What Is Bhang And How Do You Make It?
4 min

What Is Bhang And How Do You Make It?

4 min

Bhang has long been used in India to celebrate Hindu festivals and to aid meditation and worship. It's also delicious and easy to make. Here are some easy bhang recipes that are open to adjustment and experimentation!

There is a surprisingly large number of ways to consume cannabis. One of the oldest, but least known in Europe and the US, is “bhang”. Bhang originates in India, and is used within Hinduism for religious purposes and celebration.

Bhang takes the form of an often delicious, refreshing drink, making it a fairly novel method of cannabis consumption for some. In this article, we’ll explore a little of the history of bhang, then show you two different ways to make bhang concoctions.

What is bhang?

Bhang is a cannabis-infused concoction made from the crushed flowers, leaves, and sometimes stems of the cannabis plant. Bhang itself is a paste-like cannabis extract that can be added to all manner of food and beverage—but often these foods and drinks also take the name “bhang”.

Most popularly, it is included in a drink that mixes milk, fruit, sugar, and various spices, such as ginger and fennel, alongside the cannabis paste. This intoxicating drink is traditionally consumed during the spring festival of Holi and other Hindu ceremonies. It is particularly popular in North India and is widely sold in bhang shops. As bhang is believed to offer a variety of benefits, it also features in Indian Ayurveda.

In Hinduism, the custom of consuming cannabis for religious and spiritual purposes goes back thousands of years. Dating as far back as 2,000 BCE, and still popular today, it is one of the earliest known cannabis traditions in the world.

Various myths exist around the origins of bhang in Asia. One from Southeast Asia tells us about Hindu gods churning the oceans to obtain the nectar of immortality. Wherever drops of the nectar fell on Earth, a cannabis plant sprouted.

A similar story tells of how lord Shiva consumed a poisonous substance to save the world, but in doing so caused himself great pain. Fortunately, the goddess Parvati prepared a drink of bhang that relieved Shiva's anguish. Having discovered the transcendental properties of the mixture, Lord Shiva also earned himself the pseudonym, “Lord of Bhang”.

In imitation of Lord Shiva, the holy men of India (sadhus) use bhang for meditation and to achieve transcendental states. Cannabis is also popular amongst Sufis as an aid to spiritual enlightenment.

How to make bhang

How To Make Bhang

Fortunately, you don’t need to make your way to India to enjoy bhang. Here are two easy bhang recipes that you can make at home.

Easy bhang recipe

This recipe is particularly easy, and a great option for those who want to try making bhang for the first time—or those who just want to make it as simply as possible. It also begins with raw cannabis flower, rather than a cannabis paste, which means you can dive right in without any prep!


  • Max. 15g fresh cannabis bud or trim
  • 500ml water
  • 700ml warm milk
  • 120ml honey or sugar
  • ¼ tsp. garam masala
  • ¼ tsp. ground ginger
  • ¼ tsp. ground fennel
  • ½ tsp. ground anise
  • ½ tsp. ground cardamom
  • ½ tsp. rose water
  • Garnish of your choice (edible flowers, mint stems, almond flakes, nuts, crushed pistachios…)



1. Bring water to a boil. Remove from heat and add your cannabis. Allow to steep for 7 minutes.

Bring Water To A Boil

2. Using a cheesecloth or fine strainer, strain the plant material from your “tea”. Squeeze until all of the liquid has been pressed. Keep both the “tea” water and plant material!

Strain The Plant Material From Your “tea”

3. Transfer the squeezed weed to a mortar and pestle. Add 10ml of warm milk. Slowly grind the buds so they soak up the milk. Repeat until you’ve used about 120ml of milk. Set the milk with the plant extract aside.

Transfer The Squeezed Weed To A Mortar And Pestle

4. Add the garnishes into the mortar with a splash of milk. Grind into a fine paste. Remove larger stems and other chunks from the paste.

Grind Into A Fine Paste

5. Take the “tea" water and mix with the milk extract and the paste. Add spices and rose water. Add remaining warm milk and some honey or sugar to taste.

Add Spices And Rose Water

6. Mix well. Enjoy! Bhang tastes best when served cool!

Mix Well. Enjoy! Bhang Tastes Best When Served Cool!

If you want to try a different type of bhang, you can perform small adjustments to the recipe above for a different flavour experience. Check out the example below.

Bhang lassi

This is the traditional preparation popular during Holi. It is used to help one relax and to stimulate the appetite. This recipe uses trim, rather than full cannabis buds, but don’t feel restrained by our recipe—if you want to add flower, go ahead!


  • 15 grams cannabis trim
  • 500ml milk
  • 250ml water
  • 100 grams sugar
  • 1 tbsp. coconut milk
  • 1 tbsp. chopped almonds
  • ⅛ tsp. ground ginger
  • 1 pinch garam masala
  • ½ tsp. grenadine


  • 2 saucepans
  • Mortar and pestle
  • Sieve


  1. Bring water to a boil in a saucepan. Add the cannabis and let simmer for 7 minutes.

  2. Using the sieve, strain the water into a second saucepan. Keep both the cannabis and the water.

  3. Add cannabis with 2 tablespoons of milk into the mortar, and grind. Repeat several times, adding more milk and then almonds to the mixture.

  4. Strain the liquid through your sieve to remove excess plant matter. Proceed to pour the milk, coconut milk, grenadine, and water into one pan.

  5. Bring to a boil while stirring continuously. As you stir, add the remaining ingredients. Keep stirring until everything has dissolved.

  6. Remove the mixture from the heat. Allow to cool down a bit. Place in the fridge for several hours. Serve cold!

What are the effects of bhang?

What Are The Effects Of Bhang?

Bhang is a cannabis edible just like any other, at least in the sense that it contains the same active cannabinoids like THC and CBD. As such, effects are comparable to other edibles, with some differences when it comes to dosing. When you consume cannabis edibles, the delta-9-THC gets converted into 11-hydroxy-THC in your liver, which is a more potent and longer-lasting version of THC. So even if you’re experienced with smoking/vaping, still take it easy with edibles until you’ve discovered your relationship with them.

The effects of bhang tend to be heavy, creating a very “stoned” feeling. If you’re looking for an invigorating, energising experience, you might be better off smoking a sativa cultivar. Bhang is likely to make you feel very relaxed—if you get the dose right.

Lighter doses are more likely to lead to feelings of increased motivation and creativity, while larger doses edge you ever closer to becoming couch-locked. To a degree, you can influence the effects by putting different ingredients in your bhang concoctions. Fruit, sugar, and fresh ingredients could help to make the experience more refreshing and energising. It won’t be enough to overpower the effects of the cannabis, but it could influence the experience to a degree.

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What are the possible negative effects of bhang?

Like all drugs, and all methods of cannabis consumption, bhang does come with the potential for negative effects. In this sense, you can really think of bhang as an edible, as it very much shares the same side effects.

At lower doses, the negative effects are likely to be mild, and are most likely to be:

  • Lethargy
  • Minor discomfort/anxiety
  • Red eyes
  • Dry mouth
  • Impaired cognition

At higher doses, the side effects of bhang can be quite uncomfortable and overwhelming:

  • Paranoia
  • Anxiety
  • Panic attacks

These side effects can also be made worse by the fact that ingested cannabis can last many hours (12–24 including residual effects). This can create a sense of being trapped in the high. If you experience negative effects, remember that they will end, and that, though scary, you will recover.

Bhang: a divine drink

Bhang: A Divine Drink

Bhang remains very popular in India, but is less known in Europe and the US. However, for those who like edibles or desire something a little more refreshing than a brownie or a cookie, mixing together a bhang concoction can be perfect!

Easy to make and inviting experimentation, this ancient drink is well worth trying.

Max Sargent
Max Sargent
Max has been writing for over a decade, and has come into cannabis and psychedelic journalism in the last few years. Writing for companies such as Zamnesia, Royal Queen Seeds, Cannaconnection, Gorilla Seeds, MushMagic and more, he has experience in a broad spectrum of the industry.
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