How many calories are in a can of Pabst Blue Ribbon Hard Coffee?

Pabst Blue Ribbon Hard Coffee is an alcoholic coffee beverage made by Pabst Brewing Company. It combines coffee with malt liquor to create a unique drink. With the rise in popularity of hard seltzers and ready-to-drink cocktails, more alcohol brands have been experimenting with new styles of drinks. Pabst jumped into the mix in 2020 with their take on boozy cold brew coffee.

But like any alcoholic beverage, one important consideration is calories. People watching their calorie intake may be wondering, how many calories are in a can of Pabst Blue Ribbon Hard Coffee?

Nutrition Facts for Pabst Hard Coffee

Each 16 fluid ounce (473 ml) can of Pabst Hard Coffee contains the following nutrition facts:

Calories 198
Carbohydrates 8 g
Sugar 8 g
Protein 1 g
Fat 0 g

So a single can of Pabst Hard Coffee contains 198 calories.

This calorie count is moderate compared to other alcoholic beverages. For example, an average 12 ounce can of beer contains around 150 calories. A 5 ounce glass of wine averages around 120 calories. And a 1.5 ounce shot of 40% ABV liquor contains around 100 calories.

So at 198 calories per 16 ounce can, Pabst Hard Coffee lands right in the middle calorie-wise. It does contain a bit more calories and carbohydrates than most light beers or hard seltzers, which are typically under 100 calories per 12 ounce serving.

Calorie Breakdown

Nearly all of the calories in Pabst Hard Coffee come from the alcohol content. The drink contains 5% alcohol by volume (ABV).

Alcohol contains 7 calories per gram. With 16 fluid ounces of 5% ABV beer, that equals just under 14 grams of alcohol. At 7 calories per gram of alcohol, that accounts for about 98 calories.

The remaining calories come from a small amount of carbohydrates, likely from added sugars or lactose from the dairy used to produce the beverage.

So in total, the 198 calories per can consists of:

  • 98 calories from alcohol
  • 100 calories from carbohydrates/sugars

This calorie ratio is typical for most malt beverages like beer, hard seltzers, and flavored malt drinks. The majority of calories come directly from the alcohol content rather than fats, carbs or proteins.

Calories Compared to Other Pabst Products

How does Pabst Hard Coffee compare calorie-wise to other products from Pabst Brewing Company? Here’s a look:

Beverage Serving Size Calories
Pabst Hard Coffee 16 oz 198
Pabst Blue Ribbon Beer 12 oz 144
Pabst Extra 12 oz 132
Pabst Light Beer 12 oz 99

Pabst Hard Coffee contains the most calories per serving compared to Pabst’s beers. The standard Pabst Blue Ribbon beer has 144 calories in 12 ounces, so the Hard Coffee is a bit higher even when accounting for the larger 16 ounce serving size.

However, the Hard Coffee has fewer calories than higher ABV products like malt liquor. For example, Colt 45 has 215 calories per 12 ounce serving.

So while Pabst’s Hard Coffee sits on the higher calorie end compared to the brand’s beers, it’s lower than many high alcohol malt beverages.

Strategies to Reduce Calories

For those watching their calorie intake, there are some strategies to reduce the calorie count when drinking Pabst Hard Coffee:

  • Drink over ice to dilute – Adding ice will water down the coffee and lower the overall calories per glass.
  • Split the can – Pour half the can into a glass, and seal the remainder to drink later. This cuts the serving size in half.
  • Alternate with non-alcoholic beverages – Drink a glass of water or zero-calorie beverage in between cans to reduce overall calories.
  • Account for calories in your daily intake – Fit the 198 calories per can into your calorie budget for the day.

Making adjustments like these can allow you to enjoy the Hard Coffee while managing calories.

Calories in Other Hard Coffee Brands

How does Pabst’s Hard Coffee compare to other spiked coffee beverages calorie-wise? Here’s a look at some other popular hard coffee brands:

Hard Coffee Brand Serving Size Calories
Pabst Hard Coffee 16 oz 198
High Noon Hard Coffee 12 oz 150
Primer Hard Cold Brew Coffee 11 oz 100
BLK Hard Cold Brew Coffee 11.5 oz 120

Pabst Hard Coffee is on the higher end for calories compared to other hard coffee brands. For example, a smaller 11-12 ounce can of High Noon, Primer or BLK hard coffee contains 100-150 calories compared to Pabst’s 198 calories per 16 ounce can.

However, this comparison is affected by the different serving sizes. Overall, most hard coffees range from 100-150 calories for a standard single serve can. So Pabst fits right into the typical calorie range.

Does Hard Coffee Contain More Calories Than Regular Coffee?

A common question around hard coffees is whether the alcohol significantly increases the calorie count compared to regular coffee.

The answer is yes – hard coffee does contain more calories than regular black coffee. Here’s a comparison:

Beverage Serving Size Calories
Pabst Hard Coffee 16 oz 198
Regular black coffee 16 oz 2

Regular black coffee only contains around 2 calories per 16 ounces, while Pabst Hard Coffee has 198 calories.

The additional calories come from the alcohol content. Plain black coffee only contains water and coffee beans, with minimal calorie impact. Alcohol adds a significant calorie load.

The amount of added sugar or dairy products also contributes more calories to hard coffee versus plain black coffee. But the alcohol makes up the greatest calorie differential.

Ways to Reduce Calories in Hard Coffee

While hard coffees contain more calories that regular coffee, there are some ways to reduce the calorie count if you want a lighter drink:

  • Choose a brand with less alcohol – Some hard coffees are 4% ABV rather than 5%. Less alcohol means fewer calories.
  • Select smaller serving sizes – Most brands offer single serve 11-12 ounce cans. Or limit yourself to half a 16 ounce can.
  • Add more coffee – Brew your own cold brew then mix in a splash of alcohol rather than drinking ready-made hard coffee.
  • Use sugar-free flavoring – Add zero-calorie vanilla or other sugar-free syrups.
  • Use non-dairy milk – Opt for unsweetened almond or oat milk to avoid the extra calories in dairy.

Making adjustments to your hard coffee beverage and preparation method can help enjoy the drink while limiting calorie intake.

Hard Coffee Nutrition Facts

To get a full nutrition profile, here are the complete nutrition facts for Pabst Hard Coffee and other leading brands:

Pabst Hard Coffee Nutrition Facts – 16oz can (198 calories)

  • Total Fat: 0g
  • Sodium: 15mg
  • Total Carbs: 8g
  • Sugars: 8g
  • Protein: 1g

High Noon Hard Coffee Nutrition Facts – 12oz can (150 calories)

  • Total Fat: 0g
  • Sodium: 10mg
  • Total Carbs: 4g
  • Sugars: 2g
  • Protein: 1g

BLK Hard Cold Brew Coffee Nutrition Facts – 11.5oz can (120 calories)

  • Total Fat: 0g
  • Sodium: 15mg
  • Total Carbs: 4g
  • Sugars: less than 1g
  • Protein: 1g

As you can see, the nutrition profiles of the leading brands are fairly comparable. They offer negligible fat, protein, and sodium. Total carbs range from 4-8g, with added sugars making up most of those carbohydrates.

So the main nutrition factor that differs is the calorie count, which varies based on the alcohol content and serving size. Overall the beverages provide a similar light nutrition profile.

Does Hard Coffee Have Carbs?

Looking at the nutrition facts, you may notice hard coffees contain a small amount of carbohydrates. So does hard coffee have carbs?

The short answer is yes, hard coffees do contain slight amounts of carbohydrates, ranging from 4-8g per serving.

These carbs are not coming directly from the coffee itself. Plain black coffee has almost no carbs or calories.

Instead, the carbohydrates can be attributed to:

  • Added sugar – Some hard coffee brands add sugar to sweeten and balance the flavor. Even 2-4g of added sugar per can would count as carbs.
  • Natural lactose – Brands that use dairy like cream contain small amounts of naturally-occurring lactose sugars.
  • Alcohol conversion – A very minor amount of carbs result from alcohol production during fermentation.

So while hard coffee is still a relatively low-carb beverage, the alcohol production process and added flavorings result in a small carbohydrate content.

Tips for Reducing Carbs and Calories

If you want to limit carbs and calories when drinking hard coffee, here are some tips:

  • Select unsweetened versions – Some brands offer unsweetened or “skinny” editions with less than 1g sugar.
  • Use non-dairy milk – Opting for oat, almond or coconut milk avoids lactose sugars.
  • Add zero-calorie flavoring – Use extracts, cinnamon, nutmeg or sugar-free syrups to flavor.
  • Dilute with water – Add ice or water to dilute the drink and lower calorie/carb concentration.
  • Size down – Stick to smaller 11-12oz cans or pour just 8-10oz into your glass.

Following one or more of these tips when making your hard coffee can help enjoy the drink while keeping calories and carbs in check.

Should You Consume Hard Coffee on a Low-Carb or Keto Diet?

Hard coffees do contain a small amount of carbohydrates, so an important question is whether they can be consumed on a low-carb or keto diet.

The answer is it depends. Here are some factors to consider:

  • Total carb count – Most hard coffees contain 4-8g carbs per serving, which can fit into a keto diet limit of around 20-50g daily.
  • Sugar content – Many keto dieters avoid added sugars, so check if the brand uses sugar.
  • Milk type – Using non-dairy milk avoids the lactose sugars in dairy.
  • Portion size – Stick to 11-12oz portions or less to reduce carbs.
  • Frequency – Occasional or limited intake may work, but daily drinks could add up.

Consuming the occasional spiked coffee, made keto-friendly with unsweetened coconut milk for example, can likely fit into a low-carb eating pattern for some people. But those following a strict keto plan may want to limit intake to avoid added carbs.

Making Your Own Hard Coffee at Home

To get full control over the carb and calorie count, making hard coffee drinks at home can be a great option.

Here is an easy recipe to make a customized keto-friendly hard iced coffee:


  • 1 cup freshly brewed cold brew coffee
  • 1 oz vodka or spirit of choice
  • 1 tbsp heavy cream or unsweetened non-dairy milk
  • Optional sugar-free flavor like cinnamon or vanilla


  1. Brew cold brew coffee concentrate and let chill in fridge.
  2. Fill glass with ice.
  3. Pour in 1 cup cold brew coffee.
  4. Add 1 oz vodka.
  5. Stir in heavy cream or milk.
  6. Add any zero-calorie flavors if desired.
  7. Enjoy your customized hard iced coffee!

Making hard coffee at home lets you control the ingredients. You can choose your preferred low-carb milk, zero-calorie sweeteners, and alcohol strength. This flexibility allows you to craft a low-sugar, low-carb hard coffee beverage.

Potential Health Concerns of Hard Coffees

While hard coffees can be low in carbs and calories, there are some potential health considerations:

  • Alcohol content – excess alcohol intake is tied to liver disease, cancers, mental health issues.
  • Added sugars – many brands add sugar, linked to obesity, diabetes, heart disease.
  • Sleep disruption – caffeine plus alcohol can impair sleep quality.
  • Dehydration – alcohol has a diuretic effect which can cause dehydration.

To mitigate risks, the Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend limiting alcohol to 1 drink per day for women and 2 drinks per day for men. Drinking water along with alcoholic drinks helps reduce dehydration.

As with any alcohol-containing beverage, hard coffee is best consumed in moderation as part of an overall healthy diet.

The Bottom Line

So how many calories are in Pabst Hard Coffee? Each 16oz can contains about 198 calories, mainly from the alcohol content. This gives it a higher calorie count than most beers or hard seltzers.

Compared to other spiked coffee brands, Pabst Hard Coffee sits on the upper end for calories per serving. However, the calorie count fits right within the typical range for most hard coffees.

Hard coffees also contain a small amount of carbohydrates, mainly from added sugars and natural lactose. Those limiting carbs can tailor ingredients and portion sizes to make a keto-friendly drink.

Overall, enjoying the occasional hard coffee can fit into most eating patterns. But limiting intake of the higher-calorie beverages, as with any alcohol, is advised as part of a balanced diet and lifestyle.

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