Cannabis Cocktails: For A Less Alcoholic World
3 min

Cannabis Cocktails: For A Less Alcoholic World

3 min

Cannabis cocktails are the next frontier: With alcohol or not, dry or sweet, spicy and fruity, they can meet any taste. Here is how to get it right.

Grandmas, top chefs and edibles companies they are all trying to adapt their recipes to the old new ingredient. Bartenders started experimenting, how to blend cannabis extracts into a cocktail, reducing some herbaceous flavours and maybe exalting others like berries, cheese, citrus, petrol and everything else. For example, the smoky flavour of the Mexican agave infusion mezcal perfectly complements many of the cannabis scents. Everyone should be free to play the cannabis bartender. The only risk is making drinks that taste like bong water.


Many people love cannabis cocktails because they help to quit alcohol. With an alcohol-free cannabis cocktail, little carbohydrates and sugars are ingested, and a nice buzz can be achieved without all the short and long term adverse effects of alcohol. Last but not least, no hangovers the morning after.

Once cannabis cocktail art will be refined and spread around the world with legal bars and clubs together with the general cannabis legalization, it’s likely the overall amount of alcohol consumed will be spontaneously reduced by people. That’s simply because most of us can’t tolerate too much alcohol mixed with cannabis. Someone might not like this lifestyle change. We do.


Replacing your booze with a fresh fruit shake or organic juice cannabis cocktail makes you get all vitamins, minerals and other beneficial components of fruit into your body together with THC, CBD and friends. You’re going to have a good buzz with less or zero alcohol.

Everybody like fresh fruit cocktails, so just pick the best you can. You probably spent money or energies to have the best buds. No reason to have bad fruits for your cocktail. Fresh fruits and juices dramatically enhance cocktail taste. The energizing and refreshing effect of a fresh fruit cannabis cocktail will pay for itself the higher price by improving your high and your health.

Sparkling beverages can be easy ingredients for cocktails, but they just add gas and sugar without any nutritional value. They can also modify your body pH, just like fertilizers do with soil, thus you might risk getting very hairy, or no hairs at all.


Green Dragon is the most common slang term for any mix of alcoholics and cannabis. Simply stirring a bowl full of vodka and cannabis trimmings is not enough. The resulting infusion will be too low in THC, yet very alcoholic. A cocktail made with this liqueur will surely get you drunk, but not high or relaxed. The taste might not be so good, too.

Alcoholic tinctures or infusions work best for drinks that contain alcohol anyway. Tinctures can be used with more precision than infusions. One of the the simplest infusion methods is by heating buds and trimmings in the oven for 60 minutes at temperature of around 120°C. This to decarboxylates THC and activate its medicinal properties. Then pour them in a bowl with the high-grade liqueur. This mix must be stirred and shaken for a few days, then heated and strained. The same methods can apply to any strong liquor like rum, vodka, gin, tequila. Understanding the right amount of cannabis to pour in requires attention not to end up with low or too concentrated extractions. Learn more here about THC strength in edibles.


Instead of infusing cannabis in alcohol, good extractions can be made with coconut oil, which is also very beneficial for treating and preventing many diseases. The taste of cocktails made with oils and fats extracts instead of alcohols is different because they can pull out different terpenes from the buds. Based on the combination between cannabis strains and the different food-grade solvents, cocktails can smell grassy, or have a sweet fatty taste, or an acidic fruity perfume.

Cannabidiol-rich strains can be used for extractions. This is an interesting experimentation field since there is no limit due to THC psychoactivity. Here is a recipe to extract cannabinoids and terpenes from cannabis into water with sugar and glycerin.

  • 3 cups of water
  • 3 cups of sugar
  • 2 tablespoons of food-grade glycerine
  • 2 grams of cannabis flowers

Put finely chopped cannabis into boiling water, add sugar and stir. Cover the pot and boil for 20 minutes, then reduce the temperature and add the glycerin. Simmer and stir for 5-6 minutes, then strain. The syrup obtained with this method can be used for a wide variety of cocktail, and it’s easy to dose.


Combining cannabis foods, drinks and vaporizing guarantees the intake of all the active cannabis components while eliminating any risk for lungs, throat and gums. A few bars and restaurants on both the American East and West coast went famous for some underground weed cocktails and dinners offered to their hipster or jet-set clients. In many cases, cocktails were variations of the traditional recipes, added with a cannabis concentrated tincture. Here are a couple of recipes we tried.

To prepare the Cannabis Malibu Mule just shake 4 parts of cannabis syrup (made as mentioned above in this article) with 2 parts of fresh lime juice, 1 part ginger syrup and soda water at convenience. With this cocktail you get vitamin C plus all the benefits of ginger and cannabis. If you can’t find lime, any citrus works fine.

For a more soft and sweeter cocktail you can try a strawberry peach sangria: make 1 cup of lemon or lime juice diluted in soda water, add fresh strawberries, little sugar, mango juice, and of course one nice and full pull of cannabis tincture. Chill it and garnish your glass with as much fruit as you can.

While it’s easy to dose cannabis intake when smoking, head and body effects are not immediately evident when it comes to cannabis edibles, and cocktails are strong edibles. Please experiment responsibly.

Adam Parsons
Adam Parsons
Professional cannabis journalist, copywriter, and author Adam Parsons is a long-time staff member of Zamnesia. Tasked with covering a wide range of topics from CBD to psychedelics and everything in between, Adam creates blog posts, guides, and explores an ever-growing range of products.
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