BBQ with a bang: Cannabis infusions for the Fourth

cannabis bbq: image of burgers and beans

The smell of good food wafting off the grill, an abundance of juicy watermelon slices, and cold brews are all classic parts of a 4th of July barbecue. This year, some may opt to incorporate the cannabis plant into their celebrations. Passing around a joint, serving infused foods, or sipping on a mocktail are great ways to enjoy the day with friends.

Sharing a joint or bong is simple, but it takes a delicate hand and intentional infusion to serve cannabis foods at a gathering. These infusion methods can help ensure guests don’t overindulge while providing the freedom of self-service.

Guide to serving cannabis to guests

Cannabis is still new to lots of people. Some guests might not know how much they’d prefer to eat in a social situation. Being uncomfortably high isn’t fun alone, and it’s worse surrounded by a gaggle of people at a party.

One way to combat overindulgence is to only serve micro-dosed edibles. Most people will feel the social lubricant of cannabis without unwanted side effects after consuming around two milligrams. When serving cannabis at a party, separate the sauce, drinks, or food into individual servings to avoid overdoing it.

It’s also important to have signage around all cannabis goods informing guests on dosage, allergens, and other pertinent information. If signage isn’t going to work, consider having an attendant or caterer at the station to inform everyone what they’re getting into.

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If kids are at the event, it is imperative that cannabis products are either locked away or under the purview of a dedicated attendant.

Now that we’ve got the logistics locked in let’s look at what kind of infusions would fit into an Independence Day bash.


Ketchup, barbecue sauce, mustard, burger sauce–there’s an ocean of condiments used on Fourth fare. Cannabis-infused ketchup and barbecue sauce are available at dispensaries, but bloggers have shared their recipes for those who want to get saucy at home.

Identifying the fat in a condiment is the first step to understanding how it should be infused. Most use oil. Once the fat is identified, infuse it with cannabis small buds, trim, or flower if you’re balling, and use it in your favorite sauce recipe as you would traditional oil.

Serve infused sauces in little cups coordinated with your weed math to ensure guests get the right amount. Serving 2mg of ketchup is the most effective way to avoid overconsumption at the shindig.

Simple Syrup

Hosts that prefer to drink their pot may enjoy serving cannabis mocktails at this year’s Fourth festivities. So many drink recipes use simple syrup, making that the perfect ingredient to infuse. Making cannabis simple syrup requires a few ingredients and patience, but most people can master it in a few tries.

Simple syrup is versatile. It can be used in a signature mocktail, liven up a berry salad, added to a scoop of ice cream, or sweeten a cream soda or float. Infusing something that can be used in various ways leaves doors open for a host planning their party menu.


A side of green with your greens? Why not?

Another fun way to include cannabis in the event is to infuse the salad dressing. Like the sauce, oil is the commonly used fat in most salad dressings. Unlike sauce, it is rarely simmered.

Instead, the oil is generally emulsified into an acid like lemon juice or vinegar, meaning you whisk it really fast. Hosts serving up a big salad at their gathering should consider whipping up a homemade vinaigrette with infused olive oil for an extra kick.

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The sauce method of dosing out 2mg helpings in small cups would be ideal for dressing too. Have a non-infused version nearby so that guests who want their salad dressed more heavily can indulge without consuming too much cannabis.

Cakes, cookies, and brownies

Baked goods like brownies, cookies, and cupcakes often adorn the Fourth of July dessert table. The sugary treats have also been baked into edibles for generations. Sauces, dressings, and drinks are exciting ways to see cannabis served at an event, but there’s nothing wrong with the classics either.

All of these treats are traditionally made with butter, making them simple to infuse. Each of these items is also individually sized, making it simple to indicate how much one guest should consume. Consider decorating the edible with a cannabis leaf as an infusion indicator, but even if you do, still add signage to the serving table informing guests about dosage.

Whether it’s a road trip to the lake or a gathering in a friend’s backyard, cannabis could be the perfect addition to this year’s Fourth of July celebrations. These infusion methods are designed to help cannabis beginners understand how to bring the plant to the party. Just remember to make sure whoever handles the fireworks hasn’t indulged.

Cara Wietstock is Senior Content Producer of and has been working in the cannabis space since 2011. She has covered the cannabis business beat for Ganjapreneur and The Spokesman Review. You can find her living in Bellingham, Washington with her husband, son, and a small zoo of pets.