What Alcoholic Drink Has The Fewest Calories

by Daisy

When it comes to enjoying alcoholic beverages while maintaining a calorie-conscious lifestyle, it’s essential to know which drinks are the least calorie-dense. Whether you’re trying to lose weight, maintain your current weight, or simply make healthier choices, understanding the calorie content of various alcoholic beverages can help you make more informed decisions. This comprehensive guide will delve into the calorie content of different alcoholic drinks and provide specific suggestions to help you enjoy your drinks responsibly without compromising your health goals.

Understanding Calories in Alcohol

Before we dive into specific alcoholic beverages, it’s important to understand where the calories in alcohol come from. Alcohol itself is calorie-dense, providing 7 calories per gram. This is higher than carbohydrates and proteins, which each provide 4 calories per gram, but lower than fats, which provide 9 calories per gram. Additionally, mixers and added ingredients in cocktails can significantly increase the calorie count of a drink.


Low-Calorie Alcoholic Beverages

1. Vodka

Vodka is one of the lowest-calorie alcoholic beverages available. A standard 1.5-ounce shot of vodka contains approximately 96 calories. Vodka is often consumed straight or mixed with low-calorie mixers such as soda water or diet tonic, making it a versatile option for those watching their calorie intake.


2. Gin

Gin is another low-calorie spirit. A 1.5-ounce serving of gin contains around 97 calories. Like vodka, gin can be paired with low-calorie mixers such as diet tonic water or soda water, which helps keep the overall calorie count low.


3. Tequila

Tequila is a popular choice for those looking to enjoy a low-calorie drink. A 1.5-ounce shot of tequila has about 97 calories. For a low-calorie cocktail, consider a tequila soda with fresh lime juice.

4. Whiskey

Whiskey, including bourbon, rye, and Scotch, contains approximately 105 calories per 1.5-ounce serving. Opting for whiskey on the rocks or with a splash of water can help you enjoy this spirit without adding too many extra calories.

5. Light Beer

Light beers are specifically formulated to be lower in calories than regular beers. Most light beers contain between 90 to 110 calories per 12-ounce serving. Popular light beer options include Bud Light, Miller Lite, and Coors Light.

6. Champagne

Champagne and other sparkling wines are generally lower in calories compared to other types of wine. A 4-ounce glass of champagne contains about 84 calories. Opt for brut (dry) varieties, as they have less sugar and fewer calories.

7. Dry Wine

Dry wines, including both red and white varieties, tend to have fewer calories than their sweet counterparts. A 5-ounce glass of dry white wine contains about 121 calories, while a 5-ounce glass of dry red wine contains around 125 calories. Examples of dry wines include Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Grigio, Merlot, and Cabernet Sauvignon.

Low-Calorie Cocktail Ideas

1. Vodka Soda

A classic vodka soda is a refreshing and low-calorie cocktail. Simply mix 1.5 ounces of vodka with soda water and a squeeze of fresh lime. This drink contains approximately 96 calories.

2. Gin and Tonic with Diet Tonic Water

A traditional gin and tonic can be made lower in calories by using diet tonic water. Combine 1.5 ounces of gin with diet tonic water and a wedge of lime for a drink that has around 97 calories.

3. Margarita on the Rocks

To make a lower-calorie margarita, skip the sugary mixers and opt for fresh ingredients. Mix 1.5 ounces of tequila with fresh lime juice and a splash of orange liqueur or a few drops of agave nectar. This version contains approximately 150 calories, compared to 300-400 calories in a typical restaurant margarita.

4. Whiskey Sour

A whiskey sour can be made lower in calories by using fresh lemon juice and a natural sweetener like stevia or a small amount of honey. Mix 1.5 ounces of whiskey with fresh lemon juice and a touch of sweetener for a cocktail with about 140 calories.

5. Champagne Cocktail

A simple champagne cocktail involves adding a few drops of bitters and a sugar cube to a glass of champagne. This elegant drink has about 100 calories per serving.

Tips for Reducing Calorie Intake from Alcohol

1. Choose Low-Calorie Mixers

Opt for mixers like soda water, diet tonic water, or freshly squeezed citrus juices instead of sugary sodas or pre-made mixers. This can significantly reduce the calorie content of your drinks.

2. Watch Your Portions

Stick to standard serving sizes to keep your calorie intake in check. A standard serving is 1.5 ounces for spirits, 5 ounces for wine, and 12 ounces for beer.

3. Skip the Sugary Cocktails

Many popular cocktails, such as piña coladas and daiquiris, are loaded with sugar and calories. Choose simpler drinks or ask for less sugar when ordering at a bar.

4. Stay Hydrated

Drinking water between alcoholic beverages can help you stay hydrated and reduce your overall alcohol consumption. It also helps to prevent overindulging and the associated calorie intake.

5. Limit High-Calorie Snacks

Alcohol can increase appetite and lead to overeating, especially of high-calorie bar snacks. Choose healthier options like vegetable sticks or nuts instead of chips or fried foods.

See Also: What A Good Drink After Workout

Alcohol and Weight Management

1. Balance and Moderation

Enjoying alcohol in moderation is key to maintaining a healthy lifestyle. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) defines moderate drinking as up to one drink per day for women and up to two drinks per day for men.

2. Impact on Metabolism

Alcohol can impact your metabolism and hinder your body’s ability to burn fat. When you consume alcohol, your body prioritizes metabolizing it over other nutrients, which can slow down fat burning.

3. Empty Calories

Alcohol provides calories without essential nutrients, often referred to as “empty calories.” These can contribute to weight gain if consumed in excess.

4. Healthy Lifestyle Choices

Combining a balanced diet with regular exercise and mindful drinking can help you achieve and maintain your health and fitness goals. Focus on whole, nutrient-dense foods and stay active to counterbalance the occasional alcoholic beverage.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the lowest calorie alcoholic drink?

Vodka, gin, and tequila are among the lowest calorie alcoholic drinks, each containing around 96-97 calories per 1.5-ounce serving.

Can I drink alcohol and still lose weight?

Yes, you can drink alcohol and still lose weight if you consume it in moderation and make mindful choices about the types and quantities of drinks you consume.

Are there any zero-calorie alcoholic drinks?

No alcoholic drink is completely zero-calorie, but some spirits like vodka, gin, and tequila have relatively low calorie counts when consumed straight or with low-calorie mixers.

How can I make my cocktails lower in calories?

Use soda water, diet tonic water, or fresh citrus juices as mixers. Avoid sugary syrups and opt for natural sweeteners like stevia or small amounts of honey.

Is wine or beer lower in calories?

Dry wine typically has fewer calories per serving compared to regular beer. However, light beer can be lower in calories than wine. It’s important to check the specific calorie content of the beverage you choose.


Making mindful choices about your alcoholic beverages can help you enjoy your drinks without significantly impacting your calorie intake. Opting for low-calorie spirits like vodka, gin, and tequila, and choosing low-calorie mixers, can help you maintain a balanced lifestyle. Remember, moderation is key, and combining healthy dietary habits with regular physical activity will support your overall health and well-being. Cheers to making healthier drinking choices!


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