20 non-alcoholic beers tested

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Written By Kampretz Bianca

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From sweet to sour, from full-bodied to thin – the 20 non-alcoholic pilsners, lagers and light beers in the Stiftung Warentest test have very different flavors. Many beers are convincing, but some musty and slightly cheesy notes detract from the enjoyment. Good for a slim figure: If you want to save calories, non-alcoholic beer is the right choice. On average, it is only half as alcoholic as the classic. You can also save money with the results of our tests: prices per liter vary between 84 cents and 3.25 euros – but among the good beers there are also two cheap ones.

Why the “alcohol-free beer” test is worth it for you

Test results

20 brands on test – each with its own character. Included: Krombacher, Beck’s, Corona, Neumarkter Lammsbräu, Flensburger, Oettinger and Lidl beers. Three beers advertise 0.0% alcohol. Quality ratings range from good to sufficient.

The best beer for you

The test results in our table can be filtered. For example, you can only display products that are low in calories, best tasting, or 0.0% alcohol. This way you can quickly find your personal test winner.

Health information

Our test also highlights health aspects. We check whether non-alcoholic beers contain harmful substances and answer questions such as: Are they good for quenching your thirst? Do they promote regeneration after exercise? Is permitted residual alcohol up to 0.5% problematic for pregnant women, breastfeeding women and dry drinkers?

Magazine article in PDF

After activation, you will receive the 6/24 test magazine article for download.

Non-alcoholic beer tested
Test results for 20 non-alcoholic beers

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Called for control of pesticides and alcohol

Testers also had health-critical things on their radar. They examined products made from barley, hops, malt and water for pollutants such as pesticides, particularly the controversial herbicide glyphosate. Furthermore, all beers had to undergo alcohol control: non-alcoholic beers can contain up to 0.5% residual alcohol, which may be left over during production. Three products promise 0.0% alcohol. You will find out if you can trust it and if the residual alcohol content of others is OK when you activate the test. You can click on the image bar above to see exactly which beers were in the test.

Test winners come from traditional brands

The beers being tested come from traditional brands such as Krombacher, Beck’s and Clausthaler, from discount store brands, from foreign breweries such as Carlsberg and Corona and from organic breweries. One thing can be revealed: the two best beers come from traditional breweries. The price range in the test is wide, the 20 products cost between 84 cents and 3.25 euros per liter. But good doesn’t mean expensive here: two cheap non-alcoholic beers become winners in terms of price-performance. Which ones are they? Our test reveals this.

Become cool over the years

Since the introduction of the first non-alcoholic beers in East and West Germany in the 1970s, their importance on the market has grown significantly, especially in recent years. From 2014 to 2023 alone, annual per capita consumption increased from almost 3 liters to almost 5 liters, while alcoholic beer consumption fell from 99 to 83 liters. According to the industry, the reasons for this are increased health awareness and the search for a bitter alternative to sweet soda. Some athletes rely on the isotonic effects of non-alcoholic beers and hope for a quick recovery after exertion. Our test also clarifies whether this expectation is justified.

How stable is the foam? Where does carbon dioxide come from?

Our testing consists of many complex individual tests. For example, a special measuring device – the “Steinfurth Foam Stability Tester” – determined the foam stability of the beers. The origin of carbon dioxide was also determined in the laboratory: whether it is natural, that is, it comes from fermentation, or whether it was added from fossil sources. People trained in the sensory evaluation of beer evaluated, among other things, the harmony of flavor, identified errors, i.e. deviations from the ideal flavor of the beer, and described the individual character of the products. An expert also classified non-alcoholic beers as suitable as a sports drink and thirst quencher. The testers checked whether the information contained on the bottles was reliable and, in the packaging verdict, rated the environmental properties of the different types of bottles. Standardized reusable bottles and individual glass bottles as well as disposable PET bottles are represented in the test.

Tip: Stiftung Warentest has tested other drinks for those who are thirsty – e.g. Mineral water It is orange juice.

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