On the Clock: How Long Do Edibles Stay Detectable in Different Types of Drug Tests?

Edibles, a popular method of consuming cannabis, are known for their potent and long-lasting effects. However, they also require careful testing because of how they are metabolized and stored in the body.

Understanding how long does edibles stay in your system and the various types of drug tests is crucial for users who might face drug screenings for employment, legal, or medical reasons. This article explores the detection windows for edibles in urine, blood, saliva, and hair tests.

Metabolism of Edibles

When cannabis is consumed as an edible, it is metabolized differently than when it is smoked or vaped. The active ingredient, THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), is absorbed through the digestive system and processed by the liver, where it is converted into 11-hydroxy-THC, a potent metabolite. This metabolite and THC are then distributed throughout the body and stored in fat cells, leading to prolonged detection times.

Urine Tests

Urine tests are the most common form of drug screening. Urine tests detect the presence of THC-COOH, a non-psychoactive metabolite of THC. If you are asking how long does edibles stay in your system, remember that for occasional users, THC-COOH can be detected in urine for up to 3-4 days after consumption. However, for regular or heavy users, edibles can be detected for up to 30 days or more, depending on factors such as body fat percentage, metabolism, and frequency of use.

Blood Tests

Blood tests measure the active presence of THC in the bloodstream. Since THC is quickly metabolized and distributed to the body’s tissues, it has a relatively short detection window. After consuming edibles, THC can be detected in the blood for up to 1-2 days for occasional users. For heavy users, the detection window can extend to a week or longer as THC accumulates in the body over time.

Saliva Tests

Saliva tests are commonly used for roadside testing and other immediate screening needs. THC can be detected in saliva within minutes of consumption and remains detectable for about 1-3 days after use. The detection window for edibles in the saliva is similar to that of smoked cannabis, but individual factors such as oral hygiene and the frequency of use can influence the results.

Hair Tests

If you are wondering how long does edibles stay in your system, hair tests provide the longest detection window, as THC metabolites are incorporated into the hair follicle as it grows. These tests can detect THC use for up to 90 days or longer, depending on the length of the hair sample taken. However, hair tests are less common due to their higher cost and the complexity of testing procedures. They are typically used in situations requiring a comprehensive history of drug use.


Understanding the detection windows for edibles in different types of drug tests is essential for individuals who consume cannabis and may be subject to drug screenings. Urine tests, blood tests, and saliva tests provide shorter detection windows, while hair tests can detect use over several months. By considering the frequency of use, dosage, body composition, and metabolism, you can better understand how long edibles might stay in your system.

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