What Is the Alcohol Content of Popular Beers?

Stop drinking beer in San Diego.

In San Diego, beer isn’t just a drink, it’s a lifestyle. With over 120 breweries, we’re often referred to as “the craft beer capital of America.” Whether you’re rocking out at a concert, catching a ball game, or lighting up the grill on a sunny Sunday afternoon, it’s likely someone will ask you, “Can I get you a cold one?”

But if you’re trying to limit your alcohol intake this summer, it might help to know exactly what’s inside that longneck bottle of suds you’ll be drinking.

Understanding alcohol content of beer

To figure out how much alcohol a beer contains, you can check out its alcohol by volume, or ABV. ABV is a standard measure, used worldwide, to let consumers know what percentage of a given beer is made up of alcohol. The higher the percentage, the faster you’ll become inebriated. By drinking beer with a low ABV, you may lower your risk of alcohol abuse.

Different beers have different alcohol content

In general, the majority of beer on the market has an ABV of between 4 and 6 percent. However, this does vary from brew to brew. To give you an idea of how alcohol content can differ between beers, here’s a sampling of some popular beers and their ABVs.

Budweiser Beer Alcohol Content

According to Beer Advocate, Bud Light is the top-selling beer in the United States. With an ABV of 4.2%, it falls squarely in the average range for alcohol content of beer. Regular Budweiser has a slightly higher ABV of 5%, and higher still is Bud Ice, at 5.5%. If you’re looking for a slightly less alcoholic version of Bud, you can try to get your hands on Budweiser Select 55, which is only 2.5%.

Corona Beer Alcohol Content

Nothing says summer in San Diego like enjoying a plate of fresh fish tacos, which are quite often accompanied by a cold bottle of Corona and a slice of lime. The classic Corona Extra has an ABV of 4.6%, while Corona Light has a bit less, with an ABV of 4.1%.

Ballast Point Beer Alcohol Content

This brewery got its start in San Diego and was partially responsible for launching the craft beer revolution in the region. However, if controlling your alcohol intake is important to you, their beers might not be your best bet. Their popular IPAs, like Fathom and Sculpin, have ABVs of 7% and higher.

Guinness Beer Alcohol Content

With its rich, burnt flavor and thick, foamy head, a pint of Guinness can be considered a meal in itself. While this stout falls within the average ABV range for beers, the percentage can vary depending on what continent you’re on. In the UK, Ireland, and continental Europe, Guinness only has an ABV of 4.27%. But in the US, Australia, and Japan, that ABV can jump up to 6%.

O’Doul’s Non-Alcoholic Beer

The vast majority of non-alcoholic beers aren’t necessarily alcohol-free; most of them still contain trace amounts of alcohol. O’Doul’s Amber, for example, has an ABV of 0.5%. If you’re looking to enjoy a cold beer without suffering through the unwanted side effects of alcohol abuse, this might be a good option for you.

You can live a sober life and still have a social life in San Diego

Drinking beer isn’t a requirement for having a good time this summer—or anytime. But if you find you need to drink more and more alcohol to enjoy yourself when you’re with friends, this might be a sign of alcohol addiction. Fortunately, help is available. With treatment studies, support groups, or medical interventions, alcohol abuse can become a thing of your past. Seek help if you need it. Give us a call at (858) 784-7867.