Nothing beats a good warm cup of tea while the weather outside is frightful. But what if your tea could go that little bit further and help you stay healthy, and relaxed?
There are lots of different cannabinoids in the cannabis plant and CBD is just one of them, but it’s the most easily accessible and legal option. There are many different ways to try CBD including vaping, oils, or even pillowcases. There is no right or wrong choice when it comes to starting CBD as different methods work for different conditions.
Tea is a great way to get a slow release of CBD into the system compared to oils or vaping, because it has to travel through the body before being released into the bloodstream. A lot of teas also contain different terpenes which may have health benefits. Terpenes are responsible for the smell of different flowers or fruits, such as limonene in lemons.
The CBD available in the UK has low trace amounts of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) which is responsible for the “high” feeling associated with cannabis. CBD is non-psychoactive so it won’t have the same effect. Many studies show it may be good for relaxation, stress, fatigue, pain relief, inflammation as well as anxiety. It may also be a powerful antioxidant and have antibacterial properties.
Shopping carefully when it comes to CBD is vital. Most reputable CBD tea companies will have lab tests, ingredient lists and details on where they source their products. It can be difficult to know how much CBD is in each tea, however. If you are new to CBD, tea is a fantastic, non-scary way to try it. It often has less of a strong hemp taste because of the other ingredients and can be easily incorporated into a pre-bedtime routine. After all, nothing beats a good cup of tea and a great book in bed.
How we tested
There are slightly less options for CBD tea and coffee in comparison to oils, and it can be difficult to see how much CBD is in each cup clearly. The companies that do offer CBD options, tend to offer a wide variety of different flavours to try so don’t be deterred if you find you don’t like the taste of one.
All of the teas in this round-up were tested by three people over the space of six weeks and each tea was sampled for a few days before reviewed. Each time, the only thing added to the tea was a little bit of honey. The teabags or strainers were left in the tea for around five minutes to release more of the flavour. The tea was generally consumed as part of an evening routine to help with relaxation and sleep.
The best CBD teas for 2021 are:
- Best overall – Gibson’s Goodology shiso tea and blueberry: £14.99, Gibsonsgoodology.com
- Best for colds or flu prevention – Onii CBD chai blend 12 biodegradable bags: £15.95, Xbrain.co.uk
- Best bedtime brew – Ethos rest organic hemp tea: £10.25, Ethos-cbd.com
- Best for period pain – Our Remedy period pick me up set: £32.49, Ourremedy.co.uk
- Best for digestion – Amma Life CBD tea: £10.79, Ammalife.co.uk
- Best for relaxation – Bio Bloom organic hemp tea glass jar: £18.90, Fortheageless.com
- Best for beginners – The Hemp Pantry organic hemp, turmeric and chai tea: £6, Thehemppantry.com
- Best for floral benefits – Honey Heaven detox CBD herbal tea: £19.60, Cbdvillage.co.uk
- Best for fun flavours – Rokit Tea CBD turmeric and ginger infusion: £16.99, Cbd.rokit-health.com
Gibson’s Goodology shiso tea and blueberry, 25mg CBD
Sometimes, only a cold brew will do. This was a strong favourite due to its incredibly fruity and natural taste. The flavours are very delicately chosen by a master mixologist and it shows in the sweet flavour of the blueberries perfectly paired with shiso tea leaves, which are a staple of Asian cooking and often used for their uniquely fresh flavour.
This is the perfect pick me up to pop in the fridge and while it’s delicious on its own, it’s even better with a splash of vodka in a homemade cocktail to liven up an evening. In its sophisticated packaging, this is a very easy entry point for those who are new to CBD.
Both blueberries and CBD are thought to be powerful antioxidants that can help prevent different diseases by soaking up free radicals roaming the body. The overwhelming taste was of blueberries, but it was fresh and natural rather than artificial. The aftertaste of the tea leaves gave it a refreshing twist, and it was easily drinkable. There are three different blends in the range, including jasmine tea with rhubarb, and green tea with passionfruit. If you have a clear favourite, like us, you can always invest in a three-pack of one flavour or give them all a go with a mixed case.
Onii CBD chai tea blend, 12 biodegradable bags
Best: For cold and flu prevention
There is something wonderfully seasonal about this chai blend thanks to the ingredients of ginger root, cardamom and cloves. It has a beautifully spicy, yet sweet taste. Onii is an Irish brand sold exclusively through the online sports supplement store, X-Brain. It offers a lot of CBD per cup with 25mg in each brew.
Given that the colder weather often brings on colds, the fragrant blend of warming ingredients not only tastes nice, but has the potential to boost the immune system. The ginger root addition alongside CBD may help with circulation issues, making it a great winter warmer, while the cardamom contains a high amount of vitamin C. While most of the other teas in this round-up are designed to be made with just hot water, chai tea can also be made using milk, or plant milk, depending on your preferences. However, a straight water brew can help the flavours to develop. The biodegradable teabags are a nice touch for anyone concerned about plastic waste.
Ethos rest organic hemp tea, 50g loose leaf
Best: Bedtime brew
There is something quite fun about measuring out the perfect amount of loose leaf tea in a strainer. It felt like we were professionals when we measured the right amount, letting it steep before stirring. Although it is worth noting that using loose leaf CBD tea takes slightly longer than any tea bag versions. This Ethos Rest blend combines chamomile, passionflower, valerian and hemp to create the perfect pre-bed brew. We found the tea helped as part of a routine to unwind after a long day, before getting a good night’s sleep.
Ethos grows the hemp for the teas organically in Ireland and it contains CBD along with other cannabinoids. As there are so many different flowers contained in the blend, the tea doesn’t have an overwhelmingly strong taste of hemp which can be off-putting to some. Instead, the delicate chamomile flowers – which are known for their calming properties – help to give it a sweeter taste.
There are two other teas in the range which have different botanicals. The first, “active” (£9.30, Ethos-cbd.com), combines hemp with green sencha for an energising alternative to coffee with more of an earthy taste. The second, “balance” (£9.30, Ethos-cbd.com), combines lemongrass, apple, rosehip, tulsi and hemp for a fruity taste. The teas rely on different terpenes to add a little extra to the hemp. Terpenes are the compounds in plants that are responsible for the smell, and certain terpenes will work together to boost CBD benefits such as limonene found in citrus fruits or lemongrass.
Our Remedy period pick me up set, 12 tea bags
Best: For period pain
There is nothing worse than period pain, especially when it’s cold. Our Remedy offers an impressively eco-conscious tea that can be tailored to your time of the month. The period pick me up box offers its adaptogenic wellness tea bags along with a CBD oil of your choosing. You can pick between a zesty mint and clary sage blend for mood swings, or a citrusy lavender and orange version for soothing. The tea is also available without CBD on its own.
You can select the amount of CBD that you would like included in the box, from 500mg to 1,000mg. It’s always best with CBD to start slow before increasing the dose if needed. Adding the CBD in allows you to be in control of how strong you make the tea and also, how full-flavoured it is.
In this tea, the herbal helpers include goji berries, rosehip, Schisandra and raspberry leaf. This gives the tea a fruity taste which is not overpowering. Raspberry leaf is thought to soothe cramps and ease bloating, while goji berries may help with anxiety.
Amma life CBD tea, 3% CBD, 20 teabags
Best: For digestion
Amma Life calls this “the most relaxing cup of tea in the world.” And it may just be right on that. This tea had a delicate, floral flavour which was surprisingly light. It offered a great, mess-free alternative to the loose leaf versions that was easy to take on the go. While the flavour was subtle, it wasn’t overpowering, making it a great choice as a post-meal drink. We found it helped to settle the stomach especially after a big meal, too.
It’s caffeine-free which is another reason why it’s a better alternative to the post-meal cappuccino. If the taste is too subtle for you, then it also comes in a mint flavour which has a fresh yet sweet taste. We preferred the CBD version without the mint, which came down to personal preference. Although the tea is mild, it did benefit from a little bit of honey being added if for no other reason than a post-dinner sweet tooth craving. We found that it helped our digestion and felt calmer afterwards too. If you have searched for an evening drink without caffeine to avoid staying awake all night then this is the perfect option. It’s also worth noting that the bags are biodegradable too, so it won’t keep you awake worrying about single-use plastics either.
Bio Bloom organic hemp tea glass jar, 50g loose leaf
Best: For relaxation
Bio Bloom is a great choice for any CBD connoisseur looking to try other cannabinoids. As well as containing CBD, the tea also contains CBDa. CBDa is the precursor to CBD but it’s thought to be great as an anti-inflammatory, and for anxiety. The reusable glass jar is an environmentally-friendly touch that makes it great for gifts, too. It has a mild hemp taste which is best sweetened with a touch of honey. As it’s a loose leaf tea, it will need a strainer, which is easy to get a hold of on the high street.
The flavour was subtle but it definitely perked up with a drop of honey in it. It isn’t overly hemp-y which is great as it can often be a bit OTT in tea. We definitely noticed that we felt relaxed and more comfortable afterwards, which makes it great for the post-work wind down.
The Hemp Pantry British organic hemp and turmeric chai, 50G
Best: For beginners
The packaging for the Hemp Pantry makes it a great choice for a gift. The tea came in small tins which can be refilled as many times as you need. So it’s not just a present, but environmentally-friendly too, plus the bag that the tea arrives in is compostable. There is something very wintery about chai which makes it a firm favourite when the weather gets a bit colder. This tea has a strong spicy flavour which comes from the combination of chai, ginger, turmeric and cassia bark.
Cassia bark is also referred to as Chinese cinnamon because of where it grows, and it’s similar to cinnamon but a lot stronger. Cassia bark is thought to be good for kidney disorders, menopause or joint pain while also being a great option if you’re feeling the cold or slightly under the weather. It tastes best with hot water after leaving it to develop for five minutes, and we found that it helped us to feel not just relaxed, but as if we could breathe a little easier. This may be down to the antibacterial properties and spicy kick from the ginger.
This is a great entry point for those unsure about CBD or hemp teas. There is a slight hemp taste to it although it accounts for 50 per cent of the blend. The other half is made up of the different spices including liquorice root and orange peel. It is unclear if there is any CBD in this tea but it can be a good start if you are looking to get used to the taste of hemp before branching out.
Honey Heaven detox CBD herbal tea, 300mg CBD
Best: For floral benefits
Honey Heaven offers three different teas including “detox”, “energise” (£15, Honeyheaven.co.uk) and “good night” (£16.66, Vapourzlounge.co.uk). Detox is a blend of Hungarian herbs and organic Irish hemp. It’s a colourful mix of blue elderflowers, rosehips and apple pieces mixed with spices, ginger and cinnamon. It has a sweet taste with a warming kick of cinnamon and apple. Despite the largely floral content of the teas, they don’t taste overly flowery. The spices help to ground the flavour, making it a subtle taste rather than overpowering. The loose leaf tea works well in a strainer, left for five to 10 minutes, then sweetened with a dash of honey.
Despite this being best for detoxing, we felt it calmed us down before bed when we were more stressed than usual. This may be because of the combination of CBD and elderflower. Elderflower tea contains the flavonoid quercetin which is thought to have powerful antioxidant properties which can help to repair cells from stress. All three teas in the range contain interesting mixes of flowers such as lavender, hibiscus or hawthorn flower, and spices such as ginger or cinnamon.
Rokit tea CBD turmeric and ginger infusion, 18 tea bags
Best: For fun flavours
CBD and turmeric is a winning combination as both are thought to be powerful antioxidants, and have potent anti-inflammatory properties. Turmeric is a bright yellow spice usually used in cooking but it has recently been used in coffees and teas for its potential health benefits. Despite its association with strong curries, it has a mild, almost creamy taste when mixed with milky coffee or tea. The ginger helps to give the tea a spicy kick which doesn’t allow the taste of the turmeric or CBD to be overpowering.
This an easy to drink, good replacement for caffeine drinks in the afternoon, and there’s 5mg of water-soluble CBD in every brew. The water-soluble CBD allows it to be mixed into the tea, unlike oil which floats on the surface. If turmeric and ginger are not for you, Rokit offers a range of alternative teas with CBD, including matcha and chamomile. Although, the matcha packs an energetic punch that makes it better suited for the morning. There’s a biodegradable option that can be composted, while Rokit also offers CBD tea and coffee pods options.
The verdict: CBD tea
It was hard to beat Gibson’s Goodology on flavour. The versatile cans fit neatly into the fridge where they can be enjoyed immediately. The blueberry and shish tea was a clear winner among the three different flavours. It was nice to see a non-intimidating CBD option in such sleek packaging. A great runner-up was the Honey Heaven detox tea with its combination of rare and unusual floral blends. The flavour was impressively drinkable and subtle despite so many different flowers. It was also quite pretty with all the different colours.
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