Adams began her career in television working with comedian Ernie Kovacs and talk show pioneer Jack Paar. Kovacs and Adams married on September 12, 1954, and remained together until his death in a car accident on January 13, 1962. They had a daughter, Mia Susan, who was also killed in a car accident (in 1982), on the same stretch of highway, at the age of 22. Kovacs was a noted cigar smoker, and Edie did TV commercials for Muriel Cigars. She remained the pitch-lady for Muriel well after Kovacs' death, intoning in a Mae West style and sexy outfit, "Why don't you pick one up and smoke it sometime?" Another commercial showed the alluring Adams singing, "Hey, big spender, spend a little dime with me." A Muriel cigar then cost a dime. Kovacs' network, ABC, gave Edie a chance with her own show, Here's Edie, but it was a one-season casualty. Edie made sporadic appearances through the decades on television, including on Designing Women.
Edie Adams married actor Marty Mills in 1964. He was the father of her son, Josh Mills, her surviving child. However, the marriage ended in divorce. Her most recent marriage was to noted trumpet player Pete Candoli, which lasted from 1972 until their separation in 1977. They finally divorced in 1989. They toured and performed together, with Candoli serving as her music director.
She starred on Broadway in Wonderful Town (1953) opposite Rosalind Russell, and in Li'l Abner (1956). She played the Fairy Godmother in Rodgers and Hammerstein's original 1957 Cinderella broadcast. She also played "Miss Olsen" in the 1960 film The Apartment. Adams is one of the few surviving headliners from the all-star movie, It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World, and in 2003, she joined actors Marvin Kaplan and Sid Caesar at 40th anniversary celebrations of the movie.