Rolling papers are thin, lightweight sheets of paper that are used to roll tobacco or other herbs for smoking.
They vary in size, shape and material type, with some made from traditional wood pulp and some from hemp-derived plant cellulose or rice paper.
In this article, you will discover the top 5 easily available and affordable alternatives to rolling paper.
Give them a try and get ready for an amazing smoking experience.
What is Rolling Paper?
Rolling paper is a specialized type of paper that is typically used to roll cigarettes, cigars and other forms of smoking paraphernalia.
The paper is usually made out of cellulose, hemp or rice, and it can be bought in either pre-rolled formats or loose leaf form.
It also comes in a variety of sizes and thicknesses, depending on the type of material used.
Rolling papers are popular for roll-your-own cigarettes because they make it much easier to create an even smoke every time and can hold more tobacco than traditional cigarettes.
They are also often considered healthier because they do not contain any binders, adhesives or chemicals like those found in most commercially sold cigarettes.
Rolling papers have become such a popular choice for creating custom smokes due to their affordability and convenience.
While rolling papers may not be the ideal choice for everyone, there are plenty of alternatives that could be considered as viable alternatives based on your preferences.
How to Use Rolling Papers?
Rolling papers are thin sheets of paper made from cellulose, rice or hemp that are used to roll cigarettes.
The most common rolling papers measure approximately 70mm long by 35mm wide and come in a variety of weights — the lighter the paper, the less tobacco will be required to fill your cigarette.
There are some important steps to consider when using rolling papers.
First, you should choose your favorite tobacco blend (or a pre-made pouch of tobacco) and evenly distribute it along the length of your paper.
Make sure that there aren’t any clumps or lumps in the mix as these could affect how smoothly your cigarette smokes.
Once you’ve filled your rolling paper with tobacco, you can then start shaping it into a cylinder by rolling it up between your fingers or on a hard surface such as a table top.
To complete the process, moisten the gum seal along one edge of the paper with saliva or water and then press it down firmly so that both edges meet to ensure an airtight seal.
5 BEST Rolling Papers Substitutes to Consider
Despite being a common item and the most-used form of paper to roll cigarettes, it might not always be possible to get a pack of rolling papers.
What are your options when you can’t find rolling papers in the store or online? Fortunately, there are many great options out there if you’re just looking for something to use in place of rolling papers.
From healthy alternatives to upcycling found objects, there is no shortage of ways you can creatively create your smokes without the traditional wide array of brands on offer.
Here are 5 best substitutes for rolling papers that you should consider:
1 – Corn Husks
Corn husks are a natural, biodegradable alternative to rolling papers.
They provide the same texture and flexibility that rolling paper does but require less effort since they already come rolled.
Plus, since they’re naturally non-porous, you don’t have to worry about them degrading quickly in humid climates like you do with paper.
Some of the best corn husk substitutes for rolling papers include corn husks from corn on the cob, heirloom dry gourds and even dried corn husk shavings from your garden or kitchen scraps.
These cut up pieces can then be used in place of traditional rolling papers to roll your favorite herb with the same amount of comfort and ease.
2 – Cigarette Wraps
Cigarette wraps are a great way to get the traditional look and functionality of rolling papers without compromising on quality.
Cigarette wraps are specifically made for rolling cigarettes, and often come in packs of two for added convenience.
Rolling papers can be difficult to roll, but cigarette wraps have an edge over them because they tend to hold the tobacco in better and produce a much less “airy” smoke.
They come in many styles, flavors and tastes, so it will be up to personal preference which ones appeal most.
When shopping around for cigarette wraps, look out for price as well as quality – buying off-brand wrappers can sometimes mean that they won’t adhere properly or worse yet won’t hold the tobacco in correctly.
3 – Tissue Paper
Tissue paper is often the go-to substitute for rolling papers, especially when you’re in a tight spot.
All you need is tissue paper and the same herb that you would use in rolling papers.
But keep in mind that tissue paper tends to be slightly weaker—it’s not as durable and can easily tear apart if handled incorrectly.
It won’t have a filter, but with adequate care, it can still do the trick in a pinch.
Here are some easy steps to make a perfect joint out of tissue paper:
- Cut off a square of tissue paper and fold it several times lengthwise until it becomes 1-2 centimeters wide, using your finger as a guide for evenness throughout the fold;.
- Create an empty tube out of this paper, making sure its edges are sealed;.
- Fill this tube with your herb material before rolling and sealing its edges with saliva or water;.
- To fasten everything together, crawl the unused part of your roll so that your joint stands straight;.
- The last step will be lighting up your home-made joint.
4 – Bible/Dictionary Pages
While traditional rolling papers may be the most popular choice for rolling up herbs, there are plenty of creative substitutions out there.
Bible and dictionary pages are great options if you’re in a bind and don’t have your normal supplies on hand.
They both work nicely as rolling papers due to their thin, light weight and pliability.
However, make sure that you only use blank pages as using text from these sources will transfer onto the paper and can burn irregularly when lit.
Rolling with bible or dictionary pages is a great idea for travelers or campers who don’t plan on carrying bulky supplies into their destination.
Plus, the simple yet classic look of these thinly wrapped herbal creations adds an artistry to any practice session.
5 – Gum Wrappers
Gum wrappers are one of the most commonly used substitutes for rolling papers in making cigarettes.
This substitute is found everywhere and usually come in packs that can be stored to last a few weeks, depending on how often you smoke.
Gum wrappers work best for people who don’t have access to paper or don’t want to spend extra money to buy special rolling papers.
To roll a cigarette using a gum wrapper, remove the wrapper from the gum and open it up so there is an even amount of material on both sides.
Place your desired tobacco fillings inside and roll like a traditional cigarette.
Gum wrappers do not burn evenly like traditional rolling papers, so it is important to keep an eye on the cigarettes until they’ve finished burning.
In conclusion, there are many options when it comes to substitutes for rolling papers.
Each one has its pros and cons, but all of them will help you enjoy your smoking experience without relying on traditional rolling papers.
Whether you’re looking for something that tastes better or just something a bit more creative, these substitutes will give you an alternative way to enjoy your favourite herbs.
No matter what type of substitute you use, it is important to pay attention to the material and construction of the product.
Make sure it won’t come apart easily and consider adding a filter if necessary.
All in all, have fun when experimenting with different alternatives and don’t forget to stay safe.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is rolling paper?
Rolling paper is a paper used to roll cigarettes and other forms of tobacco.
It is typically made from wood pulp, hemp, flax, or rice.
What are the 5 best substitutes for rolling papers?
The 5 best substitutes for rolling papers are corn husks, banana leaves, thin card stock, thin cigar wraps, and dried out tobacco leaves.
Are rolling papers bad for you?
Smoking in general is not recommended due to its potential health risks.
Rolling papers are not necessarily bad for you, but they can be used to roll cigarettes which may be associated with certain health risks.
Carrie is a food writer and editor with more than 15 years of experience. She has worked for some of the biggest names in the food industry, including Bon Appétit, Food & Wine, and Martha Stewart Living.
As the Editor in Chief of IntroChicago.com, Carrie oversees all of the content on the site. She also manages the team of contributing writers and editors, who help to create delicious recipes, helpful tips, and informative articles that you’ll find on the site.
A native of the Chicago area, Carrie is passionate about all things food. She loves trying new restaurants and experimenting with new recipes in her kitchen. She’s also a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, so she knows a thing or two about food!