No Rolling Paper? Try These Nine Alternatives

Sideways black gift bag with black-and-white striped tissue paper

Everybody reaches the last paper sometime. Even those who prefer joints and smoke every day – those people you’d think always have a generous stash of papers in one of the kitchen cabinets – run out of rolling papers now and then. Usually at the least convenient time: like when two feet of snow have fallen in the last 24 hours and they’d need a snowmobile to get to a headshop or convenience store. In situations like that the issue becomes one of finding or creating alternative ways to enjoy your cannabis. In this post, the team at the 710 Pipes in Denver examines eight rolling paper alternatives.

So you’re snowed in, House of the Dragon is about to start and you don’t have any rolling papers, your preferred method of enjoying cannabis. What to do? Well, for starters you’re in the right place because we’ve got 8 great suggestions on tap. So calm down, take a breath, and check out the following list. We’re sure you can make use of at least one, and maybe several of the following suggestions.

Ye Olde Bong

If you’re a true cannabis connoisseur and have been for some time you no doubt have a bong stashed away somewhere. Even if joints are your preferred method of copping a buzz you likely have a standard bong or heady glass you use for parties, if for no other reason than bongs are a faster and more convenient way to share the joy. So dig it out, clean it up, and have at it. If, by some quirk of nature, you’re the only cannabis aficionado in Colorado without a bong, there’s a good chance you have one of our next rolling paper alternatives handy.

A Glass Pipe

The palm-sized glass pipe has been a reliable buzz delivery vector for as long as any of us have been around. It’s super simple, highly effective, easy to use, and extremely portable (not that you’re going anywhere with all that snow outside). Where they come up a bit short when compared to bongs is that the hit is going to be pretty rough with no water to filter it. Then again, you’re a joint lover so you’re used to having your tonsils toasted.

Tissue Paper or Gift Wrap

When we say “tissue” we don’t mean the stuff that you blow your nose into. We mean that thin paper that is often used as a packing material for clothing items and the like. This type of paper is nice and clean and will burn easily. However, it is slightly thinner and will burn a little faster than rolling paper, so you need to be aware of that. Rolling a tissue paper joint is going to take some practice and once you get one that’s usable be careful you don’t burn your fingers when smoking it.

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Chewing Gum Wrapper

Sticks of chewing gum always come wrapped in paper. The challenge is finding the right kind. You don’t want to use the stuff that has a thin layer of foil fused to one side. You want a single layer of white paper. Granted, stoners are not known for chewing gum but you may have some lying around somewhere that you bought a year ago and never used. The gum won’t be any good but the paper will still be useful.

Notebook Paper

Some people advise using book paper to roll joints instead of standard rolling papers. We’re not going to advocate burning books for any reason. Besides, once AI renders all digital content unreliable in a year or so those paper books are going to re-emerge as the only reliable source of information. Instead of burning printed books, try using empty pages from a spiral-bound notebook. It’s a little thicker than regular rolling papers, and like rolling joints with tissue paper it’s going to take some practice to nail it, but it will do the job in a pinch.


If by some chance you happen to have cigarettes available you can remove the tobacco and refill the empty paper tube with herb. There are just a couple of things to keep in mind. First, cigarette paper is very fragile, so you need to be careful when you’re trying to remove the tobacco. We recommend pressing in on the cigarette and gently twisting it back and forth until all the tobacco has fallen out. Second, if the cigarette has a filter you might want to remove it because it will kill most of the taste and some of the aroma of the weed. It’s also likely to prevent some of the THC from getting through.

An Aluminum Foil Pipe

If you can’t find a cigarette, notebook, gum wrapper, or packing tissue anywhere you can always revert to the tried and true aluminum foil pipe. You won’t find them in a pipe shop but over the years countless people have used aluminum foil pipes to get their buzz on. Just rip off a few inches of foil, wrap it around a pencil or straw, fashion a bowl at the end, and poke some holes in the bottom of the bowl with a toothpick. Load the bowl, remove the pencil or straw, and spark it up. Just be aware of the downsides. First, the foil is going to get hot fast. And second, unless you place a screen at the bottom of the bowl you’re going to inhale some product.

A Hot Knife

Now we’re getting into desperation territory. But if you don’t have any of the above available to you, you can always use a couple of knives to cook your cannabis. It’s easy to do by just heating the tips of two knives over the stove and then placing some weed onto one of the hot tips and squeezing it with the other hot tip. A decent cloud of smoke should result that you can then (carefully) inhale. We can’t emphasize strongly enough the need to be careful if you choose this method. Make sure you use knives with wooden or plastic handles that will not conduct the heat and make sure you keep your face a safe distance from the hot knife tips when inhaling.

An Apple Pipe

If all else fails and you have an apple available, never fear, all is not lost. The apple pipe has saved many a stoner from having to watch their favorite movies in an unaltered state. There is one caveat, however. If you want the apple pipe to work you will need some aluminum foil. That said, making an apple pipe is easy. Take something relatively thin and long like a pencil and bore a hole from the top of the apple to the center. Then bore another hole at an angle from the side of the apple with the holes joining together at the center. Use some aluminum foil to create a bowl with a short stem and place it into the hole on the top of the apple. Fill the bowl, light the weed, and inhale through the hole in the side of the apple.

The Bottom Line

Sooner or later every joint fan finds his or herself scrambling for rolling papers. Usually there is no easy way to obtain a pack of papers quickly. When such dire circumstances descend upon you don’t despair. Simply employ one of the methods described above and you’ll be back in stoner paradise before you can say “Whoa!”

Check Out 710 Pipes’ Online Smoke Shop

Make sure you’ve always got a viable backup to rolling papers on hand by perusing our online smoke shop and picking up some heady glass or other high-quality cannabis consumption device. Or stop by one of our brick-and-mortar shops.

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