Is Crabbies Ginger Beer high in sugar?

Crabbies Ginger Beer is a popular alcoholic ginger beer made by Crabbie’s Alcoholic Ginger Beer Company. It has a sweet, gingery taste and is often consumed on its own over ice or used as a mixer in cocktails. However, some people wonder if Crabbies is relatively high in sugar compared to other alcoholic beverages. This article will provide a nutritional breakdown of Crabbies Ginger Beer and evaluate whether or not it is considered high in sugar.

Nutritional Facts for Crabbies Ginger Beer

First, let’s examine the basic nutritional facts for Crabbies Ginger Beer:

Serving Size

Each bottle or can of Crabbies Ginger Beer contains 12 fl oz (355 ml).


There are 153 calories in each 12 fl oz serving of Crabbies Ginger Beer.


Each 12 oz serving contains 17 grams of carbohydrates.


The majority of those carbohydrates come from sugar. Each 12 oz serving contains 16 grams of sugar.

Alcohol Content

Crabbies Ginger Beer contains 4.8% alcohol by volume. Each 12 oz serving contains 14 grams of alcohol.

So in summary, each 12 oz serving of Crabbies Ginger Beer contains 153 calories, 17 grams of carbs, 16 grams of sugar, and 4.8% alcohol.

Daily Sugar Intake Recommendations

To determine if 16 grams of sugar per serving is relatively high, we need to compare it to recommended daily sugar intake amounts.

Here are some standard sugar intake recommendations from health organizations:

  • World Health Organization (WHO): 25 grams or less per day for women, 36 grams or less per day for men
  • American Heart Association (AHA): No more than 25 grams (6 teaspoons) of added sugar per day for women, 36 grams (9 teaspoons) for men
  • USDA Dietary Guidelines: Limit added sugar to no more than 10% of total daily calories

For a 2,000 calorie diet, 10% would equal about 50 grams of added sugar per day.

So most experts recommend limiting added sugar intake to 25-50 grams per day depending on your gender and caloric needs.

Is 16 Grams of Sugar Per Serving High?

Given the recommended daily added sugar limits of 25-50 grams, having 16 grams of sugar in a single 12 oz serving of Crabbies would be considered relatively high by most standards.

Here is how the sugar content of Crabbies compares to other popular alcoholic beverages in a 12 oz serving:

Beverage Grams of Sugar
Crabbies Ginger Beer 16 grams
Smirnoff Ice 16 grams
Mike’s Hard Lemonade 32 grams
Bud Light Beer 6 grams
Miller Lite Beer 3 grams
Red Wine (Merlot) 1 gram
Vodka (Absolut) 0 grams

As you can see, Crabbies and Smirnoff Ice have similar amounts of sugar, while Mike’s Hard Lemonade has significantly more. By contrast, light beers and straight liquors like vodka are very low in sugar or sugar-free.

So while Crabbies doesn’t quite approach the high sugar content of other flavored malt beverages like Mike’s, its 16 grams of sugar per serving is still roughly 2-3 times higher than that of light beers.

Should You Be Concerned About Crabbies Sugar Content?

Whether or not Crabbies’ sugar content is concerning depends on your overall diet. Here are some factors to consider:

  • If you normally consume a low-sugar diet, a single serving of Crabbies could potentially send you over your daily added sugar limit.
  • If sugary drinks make up a significant portion of your regular caloric intake, substituting Crabbies for lower sugar options could help reduce your sugar consumption.
  • If you only drink Crabbies ginger beer occasionally while maintaining an otherwise healthy, low-sugar diet, then the sugar content may not be a major concern.
  • If you need to limit sugar for health reasons like diabetes or heart disease risk, you may want to avoid drinking full-sugar Crabbies ginger beer frequently.

In general, having a 12 oz serving of Crabbies here and there is unlikely to significantly affect your health. But regularly drinking multiple servings per day could potentially increase your risk for things like weight gain, blood sugar spikes, and dental problems if you exceed daily sugar recommendations. Moderation is key.

Tips for Reducing Sugar Intake from Crabbies

Here are some tips if you want to enjoy the ginger flavor of Crabbies while limiting sugar intake:

  • Dilute Crabbies with seltzer water for a lower calorie ginger beer spritzer.
  • Order Crabbies on the rocks and add extra ice to water it down.
  • Alternate each Crabbies with a glass of water to reduce overall consumption.
  • Stick to a set number of servings, such as 1 glass.
  • Avoid sugary mixers like juice, soda, or sweet liqueurs.
  • Use zero-calorie mixers like diet soda or unsweetened tea.
  • Switch to light beer or sugar-free liquor on some days.

Using these tips can allow you to keep enjoying the bold flavor of Crabbies ginger beer while cutting back on sugar intake.

The Verdict on Crabbies Sugar Content

To summarize, Crabbies ginger beer does contain a relatively high amount of sugar compared to most other alcoholic beverages besides flavored malt beverages. A 12 oz serving packs 16 grams of sugar, which equates to roughly half the recommended daily added sugar intake for women or around one-third for men.

While having an occasional serving here and there likely won’t cause harm, regularly exceeding daily sugar recommendations by drinking multiple Crabbies per day could potentially impact your health and waistline. However, using moderation and the tips above allows you to keep enjoying the taste of Crabbies while limiting sugar consumption. Overall, being mindful of your total dietary sugar intake from all sources is more important than obsessing over the sugar in a single ginger beer brand.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Crabbies or ginger beer good for you?

Ginger beer like Crabbies does contain some potential health benefits from compounds like ginger, which may help reduce nausea, inflammation, and pain. However, the high sugar content counteracts some of these benefits. Overall, plain seltzer water is likely a healthier choice. But Crabbies in moderation can still be enjoyed as an occasional treat.

Does Crabbies make a low sugar ginger beer?

No, currently Crabbie’s does not offer a reduced sugar or low calorie version of their alcoholic ginger beer. The original recipe contains 16 grams of sugar per 12 oz bottle. Consumers have requested they release a lower sugar product, but the company has not announced plans to do so yet.

Is Crabbies sweeter than beer?

Yes, Crabbies ginger beer contains significantly more sugar and is sweeter tasting than most beers. A 12 oz regular beer averages around 5-15 grams of carbs and sugar, while Crabbies has 17 grams of carbs and 16 grams of sugar. The sugar makes Crabbies taste sweeter than average lagers or ales. Only flavored malt beverages like hard lemonades tend to contain more sugar than Crabbies ginger beer.

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