Written by: Tim Edison

Updated: October 11, 2023

How Many Beers in a Bottle of Wine? [Simple Math Cheat]

Beer and wine divide so spectacularly across the word.

The most frequently asked questions by readers are: is one more calorific than the other? Is there a difference in the hangover? How many beers in a bottle of wine?

We compare the two drinks below to give some answers.

How Many Beers Equals a Bottle of Wine?

Just like beer, wine contains a wide variety of ABVs.

To ensure you are not exceeding the recommended amounts of alcohol you should follow guidelines to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

In countries like the United States, a 'standard drink' is considered an alcoholic beverage containing 14 grams of pure liquor.

That is 0.6 pure alcohol liquid ounces.  

This is what that means for your average beer, wine, or spirit:

  • A 12 ounce beer at 5% alcohol.
  • A 5 ounce wine at 12% alcohol.
  • A 1.5 ounce distilled spirit at 40% alcohol.

Using these official statistics from the US Government, it can be said that when it comes to units of alcohol:

12 ounces (355ml) of beer at 5% alcohol = 5 ounces (148ml) of wine at 12% alcohol

So, if we want to discover how many beers there are in a bottle of wine, all we need to do is work out how many 5 ounce glasses of wine we get from a bottle.

A standard wine bottle = 750ml (25.4 ounces)


A standard wine bottle = 25.4 / 5 = 5.08 glasses of wine

If a 5 ounce glass of wine = a 12 ounce beer, then:

A 12% ABV bottle of wine equals 5 beers (assuming they're 12 ounces @ 5% ABV).

Beer vs Wine: The Answer

At 'average' ABVs of 12% for wine and 5% for beer, one bottle of wine = 5 twelve ounce cans of beer.

But these days wine and beer can have anything but average ABVs

Wine can range from around 5% up to over 20% in alcohol by volume. 

Beer can range from around 3% to well over 10% ABV.

So, if this calculation is only good for average ABVs, how can you do it for yourself for any ABV? Thankfully, it's pretty easy and I'll show you how in the next section.

How to Calculate How Many Beers Are in a Bottle of Wine

Like I mentioned in the last section, our statement of there being 5 beers in a bottle of wine is only true if we have ABVs of 12% and 5%.

Therefore, we need an easy way to do this calculation for any ABVs.

Here's how:

  1. 1
    First, calculate the total units of alcohol for each of our drinks.
  2. 2
    To do this we multiply the total volume of drink (using ml) by the ABV. This answer is then divided by 1,000.
  3. 3
    Do this for both drinks.
  4. 4
    Finally, divide the wine answer by the beer answer. This gives us how many beers are equivalent to one bottle of the wine.

Let's do an example or two for it to make perfect sense.

Real World Example 1

How many Bud Lights (4.2% ABV) are in a bottle of a Jacob's Creek Shiraz/Cabernet (13.9% ABV)?

# of Units of Alcohol = ABV (%) x Volume (ml) / 1000

Bud Light = (4.2% x 355ml) / 1000

Bud Light = 1.5 Units of Alcohol per can

Jacob's Creek Shiraz/Cabernet = (13.9% x 750ml) / 1000

Jacob's Creek Shiraz/Cabernet = 10.4 Units of Alcohol per Bottle

To see how many beers equal a bottle of wine we need to divide wine by beer:

10.4/1.5 = 7

Therefore, 7 cans of Bud Light equals one bottle of Jacob's Creek Shiraz/Cabernet.

Real World Example 2

How many UK pints of Guinness (4.2% ABV @ 568ml) are the same as a bottle of Bollinger Special Cuvée Brut NV (12% ABV @ 750ml)?

# of Units of Alcohol = ABV (%) x Volume (ml) / 1000

Guinness = (4.2% x 568ml) / 1000

Guinness = 2.38 Units of Alcohol per Glass

Bollinger Special Cuvée Brut NV = (12% x 750ml) / 1000

Bollinger Special Cuvée Brut NV = 9 Units of Alcohol per Bottle

# pints equal to a bottle = 9 / 2.38

3.8 UK pints of Guinness equals one bottle of Bollinger Special Cuvée Brut NV

Beer Vs Wine

Several efforts have been made by scientists to study the perennial menace that is the hangover

It is difficult to understand the real cause but a lack of water in the body (dehydration) is thought to be a significant factor. It also thought to be caused by some of the by-products created during the fermentation or distillation process.

Most alcoholic drinks are said to contain congeners. Congeners are chemical by-products of fermentation that are thought to make hangovers worse. They are thought to appear more in darker drinks like red wine and bourbon.

The evidence is however ambiguous. Although certain dark spirits like bourbon do seem to produce a worse hangover, studies are inconclusive and ongoing.

Polyphenols found primarily in red wine (but white wine too) are thought to have health benefits but studies on this are ongoing too. Polyphenols are naturally occurring chemicals that come from grape skins.

Recommended: Why do wine bottles have punts in the bottom of them?

A little white wine is not so bad when it comes to calories, as long as you stay with the suggested serving size an average of 5 ounces. This implies that 5-ounce glass of white wine has 121 calories.

The calories vary significantly among the different types of wine. For instance, a 5-ounce glass of Chardonnay has 123 calories, while the same size glass of Riesling has 118 calories. The least caloric white wine is Muller Thurgau with 112 calories per 5-ounce glass.

Red wine has a higher amount of calories than white wine, with an average of 125 calories per drink.

A 5-ounce glass of red Zinfandel, for example, is a little higher than average, with 129 calories and a Cabernet Sauvignon is a little less than average, with just 122 calories. The lowest calories red wine is Gamay, with 115 calories per 5-ounce glass.

Regular beer is likely to add calories to your body compared to wine.  

On average, a 12-ounce glass of consistent beer, which is considered one drink, contains 153 calories. Beer calories vary for different brands.

A 12-ounce portion of Budweiser contains 146 calories, while the same quantity of Blue Moon contains 171 calories.

The beer that is believed to contain the highest amount of calories is the Sierra Nevada Bigfoot. It has 330 calories per 12-ounce.

Save Calories and Make It Light

Regular beer has the highest calorie quantity while a light beer has the lowest, with 103 calories per 12-ounce serving.

Bud Light is a slightly higher than regular, has approximately 110 calories per serving, while Miller Light is a little lower with an average of 96 calories per serving.

The most inferior calorie light beer choice is Budweiser Select 55. It has 55 calories per 12-ounce serving.

Before choosing which drink to take, a bottle of the booze, it may be credible to increase a general vision of what alcohol indeed ingested, known as ethyl alcohol or ethanol, is produced by fermenting grains and fruits.

The fermentation process requires yeast to break down the ingredients, subsequently creating juice.

Amusingly, beer is sometimes called a food related to its caloric content, offering seven calories per gram.

It holds an advanced calorie load compared to other nutrients like carbohydrate and protein which contains four calories per gram, though lower in calories compared to fat, providing nine calories per gram. 

Unlike the three macronutrients, it is not considered a proper food in a balanced diet. It is mostly associated with minimal nutrients necessary to source and nourishes the body.

Even though both wine and beer come with their pros and cons, the whole of liquor comes with its own set of cautions.

The general guideline for alcohol intake per day for men and women are limited to one drink. Exceeding the alcohol recommendation can have harmful consequences on the body.

Initial reservations are linked with the feeling of feeling high or drunk. Following high intake, both drinks may interfere with the appropriate function of the brain and probably the central nervous system.

Notwithstanding the alcohol levels, both can inhibit the liver’s ability to maintain blood sugar levels and interfere with proper nutrient absorption.

It is essential to stick to government advice to avoid long-term health consequences.

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About the Author Tim Edison

Tim started Wine Turtle way back in 2015.
These days he contributes to Wine Turtle (and other renowned wine publications) while continuing his wine education.
Tim's wine of the month is the Coates & Seely Reserve Brut NV (from Hampshire, England).

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