Do Aperol Spritz have a lot of sugar?

Quick Answer

Aperol Spritz do contain a moderate amount of sugar, mainly from the Aperol liqueur which provides some sweetness to balance the bitterness. A standard 3oz Aperol Spritz made with 2oz of prosecco, 1oz Aperol and 1oz soda water contains around 7g of sugar. This is a bit less than a can of coke (39g) but more than a glass of dry wine (around 1g). The amount of sugar can add up if consuming multiple Aperol Spritz in one sitting. Those looking to reduce sugar may opt for a lower sugar alternative to Aperol, add less Aperol to the spritz or balance it with extra soda water. Overall, while Aperol Spritz do contain sugar, it is not an excessive amount, especially if enjoyed in moderation and accounted for in a balanced diet.

Looking at the Sugar Content of Each Ingredient

Let’s take a closer look at the sugar content of each ingredient that goes into an Aperol Spritz:


– Aperol is an Italian aperitif liqueur that provides the signature orange flavor and sweetness. It contains about 11% sugar content (110 grams of sugar per liter).

– A standard 1oz (30ml) serving of Aperol contains about 7g of sugar.


– Prosecco is an Italian sparkling wine that forms the bubbly base of the spritz. Dry styles of prosecco generally contain very little sugar, around 0-1 grams per glass.

– The small amount of sugar in prosecco has minimal impact on the total sugar content.

Soda Water

– Soda water contains zero sugar or calories. The bubbles add a refreshing element but do not contribute any sweetness.

Total Sugar in a Standard Aperol Spritz

– A typical 3oz Aperol Spritz is made with 2oz prosecco, 1oz Aperol and 1oz soda water.

– Given a 1oz Aperol contains around 7g sugar, a standard spritz made with this ratio provides around 7g of total sugar.

– This is a moderate amount – less than a regular soda but more than unsweetened beverages. The sugar adds balanced sweetness to offset the herbal bitterness.

How Does the Sugar in Aperol Spritz Compare?

To put the sugar content of Aperol Spritz into context, let’s compare it to some other popular beverages:

Beverage Sugar per serving
Aperol Spritz (3oz) 7 grams
Dry white wine (5oz glass) 1 gram
Coke (12oz can) 39 grams
Sweet white wine (5oz glass) 5-8 grams
Beer – regular (12oz) 5-15 grams
Hard seltzer (12oz) 2-5 grams

As the table shows, a standard Aperol spritz contains:

– Much less sugar than a soda like coke
– About the same as a pint of beer or sweet wine
– Slightly more than a serving of dry wine or hard seltzer

So while Aperol does contain sugar as an ingredient, the amount is moderate in the context of other alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages. Those watching their sugar intake can be mindful of consumption, alternate with low-sugar drinks or adjust the proportions as needed.

Does the Sugar Content Matter?

When considering the sugar content of Aperol spritz, a few factors should be kept in mind:

Nutritional Profile

– Aside from sugar, the overall nutritional profile of a spritz is low in calories, carbs, protein and fat

– The alcohol provides most of the calories – around 100 calories in a standard serving

– While sugar adds sweetness, it makes up a relatively small percentage of the total calories

Consumed Infrequently

– Aperol spritz are often consumed in moderation at occasional social events, not as a daily beverage

– The sugar and calorie content is less of a concern for infrequent consumption

– Having the occasional spritz to enjoy is unlikely to have negative health effects

Accounted for in Diet

– The sugar and calories can be incorporated as part of a balanced diet

– Adjusting other food intake and activities can help account for the occasional indulgence

– As part of an overall healthy lifestyle, a few spritz are not problematic

So for most people enjoying Aperol spritz in moderation, the sugar content should not be a major concern, especially if accounted for in a balanced diet and active lifestyle. However, those monitoring sugar intake for health reasons should be aware of the sugar content to make informed dietary choices.

Tips for Lightening Up Aperol Spritz

If you want to reduce the sugar content of Aperol spritz, here are some tips:

Use Less Aperol

– Since most of the sugar comes from the Aperol, use less than the standard 1oz – try 3/4oz or 1/2oz

– Top up with a bit more prosecco and soda to keep the balance

Use Lower Sugar Aperol Alternatives

– Some lower sugar aperitif options include Campari, Cappelletti, Luxardo Bitter Bianco

– For a DIY approach, add a dash of orange liqueur to dry vermouth or wine

Add More Soda Water

– Increase soda water to 2oz or more to dilute and lighten up the sweetness

– Maintain the 1:2 ratio of Aperol to prosecco for optimal balance

– Sparkling water or club soda can also be used

Use Extra Dry Prosecco

– Opt for the driest style of prosecco possible, labeled as extra dry, brut or extra brut

– Avoid richer, fruitier styles labeled as dry or demi-sec

Garnish with Citrus Fruits

– Add lemon or orange wedges or wheels to complement the citrus notes

– Provides extra flavor balance without adding sugar

Add Bitter Liqueurs/Syrups

– Small amounts of Campari, Cynar or Angostura bitters can enhance bitterness

– Bitters help balance perceived sweetness and round out flavors

So in summary, there are easy ways to adjust an Aperol spritz to reduce the sugar content for those who want a lower sugar option. With some simple tweaks and substitutions, you can easily achieve a lighter, less sweet spritz profile.

Health Effects of Sugar in Alcoholic Drinks

While Aperol spritz contain a moderate amount of sugar, some ready-to-drink cocktails and mixers can contain very high levels. Understanding the health impacts can help make informed choices:

Empty Calories

– The calories from sugar in mixed drinks provide empty calories without nutritional value

– This can contribute to excess calorie intake leading to weight gain over time

Blood Sugar Spikes

– High sugar alcoholic drinks can cause rapid spikes and crashes in blood sugar

– For people with diabetes or pre-diabetes this can be concerning

Fatty Liver Disease

– Heavy consumption of sugary cocktails may increase risk for non-alcoholic fatty liver disease

– The combination of alcohol and sugar can drive excess fat accumulation in the liver

Tooth Decay

– Sugar interacts with bacteria in the mouth promoting erosion of tooth enamel

– Some cocktails with extremely high sugar may increase dental problems


– The combination of alcohol and sugar can exacerbate next day hangover symptoms

– Sugar contributes to dehydration while electrolyte imbalances can cause headaches

So while the occasional cocktail is fine, heavily sweetened alcoholic drinks should be minimized, especially for those with health conditions affected by sugar.

Should You Avoid Aperol Spritz Entirely?

For most healthy adults, there is no need to avoid Aperol spritz entirely due to the sugar content. Here are some factors to consider:

Have in Moderation

– Enjoying Aperol spritz occasionally or in moderate quantities is unlikely to cause harm

– The combination of alcohol and sugar is not ideal, but moderate intake is not a major concern

Account for in Daily Calories

– The calories and sugar can be incorporated as part of your daily allotment

– Adjust intake of other foods and beverages to account for spritz calories if needed

Stay Hydrated

– Make sure to adequately hydrate before and after drinking spritz

– Add extra soda water to help dilute and reduce dehydration

Mindful If Health Conditions

– Those with diabetes, fatty liver disease or hypertension should be more mindful of sugar and alcohol intake

– Check with a doctor if uncertain about suggested limits for your health

Avoid Frequent Heavy Consumption

– Drinking multiple heavily sugared alcoholic drinks daily or regularly may cause health issues

– Heavy intake of any cocktail or alcohol can have negative effects

So for most people, there is no need to remove the occasional Aperol spritz entirely. With mindful consumption and accounting for the sugar content, it can be enjoyed as part of an overall healthy lifestyle.


Aperol spritz contains a moderate amount of sugar, primarily coming from the Aperol liqueur. While not excessive, the sugar content is higher than dry wines and spirits. Consuming multiple spritz in one occasion can add up in terms of sugar and empty calories. However, enjoyed occasionally and in moderation, Aperol spritz can be part of a balanced diet for most healthy individuals. Those wanting to reduce the sugar content can adjust the proportions, use lower sugar alternatives or add extra soda water. For heavy drinkers or those with medical conditions affected by sugar, caution is advised when consuming sugary cocktails. But for the average person, the sugar in the occasional Aperol spritz is not a major health concern.

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