Weed shake refers to the loose scraps of plant matter often found at the bottom of a bag or jar of cannabis. Understandably, beautiful buds do not remain perfect forever, and inevitably, pieces fall off and scraps collect at the bottom of the container.
Shake is often considered to be a lower-quality weed, and understandably so when compared to the frosty nugs from which they separate. These leftover pieces of bud are not much to look at, but shake can be a highly potent and useful addition to your cannabis arsenal.
What is weed shake used for?
Dispensaries may sell their cannabis shake to avoid wasting any part of the cannabis plant. As budtenders shift the nugs, bits break off and collect at the bottom of each jar.
Some dispensaries sell these leftovers at a lower price than the flower it came from since the potency and effects are often inconsistent. Cannabis shake can be found in pre-roll options at some dispensaries. This often means you are getting the leftovers of many different strains which can create a unique flavor and high.
Shake essentially is ground-up flower, ready to pack in a bowl, a joint, or blunt. It is also perfect for crafting edibles because one does not have to worry about the look of the buds; they are all about to be mixed into your recipe.
Some cannabis consumers create tinctures using their leftover shake. As long as you have enough shake by weight for your recipe. Occasionally, cannabis extractors will use shake to make concentrates, though many in the industry prefer to use flower, ensuring a higher quality end product.
How to use shake at home
Since cannabis edibles and drink infusions require a large amount of cannabis, shake can be an economical way to try making edibles and drinks at home. Here are some easy ways to incorporate shake into your repertoire.
- Smoke it: The easiest way to consume cannabis shake is to roll it up into a joint, spliff, or blunt. Since weed shake already comes in tiny fragments, users can simply sprinkle the shake over a rolling paper or blunt wrap. If rolled correctly, shake can burn evenly, so users will not have to keep lighting it.
- Vape it: Depending on the quality of the shake, vaping can be a great way to consume shake. Users may need to grind up the material further and ensure there are no sugar leaves or stems in the mix. While vaping multi-sourced shake may not be as flavorful as single strain shake, users can use weed shake as a budget way to medicate.
- Cook with it: Cannabis shake and material that has been vaped can be used to infuse into oils and butter for cooking or baking. Before adding it directly to your favorite oil or butter, users need to decarboxylate shake. This means that cannabis shake needs to be heated to activate chemical compounds that turn into the psychoactive THC or anxiety-reducing CBD. High-quality cannabis shake can make effective edibles or cannabis-infused meals.
- Topicals: Making cannabis topicals is very similar to cannabis-infused butter and oil. Using varying amounts of oil can create differences in textures and consistencies when making lotions, creams, salves, and more.
- Alcohol: Cannabis shake can be used to infuse distilled spirits with potent weed flower. Beginners may want to use a budget liquor that has a clean taste to bring out the flavors of the cannabis shake. After users decarboxylate their cannabis shake, they add cannabis shake to a jar, fill it with liquor, and store it in a cool, dry, and dark place. Shake the mixture a few times a day for anywhere from a couple of days to a couple of weeks, depending on the desired potency of the infusion.
- Tea: Using decarboxylated shake, cannabis consumers can infuse their morning cups of tea with some potent weed. Cannabis tea recipes will usually combine cannabis with some sort of milk to make a cream to pair with a tea.
Determining the quality of shake
Shake is often looked down upon as being inferior to carefully selected cannabis flower buds. There can definitely be some bad shake out there, but shake that comes from a cannabis strain with a high concentration of trichomes can be just as good as the original bud. However, trichomes are sensitive and may fall off.
The even smaller hair-like resin glands that fall off of flower and shake are known as kief. Look for cannabis shake that still has a decent amount of trichome concentration.
Some dispensaries may carry cannabis shake that is weeks or months old in a tightly packed jar. Before purchasing cannabis shake, ensure that it is not too dry or too moist, which can be a perfect breeding ground for mold.
Other times, dispensaries may not sufficiently sift for leaves and stems. Leaves and stems contain very few trichomes and, therefore, the cannabinoids and terpenes that weed smokers desire. Leaves and stems can also be hard to work with and are harsh to smoke.
Avoid “trim” that passes off as shake. Trim is typically the excess snippings of cannabis sugar leaves.
Cannabis sugar leaves do not contain as many trichomes as compared to flower buds. Trim can be used to make cannabis edibles and topicals, just do not expect it to be as effective as using cannabis flower or shake. Many budtenders will unknowingly refer to shake as trim or vice versa, so make sure that you are getting the right stuff.
The cost of cannabis shake
Shake offers customers the opportunity to buy cannabis at a discounted price due to its small bits and suboptimal freshness. Consider shake to be like day-old doughnuts. While fine, they are not as fresh or pretty. Because of this, some will consider shake undesirable.
As such, prices for shake vary. Some companies try selling their leftover stock in grab bag varieties. These offerings include ounces for around $100. However, prices can be found well below triple digits as well, especially if the producer is trying to make sales.
Shake sells for a variety of prices depending on the market, with some selling ounces as low as $40 for a lower quality of shake. “Top shelf” shake typically lists as an appealing discount to full buds but is more expensive than lower quality shake.
When not to use shake
It would be ill-advised to make top-shelf concentrates like full melt bubble hash with shake. Items that can only be produced from superior flower will not benefit from shake. Instead, stick to using the loose stuff only when the quality of the flower is less of a concern.
Not everyone will love using cannabis shake. Medical patients that depend on certain cannabis strains may not benefit from some shake variants.
Much of the weed shake that is sold at dispensaries is a mixture of multiple sativa, indica, and hybrid strains. Make sure to ask a budtender for the source of the shake before purchasing.