Explore & Learn

How To Smoke Weed Out Of A Hookah

The hookah, or shisha pipe, has a rich history. Persian, Indian, and North African immigrants introduced the hookah, or shisha pipe, to the West centuries ago, using it to smoke flavored tobacco when tobacco smoking was still taboo. 

By the time tobacco use was more common, the hookah had become a big hit far outside its countries of origin.

Nowadays, people worldwide use the hookah pipe freely, and many weed enthusiasts use it, too. But how do you smoke weed through a hookah, and why should you do it? We cover the simple steps to setting up your shisha pipe and the benefits you’ll enjoy using hookah for your weed.

What Is Hookah Smoking?

If you’re not hooked on hookah yet, you will be once you try it. It offers a different weed-smoking experience that many people find enjoyable. Some users even use homegrown hash in their hookah. 

A hookah has a long, flexible pipe attached to a large central bowl (typically glass or porcelain). This bowl is filled with water. Tobacco (or weed) is placed on top of hot coals in the receptacle, which causes it to burn slowly.

Hookah users inhale through the long pipe’s mouthpiece, which creates an oxygen vacuum, forcing the smoke to flow through the water and the pipe. 

The Origins Of Hookah

The story of the origins of hookah varies depending on who you ask. Some say a Persian physician, resident in India, invented it. From there it spread to Persia and the Near East. Others say that the hookah originated in the Middle East.

The word hookah appears to be related to the Hindustani word huqqa, and the Arabic word huqqah, both of which mean ‘vessel’. When Westerners became familiar with this exotic pipe, the name became ‘hookah’. 

Why Smoke Weed Through A Hookah Pipe?

The hookah pipe has an ancient exotic history and looks interesting, but why should you use it to smoke weed? There are several benefits to doing so. 

No More Nasty Smells On Your Clothing And Stains On Your Teeth

Are you tired of your non-weed-smoking friends and family complaining about the smell of your clothes? That all goes away when you use the hookah. Because of the method of smoking, the smoke does not seep into your clothes and linger there. 

Have smoking joints left you with stains on your teeth? You can resolve this issue too if you make the switch to a shisha pipe. Because the weed itself is never in contact with your mouth, there’s no staining. Now you’ll have more reason to smile when you’re high. 

Some Hookahs Are Designed For Sociable Smoking 

Hookah has, unlike cigarettes or joints, become known as a more sociable activity. It’s not unusual to see groups of friends sharing a hookah at a party. Now you can enjoy your weed with your friends without passing around a joint.

Hookah pipes are available with single or multiple stems. So, although you can take turns inhaling from a single-stem one with a friend, multi-stem variants make sharing your hookah easier. This is the type you’ll find at a hookah lounge or bar. 

More Intensity With Added Flavors

One thing users enjoy most about a hookah is the abundance of flavored tobacco that is sold to use with it. So, if you are a fan of mixing tobacco with your weed, you can ditch the spliffs and try a new tobacco/weed combo full of flavor.

People sometimes refer to mixing tobacco with weed in a hookah as a dirty hookah. Users who have tried this swear it gives them a more intense enjoyment. Whether you use ordinary or flavored tobacco is up to you. But it offers a unique taste and fills the air with a pleasant fragrance.

A More Relaxing High

If you don’t want the more intense rush of a tobacco/weed mix, stick to your usual weed. Smoking weed through a hookah gives you a more gradual high. Thanks to the delivery method, it’s already a novel experience than you have from a joint or an ordinary pipe.

You get small doses of the cannabinoids smoking weed through a hookah. And if you take short, shallow inhalations, it’ll be even more of a floaty sensation. So, if you smoke weed more for relaxation than a high, this is the way to go.

You Can Use CBD Oil In It Too

Do you sometimes want the relaxation and other benefits that CBD provides, with no THC psychoactive effects? You can use CBD oil in a hookah, too, just like you would with a vape. But you may have to experiment with it to find the correct dose.

How To Smoke Weed Using A Hookah

Smoking weed with a hookah is not as complicated as it looks. 

Get your supplies together:

  • The hookah and attachments
  • Coals
  • A dab torch or long lighter used to light barbecues
  • Metal tongs for the coals
  • Your weed
  • Shisha tobacco (if using it)
  • Some water for the bowl 

Then follow these five simple steps. 

Step 1: Set Up Your Hookah Basin

Take off the stem of the hookah. Fill the basin about halfway with clean water. Take care not to overfill it, as this will make drawing vapor through the hose more difficult. You can also use a mixture of water and ice in the reservoir. Reattach the stem and connect it securely. 

Insert the hoses into the hookah openings. Make sure everything is securely fitted, as leaking hoses will cause a mess and ruin your fun.You may want to do a test draw at this stage until you get used to using a hookah.  If you feel too much resistance, reduce the water in the basin.

Step 2: Pack Your Hookah Bowl

Add your shisha and weed to the bowl. You can use ordinary tobacco if you don’t have shisha tobacco. However, shisha tobacco contains a bit of molasses, and this will cause your weed to heat more slowly. 

There are different-sized hookah bowls. Most are designed to take 15-20 grams of shisha tobacco, but some are smaller and take about 12 grams. Use this as your guide when deciding how much weed to add. Pack this all down lightly. You don’t want to block the airflow with too tight a wad of plant matter.  

Don’t worry, it gets easier with practice, just like rolling blunts.

Step 3: Close It Up 

A hookah windscreen is a protective accessory for using the hookah outdoors. It’s designed to block wind from hitting the charcoal. These screens are typically made from aluminum or stainless steel and sometimes glass. 

The windscreen helps the coal burn longer and prevents ash from getting blown around. Even if you’re not outdoors, it will block any breeze that flows in through a window. Fit the windscreen over the top of the hookah. If you want to make your own, use a piece of aluminum foil with small holes poked in it for airflow.

Step 4: Fire It Up And Let It Burn

Position your hookah over a heat-resistant surface. Ignite the charcoal using the dab torch or BBQ lighter. Wait until the coals stop emitting sparks. They should be a glowing red-orange color before you use your hookah.

Using the tongs, place coals on the windscreen (or foil). Cover the top of the bowl, but don’t use so many coals that the airflow is restricted. Two or three coals are usually enough. It takes 3-4 minutes for the coals to heat the shisha and weed. Once that time has elapsed, take a pull using the mouthpiece. 

Step 5: Assess The Taste And Enjoy

If it tastes weak, wait another minute or two. If it tastes burned, remove some coals, allow the bowl to cool slightly, and try again. The more often you use a hookah, the better you will get at assessing how many colas to use and how long to wait before taking a draw.

If you’re satisfied with the taste, it’s time to enjoy your hookah. Once the flavor disappears, you know that it’s done. Hookah colas usually snuff themselves out. If there are a few glowing bits remaining, pick them up with the tongs and drop them into water to extinguish them. 

Maintaining Your Hookah: Cleaning Tips And Tricks

It’s a good idea to clean your hookah thoroughly after every use and even before using a new one for the first time. 

Keeping your hookah clean will prevent residue build-up that will otherwise affect the taste when you use your hookah again. You can use a bit of lemon juice in some water to clean your hookah, but hookah supply stores usually sell hookah cleaner. 

The Hose

If your hookah hose has a metal content, it might not be wise to wash it in water as this can cause it to rust. Rather, blow through the hose forcefully to clear out leftover particles. 

If it is made of a washable material, plug one end with your thumb and pour warm water into it. Then plug the other end with your other thumb and shake it a few times before releasing your thumb from one end and pouring the water out. This will flush out leftover particles. Hang up to air dry.

The Stem And Basin/Vase

Rinse the stem and basin with warm water and lemon juice, or with special hookah cleaner fluid. You can use a bottle brush to gently scrub them clean inside. Rinse with water to remove all traces of the cleaning agent. 

Turn the basin upside down and leave it this way for a while to allow water to drip out completely. Prop the stem up so that it will dry thoroughly inside.

The Bowl And Smaller Parts 

Always allow a bowl to cool down completely after use before cleaning it. Clean the bowl by rinsing it with warm water. You can also use a very soft cleaning brush if necessary. 

Rinse all smaller parts like valves, grommets, and hose adapters. Allow everything to air dry before reassembling your hookah.


Smoking weed with a hookah allows you to have a different cannabis experience that you can enjoy alone or share with friends. Some users prefer shisha in their hookah, while others don’t. How you choose to use your hookah is up to you. But no doubt good quality weed will heighten the pleasure.

For the best quality weed and cannabis products, look no further than Embarc. Whether you need it for a hookah, a bong, a vape, or you want to enjoy some edibles or a joint, we’ve got what you need. So you get that quality high every time. 

Browse our extensive range online, and pop into one of our dispensaries near you.