

Punchy horseradish meets creamy Dijon mustard and salty anchovies in this retro-inspired snack. Vanessa recommends weighing out the eggs as you add the filling in order to be precise with the dose.

7. Space Cake

No cannabis roundup would be complete without a nod to Amsterdam, so here you have it: Space Cake. These cakes can take on various shapes and potencies in their hometown. Here, Vanessa takes a cue from a Moon Pie—a classic Southern sweet—and adds her signature Cannabis Coconut Oil.

8. Sour Mango Weed Gummies

If gummies are more your speed when it comes to edibles, Vanessa has you covered. These gummies get their pep from a cannabis tincture, which Vanessa says is easiest to master at home using a whipped cream canister. "The nitrous oxide in combination with a high-proof neutral alcohol like Everclear acts as a solvent, stripping the cannabinoids (THC, CBD) from the plant buds," she says.

9. Double Chocolate Weed Brownies

It doesn't get more classic than weed brownies, whether you're using boxed mix as your base or making them from scratch. Vanessa's version is a chewy, fudgy, and decidedly not cake-like brownie that features cannabutter for her signature THC twist.

10. Cannabuttered Popcorn With Ranch Seasoning

If you've already made a batch of cannabutter for the brownies above, you might at well add some to this incredibly snackable popcorn. Vanessa replicates a fan-favorite dressing—that would be ranch, in case you didn't know—using powdered buttermilk and a smattering of dried herbs, which the popped kernels are tossed in along with the cannabutter.

Do you have a favorite way to cook with cannabis? Tell us in the comments below!

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • ustabahippie
  • Maria
  • Bev
  • Anita
  • Susan Pray
    Susan Pray
Madison Trapkin

Written by: Madison Trapkin

Former Associate Editor, Food52


ustabahippie April 22, 2024
Reefer madness abounds here today. Oy
Maria April 20, 2024
Are you seriously trying to back recipes using weed ? How much more harm can you do to the next generation... be sure to feed them weed . Then you can wonder why they do not want to do anything productive. If trying a to attract new subscribers by thinking this is the way... you have failed. I will be unsubscribing. Totally disgusted with your choices.
anne R. April 21, 2024
I think we can all agree that the next generation is more likely to be harmed by social media and online predators than a brownie recipe containing some weed.
ustabahippie April 22, 2024
Oh Maria.
Bev April 20, 2024
Not sure what thought went into your decision to "normalize" weed use as if it is a normal everyday thing to bake. I have always enjoyed your recipes and share them with family and my grandson who is a learning to cook. I will unsubscribe and will no longer purchase any of your items on the website.
What you do in your own home I could care less, but this has crossed the line.
Anita April 24, 2023
As someone who survived the "drug scene" of the '60's & 70's, I was appalled to see your recipes glorifying cannabis, or weed. If you want to ruin your marriage and family life, have no social life other than hanging out with druggies, be my guest. I definitely don't want to be part of a it. I know how edgy and cool it must be for some of your readers to find a mainstream site that provides recipes and makes it sound OK, but it is not. I am sorry the powers that be would approve of trying to convince your readers it's OK. It is not.
Susan P. April 21, 2023
I appreciate these recipes. Thank you for sharing your techniques. It’s daunting to try new commercial edibles as it feels like you never know exactly what you’re getting.
anne R. April 20, 2023
Thanks for the history of 4/20. I wondered how it came to be.
And thank you for recipes.
rossana_monzon April 20, 2023
Thanks for this article and recipes! It's so refreshing to see that cannabis is becoming normalized like alcohol, which is far more damaging health wise. Used wisely, cannabis is enjoyable, social and safe. With these recipes, we won't need to smoke it as much, which is bad for you. Happy 4/20!
Dianne N. April 20, 2023
I'm so sorry you felt it necessary to honor cannabis because is it 4/20. The number of addicted people as well as alcoholics in this country is HUGE. Cannabis ruins lives and sends many off to more addictive drugs. Cannabis harms the brains of our children and for many there is no return to normalcy. CBD is a different issue. I'm very saddened you felt you needed to go in this direction to be "cool."