How to Make Fantastic Bubble Hash from Bud or Trim
by Sirius Fourside
Table of Contents
Introduction: What is Bubble Hash?
Bubble hash (also known as “ice hash”) refers to collecting hash from your weed (or trim) by submerging the weed in ice-cold water and agitating it. This causes trichomes to break off so you can collect them.
Whenever you hear the word ‘hash’, it’s just referring to the extracted resin glands (trichomes, the sticky sparkly stuff) of a cannabis plant. The ‘bubble’ part refers to the method of using cold water and agitation to extract that resin.
Why make Bubble Hash?
- The perceived potency of bubble hash is just…great! In my opinion, it feels noticeably stronger than dry-sift, kief or dry-ice hash.
- Bubble hash is safe to make since there are no flammable ingredients or chemical reactions when making it.
- It’s also safe to enjoy as no chemicals are used during the extraction process.
- It’s a great use of trim, though making dry-ice hash is easier and produces greater yields.
Three Main Methods to Mix Up Your Hash
The cornerstone of making bubble hash is mixing up your weed, water and ice. All three of these methods produce the same quality of bubble hash. It’s the efficiency and amount of work that varies.
- (Old School) Manual Method: Using a spoon or rubber spatula and hand mixing for a while.
- Pros: Cheapest method, needs the least amount of tools.
- Cons: The most physical work and the least efficient.
- Mixer Method: Using a hand mixer with beaters attached, or a hand drill with a paint-mixer or similar tool attached.
- Pros: Many people have most of the tools needed. This method is much easier then hand-mixing and more efficient.
- Cons: Still need a drill or mixer plus a good mixing attachment that’s also long.
- A hash-washing machine (mini washing machines)
- Pros: Easiest method since you don’t have to mix. Also, the most efficient method since all the material is constantly mixed while the machine is on.
- Cons: High initial cost since you have to buy the machine (
Here’s a short video of a washer in action
- Two 7lb bags of ice
- Your dried cannabis (bud or trim)
- Bubble Hash Bags with 25-micron drying sheet (preferably all-mesh)
- Tip: Get a pack of 25-micron drying screens and dry each of your various grades of hash on their own sheet. This makes it way easier to dry and keep your grades separated.
- 2 clean buckets
- A metal tablespoon
- A sink area with a sprayer. A clean mister or a simple cup can be used if you don’t have a sprayer
- A way to mix the hash-water
- Manual: A long cooking spoon or a rubber spatula, some patience and calories to burn.
- Hand Mixer or Drill: A hand-mixer (like you would use for cakes) with beaters attached, or a hand drill with a paint mixer attached
- A hash-washer. These are usually sold as “mini washing machines” and they’re pretty good for that, too. We use the “bubblebagdude” washer.
Alright, let’s make some bubble hash!
How to Make Bubble Hash with a Hash Washer (The Easier Method)
- Set your 25-micron drying screen(s) on some paper towels and set them aside. This is where your hash will dry.
- Your washing machine came with a 220-micron bag, which you will layer with ice and cannabis. Put ⅓ of the bag of ice in the bottom of the bag, add your cannabis, and then another ⅓ of the bag of ice on top. Close the 220-micron bag and use the string attached to the bag to tie the zipper closed. Place the closed bag into the washing machine.
- If your machine didn’t come with a 220-micron bag that fits inside, just layer the ice and cannabis directly in the machine. You can filter it later.
- Put the final ⅓ of ice into the machine. Double check to make sure the bag inside is completely closed and tied before the next step or all your cannabis will come out of the bag into the washer.
- Top off the machine with water. There should be a mark on the side of the washing machine that tells you how high the water should go. Fill it to below the low mark with cold water. When we’ve filled it to the high mark we’ve had it leak out the back once everything starts mixing and churning. Even at the low mark, there can still be too much water after a bit of the ice melts.
- Set the machine to mix up your cannabis for 12 minutes and wait for the cycle to complete.
- Let the machine sit for another 10 minutes afterward to let the trichomes sink to the bottom. Move on to the next step while you wait.
- Grab the unused bucket and stack the remainder of your bubble bags inside. First insert the bag with the lowest number (25-micron), then put the next biggest (73-micron) bag inside that, and finally put the (160-micron) bag inside that. If you didn’t use a 220 bag in the washer, or if plant material somehow escaped your bag while in the washer, you’ll need to lastly insert a 220 bag, which will filter away the larger plant matter.
- Note: Some bubble bag sets come with 5 bags and some come with 8. We use the 5 bag set, but we don’t use all of the bags that come with it. All bag sets come with 25, 73, 160 and 220, but the size of the other bags differ depending on who’s selling them. Some sets come with a 45, 90, or 120 and many growers like to use those bags. However, we only use the 25 (good stuff) 73 (the best stuff), 160 (not bad stuff), and 220 (cleans out the junk) bags. The most important thing is to start with 25 and make sure each bag after that goes up in number.
- Pour the weedy water from your washer into the bucket containing your stacked bubble bags. Your washer has a tube meant to dispose of old water; this is perfect for pouring your weed-water into the stacked bags. You might need to suck on the tube a little to start the siphon.
- If you had to add the 220 bag, lift that out before the next step. The 220 bag will remove the large bits of leaf and other plant matter. Keep this plant matter because you will run it through the whole cycle again.
- Allow the water to drain through the 160 bag for a few seconds.
- Carefully pull up just the 160 bag and place it into the empty, clean work bucket.
- Use your sprayer (or mister/cup) to wash the hash towards the center of the bag.
- Carefully pull the edges of the bag down over the bucket until the bottom of the bag (where the hash is) is stretched across the opening of the bucket.
- Use a metal tablespoon to collect the wet hash and place it on the drying screen.
- Remove the 160 bag from the bucket and set it aside.
- Repeat for the remaining bags, removing each one slowly one at a time and collecting the hash, ending with the 25 bag. I always try to label which hash is which so I can compare them later.
- First run complete! The next step is to do a second run with the same bag of plant matter. Yes, do everything again. You essentially want to repeat the entire process to get more hash that hadn’t been released yet.
- Repeat steps 2-15 to complete your second run (add ice, water, and the plant matter bag back in the washer, run it again for 12 minutes, let it sit for 10 minutes, then put the resulting water through the series of bags again to collect more hash). In some cases, the second run can yield as much as the first run, so don’t skip it!
- Once you’re done with your second run, use the tablespoon to chop up all your hash into tiny bits. Let it dry out for 30 min and chop it up again. Make sure it’s in tiny bits! Continue this process 2 more times. You’re doing this to help it dry out faster, prevent clumping – and more importantly – prevent mold.
- If it’s chopped up enough, your hash should be ready to use within 1-2 days.
- Tip: I pointed a tiny fan (like this one) at the drying hash from about 5 feet away on the low setting. It’s not enough power to move the hash even when it’s dry, and the hash is completely dry and ready to use in a few hours!
- You now have a bunch of great hash! Enjoy and let us know how it went for you!
Don’t have a washer? Want to make bubble hash by hand? Learn how below!
(Manual Version) Make Bubble Hash with a Mixer, Drill or by Hand-Mixing
Making hash with a drill, mixer or by hand-mixing is the same process as with a washing machine. The only difference is that you will agitate everything with a power tool (or by hand) and pre-filter your hash-water with a 220-micron bag before filtering out your hash.
Replace steps 2-8 above with these instructions:
- Place your 220-micron bag inside one of your two buckets. This is now the ‘work bucket’.
- Next, add several layers of ice and marijuana trim or buds. First put a layer of ice at the bottom of the bag, then half your cannabis/trim, then another layer of ice, then the remainder of your cannabis and top off with a final layer of ice.
- Add enough water to make the ice on top float.
- Let this mixture sit for 20 minutes so all that good stuff (trichomes) get nice and cold.
- Use your mixer or drill on a low setting to mix up the ice water and cannabis for about 10 minutes. Keep in mind that you’re not trying to blend the mixture into some sort of smoothie, you just want to agitate the mixture to get the trichomes to fall off.
- Most drills/mixers won’t be able to reach the bottom of your bucket. Make sure to mix everything up with your hand or a big spoon a few times so the stuff on the bottom gets some love, too.
- Let everything sit for another 10 minutes after mixing to let the trichomes sink down via gravity.
- Close up the top of the 220 bag with your hands. Then, pull the bag up and let the water drain through the mesh.
- Once the water has stopped draining, squeeze the remaining water out of the work bag (220), then place the bag of plant matter in a big bowl or container. That cannabis is going to get used again so don’t toss it yet!
- Grab the unused bucket and stack the remainder of your bubble bags inside. First insert the bag with the lowest number (25-micron), then put the (73-micron) bag inside that, and finally put the (160-micron) bag inside that.
- Pour the weed-water from your work bucket into the bucket with your stacked bubble bags. You may want to use a little water to rinse the sides of the work bucket to get any trichomes stuck to the sides of the bucket.
- Now you’ve done everything the washer would have done. Go to step 9 above and continue the tutorial.
Bubble hash is made by putting weed (or trim) in ice-cold water and agitating it. This causes trichomes to break off the cannabis so you can collect them.
What Is Bubble Hash and How Can You Make It?
As more people learn about weed, some gravitate towards what is considered “craft concentrates,” a variety of concentrate types that are often made in small batches through small-scale techniques such as rosin, hash, and live resin. Rosin, which is created when heat and pressure are applied to marijuana flower , is becoming increasingly popular with cannabis consumers. And ice-water hash , or bubble hash , is also popping up on more dispensary menus.
This is largely driven by the increased interest in concentrates. Over the past several years, cannabis concentrates have grown in popularity as their high potency and pronounced terpene profiles attract more people. Sales of cannabis concentrates in the United States already account for 27% of the regulated market and are expected to top $8.5 billion by 2022 , according to data from BDS Analytics.
One of the craft concentrates increasing in popularity is bubble hash. Weedmaps News spoke with one of the cannabis industry’s most influential makers of bubble hash to help understand what it is and how to make it.
What is Bubble Hash?
Bubble hash, like all forms of hashish , is the glandular trichomes from the cannabis plant that have been collected through a process using ice and water. These tiny, mushroom-shaped projections found on cannabis leaves and flowers produce cannabinoids and terpenes in a sticky resin. When plant material is mixed with water and ice, they become brittle and break off when the mixture is agitated. The trichomes then sink and collected with specially designed filters. High-quality icewater hash will melt and bubble with the application of heat, hence its common sobriquet. When well-made from high-quality cannabis, bubble hash delivers a flavorful and potent cannabis experience.
Gina Coleman/Weedmaps Bubble hash is a type of cannabis concentrate that is made without solvents. Cannabis concentrates have grown in popularity as their high potency and pronounced terpene profiles attract more people.
Using water and ice is the preferred technique for Frenchy Cannoli , a master hashish maker who spent much of his adult life traveling the world studying regional production methods. Even though he’s now producing hash commercially for California’s adult-use cannabis market , he still generously shares his knowledge and passion via his YouTube channel and a series of workshops with live demonstrations held around the world. Making your own bubble hash at home isn’t difficult and can be accomplished with an investment of less than $100, not including the cannabis you’ll use.
Materials for Making Bubble Hash
Bubble hash can be made with cannabis trim , leaf, shake, or bud . While dried and cured cannabis is used most frequently , fresh-frozen material may also be used. As can be expected, the best-quality hash is made from equivalent-quality weed. Plant material without trichomes visible to the naked eye may not be worth the time and effort necessary to process hash. If possible, pre-chill the cannabis in the freezer overnight.
You’ll also need plenty of cold water and several bags of ice, and materials including:
- Set of 5 gallon (19 liter) ice-water hash bags, such as Bubble Bags , Boldtbags , or the like
- 25-micron filter cloths for collecting and drying
- At least three clean 5 gallon (19 liter) plastic buckets
- Large wooden spoon or pole for stirring
- Butter knife or stiff card for collecting hash from bags
- Absorbent towels
- 200 grams (7 ounces) of cannabis flower
- A water hose
- Turkey roasting bags
- Tray or wire rack
- Heat-resistant gloves
- Parchment paper
- Bottle filled with hot water
Collecting and handling hash will be more difficult in a warm environment because it gets sticky. If possible, working in an air-conditioned space or outdoors in cool weather will make the process easier.
Gina Coleman/Weedmaps To some, bubble hash is seen as a type of “craft concentrate,” a variety of concentrate types that are often made in small batches through small-scale techniques. Bubble hash is comprised of countless trichomes that have been separated from the plant using ice water.
The Hash Washing Process
- Kits with three, four, or more bags in different filter sizes to separate hash into different grades are available. Begin by lining a bucket with the bag with the largest filter holes, i.e. the highest number of microns. Fill the bag one-third full with ice, then add up to about 200 grams of cannabis. Top off with another layer of ice and fill with cold water. Wait 15-30 minutes while the cannabis is rehydrated and chilled.
- Agitate the mixture to begin the process of breaking the trichomes from the plant material, using a large wooden spoon, a length of wooden dowel, or the like. Stir vigorously for 1 to 5 minutes, being careful not to damage the bag. Alternatively, an electric hand mixer or power drill with a paint-stirring attachment can be used, but be careful not to overagitate and pulverize the plant material if using a power tool.
- Add more ice if all of it melts, but you’ll want much of it to disappear so that the trichomes won’t be impeded as they descend to the bottom of the bag. After agitation, wait 10 minutes to give the released trichomes time to sink to the bottom of the bag. Then lift your work bag up, letting the water run out the bottom and back into the bucket. When all the water has drained out, set the work bag aside in another bucket as you proceed.
- Line the third bucket with the remaining filter bags, starting with the smallest filter size and layering in the next largest bags in order. Pour the water into the bags you’ve nested in the bucket, and allow the trichomes to settle. The water should have a golden hue. A greenish tint indicates too much agitation is used.
- Slowly lift the top bag away from the others, allowing the water to flow through the filter and back into the bucket below. As all the water drains away, you will see that a layer of trichomes resembling sand or light-colored silt will have collected on the filter. Wash the trichomes with a brisk spray from a hose for a few minutes to wash any remaining contaminants through the filter.
- From the outside, gather the filter around the hash with your hand and gently squeeze out any excess water. Carefully lay the filter on an absorbent towel to pull excess water through. While stretching the filter taught, scrape the collected hash with a card or butter knife and place it on a square of 25 micron filter cloth and set aside as you continue.
- Repeat the process for the remaining filter bags, sieving and collecting the trichomes from each. The hash from the different sized filter bags can be kept separated, or combined together for a more full-spectrum product.
- Fit the work bag with the cannabis still inside back into a bucket and refill with water and ice. Complete the entire process of washing the plant material in the work bag and sieving the water through the filter bags again. The plant material can be washed and sieved again several more times with fresh water and ice. Repeat the process as long as long as the yield justifies the effort.
Drying the Hash
To prevent the growth of mold, the bubble hash must be thoroughly dried before storage. Line a tray or wire rack with a towel topped with parchment paper. Spread the hash on parchment paper in a single layer of thin hash patties. Place in a cool, dry, dark place with plenty of air circulation for several days until the bubble hash is completely dry. Make sure the environment is dust-free to avoid contamination.
Once dry, Frenchy Cannoli likes to take the extra step of pressing the hash with heat. This approximates the technique of pressing hash by hand that is practiced in many traditional processes. By adding gentle heat and pressure, the trichomes release their resin into the mass of hash, homogenizing it and beginning the process of decarboxylation , or transforming tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCA) into intoxicating tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) .
Gina Coleman/Weedmaps Bubble hash can be used in a variety of ways, including dabbing, mixed with flower in a joint, and “topping” a bowl of buds.
To press, place small patties of hash between two layers of plastic from a turkey roasting bag. Fill a large, round glass bottle with hot water and seal tightly. Using heat-resistant gloves, press the hash with the bottle, using it as a rolling pin to flatten and spread the hash as it is heated. For maximum decarbing, press for about 20 minutes. The water in the bottle should stay hot enough to complete the process.
Storage and Aging
Once the hash has been dried completely and pressed, it can be formed into a ball and wrapped. Frenchy Cannoli eschews petroleum-derived plastics and prefers organic cellophane, but this material degrades over time, so it should be changed every few months or so if used. Like a fine wine, the hash will improve over time as it ages and matures if properly stored in a cool, dry, dark location.
Make It Your Own
After learning the basics, hash makers will begin to tailor their efforts to their own experiences and working environments. For example, Frenchy Cannoli recommends the use of a small portable washing machine for washing instead of stirring in a bucket to automate the process. Making bubble hash can also easily be scaled up or down by using 20 gallon (75.7 liter) bags if you have a lot of material to wash or 1 gallon (3.8 liter) bags for smaller amounts. Give them a try! Before long, you’ll have the process down and will be smoking hash that rivals the best concentrates at the dispensary .
Feature image by Gina Coleman/Weedmaps
What Is Bubble Hash and How Can You Make It? As more people learn about weed, some gravitate towards what is considered “craft concentrates,” a variety of concentrate types that are often made in