How to Use Sugar Leaves?

If you've ever wondered how to use your precious sugar leaves, find out how you can turn your trimmings into edibles and more!
02 December 2019
6 min read
How to Use Sugar Leaves?

  • 1. What are sugar leaves?
  • 2. How to collect sugar leaves?
  • 3. Can you smoke sugar leaves?
  • 4. How to use sugar leaves
  • 4. a. Edibles
  • 4. b. Kief
  • 4. c. Vaporizer
  • 4. d. Hash and other products

For many growers, obtaining sugar leaves is the best part of harvesting cannabis buds. Partly, it’s because while you can always purchase buds in dispensaries, one cannot lay his hands on sugar leaves unless he personally grows cannabis plants. However, there are many growers that throw away sugar leaves because they don’t know what to do with them.

If you’re one of them, here’s the ultimate guide to educate you on how to use sugar leaves.

What are sugar leaves?

sugar leaves

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It’s possible you’ve never heard of sugar leaves; however, if you’re a grower, you’d have handled them. Once you grow cannabis plants, you’ll notice that it develops leaves. These leaves get bigger as the plant grows, and are known as fan leaves. Sugar leaves develop slowly along with the buds. While fan leaves are visible from the branches, sugar leaves peek through buds where only their juicy tips sprinkled with a generous amount of trichomes are seen.

Sugar leaves are small and dainty. They aren’t really visible in some plants where there’s a heavy amount of resin. Once you remove the fan leaves, you’ll see small sugar leaves clearly. Even fan leaves have trichomes, but in negligible quantities. Named aptly due to the resin that resembles sugar, growers collect even small leaves to make different products.

How to collect sugar leaves?

Collecting sugar leaves is as simple as harvesting the buds themselves. However, since sugar leaves are small, you’ll have to spend some extra time trimming them one by one. For this reason, many people let the sugar leaves stay on the buds and smoke or vaporize them along with the buds. Another point to note is that the amount of sugar leaves obtained per plant will be small.

Thus, you can save the sugar leaves by storing them in a ziplock bag or any airtight container and place it in the freezer until you’re ready to use them. This will also ensure that the leaves are brittle and it makes it easier for the trichomes to fall off when you’ve finally decided what you want to do with them.

Can you smoke sugar leaves?

This is a question many people ask. And, rightly so. If you’ve grown those plants with so much effort, it’s natural to wonder if you can smoke them too. Yes, it is possible to smoke sugar leaves, but remember that it can be harsh on your throat. It doesn’t make sense to trim the sugar leaves and then smoke them because you can simply leave them on the buds.

You’ll also need more sugar leaves compared to normal buds because the leaves don’t contain as much resin present in the buds. Therefore, if you decide to trim the leaves, make sure you create something else with them or you can just leave them on the buds.

How to use sugar leaves

If you want to use sugar leaves to make different cannabis products, keep in mind that the trichomes differ from one strain to another. For instance, a strain like Green Crack may not produce as much trichomes as, say, Gorilla Glue that’s famous for its resin. Just like the strains differ when it comes to the effects they produce, the amount of trichomes also differ. Sometimes, plants with super huge buds don’t produce too many sugar leaves while those with smaller buds will have a lot more sugar leaves.

Green Crack Auto
5 out of 5
nice fast delivery, took 3 days to germinate! have seeds 9 days into germination and they are still going.... so good job. will be ordering more!
Verified customer
Reviewed 13 March 2018

Last but not the least, no matter what edibles you make, remember to decarboxylate the sugar leaves before using them so you get to use active THC or CBD. Here’s how you can use these amazing leaves studded with resin.

1. Edibles

cannabis tea

People generally use cannabis buds to make edibles. If you’re short of buds, though, you can easily replace them with sugar leaves. However, note that you’ll need to use a lot more sugar leaves compared to the buds because although sugar leaves do contain resin, they don’t have as much resin as the buds themselves. What you’ll probably end up with is an edible that doesn’t make you as high as the buds but they are amazing nonetheless.

Brownies – Making brownies with cannabis flowers is super easy. You can replace the blossoms with sugar leaves and the effect will almost be the same. But, if you want super potent brownies, use more flowers. For instance, if your recipe calls for 50 grams of flowers, use 50 grams of sugar leaves instead to produce a milder effect. For a stronger high, use 50 grams of buds plus 25 grams of sugar leaves.

Gorilla Glue Auto
5 out of 5
first time ever growing and got some amazing colors from this strain with low temps ran it at about 58-64 for 2 weeks and got this color
Jackin Meoff.
Verified customer
Reviewed 26 December 2017

Cannabutter – Cannabutter is one of the best ways of using cannabis. Not only is the effect far stronger than smoking cannabis (because edibles are ingested by the stomach lining) but it also lasts longer. To make some butter that’s mild, simply replace the buds with sugar leaves, but if you want a stronger effect, add at least half of the amount of the buds in the form of sugar leaves.

Teas – Many people use even fan leaves to make cannabis tea, but using sugar leaves will no doubt produce tea with a strong buzz. Don’t overdo it, though – and this applies to all edibles – because edibles are much stronger than smoking cannabis. To brew some tea, weigh and strain at least a gram of sugar leaves through a filter. Pour boiling water over the leaves and let it sit until the tea absorbs the elements of the sugar leaves. Some people add cannabutter or regular butter to their tea so that the cannabinoids bind well with the fat, but it’s not mandatory.

2. Kief


Kief is the powdery substance you usually find at the bottom of your grinder. It’s usually much more potent than your regular buds because it’s nothing but a collection of concentrated trichomes. Cannabis users love kief simply because it’s potent and requires a very small amount to produce the desired high.

To make kief using sugar leaves, make sure that the leaves are dry before using them. It’s also going to work better if the leaves are brittle so that you can crush it better. Thus, you can store the leaves in the freezer as mentioned earlier.

Once you have some frozen and dried sugar leaves, grind the leaves in your grinder just like you’d grind cannabis buds. Of course, you’ll not get as much kief as you’d get with the buds, but it’s far better than throwing away the leaves shimmering with resin.

3. Vaporizer

Some growers don’t bother to trim the sugar leaves. Although it’s okay to do that, smoking sugar leaves will produce a harsher effect on your throat. And, that’s due to an excess of plant matter like chlorophyll. To avoid the harsh taste, you can trim the leaves and vaporize it using a vaporizer of your choice.

Since a vaporizer doesn’t combust the buds or leaves, you’ll never feel a harsh effect. At the same time, you’ll gain the benefits of the cannabinoids present in the leaves without having to worry about your lungs. A win-win situation for sure!

Purple Lemonade Auto
5 out of 5
Beautiful colour and she did turn purple two and a half weeks before harvest she smells like a fruity stardawg can't wait til curing is done
Verified customer
Reviewed 7 July 2021

4. Hash and other products

Simply put, you can use sugar leaves to pretty much produce anything. All you have to do is replace the buds with the leaves, and you’re done! You can use sugar leaves to create some mind-blowing Dry Ice Hash where the buds are sieved through filters. Replace the buds with your trims and although the yield will not be as significant as using traditional buds, you’ll be using the sugar leaves instead of throwing them away!

As you can understand by now, there are many ways to use sugar leaves. If you’ve thrown away your precious leaves in the past because you didn’t know what to do with them, this article will hopefully help you use it in a better way!


02 December 2019