How to Drink Cannabis This Summer
Edibles are always fun and festive, but medicated beverages are an appealing alternative.
Published on August 18, 2016

Edibles are the go-to form of medication for many stoners, but what about the “drinkables”? It’s time to give cannabis-infused beverages some credit. They’re refreshing, healthy, and discreet when compared with the hot smoke of a pipe or dab. Plus, unlike many traditional edibles, they won’t melt or go stale.

According to Ezra Pryor of the American Chemical Society’s Cannabis Chemistry Subdivision, drinkable cannabinoids are just as effective as those found in solid food products. The effectiveness of a beverage has everything to do with the chemistry of how the cannabinoids are altered in order to infuse the liquid. Infused milks and creamer products contain milk fat, and lemonades contain pulp, which helps cannabinoids bind more effectively, making it more likely that you’ll get a hit with every sip.

“There really is no difference between the effects of oral dosing with cannabis, whether in an edible or drinkable form,” says Pryor. “With edibles, as with infused beverages, THC becomes 11-Hydroxy-THC after passing through the stomach and liver, rather than delta-9-THC entering directly into the bloodstream as with smoking, which will cause a completely different effect.” 

However similar they may be once they’re inside you, this chemist says there may be one plus to a beverages over edibles. “Even distribution of cannabinoids is a distinct advantage. While one half of a brownie may be much stronger than the other half, you can simply shake or stir your drink to ensure homogenous distribution of THC.”

Join the future today by drinking your daily cannabis. Here are the most popular types of weed-infused beverages.

Coffee & Tea

Start or end your day with the ultimate hot beverage, the way the gods intended it. It’s been proven that there is higher solubility of THC in a hot beverage than with a cold one. Several companies, including the original Jane’s Brew, offer teas, coffees, cappuccinos, and mochas in a K-Cup format for instant low-key medication, anytime of the day. Various dosages and decaf options are available, as well as infused creamers.

Soda & Lemonade

Thanks to new extraction and infusion technologies developing in legal markets, companies are finding new ways to create deliciously sweet carbonated beverages infused with tinctures. Citrus-flavored Sprig soda, out of southern California, packs a punch with 45mg of THC per can, with absolutely no cannabis taste.

Other than pulpy lemonades, it’s pretty tough to infuse fruit juices with cannabis, though you can always juice the raw leaves yourself for a healthy concoction.


A nod to hip-hop culture, cannabis-infused syrups are weaning young people off of lean, and introducing many older people to the benefits of concentrated liquid cannabinoids. Most mix with a carbonated soda or hot tea, but you can also sip them straight, as long as you’re extra careful with the dosage.

Cocktails & Mixers

Not every state is keen to let people mix weed and alcohol in the same setting, but in Washington state’s recreational market, it’s fast becoming a trend. Craft Elixirs is just one company combining herbology into mixology with cannabis-infused simple syrups, specifically for the bar. Of course, these are only for house parties; it will be awhile before bars and nightclubs can serve you up a legal crossfade.

In California, the Tequiponch tequila brand is poised to enter the market, but at this time it’s still just infused with hemp extract, without labeled CBD content. The company has a long road ahead to convince the state that pot-infused tequila is a safe product.

Knowing what you do now, would you ditch your edible regimen for a liquid cannabis diet instead? Sound off in the comments. 

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Roni Stetter
Roni is a long-time cannabis advocate who has been involved in the community since her days with California's 2010 legalization campaign. A former high school athlete who successfully treated her sports injuries with medical marijuana, she now promotes the health movement on her own blog. When not writing or researching on the web, you can find her at a drum and bass show, hanging out with her dog and cat, or otherwise living the simple San Diego beach life. See what else Roni is up to on her website
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