What is the Difference Between Oolong and Black Tea

The main difference between oolong and black tea is their production method. Oolong tea is made with partial oxidation by wilting the leaves in sunshine, whereas black tea is produced by crushing the leaves and exposing them for full oxidation.

Although both oolong tea and black tea derive from the same plant, there are numerous differences between these two types of tea leaves depending on their method of production.

Key Areas Covered 

1. What is Oolong Tea
     – Definition, Features
2. What is Black Tea
     – Definition, Features
3. Similarities Between Oolong and Black Tea
     – Outline of Common Features
4Difference Between Oolong and Black Tea
     – Comparison of Key Differences

Key Terms

Black Tea, Oolong Tea

Difference Between Oolong and Black Tea - Comparison Summary

What is Oolong Tea

Oolong is a type of tea that is made from the plant Camellia sinensis. We also call it traditional Chinese tea. Oolong tea uses dried leaves and leaf buds of Camellia sinensis. When making tea, oolong tea should be fermented for longer than green tea. There are also different flavors in oolong tea. There is a sweet and fruity flavor with honey aromas, as well as woody and thick flavors with roasted aromas. This flavor and aroma depend on the style of production.

Oolong Tea vs Black Tea

Oolong tea contains caffeine, which affects thinking and alertness. There are numerous benefits to oolong tea. People use oolong tea for obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, and autism. Manufacturers process oolong in different styles; in normal production, the leaves are rolled into long curly leaves. There is another style where the tea appears as a small bead with a tail. The most traditional way out of these two styles is the first one. Although oolong tea has a stronger taste than green tea, it is not as strong as black tea.

What is Black Tea

Black tea is a common type of tea made from Camellia sinensis. It contains caffeine and other stimulants and antioxidants. We can serve black tea as either a hot tea or a cool tea. Although it is served as cool tea, it must be brewed with hot water before cooling. A process called oxidation turns green tea leaves to a dark brownish-black color. In the process of oxidation, the tea leaves are exposed to moist and oxygen-rich air. Sometimes, the manufacturers sell black tea as herbal tea or a supplement. Most of the time, the supplement includes other herbs, vitamins, and minerals, as well.

Compare Oolong Tea and Black Tea - What's the difference?

Moreover, users of black tea gain many benefits. Black tea helps to energize, improves metabolism, improves heart health, and has possible anti-cancer effects. They also have a low tendency to get diseases like diabetes, high cholesterol, and kidney stones if they consume black tea every day. Nevertheless, drinking an excessive amount of black tea may cause health problems. This happens due to the caffeine consistency of black tea. Excessive use of black tea may cause some side effects like anxiety, headache, nausea, vomiting, nervousness, and restlessness.

Similarities Between Oolong and Black Tea

  • Oolong tea and black tea are from the Camellia sinensis plant.
  • You can enjoy oolong tea and black tea both hot or cold.
  • Moreover, oolong tea and black tea contain caffeine.
  • In addition, both oolong and black tea undergo oxidation. 

Difference Between Oolong and Black Tea


Black tea is tea produced by crushing the leaves fully to increase the oxidation, while oolong tea is tea made by wilting the leaves in the sunshine and bruising slightly to create half oxidation.


Although there are flavors in oolong tea, black tea does not have different flavors. Nevertheless, black tea has a stronger flavor than oolong tea.


Black tea has a darker color than oolong tea.

Caffeine Content

Oolong tea generally contains 35 to 60 mg of caffeine while black tea contains 130 mg of caffeine per 8 ounces.


The main difference between oolong tea and black tea is that oolong tea undergoes partial oxidation, whereas black tea undergoes full oxidation. Therefore, black tea has a stronger color and flavor than oolong tea.


1. “Oolong.” Wikipedia. Wikipedia Foundation.
2. Miller, Kelly. “Black Tea.” WebMD.

Image Courtesy:

1. “BZC Oolong tea leaf” By Iateasquirrel (CC BY-SA 3.0) via Commons Wikimedia
2. “Aromatic black tea in cup on table” By Marta Dzedyshko (CC0) via Pexels

About the Author: Gerandielle

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