CBD Edibles vs. CBD Oil: How Do They Compare?

Over the last several years, the cannabis market has truly taken off in a big way across North America. Canada recently legalized marijuana nationwide, and more states in America are jumping on board with each passing year. Of course, a few have yet to follow suit. Even in states where marijuana has yet to become legal, though, CBD pharmacies and dispensaries are popping up with a vengeance.

According to the 2018 Farm Bill, hemp and marijuana are now essentially two entirely different matters. Because of this, CBD extracted from hemp is acceptable in areas where marijuana itself is still a taboo subject. That means the hemp-derived CBD industry is sure to thrive and continue to grow regardless of how each state’s lawmakers feel about marijuana. The rising number of CBD products on the market also leaves quite a few people wondering whether the best alternative is CBD oil or edibles containing this incredibly valuable extract.

Digging a Little Deeper

Distributors make CBD oil by extracting cannabidiol from hemp or marijuana plants. Cannabidiol is one of the main cannabinoids in marijuana and the primary one in hemp. Unlike THC, CBD doesn’t create the typical high for which marijuana is so famous. Once CBD oil manufacturers extract CBD from the plant, they mix it with other compounds, such as carrier oils. This makes it more viable and aids in the preservation process. People generally consume CBD oil by placing a few drops under their tongues or mixing it into drinks, foods, and other products.

CBD edibles, on the other hand, are consumable items infused with CBD oil. As the name indicates, you get the benefits of cannabidiol in these products by eating or drinking them. Though you can make your own edibles at home using CBD oil, these tasty treats come already prepared, packaged, and ready to enjoy.

Both edibles and oils offer ample benefits. Each has its own unique set of advantages and drawbacks. In many cases, those distinct differences are the deciding factors in determining which option is best for each individual. Understanding the variations and weighing them against one another is the key to figuring out which one might work best for your needs.

As we know, CBD has exploded over the last few years. However, now CBG has started to make the headlines as well. But what is CBG? Hemp contains compounds known as cannabinoids. The two most commonly known are CBD and THC. However there are other, much harder to extract compounds found in hemp, one of these being CBG. Unlike CBD, which has a relatively low affinity for cannabinoid receptors and acts through indirect interactions with the endocannabinoid system. CBG is thought to elicit its therapeutic effects directly though interaction with receptors in the brain. Research is relatively sparse when it comes to CBG due to it being so new. But there are many exciting early studies linking CBG to a whole host of potential therapeutic uses.


When it comes to variety, edibles are the clear frontrunners. If you’re looking for CBD products, you’ll find edibles in virtually every form imaginable. Brownies, cookies, muffins, cupcakes, and gummies are only a few of the possibilities. Savory snacks, beverages, and a long list of other options are available as well. At the same time, the selection continues to grow. CBD can be added to almost every food or drink you might like.

CBD oil offers a bit less diversity. Though different flavors are available, you won’t find nearly the same assortment of options as you will with edibles. Still, you can easily purchase CBD oil and use it to make your own edibles and infused beverages. In essence, this gives you an endless variety of alternatives.


For those hoping to reap the benefits of CBD, this is probably the least important consideration. It’s certainly worth mentioning, though. Since edibles come ready to eat, all you have to do is take one out of its packaging and pop it in your mouth. CBD dosages are already premeasured in edibles, so there’s no guesswork involved. Using CBD oil and determining the right dosage isn’t overly difficult, but it requires a little more effort on your part. Of course, some might say that’s not necessarily a negative point.


Edibles and oils offer the same effects, but a few significant differences enter the mix when it comes to the consumption method. Since they’re in liquid form and consumed by placing them under the tongue, oils are absorbed directly into the bloodstream. This means they work faster than edibles. They usually take effect within 30 minutes or less, but for some people, feeling the full effects may take as long as an hour.

When you consume edibles, they have to go through the digestive process before entering the bloodstream. Because of this, they don’t act quite as quickly. You may have to wait as long as two hours for them to take effect. Patience is a virtue, but if you’re using the best CBD to treat chronic pain, anxiety attacks, or other conditions, a couple of hours might seem like an eternity.

Method of consumption directly impacts the bioavailability of CBD, or how much of the substance is actually left for your body to use once it’s consumed. Vaping is one of the most effective methods of taking in CBD considering it has a bioavailability rate of about 50 percent. This isn’t an option for everyone, though. Taking CBD oil sublingually is the next best thing since this approach leaves a bioavailability of 30 to 40 percent. For edibles, the rate is roughly 10 to 20 percent depending on the amount of CBD in the product. In short, you’re likely to get more benefits for less with CBD oil as compared to edibles. However, the number of terpenes present in the product you are using will also affect this. Terpenes help cannabinoids like CBD to pass from the blood to the brain and therefore will increase the amount of CBD that reaches our brain, which will determine how strong the effect is. You can actually purchase terpenes themselves from and take them alongside your CBD oil or edible, should you wish.


This is a convoluted topic with several variables in place. Prices for edibles and oils vary from one state or city to the next, and CBD vendors have plenty of freedom when it comes to setting their own price points. Generally speaking, CBD oil is somewhat less expensive than edibles when compared milligram for milligram. Edibles may appear to cost less, but keep in mind, determining the quality and amounts of CBD in the products may be difficult. Along those same lines, the quality and potency of the CBD and its source will impact the cost as well. That being said, there are often deals and discounts to be had – you just need to know where to look. You can find coupons for Lazarus Naturals online at to save some money on the wide variety of products that they have on offer.

Bottom Line

CBD offers numerous benefits from treating anxiety and PTSD to alleviating pain and insomnia. Both edibles and oils have plenty of strong suits in their own rights, but they also have certain downsides. You’ll find more variety with edibles than oils, but you can also make your own assortments with oils. Edibles are more convenient than oils for many people, but your needs may be a bit different.

Oils definitely act more quickly, and you don’t need as much to feel the same effects. Still, small portions of edibles might be a little less expensive in the short-term sense. Consider your own needs and expectations, and compare those with the advantages of each alternative to make the best decision for your unique circumstances.


Award-winning writer, blogger, social media consultant and charity campaigner. Social Media Manager for BritMums, the UK's largest parent blogging network Freelance clients include Firefly Communications and Save the Children UK. Works with brands on marketing projects. Examples include Visit Orlando, Give As You Live, Coca-Cola and Kodak. Cambridge Law graduate with many years experience working across three sectors in advice, media relations, events, training and project management. Available for hire at affordable rates.

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