Marijuana Language: What Is Shake Weed?

There’s so much terminology flying around the cannabis world that it’s a bit hard to keep up with. In this article, we’re going to zero in on shake weed. You know, the dusty looking scraps at the bottom of your bag.

Shake weed may not have the best aesthetic appeal, but it still holds a lot of value. Read on to learn more about shake weed and all its potential.  

What Exactly is Shake Weed?

You can find shake weed just about anywhere you find solid cannabis buds. Shake occurs from shifting those buds around in their containers.

Over time, little bits break off and collect at the bottom of their storage jars. They tend to be on the drier side as they oxidize faster from their exposure to more light and air than their whole-bud counterparts. 

But shake weed is more than just the dusty scraps left over from the good buds. After all, it does come from the same part of the cannabis plant as the good buds. You could say that the definition of shake weed is just loose flowers, although it’s often written off as unworthy.

Unfortunately, shake gets a bad rap because dispensaries often mix it with low-quality cannabis bits. It also tends to contain unwanted plant matter like stems and seeds. Some dispensaries take the time to sift out the unwanted bits before selling their shake, but it’s necessarily not a selling requirement.

It also doesn’t help that there are some dispensaries that try to pass of trim as shake. Trim is actually the unwanted plant matter cut from the buds before they’re cured. The result is an unpleasant campfire-like smoke that’s less tasty and less potent. 

Despite its reputation, there is such a thing as good shake weed. It’s got plenty of uses, and you can always learn more about it to decide whether it’s something that appeals to you. 

How to Use Shake Weed

Shake weed, in general, is not regarded as being as potent as fresh whole buds. But that doesn’t mean you can’t find quality shake from well-cultivated buds with the same level of potency. 

Most would also agree that shake doesn’t provide the smoothest hit or best taste. Once again, this isn’t necessarily true for the good stuff.

Hight potency or not, shake still saves you money and gets the job done. It also has several uses, many of which you don’t want to waste the more expensive stuff on. Here are a few.


Shake weed is perfect for edibles, for several reasons. The first reason being is that you need quite a bit of bud for your desired infusion. You can buy a good amount of shake for a fraction of the price, which is especially convenient since edibles don’t require the top-shelf stuff.

Additionally, since shake is already in little bits, you can skip the step of grinding up the buds. 

Tinctures and Extracts

Shake comes in handy for those who are new to making tinctures and extracts. Ideally, you want to use top-shelf buds for your creations, but that can get expensive. Why burn through a lot of money in the learning stages when you can opt for the cheaper, “training wheels” version until you perfect your craft?

Shake can also add an extra kick to your high-quality tinctures and extracts once you move onto the bigger and better buds.

Novelty Bongs, Blunts, and Cone-Rolled Joints

Let’s be honest, nothing wastes more weed than novelty bongs, huge party blunts, and cigar-sized coned joints.

You especially don’t want to waste the good stuff on gravity bongs. Sure, they get you messed up just fine, but they’re known to rapidly condense your supply, which takes away from the quality of your weed. It’s better to go with the cheaper shake weed because you’ll still achieve the same effects without wasting your good buds. 

The same goes for those party blunts and larger than life-sized joints. It’s better to save the quality stuff for your more intimate gatherings. 

How Not to Use Shake Weed

Shake Weed is good to use in most instances — except for times that call for high-quality buds. For example, top-shelf concentrates like hashes won’t work with shake.

Additionally, if you’re a medical marijuana patient, then you most likely rely on specific and consistent strains and doses. Shake weed doesn’t always guarantee potency, much less consistency in strains. Unless the dispensary can guarantee their shake for your needs, it’s best to steer clear.  

How is Shake Weed Sold?

The cost of shake weed varies by the amount and type. Regardless of where you buy it, it will always be much cheaper than whole buds.  

Shake weed is typically sold in jars by the ounce, or as pre-rolled joints. Of course, if you’re already purchasing a jar of whole buds, you can expect to find some shake at the bottom over time. 

When buying shake weed, always ask your budtender questions upfront and always look for “premium harvest shake”. Premium harvest shake refers to shake that comes from only one flower, which is ideally the only type of shake you want to buy.  

Smoke it if You Got it

Shake weed doesn’t deserve the bad reputation that it’s stuck with. As long as you buy the right kind and use it the right way, you’ll find that it’s worth the investment.

For more on cannabis and other interesting articles, check out the rest of our site. We cover everything from business to finances to lifestyle and more. 

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