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HoneyTinc_SLetts (2)

Photos by Sharon Letts

For all the gabbing I do about ingesting, I figure it’s time to share a favorite recipe. My go-to for a good night’s sleep and a good way to deal with myriad complications from various sundry illnesses and prescription side effects has been a good, old-fashioned honey-in-my-tea-at night; cannabis infused (of course) tincture.

Though tinctures are now readily available in legally run dispensaries and collectives in medical marijuana states, if you have access to trim or bud, it’s never a bad idea to learn to make your own medicine. In fact, the one mantra I have on the politics of the plant is, to retain the right to grow and make our own.

Stovetop remedies have been created from plants and other naturally growing and found things on this planet, since an opposable thumb first plucked the first herb, with recipes handed down through generations. It’s the American way, and how this country was planted. Albeit, with Hemp as the leading cash crop back in the day.

Calming the Bunny in All of Us

Beatrix Potter’s beloved character Peter Rabbit, upon indulging in the garden was soothed by a cup of chamomile tea prepared knowingly by his caring Mum. You can easily imagine she had grown, harvested, dried, stored and steeped the tummy-soothing botanical remedy herself – knowing it worked for digestive, sleep and to calm the precocious little bunny.

HoneyTinc_SLetts (4)

[Sharon Letts]

The process of making honey tincture is as easy as steeping tea, and though some may use a candy thermometer and a double boiler, I take the simple route and make it in a crock pot. This way, it’s a slow heat process and I can steep as much medicine out of the plant as I can in a longer amount of time, without burning the mixture.

I’ve used leafy trim with stems, sugar trim, and, as shown here, popcorn buds – small, leafy buds not worth trimming, but packed with good medicine. Typically, sativa is used for daytime energy and stimulation; indica for calming, or nighttime use. If you don’t grow your own or know a gardener, most safe access points sell leaf and trim at a discounted rate for medicine makers.

It’s perfectly fine to experiment as you learn, with the right combinations for the right strengths for your specific needs. As for dosing with the honey, or any ingestible, start with a small dose, say one teaspoon one hour before bedtime, waiting one to two hours in between dosing.

Note: This is not the cure for cancer or serious illness; this is a remedy for minor ailments; for use as a sleep aide; relief of pain; the quelling of infection, and a preventive to support the immune system. I am not a doctor, nor nurse; I am an enlightened cannabis patient sharing my own experiences.

HoneyTinc_SLetts (7)

[Sharon Letts]

Sharon’s Honey Tincture

Materials Needed

Crock Pot with “Low” Setting

Cheese Cloth, String

2 Cups Bud, or 1 oz. Trim

5 lb. Container Honey

HoneyTinc_SLetts (9)

[Sharon Letts]

Wrap bud or trim in cheese cloth, secure with string.

Place bundle in crock pot and cover with honey.

Set crock pot on “low” and cover with lid.

Step 2.

Steep Cannabis four (4) hours.

Stir a couple times an hour.

You want the tincture to simmer, but not boil. If mixture begins to boil, turn crock pot off, let cool down, the turn on again to continue the process until done.

This process is not an exact science. As noted, the main goal is to make the strongest medicine without burning the tincture.

HoneyTinc_SLetts (11)

[Sharon Letts]

After four or five hours turn the crock pot off and let sit. Test for flavor and color. Tincture should be taking on some of the medicine by this time.

Once cooled, you can make the decision to stop the process and have a light tincture, or you can let it sit overnight for a stronger batch.

Step 4.

Once the tincture is at the desired consistency and strength, remove the bundle from the honey, squeezing as much tincture as possible from the bag. Set aside for making tea (recipe to follow).

Before honey cools or thickens ladle tincture into jars. I use a canning funnel and fill small jelly (Mason) jars.

Label With Love

Label each jar with a warning. This is important for many reasons. Someone choosing honey for their tea from your cupboard shouldn’t be surprised by the outcome, whether they are copacetic to cannabis or not. I’ve heard far too many stories of misdirected medicating to take this lightly.

Using California’s coding as an example:

In compliance with: CA prop 215, SB 420 Sections 11362.5 & 11362.7 of HSC

Do not drive

Keep out of reach of children

For medical use only

Not for resale


[Sharon Letts]

[Sharon Letts]

Waste Not Want Not

Using every bit of this plant is a tribute to its sustainability. That bundle of goodness you soaked in honey for umpteen hours still has a good deal of medicine in there.

In Hebrew the definition of “chai” is “life.” In India it’s a drink made from black tea, spices and honey – and one of my favorite drinks. Doubling up on meanings, you could say the medicated chai made from the bundle of Cannabis-infused honey is “Life Chai,” hence my endeared name for this drink.

Life Chai Tea

1 Saturated Bundle Cannabis/Honey (from Honey Tincture Recipe)

8 Cups water

Heaping Tablespoon each:

Whole Cardamom Pods

Whole Cloves

Freshly Chopped Ginger

Two Cinnamon Sticks

Four tea bags… choose black, green, or herbal tea. Since I use this at night for sleep, I use a “bedtime” tea blend, but traditional chai is made with a strong, black tea (note: black tea has caffeine).

1 to 2 Sticks Vanilla (If using extract, add 1 T. at end of cooking process)


[Sharon Letts]

[Sharon Letts]

Add bundle to water in a large kettle (with lid) with spices, and bring to boil. Immediately turn down to low and simmer until tea darkens in color. About one hour, more for a stronger brew.

Store in glass Mason jars in the fridge.

Tea keeps for several days.

Serving options: Traditionally milk or cream is added before drinking. I use Coconut Cream.






Sharon Letts

Sharon Letts

Editor’s note: Sharon Letts began her love of gardening in Southern California by her mother’s side, watching as she buried fish heads at the base of roses.

At 24, Sharon hung her shingle, “Secret Garden,” planting flower beds for dainty ladies. Gardening led to producing and writing for television with “Secret Garden Productions.”

Today Sharon continues to write about gardening and all that implies, advocating for the bud, and writing for many magazines, including DOPE (Defending Our Patients Everywhere).

She also pens “Road Trip: In Search of Good Medicine,” touring MMJ states, following the Green Rush.
  • http://www.facebook.com/silverdaddy Thomas Ray

    thank you..
    mama has a mj card an we will use this recipe..she has fiber mialgia an the pills dont work that the doc gives her..god sent..!!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Michael-J-Kaer/604696223 Michael J. Kaer

    I make medicated honey but in a differnt fashion. I make regular cannabutter then add a ratio of that to the amount of honey i have. Melt the butter and honey in a sauce pan while stiring. when both are liquid, let it cool a bit then use a hand mixer to whip it together. Thats it. Simple huh? It can be used topically and internally.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Sharon-Letts/1438298476 Sharon Letts

      Nom, nom, nom. Cornbread, anyone?

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Michael-J-Kaer/604696223 Michael J. Kaer

    Thomas, I am using Rick Simpson Oil in gel caps for my chronic pain. Have you looked into that?

  • wild

    can you use maple syrup instead of honey ?

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Sharon-Letts/1438298476 Sharon Letts

      Excellent question… I don’t see why not. Would be lovely on waffles. I’d check for consistency issues. You may end up with maple sugar candy… which wouldn’t be bad either!

  • http://www.facebook.com/nicholas98austin Nicholas Chaussonnet-Dorsett

    you seep the cannabis in water?
    i thought cannabis was fat and alcohol soluble, not water soluble

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Sharon-Letts/1438298476 Sharon Letts

      Good question. Your info came from the right place. Cannabis infuses well with a fatty base, and breaks down well in alcohol and glycerine. That said, it can also be steeped in water to make a tea. It’s versatile!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Sharon-Letts/1438298476 Sharon Letts

    Failed to note… THC, the psychoactive element in Cannabis, is activated when heated, therefore this tincture will have psychoactive properties.

  • majorskibum

    Just seems like an awful lot of honey. Is 5lb accurate to a mere 1 oz of plant material? When I make butter I use 4oz of plant to 1 lb butter. Just curious.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Sharon-Letts/1438298476 Sharon Letts

      I suppose it’s all relative, as one ounce to one stick of butter (your ratio) seems like a lot to me :) Five pounds of honey is really not that much, and is the large size container found in big box stores (I get mine at Costco).

    • Sweet Leaf Caregivers

      4 oz of cannabis to 1# of butter should knock you to the floor !! … If done properly you should use approx 1/4 to 1/2 gram per dose. Figure out how many doses you will get from 1 pound of butter based on the recipe you will be using and multiply total doses by .5 to get total material used. (I.E> One Pound of butter will make me 64 cookies…64 cookies x .5 of cannabis = 32g of cannabis) If this method doesn’t work for you then your not making the butter correctly and wasting a crap load of cannabis. I run a MMJ Collective in Ca and our edibles get rave reviews using .33g per dose and sold as a 2x dose cookie. (3 cookies per gram of popcorn / sugar leaf)…Hope that helps.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003028341708 Gina Winter

    honey is a water soluble item. how is this going to extract the cannabinoids? And not all the ickys we do not want that ARE water soluble in the cannabis…


    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Sharon-Letts/1438298476 Sharon Letts

      Please try it yourself, or not. It works fine.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003028341708 Gina Winter

        tea worked out great. the tincture not so much

        • me

          Gina, honey should be a good solvent according to your link for organic matter. maybe you have to “cook” longer.

        • StonedSonny

          Do you get a heavy stoned feeling with this recipe?

          • al Wolf

            imo it sucked ass. make cococanna butter instead

  • http://www.facebook.com/melo.grow Melo Grow

    Just heating in a crock pot on low may not thoroughly decarboxylate. Should be a decarb graph on my FB page, if not contact me. Nice recipe, prob. needs more cannabis, great tea idea.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Sharon-Letts/1438298476 Sharon Letts

      Actually, this is a good amount of Cannabis – or it’s worked for me for some time now, and gets plenty strong with medicine.

  • http://www.facebook.com/carl.krebs.14 Carl Krebs

    This is great news as I am a long term chronic pain sufferer . I quit cigs recently and prefer the tinture/tea method of use . It is what I would much rather do along with poppy tea to live with my pain deficiencies . Instead of dealing with doctors and dealing with percocets , Loran’s , klonopin , am
    Nd inducing . I would much rather deal with these substances I have just discussed as in tintures and teas than the pills . One problem . They are all highly,illegal,in my home state , Louisiana . I don’t want to go to jail , but also would rather get off the addiction of opiate pain killers and their severe withdrawals . Let me know if you can help me , Carl k ; . Ph 318-249-9566 . I am also considering acupuncture and severe phys therapy . Please , whatever tou can do , help me to do what necessary to not spend 30 yrs in the pen and have pain relief . I am begging for help !

    • Mary Jo


  • Mary Jo

    This was excellent, thank you. I love simple instructions. I really like the no waste idea.

  • Noel

    I’m making this for my dad, he is 67 with stage 3 esophageal cancer. His medication has completely removed his appetite, not to mention, swallowing his own saliva is painful! I hope the honey will be soothing but I don’t smoke or eat weed at all! I have some pretty quality bud in the recipe and am steeping the cheesecloth extra long to get all the strength out of it… How much would you recommend I tell him to take at one time??

  • Barrie Hurwitz Stark

    i’ve seen recipes that say you need to grind the product very fine before putting it in the cheesecloth. Yours does not say to do this and it works just as well, it seems. It works SO well for my fibromyalgia, pain/sleep issues are almost non-existent anymore! If I’m having a bad day, I just have an extra dropper-full of tincture, no more prescription meds! It does NOT make me high either, just relaxes me so I can sleep better. Question though: should I refrigerate the finished tincture? It makes so much, that it lasts me approx 6 months.

  • ilse ryan

    Thank you for sharing the honey recipe. I am a very firm believer, God created this for us to heal ourselves with. I have chronic pain, and stopped using regular medicine which just tore me up. I make a tincture using Everclear, works GREAT

  • bellaganj

    great post! i’m using the crock pot method. can you please tell me about the light colored foam that comes up? should i skim it or is this a part of the potency? thank you

  • Gary Swarthout

    Does anyone know the shelf life of honey made tincture? Please, if you know, let all of us know. Someone else has asked this question, but there was no reply. Here is a simple recipe that I’m using and it’s the greatest. Even people who have made tincture for a long time, love the taste and the effect of this honey. (Since I don’t smoke and never will, I have come up with a way to maximize the effect. I do not use the trimmings etc, but use only the best of the bud. Why should I make my stuff out of the crap? I use the best. First, I put just around 3 oz of bud, pour in 80 or more proof of vodka, just enough to wet it. I soak this for about 2 hrs, then pour in 2 5lbs of honey. I bring this to a high simmer and turn off for about 2 hrs, stirring it a lot. I turn the mixture back on to high simmer and turn it off again. I do this for about 6 hours. I know it seems easier in a crock pot, but I love cooking this, and want to watch each step to make sure it’s not over cooking. I pour mixture into a strainer, just a regular kitchen strainer, I don’t care if I get small miniscule particles in the honey, taste the same. I put in quart canning jars and label. I just need to know if there’s a ‘expiration date’ that should be added.

  • Trey

    When you say leave the honey overnight, is that with it off? Just let it sit and let the medicine seep into the honey? Or do you repeat the process again?

  • Adiemus

    I love your disclaimer (that’s the responsible thing to say about home remedies) – and the recipes look great.

  • nmrk04106

    Just a note, I put the glass mason jars with honey in them, in a crockpot filled with water. I do it with coconut oil also. Saves on the clean up and leaves you less frustrated to cook again.

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