Touted for its health benefits, CBD tea is growing in availability and popularity. It tends to have a pleasant taste that resembles regular tea. But, like any tea, it can use a boost of flavor. Infused with lemon and cinnamon, this cup is refreshing, relaxing, and flavorful. It's a simple way to brew a better-tasting and more effective cup of CBD tea from a prepared blend.
CBD tea is known for potentially relieving anxiety and pain among other ailments. Also called hemp tea, it may offer medicinal benefits to some people, though the extent of that is going to depend on the tea and the individual. Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of the active compounds found in cannabis plants. It is not tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) which produces the psychoactive high associated with marijuana—a different plant than hemp, which is used for the majority of CBD teas.
If you're hoping to maximize the effectiveness of the cannabidiol compounds in a CBD tea bag, you'll want to add fat. The CBD molecules cling to fats, which helps your body process them. Adding cream, milk, or a similar "fat" to your cup of tea maximizes the benefits you get from drinking it.
Types of CBD Tea
CBD is typically blended with other ingredients which are normally found in tea. These include varieties of true teas (e.g., green or black tea) as well as herbs and spices that are common in tisanes like chamomile, ginger, mint, and turmeric.
Some manufacturers add the actual hemp plant to the tea bag. These have a noticeable cannabis fragrance. Others use another form of CBD, but it must be water-soluble. Simply adding CBD oil to a cup of tea will not work because water and oil don't mix, so the beneficial compounds will not be extracted into hot water. Alcohol-based CBD tinctures may work, though.
CBD teas also vary in strength, which is measured in milligrams (mg). Some CBD teas, such as those from Buddha Teas have 5 mg of CBD per tea bag while other companies like The Brothers Apothecary have 62.7 mg of CBD per tea bag. In the CBD world, a single serving is often referred to as a dose, referring to its potential medicinal benefits. Tea does not offer the accurate dosing of other CBD products.
Buying CBD Tea
When shopping for CBD tea, look for "full-spectrum" and "industrial" hemp, and ensure that it's water-soluble. Since the tea affects everyone differently, it's likely best to start with a low dosage tea. Also, if you're looking to drink the tea to relax, keep in mind that tea leaves have caffeine, so choose a caffeine-free herbal blend instead.
Gather the ingredients.
In a mug, add the honey, cinnamon stick, and lemon twist.
Add the tea bag and fill with hot water. Let steep for 3 to 5 minutes, according to the tea's recommended time (typically on the packaging or you can use suggested brewing times for the type of tea).
Remove the tea bag and add a splash of cream.
Serve and enjoy!
- Heat is required to activate the CBD molecules. Don't try a cold infusion or you will not get the full benefits. You can, however, chill a cup of tea after brewing it.
- The lemon peel adds an uplifting accent to the tea's flavor. Cut a twist or a 2-inch piece of lemon peel, trying to avoid as much of the white pith as possible.
- Keep the lemon peel and cinnamon stick in your cup and the flavors will slowly infuse as you drink without overpowering it.
- Don't replace the lemon peel with lemon juice if you're using a dairy product. The juice's acids may cause the milk or cream to curdle.
- Use another sweetener, such as agave nectar, simple syrup (plain or flavored), or regular sugar (or a substitute) instead of honey if you prefer.
- This recipe calls for honey and includes cream to create a delicious cup of freshly brewed tea. It works remarkably well with green teas (matcha powder teas are popular with CBD), as well as black teas, and most herbal teas, including chamomile and mint. You can certainly try it with other blends, too.
- Rather than cream, use dairy milk, coffee creamer, or dairy alternatives like almond, hemp, rice, or soy milk. Some people prefer a tablespoon of butter or coconut oil. Try to keep the fat content as high as possible: avoid "skim" and "lite" products if you want the most potent CBD tea.
- The legality of CBD remains uncertain in some states, however, the 2018 U.S. Farm Bill legalized industrial hemp, which contains CBD but no THC. Therefore, CBD teas are legal in most states if they come from industrial hemp plants, not the marijuana plant. Check with your state's laws to get the latest information.
- When buying tea, do some research so you know which plant the manufacturer uses. Most are upfront with this information and even provide third-party test results that you can review to ensure there's no THC in the tea.
- CBD is generally safe, however, just like herbal supplements of any kind, it can come with side effects and interactions. Check with your doctor before trying it, especially if you have health conditions or take prescription medications.
Shannon S, Lewis N, Lee H, Hughes S. Cannabidiol in Anxiety and Sleep: A Large Case Series. Perm J. 2019;23:18-041. doi:10.7812/TPP/18-041