18 low-calorie alcoholic drinks in a can to enjoy this summer

These low-calorie alcoholic drinks in a can are the perfect picnic accompaniment as the weather gets warmer

A selection of the best low-calorie alcoholic drinks in a can
(Image credit: Goldling, Topo Chico, LuvJus Cocktails, Served)

Low-calorie alcoholic drinks in a can are a rare find but as summer's now here, these are staple drinks for those looking to enjoy a boozy picnic while keeping their calorie count low. 

It's the place where seltzers, spritzers, and even some beers find their time to shine. Refreshing, light, and packed with exciting flavours, these often come in at just over or under 100 calories and can be the easy low-cal, low-carbohydrate and/or low-sugar alternatives you're looking for.

If you're looking to learn how to lose weight without dieting, opting for the lowest-calorie alcohol can be one of the best ways to go. To help you find some online and in your local supermarket, we've gathered the best low-calorie alcoholic drinks in a can to have in 2023, including beers, wine spritzers, cocktails, and more.

What are low-calorie alcoholic drinks in a can?

Low-calorie alcoholic drinks are alcoholic beverages that are low in calories, the measurement of energy in food and drink. The number of calories everyone needs per day is different but if you go above your maintenance calorie level, the number you need to maintain your weight, then you will gain weight and vice versa if you consume fewer calories. 

If you are trying to get into a calorie deficit to lose weight and drinking is a big part of your social life, you may not want to cut alcohol out completely. And there's no need to either, as personal trainer Richie Howey says, but changing up your choices when it comes to drinking can be helpful.

“If you’re looking to reduce your calorie intake whilst enjoying alcohol over the summer, I’d recommend opting for low-calorie vodka and other light spirits with diet mixers over sugary alcopops, ciders, and cocktails. It’s all about making smart choices that serve you and your weight loss goals," he says.

Low-calorie alcoholic drinks in a can are also helpful for this, as some of the most common ones include spritzers, low-calorie cocktails, and seltzers, which is flavoured sparkling combined with a type of spirit (usually vodka). Here are a few of our favourites...

Best low calorie alcoholic drinks in a can

Under 150 calories

Under 100 calories

How does alcohol impact weight loss?

Alcohol itself can't stop weight loss but 'drinking your calories' can take you out of a calorie deficit, which is what you need to lose weight. This is when you burn more calories per day, through bodily functions like breathing as well as exercise, than you eat. The higher the calorie deficit, the more weight you'll lose.

As personal trainer Richie Howey says, “It all comes down to calories. For example, the difference between choosing a diet mixer over a full-fat Coke can be 500 to 1000 calories through a night out.”

But drinking doesn't only inhibit our ability to lose weight, it's what we do when we're hungover that makes a difference too. So even if you're opting for the best low-calorie alcoholic drinks in a can, how many you drink will matter. 

“As alcohol causes dehydration, hunger levels spike, and people end up bingeing, mainly because it’s difficult to control cravings when you’re intoxicated. Think about all the kebabs, pizzas, and cheesy chips you’ve indulged in over the years, they’re all high-fat meals that are the worst thing you could possibly eat when out.”

Then consider the day after the night before, Howey says. "You hardly move at all. That means low-calorie expenditure followed by another takeaway on the night as you’re bound to have the munchies. So, really, you’ll have consumed a double dose of calories.”

While a weight loss goal shouldn't prevent you from enjoying yourself, and you can enjoy alcohol in moderation with low-calorie alternatives if you're concerned about your daily calorie count, there's no doubt that alcohol definitely makes a difference.

“Fat burning is put on the back burner when you’ve had a few because your body is going to prioritize getting rid of the toxin (alcohol) before it metabolizes fat, so instead it just stores fat," Howey says.

Grace Walsh
Health Channel Editor

Grace Walsh is woman&home's Health Channel Editor, working across the areas of fitness, nutrition, sleep, mental health, relationships, and sex. In 2024, she will be taking on her second marathon in Rome, cycling from Manchester to London (350km) for charity, and qualifying as a certified personal trainer.

A digital journalist with over six years experience as a writer and editor for UK publications, Grace has covered (almost) everything in the world of health and wellbeing with bylines in Cosmopolitan, Red, The i Paper, GoodtoKnow, and more.