This article has been updated for accuracy, May 2020.
Ginger beer was a brewed mildly alcoholic drink originating in the mid 18th century in England. Today it is a non-alcoholic soft drink, like ginger ale. It is flavored by ginger juice and sweetened with either sugar or artificial sweeteners. Some ginger beers are brewed but have an alcohol content of less than .5% so they are considered non-alcoholic. If you avoid alcohol, look for non-fermented brands.
The main difference between ginger ale and ginger beer is the intensity of the ginger flavor. Ginger beer is often called ‘ginger ale with a kick’. Ginger ale on steroids is how I like to think of it, and I love the taste of ginger. I think ginger beer is delicious on its own, but it also can be added to alcohol to create two popular cocktails – the Moscow Mule and the Dark n’ Stormy.
Since I love ginger I really enjoyed researching this article! I now have quite a stash of ginger beers in my fridge and don’t really want to share any of them. Here are my favorites – go buy your own.
Barritt’s Bermuda Stone Ginger Beer comes from the Caribbean and is made with pure cane sugar. It is sweeter than some others and has a strong ginger flavor. A case of 12 cans is $20.97. Barritt’s also comes in glass bottles.
Fever-Tree Premium Ginger Beer is made in the U.K. It isn’t too sweet, has a delicious dark ginger taste and packs a real kick. A case of twenty-four 6.8 glass bottles is $35.99.
Gosling’s is a spicy, all-natural ginger beer, made with corn syrup. It is a well-established company based in Bermuda.
A twenty-four can case of 12 oz. cans is $35.97.
Green Bee Soda makes a Ginger Buzz that is delicious. It has fresh ginger with a hint of coriander and is sweetened with Maine wildflower honey. A case of 12 bottles is $27.99.
Regatta isn’t too sweet and is good for mixing. Caribbean and African gingers are blended in stone crocks. Very refreshing and zesty. 4 pack-$40.13.
Reed’s Extra Ginger Brew All Natural Jamaican Style Ginger Beer is sweetened only with honey and pineapple juice. It is very refreshing.12 Oz 24-pack $59.00
Fresh Ginger – Ginger Ale by Bruce Cost uses fresh ginger, no ginger extracts or oils. It is unfiltered and all natural. Even though this product is called Ginger Ale we’ve tasted it and consider it worthy of ginger beer status. It is refreshing and even provides some calcium, iron and a little vitamin A and C. It will need a little shaking before drinking. A case of twelve 12 oz. bottles is $28.00.
Maine Root Ginger Brew is bubbly, warm & spicy with a great ginger aftertaste. Launched six years ago, Maine Root’s beverages are Fair Trade Certified and are organically sweetened. They are made in Portland, Maine.
Bundaberg Ginger Beer is a family-owned company based in Bundaberg, Queensland, Australia. Like many ginger beers, theirs is cloudy and needs a shake before consuming because of the pieces of real ginger in the beverage. This ginger beer contains no artificial flavors or colors. A 12 pack is $50.00.
Fentiman’s Traditional Ginger Beer comes in two strengths – Traditional (sinus clearing) and Cool (less kick). The company is based in England and has been producing its‘ botanically brewed’ ginger beer since 1905. The Cool Ginger Beer is difficult to find online but might be in your grocery store.
Ginger People Ginger Beer is made in California. It has tiny particles of ginger and a sharp clean taste. Check out their adorable logo!
Sioux City Ginger Beer has a good spicy ginger flavor but is also good as a mixer. It is made in New York State. We love the taste in spite of the fact that it contains high fructose corn syrup and not pure cane sugar as a sweetener. A twelve 12. oz pack is $32.97.
Ginger beers can be used in Equally Attractive Non-Alcoholic Beverages, also known as EANABs. See what we’re talking about in About Eanabs