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CBD Salve Recipe for Pain Relief [Updated 2023]

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I’m going to skip all of the himming and hawing for this post and get right to the point:

Muscle and joint pain sucks. CBD salve can help.

I don’t know anyone who doesn’t get achy every now and again, and many people in my world suffer from things like chronic pain and arthritis. That’s why this year, I’m gifting this pain-relieving salve to everyone I know.

There’s another reason that I’m choosing this over holiday gifts. It’s the easiest thing you can possibly make.

After you infuse the oil, it’s a matter of melting 3 ingredients in a makeshift double boiler, adding essential oils, and pouring the mixture into containers.

You can literally do it on Christmas Eve and you’ll be everyone’s favorite Cannabis elf.

CBD Salve Recipe for Pain Relief

As an added bonus, CBD salve is a great way to open the conversation up around Cannabis in your family or community. It’s fully legal (in most states), so you can gift it at work and give it to grandma.

In order to whip up a big batch of this simple and easy CBD Pain Relief Salve, I used my Nova Decarboxylator and a Magical Butter MB2. (I used to use the MBM but now I prefer the Ardent FX because it decarbs and infuses all in one machine). With about 15 minutes of prep, straining, and clean up, I was able to make enough CBD infused coconut oil for 16 of these gift-sized CBD salves.

cbd pain relief essential oils

Buying CBD Flower for Salve Making

cbd pain relief recipeI’ve been using Sacred Smoke Herbals for almost a year now and tested salves using their buds. Their flower is high quality, affordable and is organically grown. I smoke it, vape it and put it in edibles and topicals that I use every day.

Highly recommended if you don’t already have access to high CBD or CBG flower. You can go here and get 15% off your order using the code WAKEANDBAKE.

cannabis recipes

CBD Salve Recipe Notes

  • Use high-quality essential oils. I tried three batches of this recipe with cheap essential oils because they were what I could find and it didn’t have the same kind of kick that the final batches did.
  • You can make each salve between 200-400mg of CBD depending on how much infused coconut oil you use and the potency of your plant material.
  • You can use infused or non-infused olive oil in this CBD salve recipe or can sub all of the olive oil for coconut oil.
  • If you use a full cup of CBD coconut oil for the recipe, the resulting salve will be a bit firmer when cooled. You can also add more beeswax if you’d like a firmer salve.
  • All in all, it cost me about $8 each to make 16 of these that were about 200mg CBD each.

CBD Salve Recipe

This recipe makes 4 – 2oz containers of pain-relieving CBD salve that ended up being 200-400mg of CBD each (see notes). Use the dosage calculator to figure out the dosage of your salve.

pain relief cbd recipe


1/2 cup CBD Infused Coconut Oil

1/2 cup Olive Oil (can be infused to make the salve stronger or you can use a full cup of CBD infused coconut oil)

4 Tablespoons Beeswax

80 drops each of:

  • Eucalyptus Essential Oil (I use this one)
  • Clove Essential Oil (I use this one)
  • Peppermint Essential Oil (I use this one)
  • Black Pepper Essential Oil (I use this one)
  • Ginger Essential Oil (optional…this one can be a bit pricey so you could add more of the other oils to keep costs down)

You can use more drops or less as desired but this was the sweet spot when we tested using these oils.

aura cacia essential oils


Make the CBD Infused Coconut Oil

  1. Decarboxylate 14g high CBD flower in an Ardent FX Decarboxylator or using your preferred method for decarbing CBD. If using the Ardent Nova, run the cycle once and then let cool for 30 minutes before running a second cycle.
  2. Infuse 2 cups of coconut oil with decarbed CBD using a Magical Butter MB2, the crockpot method or whatever method you love. (As I mentioned above, I now prefer to use the Ardent FX because it decarbs and infuses all in one).
  3. Strain CBD plant material from the oil.

Make the Salve

  1. In a double boiler, or makeshift double boiler, over medium heat, combine:
  2.  Once melted, add 80 drops each of:
    • Eucalyptus Essential Oil (I use this one)
    • Clove Essential Oil (I use this one)
    • Peppermint Essential Oil (I use this one)
    • Black Pepper Essential Oil (I use this one)
    • Ginger Essential Oil (optional…this one can be a bit pricey so you could add more of the other oils to keep costs down)

5. Stir to combine and pour into 4 – 2 oz containers.

6. Cool. Cover. Label.

When you make this recipe, let me know how it went in the comments. I hope you love it! (If you do and you want to learn more about the health benefits of Cannabis, check out The Cannabis Coaching Institute)!

With love,



Corinne Tobias

My name is Corinne Tobias and I’m the creator of this site that is all about cannabis and health (and having a good time combining those things!). Since 2013, I’ve helped millions of people on their cannabis journey and have been featured in publications like High Times, Merry Jane, Jezelbel, Westword, and Vice.

57 thoughts on “CBD Salve Recipe for Pain Relief [Updated 2023]”

  1. Is 80 drops each of essential oil correct? I’ve been making salve for quite a while and have never seen this kind of eo quantity. Is it more like 8 drops?

  2. Hi Corrine, love this want to make.. Just wanted to check.. Can I use organic coconut MCT instead of whole coconut oil? Will it still solidify to a balm?
    Thanks with much love!

      1. Hi Corrine,
        I tried with the mct oil and your standard recepies, omitting the ginger oil..
        As long as its kept in a cool dry place. Its a dream to work with. I double strained so no chunkies. And it’s a dream to massage in. Better than any voltaren for gout etc. I’m trialling with different oils for pmt cramps, rose geranium..
        And arnica and tea tree for deeper skin healing. Excited to lean more!
        Thank you so much for the inspiration! I am able to help many without the worry of silly Australian drug testing. ?

  3. Hi Corinne
    What temp do you add the essential oils to avoid them just evaporating off?
    CBD decarb in the oven ….240 for 60 minutes?
    Thanks heaps,

    1. I add them when the mixture is still warm, but I haven’t tested the exact temp. 240 for 60 should do okay, but you may have some CBD loss and some CBDa in the mix (not necessarily a bad thing). I hope that helps! xoxo – CT

  4. Hi Corrine,

    I read the recipe and initially, you call for making 2 cups of infused oil, but your recipe only uses 1 cup. Why not write the recipe for making the salve from all the oil?

    The recommended levels of essential oils also seems high. Higher than any recipe I’ve ever seen. You mention a “sweet spot” how did you arrive at that amount. It’s almost 5 tsp of them and sounds over the top. I’m a rank amateur and I’m curious.
    Thank you

    1. Not everyone wants to make that much salve, so you can adjust the recipe as needed.

      And as for the oils, that was the amount that tested best (we started with 1/4 the amount and tried several brands of oil and increased and tested different brands from there) so that’s what I decided to publish. Again, if it’s too much using whatever oils you choose, you can cut down on the EO’s, but it won’t have the same effect as the one we tested.

      I hope that helps! xoxo- CT

      1. Have you ever used CBD isolate in this recipe? Love this recipe been experimenting and formulating with isolate and it’s done wonders for me and my place with various issues.

  5. I made this salve today. I am going thru opiate withdrawal after 18 years with an infusion pain pump. My muscles ache deeply, this salve is AMAZING. Pain level at a 7-8 and very hard to move. I took a bath and applied the salve after and 30 minutes later I cleaned the kitchen. I’m keeping most of what I made to help me thru this. I infused both oils. Thanks Corrine, I learned to micro dose from you I appreciate what you do.

    1. Thank you so much for the love! I really appreciate the kind words and am SO glad that microdosing and the salve have been helpful. My heart is HUGE right now! xoxo – CT

    1. I haven’t tried it with this one yet, but I used my old salve recipe for “lady times” and it worked well. I imagine this formula is going to be a game changer. Let me know if you try it! xoxo – CT

      1. Hi guys, I made the initial recepies and then when I needed to test.. I had cramps.. So I added some rose geranium and orange oil. Even rosehip for my skin as its my stretch mark zone..
        I was a amazing cure!
        It has prompted me to learn more of aromatherapy and its powers with terpenes etc.
        Thank you Corrine!

  6. Good afternoon! I am currently decarbing 35 grams of 16% CBD herb. By my calculations from your dosage calculator, that’d be 466mg per 1/2cup serving – using 6 cups of coconut oil. Does this seem especially high to you? Just making sure I don’t mislabel it. I’m so excited to make this and gift it for Christmas presents!! Thank goodness for the Ardent Nova and Magic Butter machine!!!!!

  7. Love your site! I see that 80 drops of each essential oil was not a typo. I am curious if there is a therapeutic/pain relieving purpose to the amount or if it is more about a desired scent. Any chance you could elaborate a bit? Thanks!

    1. It’s a little bit of both. It smells amazing, but that combo of oils creates a warming sensation that helps with the overall relief. We tried it with less and this was the ratio that gives the most effect without being ridiculously expensive or smelling too strongly. If you need to omit something, I’d go with the ginger or try infusing your oil with fresh ginger and peppercorns. I haven’t tried this yet, but read others who have. let us know if you try it! xoxo – CT

  8. I made the salve recipe using the 80 drops each except for the ginger , the health food store was out, and i needed to make this. I did reduce the beeswax to 2 tablespoons. Next time will try the 4 tablespoons to see the difference in thickness. I had just processed a batch of infused virgin coconut oil with my magic butter machine. I process full spectrum hemp for cbd. Using the MBM calculator I processed this batch at 1250mg per oz. yes you read it right. I normally process at 500mgs. per oz. but the pain in my hand from arthritis and an injury was at about a 8 and if moved wrong was off the chart. This salve does a better job than just my 500mg infusion oil. With in a few minutes of applying it I could fell a reduction of the pain. I could close my hand ,wrigle my fingers and twist the wrist with a pain level of about 1 to 2. I do need to apply every few hrs but That is ok. I am also going to make a few jars using the 500mg per oz that I make to see if there is much difference between the 2 different strengths of cbd. ( I buy my hemp from a local grower who owns a nursery. I buy by the pound as I process cbd for pets. But this was for me.)

    1. I love it with more beeswax as well. From my recent experiments, 4 Tablespoons was great and I’m going to try 6 next for people who want to use it on their hands and have a less “greasy” salve. Keep me posted on your experiments! xoxo – CT

  9. Corinne!

    Thank you so much for this recipe. I just finished a batch for my dear friend and myself for the holiday season. I live outside of Denver and we are both musicians (particularly pianists) and music therapists so our wrists and forearms tend to get quite sore after a long practice session or work day! I have made some of your recipes before (notably the edible whipped lube (; ) and I have been very impressed so I’m looking forward to testing this out!

    I didn’t have the essential oils on hand that you mentioned so I used different parts of some blends, mainly Joy, Valor, Peace & Tranquility, and Ylang Ylang. It is still cooling but it already smells soothing and healing!

    Thanks again and keeping fighting the good fight for this amazing herbal health benefit!

  10. Hi there-I made this for my daughter, who is a gymnast with often-sore muscles. However, I did something bad to my foot running yesterday, and woke up HOBBLED. As in, could barely walk to the car to take the kids to school this morning. When I got back I thought, “What the heck? I’ll put some of that CBD salve on it. Can’t hurt!” After one application, there was noticeable improvement in the pain level, and I could put more weight on my foot. I’ve now applied it five times over the course of the day, and i can walk with almost no pain! I’m still going to take it easy because I am injured, but at least I can function. Thank you!

    Of note: I used 28 grams of CBD, because I followed your recipe for CBD oil and just noticed this recipe calls for half. However, I also did not decarb twice as I forgot that point-only once. For whatever that’s worth. And, the copious quantities of essential oils that others have asked about create a warming effect that I find quite soothing without being irritating. Great recipe, thanks again!

  11. I made this today- sort of! I could not find all of the essential oils. I did get the peppermint and clove oil, but the store only had a huge bottle of the ginger so I passed on it. I did have rose oil so used that. I put the 80 drops each in the mix. It smells lovely. You can’t smell the pot at all. Were the other oils to add to the medicinal properties, or just the aroma? Thanks for the recipe!

  12. Do you think it would make a difference by adding THC to this recipe? Does it help with the pain too or is just the CBD enough? Thank you!

    1. I love it with THC. I’ve been testing different blends these past few weeks and feel like it’s even more effective if you have access to high THC material. It seems to have more of a muscle relaxing effect (but i have zero data to back that up 😉 xoxo – CT

    1. It decarbs *almost* all the way in the first cycle. To get the extra 5%, you have to hit it twice. It’s up to you whether or not you want to wait or not. I’ve done them both and it’s really not a noticeable difference.

  13. I made a double batch using black tie cbd, cbd infused coconut and cbd olive oil. I used 28g of cbd, 1c each infused oil. I ended up with approximately 21 oz of salve but am having a hard time getting an accurate per oz cbd total with the calculator (I’m bad with the math even when this easy). Can you show how you used it on the recipe?
    Also, everything comes out green – how do you make non-green salves, etc? My salve is light green, not creamy tan/yellow colored.
    Thank you!

  14. I hope all goes well with your infusion! Addiction is rough. Stay strong! Good luck! I’m a hemp farmer and love hearing how it help others!

    1. They do vary and so do the strengths of various oils. Instead of trying to give exact measurements that may make your salve to strong or too weak if you use different oils, I’d rather you use your nose and do your own testing to find a formula that works best for what you’re using. Those measurements are specifically for the oils that I used. Does that make sense?

  15. If you use lighter oils – you get a lighter salve. I do not use Olive oil as it comes out too green. I use sunflower oil or Sweet almond oil. But any light oil will work.

  16. Hi Darlene, I use 2 ozs. beeswax, 1/2 c. infused coconut oil, 1/2 c. shea butter, 1/2 cocoa butter, 1/2 c. infused grapeseed oil, 2 tablespoons jojoba oil, 2 tablespoons infused MCT oil, 2 tablespoons glycerin tincture for my base then add my essential oils. Refrigerate to harden then whip. Last night I made a new batch with kokum butter instead of cocoa butter because I was out, it feels just as nice, but I’ll have to see if I like it as well in a few days. Good luck.

  17. Finally tried this recipe. I used menthol, eucalyptus, lavender, and camphor as my essential oils, but used a heavy hand in them as suggested. It works wonderfully. My grandma has nueropathy, severe foot pain, and this gave her relief that she has never had before.

    Thank you Corinne!!

  18. Joseph Wayne Thompson

    the smell of the ginger and black pepper are off putting and not at all pleasant, I’ve decreased the ginger and black pepper by 10 each and added 20 drops of camphor

  19. Is your recipe calling for 2 cups or 1 cup of total oil using 14 g of CBD? I’m really anxious to make your recipe and want it to be correct!!

    1. Hey Diana!

      To make the CBD infused Coconut Oil, you will combine 14g of decarbed CBD and 2 cups of coconut oil.

      For the salve, you will be using 1/2 cup of CBD infused oil, and 1/2 a cup of olive oil.

      I hope this helps!

      Reach out to [email protected] if you have more questions!

      -Maddie (Team Wake + Bake)

  20. Hi Corrine
    Great website and recipes.. Just wanted to make sure people understand that each essential oil has its own safety Dilution percentages. ( Tisserand Young) edition book is the foremost respected author who most if not all health professionals use when formulating recipes. For Example
    Eucalyptus 20%
    Clove 0.6%
    Peppermint 5.4%
    Ginger 4%
    Add up all the carrier oils and beeswax then multiply the proper safety dilution percentage.
    8oz’s (1cup) plus approx 2 oz’s beeswax (1 Tbs is approx 1oz) .
    10oz Total x 28 grams (1oz) = 280 grams
    Now find the total percentage of essential oils you want in your recipe 3% is standard safe % for adults and 5% is usually the highest recommendation for continuous use. Always do a skin test. Kids and the elderly may require less than 3%.
    280 grams x 3%= 8.4 grams total
    280 grams x 5%= 14 grams total
    Now find out the safety dilution % of each oil.
    Eucalyptus 280 grams x 20% = 56 grams
    Clove 280 grams x .6% = 1.68 grams
    Peppermint 280 grams x 5.4= 15.1 grams
    Ginger 280 grams x 4% = 11.2 grams
    Now you how much you can use safely. We know we can’t go past the total EO % of 3% for example = 8.4 grams
    8oz oil
    2 Oz beeswax (4:1 ratio of oil to beeswax is recommend for a firm salve)
    Eucalyptus 3 grams
    Clove 1 gram
    Peppermint 2 grams
    Black Pepper 1 gram
    Ginger 1.4 or 1 gram
    Total EO @ 3% dilution = 8 or 8.4 grams
    Highly recommended 1% dilution of Vitamin E. 280 grams x 1% = 2.8 ( this is not a preservative but will help keep your recipe from going rancid)
    Rule of thumb
    30 drops = 1 gram approx
    When using cannabis THC or Cbd add the following for a greater effect/ synergy
    1) Copaiba
    2) Black pepper
    3) Cinnamon
    4) Rosemary
    5) Hops
    6) Basil
    7) Oregano
    This list above work like cannabinoids like THC and Cbd and work to enhance each other by the Terpenes they share beta caryophyllene working with the CB2 receptors thru out your body. This will help with pain receptors and inflammation and more.
    Lastly For Pain recipes add natural pain relievers like Menthol, Camphor, Capsaicin, Lemongrass.
    As you can see that essential oils are very potent and should be used with the upmost care and respect. Always dilute .
    Hope this helps
    Great site!

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