Buying infused pre-rolls? You should know this

infused pre-rolls

Grab-and-go culture is a favorite among Americans. Grocery store deli sandwiches or a pack of gum at the register are common quick buys and add-ons to regular shops. Convenience is king, after all. According to a report of pre-roll trends for the upcoming year from Custom Cones USA and Headset, infused pre-rolls are becoming another handy American purchase. The data collaboration found that infused pre-rolls take almost 50 percent of the pre-roll market share.

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Infused pre-rolls come in many forms, but all are joints made with usual ground, cured flower, and a concentrate or two. Bubble hash, rosin, diamonds, and more are put into and painted onto smoking papers or stuffed inside the bud. Brands put all kinds of terpene-rich extracts into infused joints. Choosing a “good” hashy pre-roll may feel daunting with so many varying forms and factors. These tips should sort it out.

How to shop infused pre-rolls

As 7/10, the day for wax, approaches, it is the perfect time to learn how to shop for these treasured sticks. Harrison Bard, Custom Cones CEO, shared more about the infused pre-roll category with GreenState, including how to shop the category.

“When shopping for pre-rolls, I always recommend choosing those infused with live resin or hash rosin,” Bard said. “These options are more full-spectrum and generally higher quality.”

People put all kinds of things into and onto weed, and not all of them are great to inhale. Knowing the types of extracts mentioned at dispensaries and commonly put into infused pre-rolls empowers shoppers to understand red flags and green flags.

“The most common concentrate in infused pre-rolls is distillate, which is of the lowest quality. Therefore, if live resin or rosin is available, it’s worth trying,” explained Bard

Kinds of extracts in infused pre-rolls

Live resin is a cannabis concentrate made from freshly harvested, uncured cannabis flowers. This is not to be confused with live rosin, which is solventless. The input of these products is the same, but the extraction process is different. Both would be similar in an infused joint.

Liquid diamonds are also typical pre-roll infusions. These are considered one of the purest forms of cannabis. Liquid diamonds may add up to 99.9 percent THC to the rollie. While THC definitely contributes to a high, it doesn’t do that work alone–which leads the conversation back to distillate.

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There is a use for distillate THC, but it may not be infused pre-rolls. In fact, it may not be the answer for inhalable products in general. The distillation process cooks off many delicious, interactive compounds, like terpenes. Extractors take this loss to maximize and purify the THC and simplify the work. However, the end result alone leads to a flat experience for many.

Knowing the extracts commonly put into infused pre-rolls is essential to shopping for these products. But this isn’t all of them. There is also kief, shatter, CO2, and spray on terpenes, to name a few. Some are accepted, and others are controversial. For example, many spray-on terpenes are food grade with little to no testing on the impact in the short or long term if heated and inhaled.

To be an informed modern cannabis consumer is to be constantly learning. Here are a few things to look out for when deciphering whether the chosen infusion method is safe to inhale.

Infused pre-roll red flags

Making a visually appealing product is always key, but achieving the look shouldn’t sacrifice the quality. Bard recommends steering clear of pre-rolls painted with oil and rolled in kief, as this only serves as curb appeal.

“An infused pre-roll provides a better smoking and tasting experience when the infusion is inside the rolling paper,” Bard explained. “When lighting a painted and kiefed pre-roll, you’ll notice a thick, black plume of smoke as the oil on the outside combusts. In contrast, when the concentrate is infused within the pre-roll, the ember gently vaporizes the oil, resulting in a smoother, better-tasting smoke.”

Bard also warns to watch out for green or darker brown-colored kief painted onto the outside of a joint.

“Genuine kief is golden in color. Some companies coat pre-rolls in flower dust, which is green and less potent. If the packaging is transparent and you see bright green ‘kief,’ it is likely flower dust and not the more potent golden trichome heads,” Bard concluded.

Connoisseurs have clocked the perfect burn for these products, like the aforementioned black plume from extracts painted on the papers. Take a hash hole, or hash rolled into a snake and put into the middle of the flower, will burn with a perfect circle in the center.

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Flower is crucial, too

Extracts aren’t the sole compound to question inside of the rolling papers. Consumers should inquire about the flower, too. Whole flower is preferred over trim as it will generally have a higher cannabinoid and terpene content. This will often be indicated on the packaging, but if not, ask the budtender or seek answers on the brand website.

Identify the extraction method and producer to understand if the brand is trustworthy or not worth the dollars. Knowing about the product and talking to a budtender about the brand culture is the best way to get a pulse on good and bad operators in every market.

Shopping infused pre-rolls made easy

The root of simplifying weed shopping lies in education. Being an informed shopper helps a person ask a budtender the right questions, locate products on jam-packed online menus, and discover what kind of weed they like. For infused pre-rolls, learn about the extracts used in the product, the brands that make it, and how to spot quality over imposters.

With these tips, everyone can be sure to walk out of their local weed store with the perfect infused rollie for 7/10.

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.