What to Use If You Don’t Have Cheesecloth
These substitutes are likely close at hand in your house
Erin Huffstetler is a writer with experience writing about easy ways to save money at home.
Cheesecloth is gauze-like, woven cotton cloth. Its original purpose was for making and wrapping homemade cheese, but it has become a useful tool in other recipes as well. It is used as a strainer when a fine sieve is needed, as a cover for roast turkey or chicken to keep the bird moist, and is made into little pouches for herbs for seasoning meats, broth, soups, and other dishes.
Cheesecloth is something we may not often have in our kitchen. If you don’t have any on hand, luckily there are plenty of alternatives. Just make sure the item is clean before cooking.
Since cheesecloth is cotton, other types of cotton fabric will work as a substitute. You can use a flour sack towel, pillowcase, bandana, scrap of fabric, clean cloth diaper, cloth napkin, or jelly bag to strain foods or contain little bundles of herbs. Choose something you don’t care about because the food you’re straining can permanently stain the fabric. Use a rubber band to secure the fabric over a bowl so it’s held taut while you pour and be sure to pour liquids through the fabric slowly so they have time to work their way through. Don’t forget to toss the fabric in the wash when finished.
Fine Mesh Bag
Fine mesh bags have many uses around the home, from laundry to food-making to painting. In place of cheesecloth, you can use a laundry bag, nut milk bag (used for making almond milk), mesh bag (used for making alcohol), or a paint strainer bag (found in hardware stores) to strain broths, cheeses, yogurts, and other foods. Many people find mesh bags worth buying for the simple reason that they’re much easier to clean than cheesecloth and last a lot longer. If you’ve ever worked with cheesecloth before, you know just how quickly it wears out and how difficult it can be to clean.
Fine Wire Sieve
If you need cheesecloth for straining, a fine wire sieve is often more than adequate for foods like broths and cheeses. It won’t catch quite as many of the fine particles as cheesecloth, so you need to choose the sieve that makes sense for the recipe. For example, if perfectly clear, seed-free jelly is important to you, using a fine wire sieve won’t bring you the results you want.
Although not as common anymore when it comes to fashion, stockings are useful in many other ways—including as a substitute for cheesecloth. Create the perfect strainer by stretching a clean pair of pantyhose or tights over a large mixing bowl. You can also cut off one of the feet, stick some herbs inside, and tie it shut for a spice pouch. Toss the pantyhose in the wash when you’re done and reuse it again and again.
Whether you have disposable coffee filters or a reusable one, either will work in place of cheesecloth when straining. Since the weave of the material is pretty tight (it has to be to keep the grounds out of your coffee), you’ll find it does a beautiful job of straining other foods. If using the filter from your coffee maker, just be sure to clean it well before returning it to the machine.
Cheesecloth is used as a strainer in certain recipes. Several items can be substituted for cheesecloth, many of which you may have at home.
How to Make Marijuana Butter AKA: CannaButter At Home (Without Getting Caught)
Everyone knows that marijuana and munchies go hand in hand. There’s nothing like eating an entire bowl of popcorn, batch of cookies, or take-out Chinese food order buzzing on your favorite buds. The TCH and CBD in your weed combine perfectly to enhance your appetite and make everything taste about ten times better than it did initially. But you don’t have to smoke your marijuana to get that awesome combo feeling.
A lot of stoners enjoy the occasional edible as a potent way to mix up the mary jane experience. Of course, the exorbitant cost of high-quality edibles in the dispensary might just cramp your style. Unless you start to bake your own edibles at home. Whether you’re a kitchen witch or just a curious stoner scientist, it’s actually surprisingly easy to make your own marijuana butter (“cannabutter”) at home to bake into treats or spread on some amazing garlic toast.
Today, we’re here to show you not only how to make the key ingredient to delicious homemade edibles, but also how to get that awesome marijuana stank out of your kitchen before your mom comes over for dinner.
Step 1: Gather Your Supplies
Before you get started, you’ll want to gather up what you’ll need to make the cannabutter. This is a multi-step process, and you might not have everything already at home. Most people, for example, don’t have their own cheesecloth and you might not have parchment paper already. But if you’re about to start some serious canna-baking, these things will be useful to have around. If you don’t have a cheesecloth, a folded paper towel or coffee filter can work almost as well.
Of course, if this all sounds like waaay too much work for some weed brownies, you can also try the “Magical Butter Machine” that will infuse your cannabis buds into just about anything you can think of without the careful kitchen witchery.
Here’s what you need to DIY that awesome cannabutter:
- 7-10 Grams Sticky Buds
- 1 Cup Butter
- 1 Cup Water
- Cookie Sheet
- Sheet of Parchment Paper
- Herb Grinder
- Soup Pot
- 1 Cup Measuring Cup
- Stirring Spoon
- Cheese Cloth
- Glass Jar and Lid
Step 2: Bake the Herb
Bake Buds at 245 F for 30-40 Minutes
When you light that herb in a bowl or blunt, it heats up, and the THCA (acidic cannabinoid) in the plant vaporizes into that sticky-icky THC. To get that same potent hit in your cannabutter, you’re going to want to simulate the light-up by slow baking your herbs in the oven. This will cook the THCA into THC, making it ready to bond with the butter. This process is called decarbing.
Start by heating your oven to 245 F. Your goal is to warm up the buds and dry them out a little, not to scorch them.
Next, place a piece of parchment paper on a cookie sheet and then lay out your buds evenly over the paper. The paper will keep your buds from sticking and will leave any fallen THC crystals easy to shake into the butter when you’re done.
Bake the buds for 30-40 minutes, turning or shaking them every ten minutes to make sure they are evenly cooked. Older and drier weed may need less time in the oven.
Step 3: Coarse Grind Your Buds
Grind Up the Baked Buds
Once your buds have baked, they are now mega-potent to infuse into something like butter or cooking oil. But they won’t infuse evenly in bud-form so you’ll need to break them up.
Use your herb grinder that you use for blunts and bowls to break up the now crispy buds into crumbles. Don’t use a coffee grinder or a hand dicer. You want your buds broken up into coarse crumbles where the pieces can still be rolled between your fingers. This will make it easier to strain out the leafy bits once the butter is fully infused with the THC and CBD from your potent herb.
Step 4: Melt Butter & Water in Equal Parts
Melt 1 Cup Butter with 1 Cup Water in a Pot
Believe it or not, the way to safely infuse butter without scorching is to mix it with water. The water doesn’t blend with the butter but keeps it suspended, so the butter doesn’t scorch to the pot when it heats up and is easier to stir.
Place your cooking pot on the stove and add your one cup of butter and one cup of water. Heat slowly and stir together until the butter starts to melt and soften.
Step 5: Stir In the Herb
Stir the Ground Herb into Melting Butter
Once the butter is softened or melted, it’s time to add your baked leaf crumble. Pour your ground herb into the mixture, then fold and tap the parchment paper over the pot to shake out any fallen THC crystals that you want to be included in your infusion. Being careful to preserve and add every shake of weed, this will ensure the final potency of your butter without wasting a single sticky icky crumble.
Make sure the herb is added evenly to the butter and stir continuously until the butter is completely melted and blended with your herbs.
Step 6: Low Simmer for 3 Hours
Simmer on Low Heat for 3-4 Hours, Stirring Regularly
Now for the infusion. The butter will need time to leech the TCH, CBD, and delicious marijuana flavor out of the leaf crumbles. This process will take about three to four hours of slow simmering. It’s important to keep the heat in your pot low during this process so that neither the butter or herb crumbles scorch and the mixture does not boil.
During these three hours, your home will fill with the aromatic smell of buttery marijuana leaf, which we can help you deal with later when your kitchen needs to not smell like a dispensary. Stir at least three times an hour to make sure the cannabis is infusing evenly into the butter and that the simmer is low and scorch-free.
Step 7: Strain Out the Leaf
Pour Mixture into Jar through Cheesecloth and Squeeze
When the butter mixture is fully infused, it’s time to strain. Place your cheesecloth (or equivalent) over your glass jar or a ceramic bowl. Pour the mixture through the funnel into the cheesecloth. The cloth will catch the now-inert marijuana leaf crumbles which don’t taste so great in the butter. Twist the cheesecloth or filter closed and squeeze to free up the last of your delicious cannabis-infused butter mixture into the jar.
Now you can throw away the damp flower bits because the good stuff is in the jar.
Step 8: Cool & Separate
Put It In the Fridge for 1 Hour
Leave your cannabutter mixture to cool on the counter to cool for a few minutes, then put it in the fridge for about an hour. This will cause the butter, which is infused with THC and CBD, to harden and separate from the water in the mixture. When the butter is completely firm, run a knife around the edge of the jar or bowl, then carefully pour off the excess water.
Step 9: Get Baking to Get Baked!
Start Cooking Homemade Edibles
Now that all your hard work is done, you have a beautiful little jar of delicious marijuana-infused butter to do with as you please. If you just want a fast edible snack, spread it on toast, a bagel, or your morning toaster waffle. But if you’re ready for some real kitchen wizardry, it’s time to start baking! With your own homemade cannabutter, you can make edible cookies, brownies, even dinner-foods that use butter like stuffing or potatoes. The possibilities are endless, and your new concoctions will hardly even smell like “contraband.”
Step 10: Air Freshen Your Canna-Kitchen
Use BluntPower Air Freshener to De-Canna Your Kitchen
Homemade cannabutter can make edible baking easy and revealing-aroma-free. But baking your cannabis buds and simmering them in the butter for hours has no doubt left your kitchen with a delicious and dangerously potent marijuana smell. Fortunately, BluntPower is here to provide exactly what you need. Whether your moms are coming over for dinner or your uptight special someone is dropping by for a date, a few sprays or an incense stick of BluntPower will make sure your kitchen smells fresh and clean, not like you just opened your own bud shop.
Today, we’re here to show you how to make delicious homemade edibles, and how to get that marijuana smell out of your kitchen before your mom comes home.