2020 has been particularly baked. Instagram feeds have been overloaded with photos of breads, cookies, pies and other comfort foods—even more than usual—in our attempts to manage Covid-related stress and stay occupied while trying out a new recipe. Let’s call it what it is—anxiety baking.
Now it’s that time of year when we get extra cozy indoors and start whipping up even more delicious baked goods than we do the rest of the year in an attempt to help us all get through the chill of winter. Do we bake out of boredom? Or because brownies are delicious? Or both? It seems that the world is baking extra right now because our activity options are more limited. And because, let’s face it, anxiety baking, or any kind of baking, is fun.
Baking can be solitary or social; it can be done to pass time, or it can be attached to a special occasion. Like any hobby or activity, it’s always exciting to experiment, which you can do in baking by tinkering with new (or old) recipes, playing with temperature, and adding or removing ingredients, among other things.
One way that people are experimenting with baking this season is by mixing all the many varieties of CBD oils, tinctures, sweeteners and more into breads, cakes, muffins, and beyond.
Degelis Tufts, CFA and CEO of CBD beauty and wellness brand Tribe Tokes, has noticed that questions about CBD for anxiety and sleeplessness has been the #1 inquiry via their website’s chatbot.
“This is the first time in most of our lifetimes that there has been collective, universal anxiety nationally for a very extended period of time,” says Degelis. “It’s encouraging to see people researching natural and plant-based stress remedies.”
You know, to go with a nice, destressing cookie. Degelis suggests adding a dropper of flavorless CBD oil, such as Tribe Toke’s Tribe Revive 1500 mg Full Spectrum CBD Tincture on your finished pancakes underneath the syrup. The MCT oil base of the product provides healthy fats in addition to the benefits of the CBD.
“CBD interacts with the human endocannabinoid system to promote homeostasis, or balance in the body, which helps many people feel more relaxed and less stressed out,” explains Adam Grossman, Founder and CEO of Papa and Barkley. “The endocannabinoid system has receptors throughout the nervous system, with concentrations in the brain and the stomach. CBD can be a powerful tool for fighting anxiety.”
In short, an anti-anxiety hobby, like baking, simply pairs well with an anti-anxiety agent, like CBD.
If you are like me and bake to ease your mind, Adam suggests swapping out some of the oil the recipe calls for with tincture.
For example, if the recipe calls for half a teaspoon of coconut oil, a substitution of 2.5 milliliters of tincture should do the trick. “Just make sure you pay attention to how many milligrams of CBD that is, so you can manage your dose,” Adam explains. He also recommends baking recipes that can be separated into evenly-sized portions, such as cupcakes or brownies so you can figure out and know how many milligrams of CBD each baked item has in it.
Say you don’t have a jar of tincture lying around, but are loaded with flower and in the mood to add some CBD into your holiday baking. Rebecca Zaccard, co-owner and COO of family run Western Pennsylvania hemp farm Penn’s Choice explains the process of getting the CBD out of the flower, which is known as conditioning, or decarboxylation. “If you don’t have a decarboxylator or a sous vide machine lying around, you can use a good old fashioned crock pot,” she said.
“Put the cannabis flowers into the canning jars and tighten them,” explains her partner, Steve Gibson. “Place the jars into the crock pot and fill it with water. Heat the water in the crock pot to over 200º F. Cook for over two hours, let cool and then you can add your decarboxylated cannabis to your favorite cooking oil.”
Maybe you just want a quick CBD-meets-chocolate fix without having to preheat the oven.
CBD expert Conor Denman suggests dropping CBD into your hot chocolate. “CBD makes a great addition to dishes or drinks, due to its non-psychoactive properties that include helping manage inflammation, sleep quality and anxiety.” Hot chocolate and CBD offers a quick alternative to those who’d rather not go so far as to muffin n’ chill.
His recipe calls for simmering a cup of unsweetened, plant-based milk with a tablespoon each of raw cacao powder and maple syrup, a teaspoon of vanilla extract, a pinch of Himalayan salt and any of your favorite seasonal toppings, such as mint or cinnamon, together over medium heat. He suggests makers whisk to avoid lumps, let it cool to warm and then add 1 full dropper of CBD oil to the concoction.
Whether you’re making a plate of chocolate chip cookies for a 420-friendly neighbor or whipping up a pound cake to scarf down by the slice as we wallow these crazy times, CBD is guaranteed to add an extra level of relaxation to your anxiety baking.
PENN’S CHOICE Cashew Meltaways
Recipe by Chef Don Ras
- 1 lb. Organic salted cashews
- 2/3 cup PENN’S CHOICE CBD or CBG infused organic coconut oil
- 3. 2 cups confectioners’ sugar
- 4. 2 lb. Dark chocolate melting chocolate.
1. Place cashews in a food processor and pulse into a finely ground consistency.
2. Add PENN’S CHOICE CBD or CBG infused coconut oil and continue to pulse. Blend until smooth and creamy.
3. Add confectioners’ sugar and blend until incorporated.
4. Pour contents of the food processor onto a parchment paper lined sheet pan and place in the refrigerator.
5. Melt chocolate utilizing preferred method and add a thin layer to your desired mold (fill roughly 1/4 of the way).
6. Cut chilled cashew butter into size-appropriate pieces and place in chocolate. Tip: Keep cashew butter as cold as possible during this step.
7. Fill the remainder of the mold with chocolate to cover and let cool at room temperature.
*Up to 3 additional Tablespoons of PENN’S CHOICE (or your favorite) infused coconut oil can be added to chocolate to increase CBD or CBG content if desired.