How to Smoke Weed Without Rolling Paper?

Sophia Delphi July 01, 2022 - 8 min read
Fact Checked
Illustration of Best Ways to Smoke Weed Without Rolling Papers

Few situations are more frustrating. All-day, you’ve been looking forward to getting home, settling in, firing up some weed, and just chilling.

Everything goes fine, too, until you reach for your rolling papers – and discover that your girlfriend must have used the last one. You still have some bud left, but you have no way to roll a joint.

What now?

Well, hopefully, you can find a bowl or one-hitter tucked away in a closet. If not, it feels like you’re in for either a long drive to the nearest 24-hour convenience store or a very disappointing end to a promising night.

Calm down, dear reader. There’s hope.

Here’s how to smoke weed without rolling paper.

You Probably Already Thought of These

While you were looking in the closet for a pipe, you probably would have gratefully grabbed an old bong or bubbler as a more-than-acceptable replacement for your normal joints. In fact, any smoking device can be used to smoke weed, even a hookah – as long as you mix the flower with regular tobacco or traditional flavored shisha tobacco.

Vaporizers or vape pens are another way to smoke weed without rolling paper. If you already own one, of course, you would have thought of this option as well. It’s worth considering for the future, though. Here’s why.

Not only is a vape pen a terrific emergency replacement, but the smoke from a vaporizer also is smoother, the cannabis usually hits harder and tastes better, and it apparently has fewer harmful effects on the bronchial tract and lungs. Buying a dab rig might also fall into the same “I don’t want to spend all that money on equipment” category, but dabbing is how you’d get the most potent hit.

There’s one additional option if you aren’t scared of the kitchen if you can wait a few hours for your buzz – and if you’re not hung up on the word “smoke.” You can use your weed to make edibles. It’s not as easy as just lighting up, however. You’ll have to:

  • Spend about 30-40 minutes decarbing the flower (putting it in the oven at a low temperature to activate the THC)
  • Make cannabutter or canna-oil to be used in a brownie or cookie recipe.
  • Bake your delicious edibles.
  • Wait another hour or so for them to kick in.

That’s a lot of effort and time to invest in getting high. There are simpler ways to deal with your dilemma.

Bum a Cigarette

Image of Ways to Smoke Weed Without Rolling Paper

If you don’t smoke, maybe a neighbor does. That’s the simplest way to smoke weed without rolling paper because the paper used to make cigarettes is thin enough to do the job. You just have to gently tap or roll the cigarette to get all of the tobacco out, fill the cylinder with weed, and remove the filter (or replace it with a joint filter, also known as a “crutch”). Problem solved.

Gum Wrappers Work, Too

OK, no one you know smokes. We’ll just about guarantee that you or a neighbor chews gum, though. The wrapper from a stick of gum can substitute nicely for rolling papers if you separate the foil from the thin paper that’s attached to it. That paper is almost exactly the same thickness and consistency as rolling paper, so just roll your doob with it and you’re good to go.

If You Have Oily Skin, Look in Your Purse or Pocket

Are you familiar with “blotting sheets?” They’re the small pieces of paper that some people use to dab excess oil that forms on their skin (or give their makeup a matte finish). They’re small, they’re thin – and they make an excellent rolling paper in a pinch because they burn quite slowly.

Lend Me Your Ear

Of corn, that is. In Jamaica, not everyone has easy access to a store that carries rolling papers – and besides, it’s also traditional there to use corn husks to roll ganj. Not only are they nice and thin, but the fibers in corn husks hold the weed firmly. Don’t use corn right off the stalk, however; the husk burns best after it’s dried out for a bit.

By Any Other Name…

You really can use rose petals to roll a doob. It’s not just an urban legend. Only give this one a try if you have a few minutes to get the petals ready because they contain a good deal of water. Broil them in an oven or toaster oven for about 10-15 seconds, and then attach three or four of them together. (Do that by licking the ends like you would to seal a joint.) Roll your weed inside, toast the joint for 10 seconds, and smoke up.

You Can’t Roll Them, But They Work

There also are lots of DIY smoking devices you can MacGyver up fairly quickly, as long as you aren’t deficient in the manual dexterity department.

Use a Pen

This one only works if your pen has a metal cap; ordinary Bic pens won’t do, because their caps will melt. Take the pen apart, and then flip the cap so the narrow end fits tightly into the empty cylinder. Put your flower in the tiny bowl that the cap has made, light and inhale through the other end. Caution: Only use the pen for a few hits. Otherwise, it could release hazardous chemicals or even melt.

Chug Your Soda…

And then use the empty can to make a pipe. Bend the can to make an indentation, and poke a very small hole in the middle of the dent; that will be the “bowl.” Poke another hole to act as a carb, and smoke from the can’s natural opening on top.

You don’t drink from cans, but go through two-liter bottles like a madman? We have two options for you.

  1. Poke a few tiny holes in a small piece of tin foil, and wrap it around the mouth to hold your weed. Then make a bigger hole down toward the bottom of the bottle, and use it as the mouthpiece.
  2. After you’ve got the tin foil ready, cut off the bottom half of the bottle and put it into a large bowl or container of water. Fire up your weed in the tin foil, lift the bottle most of the way (but not all the way) out of the water, and gravity will fill the bottle with smoke. Remove the foil and enjoy the smoke. That’s how you make a gravity bong.

Speaking of Bongs…

We’ll finish with something you may have used long, long ago, and forgotten about, the apple bong. Take the fruit (if you don’t have an apple, try a round melon) and make connecting two tunnels in the shape of an “L,” with one starting at the top and the other from the side. Make a small bowl for your flower around the top opening, and inhale from the side one. If you want to get fancy, make a third connecting tunnel to be used as a carb.

And after all of that crazy messing around – maybe next time you’ll be sure to have a pipe available for when you run out of rolling papers.

How to Smoke Weed Without Rolling Paper: FAQ

Q: Can’t you just use regular paper if you’re stuck?
A: Bad idea. Most types of paper are processed and bleached with chemicals that could do some major damage if they’re burned and inhaled.

Q: What about the substitutes you always hear about, like toilet paper, parchment paper, or pages of a Bible?
A: They all contain the same types of potentially hazardous chemicals. In addition, toilet paper burns much too fast, and parchment paper is too thick to roll properly.

Q: Can you actually get stoned with any of these methods?
A: Absolutely. But if you’re making a DIY pipe, take the extra time needed to build in carb as well. It makes a huge difference in how much smoke you’ll be able to get.


Spindle, T. R., Cone, E. J., Schlienz, N. J., Mitchell, J. M., Bigelow, G. E., Flegel, R., … & Vandrey, R. (2018). Acute effects of smoked and vaporized cannabis in healthy adults who infrequently use cannabis: a crossover trial. JAMA network open, 1(7), e184841-e184841. [1]