Ask Cheri

Can you eat raw cannabis leaves? 

By Cheri Sicard
October 18, 2023

Dear Cheri,

Can I eat raw cannabis leaves without cooking it first?  I was thinking this would be convenient.  Instead of making edibles I could, for instance, add some chopped fresh leaves to a salad.  What do you think?

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Cook with Cannabis.

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 Yes you can, and raw cannabis leaves are in fact extremely nutritious and loaded with antioxidants.  However don’t expect much of a high, if any.

Why?  Because raw fresh leaves contain no THC.  They contain the acidic form of this cannabinoid, THC-A, which is not psychoactive.  It takes age and/or heat to create the chemical process called decarboxylation that changes the THC-A to psychoactive THC.

Click here for my full decarboxylation tutorial including why it’s so important and how to do it.

That said, raw leaves offer a nutritional powerhouse.  They are in fact a superfood.

You can chop them up to add to salads.  You can also juice them, although be sure to use a masticating juicer (like used for wheat grass).  Cannabis leaves will quickly gum up and ruin a regular juicer.

If you grow your own, you can juice the fresh leaves, then freeze in ice cubes trays for later.  Add a cube or to two smoothies to boost the nutritional content.

So yes you can eat raw cannabis for its exceptional nutritional value but no it won’t make you high.

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About the author

Cheri Sicard is the author of Mary Jane: The Complete Marijuana Handbook for Women, and The Easy Cannabis Cookbook.  Her online courses at have educated 1000s of students about marijuana, cannabis cooking for home cooks, and making infused topicals.

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