On March 31, 2021, New York became the latest state to legalize the use of recreational marijuana, and public opinion has rapidly shifted in favor of full-blown legalization. Like gay marriage before it, the tides have turned in dramatic fashion, and the federal legalization of weed now seems inevitable. (The popular news site Vox declared in 2021 that “Marijuana legalization has won.”) So it’s no surprise that Americans are getting more creative with their pot consumption — despite the fact that it is still illegal at the federal level. The best marijuana cookbooks contain recipes that let cannabis users enjoy this plant in entirely new ways, and while we do not recommend breaking the law, there’s nothing illegal about owning and reading cookbooks.
Lots of people prefer to smoke cannabis the old-fashioned way, and it’s true that cooking with cannabis can be challenging. In order to properly prepare edibles you need some basic knowledge of both cooking and cannabis, and edibles sometimes have a reputation for extremely high potency. However, that doesn’t have to be the case, and marijuana-based food can be as strong or mild as you desire. SPY recently spoke with cannabis cookbook author Tracey Medeiros, and she told SPY, “For beginners, the general rule is to start low and go slow.”
Below, we’ll share some of the most popular marijuana cookbooks. We also spoke with experts like Medeiros about this unique part of the culinary world.
Why Do People Cook with Cannabis?
The new cannabis culinary landscape is helping bust the stigma around the plant. In addition, for people who use medical marijuana as an alternative treatment for pain, inflammation, and anxiety, eating or drinking cannabis offers an alternative to smoking.
Dr. Anne Marie Wong, who leads Miami medical marijuana clinic Medverde, told SPY:
“Cooking with cannabis can be a creative way to take your medicine. Some patients may not be able to use store-bought edibles due to dietary restrictions or preferences (i.e. Kosher or sugar-free). Some of my older Jamaican patients just enjoy making tea from flower, and find the effects to be calming and medicinal. Other patients make butter out of flower to use for topical use. Some patients even use concentrates rather than flower to cook with,” Dr. Wong said.
The best cannabis cookbooks also explore the gourmet side of weed, teaching you how to infuse it into ingredients like butter, oils, milk, and sugar. In 2022, we’re well beyond the basic standard of the pot brownie — these sweet and savory appetizers, entrees and desserts offer something for bakers and cooks, whether you’re an amateur or a pro.
For many beginners, edibles are a less scary way of diving into cannabis than smoking a joint. Chef Julian Rose of cannabis brand Insa, told SPY, “For many people, eating a gummy feels more familiar than using a vape pen. Trying cannabis in a familiar form, like an infused chocolate bar, can be a lower barrier of entry for many people. “
What Tools Are Needed for Cooking With Cannabis?
Although many of these cookbooks contain informative primers so you can get educated before you get baked, there are a few common cooking tools popular among marijuana foodies who like to whip up edibles at home. One is a cheesecloth or mesh strainer, which is necessary for plant material out of infusions. Another is an instant-read thermometer since many recipes rely on paying extra attention to temperature. Finally, many bakers and home chefs use a digital kitchen scale, which can be used to ensure the proper dosage of, let’s say, sugar.
Medeiros also recommends carefully following the recipe instructions, as this will stop you from ruining both the potency and effectiveness the phytocannabinoids present in a strain. “Phytocannabinoids are cannabinoids that occur naturally in the cannabis plant,” Medeiros told SPY. “They each have a specific boiling point. If you go beyond this boiling point, they will lose their effectiveness.”
Are you a newbie to cooking? Cooking with any type of new ingredient is just like any hobby — it gets easier with practice. Whether you’re looking to reduce alcohol intake or reduce inflammation, there are tons of reasons you might be interested in cooking with cannabis. From weed-infused chicken and waffles to cannabis cocktails, the best marijuana cookbooks have recipes to suit every type of taste. Keep reading and get ready to light up your taste buds with these top-rated cannabis cookbooks.
1. Bong Appétit: Mastering the Art of Cooking with Weed by MUNCHIES
Inspired by the MUNCHIES + Viceland TV series, Bong Appétit is the crème de la crème among gourmet cannabis cookbooks. This beginner-friendly book breaks down the science of infusing oils, milk, butter, alcohol and more with cannabis. Boasting mouth-watering recipes like weed butter-basted chicken to weed brownie sundaes, this book aims to delight your taste buds and create elevated good times for you and your friends. Outside of recipes, the book also covers marijuana politics and tips from the MUNCHIES network of stoners, experts and expert stoners.
2. The Art of Cooking with Cannabis: CBD and THC-Infused Recipes from Across America by Tracey Medeiros
A cannabis cookbook like no other, Tracey Medeiros merges her own infused recipes with those of cannabis chefs around North America in The Art of Cooking with Cannabis. We recently reviewed thsi cookbook, and it’s one of the most comprehensive collections we’ve ever seen. It’s divided into three sections (hemp, CBD, and THC), and there are oven 100 recipes, including infused salad dressings, vegan energy balls, cocktails and entrees. This book proves that there’s so much more than pot brownies out there.
The Art of Cooking with Cannabis: CBD and THC-Infused Recipes from Across America
The Art of Cooking with Cannabis: CBD and THC-Infused Recipes from Across America by Tracey Medeiros
3. High Cookery: Your Guide for Cannabis Cooking and the Munchies by Gilad Meiri
BEST FOR THE MUNCHIES
High Cookery is a serious cannabis culinary masterpiece. Clocking in at over 250 pages, this book is broken into two sections: sweet and savory infused recipes, and non-infused chapters catered towards satisfying the munchies. Helpful and humorous chapters like “Unorthodox Combinations” and “For the Nutritionally Indifferent” will ensure that you always have creative snacking solutions when stoned. The book also provides some historical background information between weed and food that’s led to the canna-cooking landscape we’re in today.
High Cookery: Your Guide for Cannabis Cooking and the Munchies by Gilad Meiri
4. The CBD Cookbook for Beginners: 100 Simple and Delicious Recipes Using CBD by Mary J. White
The CBD Cookbook for Beginners by Mary J. White was written for anyone looking to experiment with infusions without the high or suffering from chronic pain. This is a fantastic intro to cooking with cannabis that’s not overwhelming and doesn’t require expert-level knowledge. From condiments to entrees, there’s no shortage of tasty staples that are approachable to cook. In theory, many of these recipes are compatible with more psychoactive varieties of cannabis, but all of these recipes are specifically created for CBD.
5. Cannabis Cuisine: Bud Pairings of A Born Again Chef by Andrea Drummer
BEST FOR BUD PAIRINGS
Andrea Drummer’s “Cannabis Cuisine: Bud Pairings of A Born Again Chef” shows you how to do more than just cook with pot. It’s a complete strain-specific guide to pairing harmonious strains with ingredients in order to maximize the flavor profile. Just like fine wine, cannabis is meant to be paired with something that complements its unique smell and flavor profile. The author carefully examines each strain and blends it with a dish accordingly. A must-have for learning the basics of pairing buds and impressing all your dinner party guests.
6. Cooking with Herb: 75 Recipes for the Marley Natural Lifestyle by Cedella Marley
Bob Marley’s daughter Cedella Marley, a woman well-versed in cannabis culture, has finally shared her cookbook Cooking With Herb with the world. In it, she highlights over 75 Caribbean-inspired meals. Written with a focus on clean eating and mindfulness, Cedella shares recipes and family anecdotes from her upbringing, describing how her parents introduced cannabis as an enlightening spiritual practice. Along with edible goods, Marley also shares canna-boosted recipes for scrubs and hair treatments.
7. Edibles: Small Bites for the Modern Cannabis Kitchen by Stephanie Hua
BEST SMALL BITES
It’s no wonder this book has earned more than 2,000 glowing reviews on Amazon — it’s filled with innovative confections and lip-smacking salty bites like roasted beet hummus and Gruyére & green garlic gougéres by leading canna-chefs in California. This book was designed for cooks and bakers of all skill levels, and reviewers love the educational aspect that breaks down the science behind edibles, including terpenes and cannabinoids. Doses are set low by default, but readers can adjust the recipe’s quantities accordingly.
8. From Crook to Cook by Snoop Dogg
BEST CELEB AUTHOR
Want to eat and cook like Tha Dogg Father himself? The full title of Snoop Dogg’s marijuana cookbook sounds like something he came up with while he was high, which he probably did — From Crook to Cook: Platinum Recipes from Tha Boss Dogg’s Kitchen. Whip up some of Snoop’s OG edibles like Fried Bologna Sandwiches with Chips or easy and delicious faves like Soft Flour Tacos and Easy Orange Chicken. Snoop’s first cookbook, From Crook to Cook, also makes a great coffee table book and conversation starter. Learn to remix upscale classics like Lobster Thermidor and Filet Mignon for when you’re trying to impress that special someone. And, of course, no party is complete without the best drink recipes featuring Snoop’s go-to, Gin and Juice.
9. The 420 Gourmet by JeffThe420Chef
It began as a way to help a close friend’s mother manage pain and discomfort from her cancer treatments. It became one of the best marijuana cookbooks of all time. Sure, the author’s pen name JeffThe420Chef might not exactly inspire confidence, but The Daily Beast called them the “Julia Childs of Weed”. In his book, The 420 Gourmet, you’ll not only get delicious recipes to satisfy foodies and cannabis lovers of all types, but you’ll also enjoy gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan and kosher options to elevate the edible experience to tasty new levels. The “pot-sibilities” are endless. JeffThe420Chef also educates readers on safer dosing, summaries of the principal strains and their effects along with details on the herb’s medical and recreational benefits.
10. Sweet Mary Jane: 75 Delicious Cannabis-Infused High-End Desserts
BEST FOR DESSERTS
If you have a sweet tooth and also happen to love cannabis, this collection of recipes by Karin Lazarus is a must for your bookshelves. New York Magazine once called Lazarus “The Martha Stewart of weed baking”, and as much as we love delectable recipes, this gourmet guide features equally breathtaking photographs of its masterpieces. The book is divvied up into categories including different kinds of baked goods, ice creams, and puddings. Although it’s marketed as high-end, the creations are still newbie-friendly.
11. The Art of Weed Butter: A Step-By-Step Guide to Becoming A Cannabutter Master
BEST FOR MASTERING BASICS
Although recipes that earn Oohs and Ahhs make up the majority of this round-up, one thing is for sure: the basis of any successful infused recipe is a high-quality cannabutter. After all, you can’t just sprinkle weed into a batter and expect magic to happen. This guide focuses on perfecting your cannabutter in such a manner that preserves marijuana’s chemical components, including non-psychoactive compounds like CBD. Aggrey’s book shows how to infuse cannabis into any oil, butter, or form of fat that you desire. As such, it’s easily one of the best marijuana cookbooks for beginners.
The Art of Weed Butter: A Step-By-Step Guide to Becoming A Cannabutter Master
$21.95 32% Off
12. The Vegan Cannabis Cookbook
BEST FOR VEGANS
The Vegan Cannabis Cookbook: Vegan Recipes For Delicious Marijuana-Infused Edibles is one of the best cannabis cookbooks for vegan potheads. Many people have made the switch over to veganism, which is healthier for our bodies and the environment. This recipe book by clinical psychologist and chef Eva Hammond, who believes that the way we eat should positively impact our bodies and brains. Please note that this cannabis cookbook is ideal for vegans who don’t require a ton of illustration, as photos are minimal. Dive into addictive creations like her Acai and Cherry Almond Milk Smoothie, or Chocolate Orange Nut Clusters.
The Vegan Cannabis Cookbook: Vegan Recipes For Delicious Marijuana-Infused Edibles
13. Cannabis Cocktails, Mocktails, and Tonics by Warren Bobrow
Why focus only on food when a beverage is such a nuanced art in itself? Cocktails aren’t just for alcohol-lovers, anymore. This book contains 75 recipes of cannabis-inspired cocktails and drinks, with details on shrubs, syrups, bitters, and infusions to integrate within a beverage. While some of the recipes can be hard to find, there are more accessible creations as well. The author is a pro in cannabis mixology and the book is densely packed with information, beginning with a thorough history of cannabis-based healing.
Cannabis Cocktails, Mocktails, and Tonics: The Art of Spirited Drinks and Buzz-Worthy Libations
14. The Easy Cannabis Cookbook: 60+ Medical Marijuana Recipes by Cheri Sicard
BEST FOR CLASSICS
Go beyond the basic pot brownie with The Easy Cannabis Cookbook, a wildly popular cookbook filled with sweet and savory edibles for all kinds of ganja connoisseurs. Her book is divided up into sections like Breakfast, Main Meals, and Snacks, but contains an essential chapter called Staples, which shows you how to make infusions with all sorts of bases, from Cannabis Pesto to Marijuana Mayonnaise. These marijuana recipes are flavorful riffs on classics and not just for esoteric foodies, meaning that ingredients are easy to find, and dishes are automatic crowd-pleasers.
The Easy Cannabis Cookbook: 60+ Medical Marijuana Recipes for Sweet and Savory Edibles
$14.99 10% Off
15. Cooking with Cannabis: Delicious Recipes for Edibles and Everyday Favorites by Laurie Wolf
BEST FOR FOODIES
Food writer and recipe developer Laurie Wolf is no amateur when it comes to cooking — she’s a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America and has written recipes for tons of high-profile magazines and websites. Attractive enough to be a conversation-starting coffee table book, Cooking with Cannabis contains step-by-step pictures so you can easily follow along with every recipe. From bacon-wrapped shrimp to infused watermelon and feta salad, these concoctions aren’t complicated to make, and still contain a bevy of explosive tastes.
Cooking with Cannabis: Delicious Recipes for Edibles and Everyday Favorites
16. Edibles for Beginners: A Cannabis Cookbook
BEST LOW DOSE PICK
For a lot of people who haven’t cooked with cannabis before, diving into the world of edibles can feel intimidating. A helpful first step is this cookbook catering to newbies, titled Edibles for Beginners: A Cannabis Cookbook. The recipes consist of low doses, but they’re anything but basic thanks to inventions like Cantaloupe-Lime Pops and Garlic-Parmesan Popcorn. There are even vegan pages for those who live a plant-based lifestyle. A bonus perk is Chapter 2, which details a flavor guide to different marijuana strains.
17. The Cannabis Kitchen Cookbook by Robyn Griggs Lawrence
Looking to take your meal to a higher level? From brunch, snacks and late-night cocktails, The Cannabis Kitchen Cookbook offers an educational approach to using cannabis as a prime ingredient for your favorite food and drinks. It provides step-by-step instructions for preparing fresh, tasty and healthy home-cooked meals as well as educational tips for how to store cannabis.