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It may seem like a match made in heaven – the most potent part of the cannabis plant blended into a beautiful gently heated high. But does dabbing kief work on a practical level? Can you dab kief?

What is kief?

First, let’s cover exactly what kief is. You’ve probably noticed those tiny, sticky crystals that coat the buds of the cannabis flower. Or maybe you’ve seen them as the light dust that gathers in the bottom of your grinder when you shred your weed. That’s kief, also known as weed dust, weed crystals, dry sift, or pollen. It forms part of the trichomes – those hairs, sometimes of different colors, that you can see between the flowers.


Can you dab kief? 

Technically yes, you can dab kief, as it’s a cannabis product containing THC. You can dab it in any of its various forms – kief oil, hash oil, or even solid hash. You could sprinkle kief that you’ve collected into either a dab rig or a dab pen, or roll it up into a little hash ball.

But it gets a touch more complicated than that. When cannabis flower is ground or blended too heavily, more tiny pieces of plant matter get through into the kief. This is true whether you get your kief from a grinder or through a screen.

This lower purity kief isn’t suitable for dabbing. It can leave behind a lot of residue that gets stuck in the dab pen or leaves an unsavory taste on the nail of your dab rig. The only kief to dab with should be a light tan or blonde color, rather than green. This means it’s of higher purity, containing nearly exclusively trichome heads. And unless you’re a pro, it’s unlikely you’ll be able to collect that kind of premium kief yourself at home.

What are the benefits of dabbing kief? 

It’s healthier for you

Waxes and concentrates used for dabbing are made by extracting THC and other cannabinoids from the plant matter. Makers usually add butane solvent, CO2, propane, or ethanol during this process. The end product is referred to as wax, shatter, budder, or butane hash oil (BHO).

Kief is simply a natural part of the cannabis plant, with a very simple extraction process. There’s no need to use any chemical solvents so there are no safety concerns.

It’s strong

Whereas cannabis flower is usually 15-25% THC, kief has around 40-60% THC. Some of the purest kief to be extracted has contained up to 70%!

Gathering kief also takes time. This means the end product usually comes from slightly different strains, giving you a varied mix of cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids, and adding to its overall potency.

In theory, kief will give you a more intense, or at least a different, natural high than flower, whilst using less plant material and not undergoing a chemical process like concentrates.

Are there any downsides to dabbing kief? 

Kief can be messy when it’s dabbed. It can also be tricky to place the kief onto a nail or load it into a dab pen, and it doesn’t melt like traditional concentrates once it’s heated. It’s an exercise in trial and error.

But if you love dabbing, or you don’t want to waste any of the kief you’ll discard from grinding flower, combining the two could suit you perfectly!

Looking for more uses for the kief you’ve collected? Check out Wikileaf’s eight ideas.