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Distillate Edibles: What Are They And Why Are They Popular?

By Kent Gruetzmacher
Published: November 19, 2021
Key Takeaways

With accurate dosing, purity, and products that don’t taste like cannabis, distillate edibles are quickly becoming go-to products.

As our knowledge of extracts grows in conjunction with legal cannabis, we continuously find new and interesting ways to process the plant. As good manufacturing practices (GMP) from other industries (such as food processing), have been implemented in cannabis, the extracts field has exploded with innovation. Today, cannabis dispensaries are awash with new extract products like live rosin and extract diamonds.

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Distillate edibles are a popular new product that has developed a dedicated customer base in the U.S., Canada, and beyond. Distillate edibles are made by infusing foods with cannabis extract distillates. People enjoy distillate edibles because they offer accurate dosing and unparalleled purity.

Let’s walk you through distillate edibles so you can decide whether these cannabis products are a good fit for your taste.

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What are Cannabis Distillates?

With the maturation of the extracts space, producers have come up with several new ways to separate cannabinoids from other plant material. Some of the products, such as full-spectrum extracts, are made with the intent of including additional materials like terpenes and chlorophyll. Other manufacturers choose to isolate a single cannabinoid like THC or CBD.

Cannabis distillates are extracts that are refined down to their simplest state: pure cannabinoids. However, distillates are not made directly from cannabis plant material like other extracts. Rather, when making distillates, manufacturers take extracts such as oils and purify them further to isolate cannabinoids.

According to the website Analytical Cannabis, “distillation is the separation of molecules through selective boiling and condensation.” They continue with the fact that distillation is the primary method for making liquor, such as bourbon, because “in order to create a higher alcohol content in spirits like vodka or whiskey, a distillery needs to use distillation to separate other materials from alcohol.”

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In cannabis, the process is similar, but instead of alcohol, producers are making pure cannabinoid products.


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Why are Distillates Good for Making Cannabis Edibles?

Distillates can be made into the same edibles products as any other cannabis extracts. However, distillates offer many advantages over other extracts when it comes to making cannabis-infused foods.

Because distillates are pure cannabinoids, they don’t taint food with other plant materials. To illustrate, extracts like Butane Hash Oil (BHO) taste strongly like cannabis plants due to the fact they contain potent terpenes. If you infuse edibles like brownies, cookies, and gummies with terpene-laden extracts, you will taste it with every bite. Importantly, distillates allow edible manufacturers to make products that don’t taste like cannabis flower.

Edible producers also enjoy working with distillates because they offer more accurate dosing than other cannabis extracts. Both broad-spectrum and full-spectrum extracts can produce somewhat unpredictable effects when consumed. This is due largely to the fact that different compounds — such as cannabinoids and terpenes — interact with one another when ingested.

Distillates give manufacturers the ability to make edibles with highly accurate dosing. This accuracy, in turn, gives consumers the ability to make more informed purchasing decisions on cannabis products.

group of people enjoying cannabis edibles

Why Do People Like Distillate Edibles?

As seen with other cannabis extracts, people enjoy distillates for very specific reasons. One of the primary selling points of distillates is people know exactly what they are consuming in their edibles. This gives them the ability to consume a single cannabinoid, without the added effects of another.

Distillate edibles have been particularly impactful in the hemp-derived CBD space because they allow people to consume CBD without the danger of ingesting THC. In America, any cannabis sativa plant containing less than 0.3 percent THC is legally considered hemp. However, these trace amounts of THC might still be enough to show up on a drug test.

CBD has major advocates in the professional sports world, where the cannabinoid is an increasingly popular treatment for things like chronic pain. For such people, distillates are the only way to consume CBD edibles. Not only do distillates afford the purest edibles products, but they also ensure the athletes won’t consume THC and jeopardize their careers.

THC distillate edibles have their own advocates. Especially in the realm of medical cannabis, people find value in the ability to consume only the cannabinoids they need.

What Types of Distillate Edibles Can You Get?

Distillates can be made into the same edibles products as any other cannabis extracts. Nonetheless, as distillates don’t taint food with terpene flavors, their applications are perhaps wider than traditional extracts.

Some examples of distillate edibles on the market today include:

  • Gummies
  • Cookies
  • Beverages
  • Chocolates
  • Honey
  • Confections
  • Truffles
  • Popsicles
  • Caramels

Depending on where you live, you should be able to procure either CBD or THC edibles made from distillates. As seen with any other ingestible cannabis products, we recommend doing your homework on distillate edibles before trying them. Especially with THC edibles, the mantra is always “a little bit goes a long way.” If you aren’t sure what dosage works for you, start small and go slow.

Summary: Are Distillate Edibles Better Than Others?

As the cannabis industry continues to mature, we see continuous progressions in product development. As legal cannabis gains momentum across the globe, the industry is beginning to adopt production techniques from other industries. Of these, the extracts field has grown exponentially with methods taken from food and alcohol manufacturing.

Distillate edibles are great for both manufacturers and consumers. They give us the ability to consume pure cannabinoids without any added flavors or psychoactive effects. As such, there has been perhaps no more impactful product on the modern extracts space than distillates. Today, you can find them in your favorite infused foods, beverages, and supplements.

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Written by Kent Gruetzmacher | Writer, Owner of KCG Content

Profile Picture of Kent Gruetzmacher

Kent Gruetzmacher MFA is a Colorado-based writer and owner of the writing and marketing firm KCG Content. Kent has been working in the cannabis and hydroponics space for over a decade. Beginning in California in 2009, he has held positions in cultivation, operations, marketing, and business development. Looking specifically to writing, Kent has worked with many of the leading publications and marketing agencies in the cannabis space. His writing has been recognized by such icons as Steve D’Angelo and Rick Simpson.

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