Are you a craft beer lover?
If so and if you brew your own beer at home, you’ll need a suitable vessel for that beer. Beer growlers are the obvious solution.
Resembling a thermos at a glance, these coolers perform the same core function. Whether you want beer kept chilled or a coffee still warm when you finish your daily commute, growlers are typically vacuum-sealed and double-insulated to achieve this cooling efficiently.
The key difference between a straight-up flask and a beer growler is the way these things also ensure your beer stays fresh and carbonated not flat as a pancake.
Other drinks like cider and kombucha also need the same helping hand if you want to enjoy them chilled and fizzy not flat and warm.
Today, then, we’ll be breaking down a selection of the best beer growlers you can find across a range of price points so you can determine which, if any, makes the best fit for you.
Once we’re done with our reviews, we’ll then give you some handy buying hacks to streamline your purchasing decision.
Let’s get right down to business!
I. The 9 Best Beer Growlers
1. Our #1 Pick: Stanley Classic Easy-Pour Growler
Stanley are perhaps best-known for their power tools, but they bring that same precision engineering to this beer growler, our overall favorite in terms of price, performance, and overall value.
Generous 64oz capacity gives you the freedom to chill your favorite beer for up to 12 hours while also keeping it nice and fizzy.
The double-walled insulation is guaranteed free of BPA and any other contaminants that might taint your beer and jeopardize your health.
You’ll have no problems pouring either. The leak-proof lid comes with a removable silicone gasket. Made of stainless steel, you won’t taste anything other than your drink.
If you plan to take this growler hiking or camping, you’ll appreciate the integrated handle.
You won’t face any messy clean-up as this growler is dishwasher-safe. If you choose to handwash it, pay close attention to the interior and make sure you don’t leave any debris behind. Use some mild detergent and rinse well.
Covered by a lifetime warranty, this should be the last growler you need to buy if you care for it well, Run into any problems and Stanley has your back.
2. Runner-Up: Coleman Insulated Stainless Steel Growler
A close runner-up in our quest for the best beer growlers is this stainless steel gem from Coleman.
This versatile unit allows you to keep drinks hot or cold. The manufacturer claims some impressive cooling and warming times, although customer feedback suggests these are ambitious.
The squat dimensions of this growler belie the 64oz capacity, ample for your favorite beer when you want to enjoy it icy cold and decanted from its bottle.
The double-hinged lid is designed for sustained use. This is a classic weak point on many growlers, but the Coleman shouldn’t let you down.
The handle is baked in and designed to fit snugly in your hand without putting you in danger of losing your grip or spilling your drink.
With double walls and vacuum insulation, even if those claimed times are inflated, you should still enjoy all-day performance which is all that really counts. Whether you want coffee still warm when you arrive at the office or a beer that stays chilled all the way along your hike, this versatile growler is well worth a place on your shortlist.
3. Upgrade Pick: GrowlerWerks Carbonated Growler
If you have deeper pockets and you’re looking for a statement piece for a beer growler, look no further than this carbonated model from GrowlerWerks.
If you’re shopping primarily on budget, this is not the growler for you, but if you don’t mind paying for a feature-rich beverage companion, what do you get for your money?
Pressure inside this growler is automatically regulated, and you can pick your preferred carbonation level in line with the type of beer you usually drink. The gauge allows you to read this with ease and it also looks great on the exterior.
The curling dispenser tap, lockable for your convenience, lets you pour your drink out if you want to decant from the growler to a smaller cup. If you want to further customize this striking growler, you can swap out the handle for something even more intricate.
The double-walled stainless steel is vacuum insulated so you’ll never be menaced by warm and unappetizing beer.
As long as you can weather the stiff price tag, you’ll struggle to find a better beer growler.
4. YETI Rambler Growler
YETI has a deep bench of high-grade kitchenware that doesn’t break the bank and doesn’t force you to compromise on quality either. YETI products are certainly not cheap but we feel they represent stellar overall value if you’re not motivated primarily by the bottom line.
The roomy 80oz capacity is surprising as this growler is quite small and fairly compact. You’ll appreciate that extra space when you’re out camping or hiking, though.
The lid is insulated with a full inch of material meaning your drinks stay hotter or colder for longer.
The innovative Mag Cap locks automatically in so you can enjoy a worry-free experience whether you’re walking, in the car, or on the subway.
Finished with DuraCoat, the material won’t rust, peel, or fade, and you’ll get no taint of your drink either.
5. Hydro Flask Beer Growler
Hydro Flask makes some eye-catching growlers in bright colors that make a welcome change from the usual black and silver that usually dominates the design of these products.
Fashioned from 18/8 stainless steel, you’ll get a growler that can withstand some serious punishment and is built to last. Despite this build, a few users have complained about the opening rusting, slightly disconcerting and something you should make your own mind up about.
You’ll get no BPA in this growler and no toxic phthalates either.
If you have previously purchased a Hydro Flask product, be aware that the company has rebranded. The new flasks don’t feature the trademark symbol next to the logo, so this is an intentional redesign rather than an indication of a fake.
Your beer won’t just stay cold in this thing, but it will stay nicely carbonated, too. Whether you’re hitting the hiking trail, the campsite or the back yard, you’ll wonder why you didn’t invest in this growler sooner.
6. NutriChef Pressurized Growler System
If you’re a craft beer lover, this pressurized growler system will keep it at its best for up to 2 months. Regular growlers, by contrast, see the beer starting to go flat once it’s been poured.
While this growler is not throwaway cheap, it’s great value when you consider what you’re getting in return. You could easily spend more on a growler boasting far less functionality.
All componentry is made from 304 stainless steel so you get a heavyweight piece of kit that won’t let you down.
All the installation hardware you need is thrown in along with clear instructions so you’ll be up and running and enjoying ice cold beverages right out the box.
The 128oz capacity gives you ample space to accommodate plenty of your favorite tipple and to keep it cooler and carbonated for longer.
The system is powered by disposable CO2 cartridges. These are not include and you should factor in sourcing and funding replacements.
7. Klean Kanteen Stainless Steel Growler
This growler is made from food-grade 18/8 stainless steel giving you the ideal material for crisp tasting beer along with an enviable lifespan.
The manufacturer claims this unit will keep drinks hot for 40 hours and ice cold for 120 hours. As usual, these figures should be taken with a pinch of salt. What counts is that whatever drink you put inside this growler will stay hot or cold all day so you can relax and go about your day without worrying about warm beer.
The 1.75-inch opening is designed to easily accommodate ice if you want your drink super-chilled.
The cap is also made from stainless steel and designed with ease of use and durability uppermost.
The dark amber finish makes a nice change from the usual sea of black and gray.
This growler is covered by the Strong as Steel guarantee so you can buy with complete peace of mind and the knowledge you’ll have icy cool beverages on demand.
8. GrowlerWerks Carbonated Growler
GrowlerWerks make some highly effective beer growlers that might not be cheap but still translate to great value. Ideal for a range of drinks from craft beer and soda through to cocktails or the mysterious kombucha, you’re spoiled for choice.
Onboard is a carbonation system so your beer stays just the way you like it all day long rather than losing the body and bubbles.
You have a choice of 64oz or 128oz capacity so choose in line with the needs of you and your family.
The tap has 3 pouring positions for an ergonomic and spill-free experience.
You’ll need to buy a separate CO2 charger so make sure you take account of this so you don’t end up disappointed and scurrying to the hardware store when your growler arrives.
A few disgruntled users have highlighted a build quality that doesn’t quite marry with the elevated price tag, so decide for yourself whether this growler is worth the money or whether you’ll look elsewhere.
9. DrinkTanks Growler
DrinkTanks serves up a 64oz growler available in a string of striking color schemes. If you’re drawn in by that shiny appearance, a few customers have complained that the photos of this finish are misleading.
Measuring up at just 7 x 7 x 14 inches, this growler is fairly compact and ideal for popping in your rucksack when you’re out on the hiking trail or the campsite.
Double-walled insulation keeps your cold drinks icy for up to 45 hours. Warm drinks will stay that way for up to 25 hours. As with all of this data supplied by manufacturers, your experience could differ slightly.
An ergonomic handle lets you tote this growler with ease even if you’re heading on a lengthy walk.
Dishwasher-friendly, you have everything you need with no messy clean-up to worry about, so what are you waiting for?
OK, by now you should have an accurate idea of the main options at your disposal when you’re shopping beer growlers.
Before we round out for the day, what should you look out for on the buying trail?
II. Things You Should Consider
Buying a beer growler might seem like one of the easiest buying decisions, and in many ways you’d be right.
As with any purchase, though, there are some key pointers to consider so you can maximize your chances of getting the right kit for the job.
Focus on these aspects and you can’t go wrong:
- Temperature retention
- Taste of Drink
- Ease of Use
Beers usually taste best when served between 35F and 55F, depending on the type of beer.
All the growlers we review today are capable of keeping your drinks cooled within this threshold.
Most manufacturers tend to get very hypey when it comes to describing how long these growlers keep drinks cooled. Almost without exception, this figures are inflated and should be viewed with some skepticism.
The only thing that counts is whether the growler you’re looking at will keep your beer cold for as long as you need it to. With most decent growlers, you should avoid warm beer even if it’s been sitting in the growler all day.
The majority of growlers will also effectively warm your tea, coffee, or other hot beverage giving you a very versatile piece of kit.
It’s not only temperature retention that’s important with a beer growler, though…
Most people who buy a growler are looking to store beer or other carbonated drinks. If you had no interest in preserving the fizz, you could easily opt for a regular thermos instead.
Growlers come with various technologies baked in to ensure that your beer stays bubbly. Some use CO2 cartridges and a full system while others simply use vacuum seals and heavy insulation to mitigate your drinks going flat.
Depending on the extent to which this area is important for you, you should delve down into user reviews so you can get a feel for whether the growler delivers as promises or would leave you disappointed.
All the growlers on our shortlist will ensure you have bubbly beer even if you’re out all day.
Taste of Drink
The most crucial element of buying a growler centers on finding one that doesn’t leave any kind of taint in your drink. After all, if you’ve taken the time and trouble to lovingly create some home brew, you don’t want to risk spoiling it.
Low-quality materials can impart a metallic taste to your drink, unpleasant and to be avoided at all costs.
Poorly sealed growlers will let oxygen inside. Again, this will mess with the taste of your beer.
Ease of Use
The best growler in the world is not much use if you end up struggling to easily use it.
Your new gear should be easy to open and just as simple to carry. You should also find the lid easy to close and you should find it straightforward to pour without spilling the contents of the growler.
We would strongly recommend avoiding all growlers that attract negative user reviews. Most people give pretty honest feedback once they’ve parted with their money. If you find people moaning about spillage, leakage, or difficulties using the growler, give it a miss. You have plenty more options up your sleeve and there’s no need to compromise.
A versatile growler should be robust enough for a range of applications from walking to hiking to camping.
While glass and ceramic growlers are fit for purpose, they are also much more limited in scope.
We would suggest sticking with stainless steel growlers for the best all-round approach to keeping your beer cold all day and as fizzy as when you poured it inside.
While a beer growler is a simple device, you can still keep your eyes peeled for relevant extras. Since your main goals are keeping your drink cool and fizzy, you don’t need any extras beyond this.
Volume markings can be useful, especially if you’re using the growler in a commercial setting.
You should also think about your attitude toward cleaning and look for a dishwasher-friendly growler if you’re looking for ultimate ease.
Last but not least, check out whether the growler is covered by a decent warranty. Any manufacturer that stands behind their product should offer at least some coverage.
1) Where does the name beer growler come from?
In the 1800s, people carried beer home in a covered pail. As the beer sloshed around inside the pail, CO2 escaped and created a growling sound. The pail was named for this sound.
2) Is it legal to carry a growler outside in the US?
This depends on local laws. In some states, you can legally top up your growler at a brewery. Other states insist on this being carried at a dedicated growler shops or package stores. Similarly, the capacity of growler tolerated in public varies from 32oz to 64oz so check with your local ordinances.
3) What’s the best material for a beer growler?
To some extent, this is down to personal preference, but stainless steel probably makes the most versatile choice of material.
Well, if you started today with no clue about what a beer growler is or why you might need one, that should have changed by now.
Stick with any of the units on our shortlist and you’re in safe hands. If you encounter a growler we didn’t review today, all you need to do is stick to the advice in our beer growler buying guide and you should easily determine whether it makes the grade.
Before you head off today, take a minute to bookmark BriccoWine so you know where to come back when you’re struggling to find the right accessories for your favorite drinks. With the holiday season looming, we’re still hard at work and we’ll be bringing you more great guides and impartial reviews as we head toward Christmas and into the new year. See you soon!