Crowler vs Growler—Which Is Better for You?

Are you a craft beer fan?

If so, you’ll love the sight of big refillable glass containers and the big aluminum containers – the growler and the crowler. 

Which one do you prefer?

Dive into this article and discover your side of the age-old “crowler vs growler” debate!

Crowler vs Growler 101

crowler vs growler

Defining A Crowler

Do you know what a crowler is?

It’s a medium-sized aluminum can used to transport beer. 

In 2002, Oskar Blues was the first craft brewery in the US to use them.

They partnered with the Ball Corporation to make it easier for customers to take beer home. 

At first, other breweries weren’t sure crowlers would be popular, but now, more than 600 breweries in the US offer them.

Defining A Growler

Do you know what a growler is?

It’s a big glass jug used to transport beer. 

People have been using them since the 1800s.

But during the 1920s, the prohibition made selling or using them illegal. 

Luckily, the prohibition was lifted in 1933, so customers and breweries could use them again.

Then, in the late 1980s, Charlie Otto and his dad were the first to offer take-out beer with growlers. 

Now, thanks to new technology, growlers keep beer fresher than ever.

Bottle Functions

With a growler, the brewer will fill the glass container with your choice of brew.

They’ll seal it with counter-filled pressure to trap in the flavor and preserve the carbonation. 

Enjoy pub-like freshness from the comfort of your own home or anywhere else.

For a crowler, an aluminum can is sanitized and purged of CO2. 

Purging depletes the can of oxygen, ensuring optimal taste and carbonation.

The crowler is then filled, and a machine applies a lid. 

It places the can on a pedestal, turns it, raises it, and locks it under pressure.

Press GO, and flavor-locked portable premium amber goodness is ready for you.

Crowler vs Growler—Differences

Size Differences

Crowlers are 32 oz. Containers, so they’ll give you two full pints of beer.

Conversely, growlers come in 32- and 64-oz sizes, so they’re the way to go if you want more beer! 

That’s double the amount of beer you can get with a crowler.

Container Maintenance

A growler is a reusable container that holds 64 oz. of craft beer, while a crowler is a single-use, 32 oz. Can.

To keep your growler in good condition, you need to: 

  • Store it cold
  • Triple rinse with hot water
  • Air dry upside down 
  • Leave the cap off

On the other hand, crowlers are intended for one-time use.

Material Differences

You may want to consider a crowler if you’re looking for a lighter, more cost-effective way to transport beer.

Crowlers come in aluminum cans that are lightweight and more affordable to ship. 

Plus, they keep your beer fresher longer, so you can get more beer for less money than you would with a growler.

And you won’t have to lug around a heavy container!

Destination and Location Restrictions

Do you know the difference between crowlers and growlers?

It’s not about taste but about where you can take them. 

Glass is prohibited in many places, like beaches, bike paths, campgrounds, parks, pools, and public festivals.

That’s why crowlers are the way to go for these places. 

Plus, when it comes to shipping, crowlers are the superior choice.

They have zero oxygen intake and zero UV light penetration, so they stay fresher longer. 

So, when laws are a pain in the glass, keep calm and reach for a crowler!

Pricing Difference

A Drink Can.

Crowlers are typically cheaper because they’re made of less expensive materials.

Some breweries even give them away for free, but they’re meant for single use. 

Growlers cost more upfront, but you get a larger 64-ounce container.

Plus, you only pay for the fill after the initial purchase. 

So, if you’re looking for more beer, the growler is the way to go.

A crowler usually costs between $9 and $12.

The price depends on the beer, the brewery, and the brewery’s response to ongoing inflation.

Generally, it’s around $1 to $2, plus the beer price.

Growlers are more expensive initially, but you can save money in the long run. 

An empty growler can be as low as $6 or more than $10, and a refill is $5 to $30.

In total, you’ll likely spend $20 to $30. 

Some places let you put a deposit on a growler and get your money back when you return it.

Quality and Performance

You may wonder which container is better for taking your beer home – a crowler or a growler?

Generally, crowlers are more reliable and effective. 

They are durable and perfect for long commutes.

Plus, the aluminum protects your beer from UV rays and sunlight, and the air-tight seal keeps it fresh for two weeks or more. 

Conversely, growlers can shatter, allow sunlight to reach your beer, and can’t trap carbonation effectively.

You should enjoy your beer within three to five days after filling your growler. 

This is the best way to ensure you get the most out of your brew.

Quick Summary of Key Differences

  • A growler holds about one liter more than a crowler. Plus, it’s more flexible if you want more beer – it can give you twice the quantity. 
  • Crowlers are usually cheaper because of the packaging cost. Growlers cost more, but it’s a one-time investment. 
  • Crowlers are more convenient – pick them up from the brewery. Growlers are less convenient – you must bring them or buy a new one. 
  • Crowlers keep the beer fresh, but growlers can oxidize when opened. 
  • Growlers hold more beer, but they’re heavier and harder to ship. 
  • Crowlers are recyclable, but growlers aren’t. 
  • Crowlers aren’t always available, but growlers usually are unless the brewery runs out.

Looking Out For Your Health – 10 Best Beers to Flush Kidneys.

Final Thoughts

Crowlers and growlers are great ways to package beer.

These two will also take your beer-drinking experience to the next level!

They make it easy to transport premium beer, too.

Growlers are perfect for parties, while crowlers are great for picking up different types of beer from a brewery and enjoying it at home. 

Crowlers have become more popular recently, so you may not see many growlers around.

In the end, it’s all about your preference or situational need. 

Whichever you choose, you’ll have a great way to buy and enjoy beer.

Enjoy, but don’t forget to drink responsibly! 


Other Related Articles To Read Below:

Keezer Vs. Kegerator.

Beer Keg Sizes.

Beers In A Case.