It’s no secret that the rare, super-potent weed that Seth Rogen and James Franco sampled in the 2008 movie Pineapple Express was fictional. The Pineapple Express strain does actually exist, though. It’s not rare and not “the dopest dope,” but at 20% THC content, it’s no slouch, either.
Pineapple Express is a 60/40 sativa hybrid that delivers a happy, focused head high followed by a relaxing body buzz that won’t put you flat on your back like the fictional strain. There is some pineapple flavor in the weed’s aroma and flavor, but the overall experience is more of a woodsy and fruity combination with a little funk mixed in.
Pineapple Express isn’t the ridiculously killer strain portrayed in the movie — but it’s a great choice for getting stoned and watching Pineapple Express.
Effects and Side Effects
Stoner movie fans who expect to be totally destroyed when they try Pineapple Express may be disappointed, but the effects of this strain are far from disappointing if you keep an open mind.
The experience starts with an uplifting cerebral high that erases mental stress in a hurry. The high is stimulating, creative, and often blissful, an excellent strain to use during the day when you want or need an extra burst of euphoric brainpower. Some users find themselves giggling, others may find themselves daydreaming, but they’ll still be relatively grounded in reality.
The body stone that follows isn’t likely to be incapacitating. It’s relaxing and buzzy, but it’s not sedating, and it won’t lock you to the couch; it’s not the best idea to smoke this strain before bed. The buzz simply adds to the overall calm, happy feeling of a real Pineapple Express high, which is particularly enjoyable when hanging with friends, at parties, or using it as a prelude to sex.
The potential side effects of this strain are mild at worst. Dry eyes and cottonmouth, and perhaps dehydration, are possible. But Pineapple Express isn’t one of the strains likely to cause problems for novice smokers or users with existing anxiety issues. It’s benign and extremely enjoyable.
- Energy: 4/5
- Creative: 4/5
- Pain: 4/5
- Stress: 4/5
- Sleep: 1/5
- Mood: 4/5
- Paranoid: 1/5
- Dry Mouth: 3/5
- Dry Eyes: 3/5
- Lethargy: 1/5
- Cough: 2/5
Bottom Line: Pineapple Express is a really fun strain for daytime use. There’s an energizing, creative, and happy head high, followed by a relaxing (but not sedating) body buzz.
You can probably guess that a strain like Pineapple Express, which primarily delivers a euphoric, stress-relieving experience, is used by medical marijuana patients to help with clinical depression and anxiety and mental health issues like PTSD and OCD.
Other patients find it useful for physical issues as well, saying that the mix of mood-elevation and THC help them with chronic pain, as well as PMS and minor aches and pains. Pineapple Express does induce the munchies, meaning it can also be a good choice for those with anorexia or other eating disorders that kill their appetite.
Flavor and Aroma
The taste and scent of this strain aren’t straightforward. Don’t think about pineapple juice or a juicy chunk of pineapple — think about a complex tropical drink that contains pineapple and many other tasty ingredients.
Pineapple Express’s aroma is a mix of fruit, pine, and earth; it’s sweet, sour, and pungent all at once. And the flavor is similar. The citrus and pine, sweetness and sourness all make you feel as if you’re enjoying a sweet and savory cocktail on the beach; the pineapple is most notable in the strain’s aftertaste, along with wood and spice.
It’s difficult to accurately describe, but it’s wonderful to experience.
Flavor and Aroma Ratings:
- Earthy: 4/5
- Citrus: 3/5
- Fruity: 4/5
- Spice: 2/5
- Wood: 3/5
Cannabinoids and Terpenes
The film never used a number to describe the ultra-potency of the fictional Pineapple Express, but the real strain averages 20% THC content which is definitely impressive. Some samples may test as high as 25%; that may not be the stuff of stoner movie legend, but it’s definitely on the high end of what you’ll find at dispensaries.
There’s very little CBD (or other major cannabinoids) in Pineapple Express, but the strain is so popular that it has been bred in a different form to have higher CBD content. You’ll probably have to ask at a medical dispensary in order to find it.
The terpenes most common in Pineapple Express are caryophyllene, limonene, myrcene, pinene, phellandrene, and linalool. That large mix explains the strain’s complex aroma and flavor.
Pineapple Express is a cross of powerful sativa-dominant Trainwreck and a Hawaiian landrace strain. The latter contributes most of the distinctive aroma and flavor of the weed.
Many growers have claimed credit for originating this strain, but most cannabis experts believe it was the respected cultivator G13 Labs which says it bred Pineapple Express in the mid-2000s. The strains you find at dispensaries may exhibit slightly different characteristics because many growers have tried to create their own versions of Pineapple Express.
(And no, the movie wasn’t named after an existing weed strain. Rogen says it was named after a weather system that occasionally starts in Hawaii and hits the Pacific Northwest.)
Many sativa-dominant hybrids combine the uplifting effects of Pineapple Express with extreme deliciousness. Some to check out: Mimosa, Sour Diesel, Lemon Haze, Lemon Skunk, Candyland, and of course, Golden Pineapple.
Pineapple Express Strain Review
Q: Which came first, the strain or the movie?
A: There’s no definitive answer to that very common question. Pineapple Express was released in 2008, around the same time that the strain was apparently bred. All we know is that the name of the fictional strain wasn’t based on the real one and that there’s no evidence backing up claims from several breeders that they created the strain in response to seeing the film.
Q: Is it easy to find Pineapple Express at retail cannabis outlets?
A: Yes. It’s a very popular strain (for very good reasons), and dispensaries with a good selection of products are likely to stock it. Seeds used to be difficult to find, but they’re now widely available from seed banks, and Pineapple Express is an effortless plant to grow.