The 6 Best Non-Alcoholic Beers, According to Experts

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Athletic Brewing Upside Dawn
Choosing non-alcoholic beer doesn't mean you have to forego the flavors you love
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The sober curious lifestyle is growing in popularity, and so, too, have zero-proof alcohol options like non-alcoholic beer, wine and spirits. After all, there are plenty of health benefits to drinking less alcohol or choosing to go totally sober.

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Creating an exceptional non-alcoholic beer can be difficult, though: It's hard to preserve the true flavors when removing the alcohol. Luckily, companies are becoming more innovative in their brewing methods, finding ways to craft non-alcoholic beer that tastes almost like the real thing (without the hangover to follow).

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There are plenty of good (and a few not-so-good) non-alcoholic beer options to choose from, so to help you sift through them, we chatted with experts for their favorites and recommendations.

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Warning

Non-alcoholic beer still contains alcohol (0.5 percent, or less as defined by the FDA), so it's important to take this into consideration if you're avoiding alcohol completely.

The Best Non-Alcoholic Beers

How We Chose

In rounding up the best of the best non-alcoholic beers, we dug further than just the well-known beer brands, and sought recommendations from both professionals and real reviewers that are serious about their beer.

With this combined input, we chose the beers on our list based on:

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  • Flavor
  • Hops
  • Calories, carbs and other nutritional factors
  • Ingredients

1. Best Pale Ale: Partake Pale

You'll love the refreshing citrusy flavor of this non-alcoholic beer.
Image Credit: Partake

This internationally award-winning craft pale ale from Partake is the perfect beer for those who enjoy a lighter brew. With just 10 calories, this non-alcoholic beer offers flavors of caramel, malty sweetness, medium bitterness and citrusy, tropical aromatics for a balanced, crisp beer you'll love.

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One reviewer says, "If you're someone like me who gave up alcohol and really missed the satisfaction of a delicious cold beer, this is the absolute best thing you can do for yourself. The taste is honestly better than many (if not all) regular beers out there, and it's only 10 calories per can (as a fitness expert, that is a very pleasant surprise)."

Tasting Notes

Medium bitterness

Citrusy aromatics

Caramel, malty sweetness

Nutrition

Per 12-ounce serving:

  • 10 calories
  • 0 grams of carbs

Buy It:Amazon ($29.99); Partake ($24.99)

2. Best Lager: Heineken 0.0

Heineken 0.0 is the perfect non-alcoholic beer for lager lovers.
Image Credit: Heineken

A Dutch classic, this 150-year-old beer company is switching things up with a non-alcoholic version of their original classic lager. Heineken 0.0 offers the same great taste you know and love, but with 0 percent alcohol and a softer malted body.

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Instead of just removing the alcohol and by consequence all the flavors, the brewers over at Heineken created a unique process to preserve the light, fruity notes and refreshing taste while using high-quality ingredients.

We also love that you can buy this non-alcoholic beer in bottles or cans depending on your preference.

Tasting Notes

Fruity Notes

Soft, malty body

Nutrition

Per 11-ounce serving:

  • 69 calories
  • 16 grams of carbs

Buy It:Amazon ($46 per case); Total Wine & More ($9.99 for a 6-pack)

3. Best Golden Ale: Athletic Brewing Upside Dawn

If you enjoy a lighter brew with a true, hoppy flavor, reach for this non-alcoholic beer from Athletic Brewing.
Image Credit: Athletic Brewing

Athletic Brewing's Upside Dawn Golden Ale is the perfect light-bodied and refreshing non-alcoholic beer for those who love a beverage with a clean finish. It has earthy yet floral notes from a combination of brewed Vienne Malt and English and American hops.

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This delightful brew comes highly recommended by nutritionist, trained sommelier and marketing specialist Breana Lai Killeen, RD: "I'm much more of a wine drinker than beer drinker but when I was pregnant with my twins, I found the Athletic Brewing Company beers hit the spot when I wanted something sans alcohol," she says. "They have all the same flavor notes of beer, but without the alcohol and the bitter aftertaste."

On top of tasting great, this option is pretty low in calories (just 45 per serving, compared to about 150 in a regular can of beer), so you can feel good about sipping it all night long.

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Tasting Notes

Floral and earthy notes

Refreshing, clean, balanced taste

Light-bodied

Nutrition

Per 12-ounce serving:

45 calories

12 grams of carbs

But It:Amazon ($24.99 for a 12-pack); Athletic Brewing ($13.99 for a 6-pack)

4. Best Stout: Athletic Brewing All Out Extra Dark

For those that enjoy a potent stout, reach for this non-alcoholic beer from Athletic Brewing.
Image Credit: Athletic Brewing

There's another Athletic Brewing recommendation on our list that will knock your socks off if you love the bold flavor of a dark stout beer.

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All Out Extra Dark offers a heavier yet smooth finish with rich, endless flavor. Roasted nuts, dark coffee and a hint of semi-sweet chocolate are some of the unique ingredients that make this brew unique and delicious.

Many Amazon reviewers tout this pick as the best non-alcoholic beer, making comments like, "All Out is as close to the real thing that I have found. Dark Guinness like or porter taste without the weird aftertaste that most non-alcohoic beers have, no weird smells, carbonated with a decent viscosity. I'm sold."

Another writes, "After trying a slew of non-alcoholic beers, this was a nice departure from the norm. In my opinion, this stout is the perfect starting point for a non-alcoholic beer. Non-alcoholic beers tend to be a bit maltier and sweeter, which is perfect in a stout. This is my favorite non-alcoholic beer I've tried and I'd highly recommend."

Tasting Notes

Light, yet rich

Notes of roasted nuts, dark coffee, and semi-sweet chocolate

Nutrition

Per 12-ounce serving:

90 calories

21 grams of carbs

But It:Amazon ($29.99 for a 12-pack); Athletic Brewing $13.99 (6-pack)

5. Best Pilsner: Bitburger Drive

If you enjoy a good German pilsner, you don't have to miss out thanks to this non-alcoholic beer from Bitburger.
Image Credit: Bitburger

Pilsners are one of the most-loved types of beer, and if you want an authentically-tasting non-alcoholic choice, Bitburger is the way to go. Even alcohol-free, this German beer doesn't lose its flavor during alcohol removal.

The brew has a sweet aroma of honey and gingerbread, combined with grain and just the right amount of bitter herbs for a balanced, hoppy flavor. Plus, Bitburger's Drive is a comforting and refreshing option with absolutely no alcohol, whereas other non-alcoholic beers typically contain trace amounts.

Tasting Notes

Sweet aromas of honey, gingerbread and bitter herbs

Refreshing taste and finish

Bittersweet malty-flavor

Nutrition

Per 12-ounce serving:

22 calories

5 grams of carbs

Buy It:Total Wine & More ($11.49 for a 6-pack); Amazon ($34.66 for a 6-pack)

6. Best Blonde Ale: Suntory All-Free

This 0-calorie non-alcoholic beer from Suntory is light and refreshing.
Image Credit: Suntory

The lightest non-alcoholic beer option on our list, Suntory's All-Free Blonde Ale, comes from a brewery in Japan and contains no calories and only 1 gram of carbs, which is ideal for those who don't want to add calories to their diet. (That said, this non-alcoholic beer may not be for those who like a rich, deep or malty beer flavor.)

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All-Free is the non-alcoholic beer to buy if you want a refreshing, crisp ale that's ideal for sipping at gatherings or, as reviewers suggest, by the pool or beach on a warm, sunny day.

Tasting Notes

Refreshing, crisp finish

Aroma of hops

Nutrition

Per 12-ounce serving:

0 calories

1 gram of carbs

Buy It:Total Wine & More; ‌Price:‌ $11.49 for a 4-pack

What to Look for in Non-Alcoholic Beer

Before you buy a pack or case of non-alcoholic beer, consider these factors:

Flavor

While there are some distinct differences between alcoholic and non-alcoholic beer, the flavor is the most significant, non-negotiable factor. Consider the types of beer you like to drink, and opt for a non-alcolic version of the same type, such as a lager or pilsner.

Cost

If one of the reasons you're cutting back on alcohol or forgoing alcohol altogether is the chunk it's taking out of your wallet, consider how much you're willing to spend on alcohol alternatives.

Brands like Partake and Athletic Brewing are a bit more costly and can range around the same price as regular craft beer.

And lastly, Killeen offers us a final piece of advice for choosing the best non-alcoholic beer: "Ask a beer drinker you know for their advice. It's impossible to go by the label on a product, so having someone you trust endorse it is the best recommendation!"

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