Learning how to make shatter is a great way to take your cannabis experience to the next level and breathe new life into your smoke sesh.
In this article, the all-things-cannabis experts at Honest Marijuana have created the ultimate tutorial to help learn how to make shatter safely and easily, regardless of the tools you have on hand.
How To Make Shatter At Home
1) How To Make Shatter With Bud
For this simple how-to-make-shatter tutorial, all you’ll really need is some dried and cured bud from your local dispensary and a few household — or easily-obtainable — items.
- Your favorite strain of ganja
- Flat iron (one with a digital temperature display works best)
- Parchment paper
- Towel or potholder (puns are fun!)
- Razorblade or dab tool
- Separate out about 2 grams of ganja.
- Break that bud into four pieces (roughly a ½ gram each).
- Heat the flat iron to between 300℉ and 330℉. Too hot and you’ll burn off a large portion of the chemicals you’re trying to extract. Too cool and you won’t get enough of the chemicals you’re trying to extract.
- Tear off a piece of parchment paper about 12 inches long.
- Fold the parchment paper in half (so you have two six-inch sections).
- Place ½ gram of bud between the parchment paper.
- Fold the open edges closed just to be safe.
- When the flat iron is hot enough, place the parchment paper between the blades.
- Press the flat iron together hard for three seconds (be sure to put a potholder or towel between your hand and the hot iron so you don’t burn yourself).
- Remove the parchment paper.
- Unfold the paper.
- You’ll see a brownish stain surrounding the bud. That’s liquid shatter (a.k.a. rosin)!
- Move the bud to another spot and press again for 3 seconds.
- Move the bud one more time (if there’s room) and press for another 3 seconds.
- Set the flat iron aside and wait a minute for the shatter to cool completely.
- Unfold the parchment paper and collect the shatter with the razor blade or dab tool (Be careful! It’s fragile.).
We love this method because there’s no complicated chemistry, no dangerous solvents, and no long hours over the stove.
Just a simple method for how to make shatter with stuff you’ve probably got in your house already.
2) How To Make Shatter With Kief
Bet you didn’t know you could learn how to make shatter with nothing more than some leftover kief and an iron (yes, the thing you use to get the wrinkles out of your clothes).
If you’re unfamiliar with kief, it’s the bulbous formation on the tip of the trichome — the resin glands of the pot plant that contain THC, CBD, CBG, CBN, and other active cannabinoids — and is where all the action’s at.
If you’re unfamiliar with an iron, well…we can’t help you there.
The best and easiest way to get ahold of your own kief is to use a grinder. More specifically, you’ll need a four-piece or three-chamber grinder.
We don’t suggest sitting down with a new grinder and chopping up loads and loads of cannabis in an attempt to harvest a bunch of kief. That’s a waste of time.
You’re better off just going about your regular ganja activities, but this time, grind up the bud you use for joints and blunts and spliffs and stuff.
Over time, you’ll amass enough kief to take it to the next level and learn how to make your own shatter.
Here’s how to do it.
- Parchment paper (NOT wax paper)
- Hand towel or t-shirt
- Turn on the iron to the lowest setting (no steam).
- Pour the kief in a pile on the top half of the parchment paper.
- Spread out the pile of kief until you have a layer roughly a quarter-of-an-inch thick.
- Fold the bottom half of the parchment paper over the top half so it covers the kief.
- You can even fold the parchment several more times to create a little packet.
- Place the parchment paper on an iron-ready surface (something that won’t melt or burn like an ironing board).
- Place the hand towel or t-shirt over the parchment paper.
- Apply pressure with the hot iron for three or four seconds (no more or you’ll burn the kief).
- Remove the iron for another three or four seconds.
- Repeat this process — three or four seconds on, three or four seconds off — twenty times, flipping the parchment paper every two. (Ten rounds of on, off, on, off, flip)
- Peel the parchment paper back to check your progress.
- If it needs more heat and pressure, continue with steps eight and nine above.
- If it looks good, turn the iron off and let the shatter cool before handling.
If you don’t have an iron, but, for some reason, you do have a hair straightener, you can use that as your source of heat instead.
Just be sure to abide (like The Dude) by steps eight and nine in the instructions above so you don’t burn your kief and destroy your shatter.
3) How To Make Shatter With Alcohol
As the title of this section suggests, we’re going to use alcohol to make our shatter.
But we’re not going to use just any alcohol. We’re going to use 99-100% pure isopropyl alcohol!
Before you go getting all excited, it’s essential for your health that you understand that isopropyl is A LOT different than any of the alcohol you’ve got stashed in your cupboards — even high-proof stuff like Everclear and Absinthe.
Isopropyl alcohol is NOT meant for human consumption, so don’t go putting it in your mouth, kiddies. This isn’t a dare, folks. We’re not trying to see if you’ll do it.
We’re warning you that you can get very sick (and worse) if you ingest isopropyl alcohol. Don’t do it.
It’s also essential for your safety that you understand that isopropyl alcohol is flammable. It’s nowhere near as bad as some other solvents used to make shatter (like butane, which explodes at the drop of a hat), but you don’t want to handle it around an open flame.
If all you’ve got is a gas stove, you may want to stick to the other how to make shatter tutorials in this article.
You’ve been warned. On to the instructions.
- 2.5 grams of your favorite ganja
- Containers that pour well and are freezer- and heat-safe
- 99-100% isopropyl alcohol
- Metal mesh screen
- Unbleached coffee filters
- Hot water
- Break up your bud into a quarter of its original size (half or a half)
- Put it in an oven-safe container and dry the cannabis at 200 degrees Fahrenheit for 20 minutes. Please note, this is not decarboxylation.
- Once the cannabis is sufficiently dry, put it and the bottle of alcohol in the freezer for three to five hours.
- Wait (Yes, this is the hardest part of the whole process.)
- Pour enough cold alcohol over the cannabis to cover it by at least one inch.
- Gently swish the mix for 20 seconds.
- Separate the bud from the alcohol by pouring through a mesh screen.
- Set the plant matter aside for now (from here on out, we’re going to focus on the alcohol).
- Pour the alcohol through an unbleached coffee filter into another container.
- Squeeze the coffee filter to get as much of the alcohol out as possible.
- Allow the alcohol to evaporate. You can do this in one of three ways:
- Place a coffee filter over the top of the container and just give it time (more waiting).
- You can also use a warm water bath to speed the process.
- If you’re really impatient (like we are), you can put the water bath on the stove at low to medium heat until you see liquid start to evaporate. Be sure not to boil the alcohol.
- When all the alcohol is gone, let the remnants cool, and scrape the shatter out of the container.
- Store in a glass container or on some parchment paper.
You can also run the original buds through a second wash (this time for one minute), to get every single drop of the remaining good stuff. Then proceed with steps seven through 12 as outlined above.
That’s all there is to it!
How To Make Shatter: Quality And Purity Are Key
One of the many nice things about learning how to make shatter at home is that you can use any strain you like.
You can use a high THC strain. You can use a high CBD strain. You can even use a landrace strain.
It doesn’t really matter to your shatter. What does matter is the quality and the purity of the strain you choose. Those are key.
For quality, we always recommend headies and beasters over mids and regs.
And for purity, we always, always, always recommend an all-natural, organic strain like those we grow at our Rocky-Mountain-based grow facility.
There, we employ world-class organic growing methodologies to provide you — and all cannabis connoisseurs — the purest marijuana experience on the planet.
We grow our plants the way Mother Nature intended: in organic soil without chemicals or pesticides. We even hand-trim our plants so that they’re organic from the ground up.
So don’t settle for an inferior strain or an inferior shatter.
Get the best buds on the planet — bud cargo buds — and experience cannabis and shatter the way it was meant to be.