Water Curing or Washing Your ABV / AVB for Improved Flavor

What is water curing for cannabis?

If you’re getting into making edibles, you may have come across the term “water curing” and have wondered what it means and why you might have a better edibles experience if you do it. It sounds strange but this practice has real benefits to improve the flavor of your edibles, while losing negligble THC potency.

Water curing is relatively simple and involves soaking your material in water for a few days. By “material” in this case we’re referring to AVB or Already Vaped Bud. This is the stuff you have left over after using a vaporizer — and it’s the perfect material for edibles!

But anyone who’s tried ingesting this stuff knows, it doesn’t taste the best. In fact it can be quite pungent in both taste and smell, and it can ruin an otherwise tasty batch of edibles. So how do we make our edibles actually taste good? By water curing our material first!

How does water curing work?

Water curing actually alters the chemical construction of the plant. The process of water curing dilutes the strong flavor of the chlorophyll on the plant. When you water cure, the tiny hair-like structures on the plant fall off. How does that affect the taste? Well those little hairs are what pack the biggest flavor punch — in a bad way. So getting rid of them is actually a good thing because it will make that signature weed taste (and smell) diminish. And while it won’t go away entirely, it’ll definitely help make your AVB creations more palatable.

Do I have to water cure my weed before using it for edibles?

The short answer: no, you don’t. You do not have to water cure your AVB in order to use it. Uncured AVB will be perfectly suitable for use in edibles. It is purely a matter of preference. Do an experiment and make the same edibles recipe with bud that’s been cured and bud that hasn’t, and you be the judge! The improvement in taste will be well worth it.

Pros and cons of water curing

The main benefit of water curing your cannabis is that water cured weed is easier to enjoy in edibles. It both tastes better and is easier on the stomach than already vaped bud straight out of your vaporizer.

Water curing also separates out the impurities from your AVB, leaving you with more pure and therefore more potent cannabis relative to its volume.

As for cons? There will be a slight, and I mean slight, decrease in potency of your end product. The amount isn’t noticeable, and again, it’s well worth the trade off for a more enjoyable experience.

Will water curing wash off my THC?

“No”. That is, for all intents and purposes, no. The cannabinoids THC and CBD are not water soluble, meaning they do not dissolve in water. So when you put them in water, they will stay in tact. When people talk about losing THC potency from water curing, they are either misinformed, or they’re referring to the fact that the delicate trichomes can fall off the material in the process. The trichomes contain some of the THC in the plant, but these little hairs are so small that the amount of THC you’d lose is negligible.

How do you water cure AVB for edibles?

Now that you know all about the benefits of water curing, you’re probably wondering how to actually do it. It’s a fairly simple process that just requires some waiting in between steps.

Option 1: The french press

This is a popular option among vapers both because of the readily available supplies used, and the efficacy of this method. Simply put your material in a french press with some water (ideally reverse osmosis but plain ol’ tap water will be fine, too). When the water looks gross, change it. You can give the material a very gentle stir periodically to loosen it up and get it all clean, but stirring it is not necessary and will make more trichomes fall off.

Option 2: The crockpot and cheesecloth

This is an easy method although it’s a little messier. Put some water (ideally reverse osmosis but plain ol’ tap water is fine, too) into a crock pot (turned off). Lay out some cheese cloth and place your AVB on it, and wrap it up. You can tie it around itself using a few layers of the cheese cloth so your material is all really secure in there, or you can use a twisty tie or rubber band — anything to keep your material from coming out. Place your wrapped bundle into the water and keep it submerged for however many days you see fit, probably about 3-4 or up to a week. When the water looks gross, change it.

Option 3: Anything that sort of resembles the techniques in options 1 and 2.

Whether you own a french press or a crock pot doesn’t matter. You can use a soup pot or a large bowl with a lid. Maybe you don’t have cheese cloth but you have some pantyhose or a coffee filter. Fine. The point is to strain out the gross stuff from the water while keeping your weed safe from getting dumped out with it.

A week later, bam!

After doing any of the above options a few times over a few days, you’ll notice the water doesn’t get as dirty or need to be changed as often. This is how you’ll know you have successfully gotten out most of the nastiness! If you want your stuff really really clean, give it a week. But any more than that shouldn’t be necessary and also will increase the chance that mold could develop.

Squeeze or press all the water out of the cheesecloth/french press/etc. Be very thorough with this. Then your material is ready to either use now or to let dry for use later.

Do I need to dry my water cured AVB?

Now that your material is water cured, it’s almost ready to be used for making edibles! Depending on what you plan to make, you’ll likely want to dry it first. Some recipes will turn out well if you use damp AVB, like cannabutter. But for most things, it’s safe to say you’ll get the best results if you dry it before using it. Just spread it out on a baking sheet as thinly as you can, and bake it in the oven, set at a really low temperature like 150 degrees F. After an hour or an hour and a half it should be all dry. You can also prop the oven door open a bit to let out the steam to make the process faster. Note that this part of the process will make your house smell and is not discrete in the least.

Then you’re all set to use your water cured AVB. Or, store it in the freezer for later use.

What can I make with my water cured already vaped bud?

We’re so glad you asked! We have a couple of incredible recipes that are the perfect choice to curb those munchies. But before you get cookin’, make sure you use the right dose! We have a THC dosage calculator that does all the math for you.

3 Comments

  1. Doc on August 24, 2023 at 4:04 am

    Please stop advising the masses that normal tap water will be good enough to use in any process undertaken to utilize AVB content in other finishing processes like baking or loading up on gummies(my preferred choice).

    Normal tap water does not cut the mustard, it never has. Most water utilities in North America provide a minerals added, chlorinated water to their customers and neither is good for washing AVB, or making food items and candies. The small town I live in does both; minerals are stripped out of the water when purifying raw water into drinking water. To prevent the water from leaching minerals from pipes, purified water needs a mix of various minerals added to the final product before it leaves the plant and sent to the masses. Chlorine leaves a bad taste in your mouth when it’s eaten and reason why most people buy bottled water. I use 2 Brita filters; one is on the tap, another is in a bulk tank in the fridge. The one on the tap removes the “odd” taste and chlorine from town water and is good to cook with as pot water that will be boiled as well. I use the bulk tank water as cooking ingredients in recipes, drink mixes and drinking water.

    If you are going to rehydrate your stash with the clay puck method or similar items NEVER use tap water. If you can afford pot and Volcano type vaporizers then you can damn well afford a 4L/ 1 gallon bottle of distilled water you can buy a grocery or pharmacy store, even Walmart and Amazon. This is the best water to use since it doesn’t impart any flavor; it’s completely neutral in PH as well and perfect for both processes. It’s the only way to go. All food manufacturing plants have their own water filtration plant which purifies the in coming water to get rid of the bad flavors to meet their standards.

    I’m not trying to troll you, I just would like to provide everyone with solid reasoning and added benefits from using ANYTHING but tap water.

  2. kris on April 25, 2022 at 6:17 am

    what to do with my levo poo??

    • Vapormaster on April 25, 2022 at 11:51 am

      If you’re using your Levo right, there’s not going to be much left in the poo. Some enterprising folks add it to smoothies or baked goods. Mostly it’s the residual oil within that’s worth anything, the plant material should be pretty fully extracted.

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