Debunking Myths: Counting Hard Seltzer Calories in 2023

Counting your drinks and your calories? Hard seltzers might be on your radar. Let’s dive into the effervescent world of hard seltzer calories.

The Rise of Hard Seltzers

It’s hard to ignore the meteoric rise of hard seltzers in recent years. From barbecues to beaches, these fizzy drinks have become a popular choice for those looking for a refreshing and low-calorie alcoholic beverage. In fact, according to Nielsen market research, sales of hard seltzer have grown by 200% from last year alone.

The Perceived Health Benefits

Another factor driving the popularity of hard seltzers is their perceived health benefits. These drinks are often marketed as a healthier alternative to beer and wine due to their low calorie and sugar content. Many people believe that they can indulge in a few drinks without worrying about packing on extra pounds or derailing their fitness goals.

The Truth Behind Calorie Counts

However, when it comes to counting calories in hard seltzers, things are not always as straightforward as they seem. With so many brands on the market offering different flavors and alcohol contents, it can be difficult to know what you’re really consuming. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the calorie counts in popular hard seltzer brands and explore some tips for making informed choices when it comes to these trendy beverages.

What You Can Expect From This Article

So grab a can (or two) of your favorite hard seltzer, sit back and let’s dive into the truth behind those calorie counts!

What are hard seltzers?

Defining Hard Seltzers

Hard seltzers are the latest craze in the alcoholic beverage world, characterized by their low-calorie content and refreshing flavors. Unlike traditional beers or high-calorie cocktails, hard seltzers are a healthier alternative for those who want to indulge in an adult beverage without breaking their diet. The popularity of hard seltzers has skyrocketed in recent years, with many major brands jumping on the bandwagon and introducing their own versions of the light and bubbly drink.

A Brief History of Hard Seltzers

While they may seem like a new trend, hard seltzers have actually been around since the 1990s when a small company named “SpikedSeltzer” began producing them in Connecticut. However, it wasn’t until recently that they gained mainstream attention and became a popular choice for drinkers looking for a lighter alternative to beer or wine.

How Are Hard Seltzers Made?

Hard seltzers are made using a fermented sugar base that is mixed with carbonated water and flavorings. The sugar can come from various sources such as corn syrup or cane sugar.

Yeast is added to this mixture to begin fermentation which converts the sugar into alcohol. The resulting product is then filtered multiple times to remove impurities before being packaged into cans or bottles.

Ingredients Used in Hard Seltzer Production

The ingredients used in hard seltzer production vary from brand to brand but typically include carbonated water, malted barley, yeast, hops, natural fruit flavors or essences (such as grapefruit or raspberry), and sometimes even real fruit juice for added flavor. Some brands may also use artificial sweeteners as well as other additives such as preservatives or food colorings.

Now that we’ve covered what hard seltzers are, their history, and how they’re made, it’s time to take a closer look at the calories in these drinks. In the next section, we’ll dive into calorie counts for popular hard seltzer brands and explore how different flavors can impact calorie content.

Calorie counts in hard seltzers

When it comes to counting calories, hard seltzers are often marketed as the healthier choice compared to other alcoholic beverages. However, it’s important to note that not all hard seltzers are created equal.

Let’s compare some popular brands:

  • White Claw – 100 calories per can
  • Bon & Viv – 90 calories per can
  • Truly – 100 calories per can
  • Bud Light Seltzer – 100 calories per can

As you can see, the calorie count for one can of hard seltzer varies between brands. While some may only have a slight difference in calorie count, those extra few calories do add up over time.

Different flavors impact calorie counts?

In addition to brand variation, different flavors of hard seltzers can also impact calorie counts. It’s crucial to pay attention to serving sizes and the ingredients used in flavorings.

For example, a plain lime-flavored hard seltzer may have fewer calories compared to a more complex flavor like black cherry or peach. This is because flavorings typically contain added sugars or artificial sweeteners that increase the overall calorie count.

The impact of alcohol content on calorie count

The alcohol content in any alcoholic beverage will always affect its calorie count. Hard seltzers contain an average of 5% alcohol by volume (ABV), which is comparable to beer and wine.

However, most people tend to consume more than one serving at a time. A standard serving size for most alcoholic beverages is considered around 12 ounces.

Most cans of hard seltzer are 12 ounces, but some brands offer larger sizes. It’s essential to keep in mind that the more alcohol you consume, the more calories you’re consuming.

It’s important to note that while hard seltzers tend to be lower in calories compared to other alcoholic beverages like beer and cocktails, they still contain calories. Therefore, moderation is key when it comes to consuming hard seltzers or any alcohol for that matter.

The truth about “low-calorie” claims

How companies can manipulate serving sizes to make their products appear lower in calories

Have you ever noticed that some hard seltzer brands boast “only 100 calories per serving” but the can actually contains two servings? It’s a sneaky trick that companies use to make their products appear lower in calories than they actually are. By reducing the serving size, the calorie count also goes down, even though most people will end up drinking the full can. Another way companies manipulate calorie counts is by using smaller cans or bottles.

While it may seem like a good idea to choose a drink option with less volume, be sure to check how many servings are in each container and do the math yourself. You might find that those mini-cans of hard seltzer are actually just as caloric as regular-sized ones.

Importance of reading nutrition labels carefully

It’s important to remember that not all hard seltzers are created equal when it comes to calorie count. Some may be loaded with sugars or artificial sweeteners that increase their caloric value and impact your health negatively.

That’s why reading nutrition labels carefully is crucial when choosing your beverage of choice. When looking at a nutrition label, pay attention not only to the number of calories but also other nutritional information like total carbohydrates, sugar content, and alcohol percentage.

Remember that alcohol has its own set of calories separate from carbohydrates and sugars, so it’s important to take all factors into consideration. By taking a closer look at nutrition labels, you’ll be able to make informed decisions about which hard seltzers truly deserve their “low-calorie” claims and which ones might not be worth indulging in if you’re trying to watch your calorie intake or maintain good health.

Always read nutrition labels carefully and keep an eye out for sneaky serving size manipulations that some companies use to make their hard seltzers appear lower in calories than they actually are. As with anything, moderation is key, so choose your drinks wisely and enjoy them responsibly.

Alternatives to Traditional Hard Seltzers

The Search for a Low-Calorie Buzz: Options for Alcohol Lovers

While hard seltzers might be the hot new trend in low-calorie drinking, they’re not the only option for those who want to indulge without packing on the pounds. Light beer and wine spritzers are two popular alternatives that offer similar calorie counts with different flavor profiles.

Light beers come in many varieties and are available from most major breweries. These beers typically contain fewer calories and less alcohol than their regular counterparts.

Brands like Michelob Ultra and Bud Light have become staples among athletes who want to enjoy a cold one without sacrificing their six-pack abs. Wine spritzers are another low-calorie alternative to traditional hard seltzers.

These drinks combine wine with sparkling water or soda water, resulting in a refreshing and low-calorie drink that’s perfect for summer afternoons. They’re also customizable – choose your favorite wine varietal, add some fresh fruit or herbs, and top off with sparkling water for a delicious twist on traditional wine.

When You Need a Break: Non-Alcoholic Alternatives

Sometimes you just need a break from alcohol altogether – whether you’re driving, dieting, or just taking some time off. Luckily, there are plenty of non-alcoholic options available that won’t derail your caloric goals.

One popular option is kombucha – a fermented tea that’s rich in probiotics and other health benefits. Many kombucha brands offer fruity flavors that mimic those of traditional alcoholic beverages while remaining low in calories.

Another great choice is sparkling water with fresh fruit or herbs added for flavor. Simply muddle your favorite fruits or herbs (such as strawberries, mint leaves, or cucumber slices) at the bottom of your glass, then top with sparkling water for an effervescent drink that’s both refreshing and low in calories.

Whether you’re looking for an alcoholic alternative or a non-alcoholic option, there are plenty of delicious and low-calorie drink choices available. Experiment with different flavors and combinations to find the perfect drink for any occasion.


Summary of key takeaways regarding calorie counting in hard seltzers: When it comes to hard seltzers and calorie counting, the most important things to keep in mind are serving size, alcohol content, and flavor. Different brands and flavors can vary widely in calories, so it’s important to read nutrition labels carefully. Additionally, many companies will manipulate serving sizes to make their products appear lower in calories, so don’t be fooled by packaging.

Tips for making informed choices when choosing a drink option: To make an informed decision when it comes to choosing a low-calorie drink option, consider the alcohol content and serving size. Opt for light beers or wine spritzers if you’re looking for something alcoholic but still low in calories.

For a non-alcoholic option, try flavored sparkling water with a splash of juice or fruit-infused water. It’s worth noting that while counting calories can help you manage your weight and overall health goals, it’s not the only factor to consider.

It’s important to enjoy drinks (and food) in moderation and balance them with other healthy habits like regular exercise and plenty of sleep. While hard seltzers have gained popularity due to their perceived health benefits and low-calorie counts, the truth behind their calorie counts is more complex than many people realize.

By being aware of factors like serving size and alcohol content and reading nutrition labels carefully, consumers can make informed choices about what they choose to drink. Ultimately though, the most important thing is enjoying drinks (and food) in moderation as part of an overall balanced lifestyle.

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