What is Malt Liquor

by John Staughton (BASc, BFA) last updated -

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Malt liquor isn’t the most common drink to sip on at the end of the day, but in some cultures and demographics, it is a very popular type of alcohol.

What is Malt Liquor?

Malt liquor is a beer fermented from grain, sugar, and yeast, with an abv of 6%- 12%, making it stronger than most commercial beers. Malt liquor tastes sweet and lacks the bitterness of some beers. It has a lot of carbonation, with a mild flavor.

The process of brewing this beverage is similar to brewing beer, but there are a number of key differences. Most notably, malt liquor has added sugars, which is what converts into alcohol during fermentation. You can call this grain-based liquor ‘beer’, but the two are generally considered different beverages.

How to Make?

Malt liquor is made by fermenting grain and sugars over a number of weeks until the yeast has converted most of the sugar to alcohol. This beverage does have gluten from barley and should be avoided by people with extreme sensitivities, particularly if they have been diagnosed with celiac disease.

A glass with malt liquor and ice in it on a wooden table-top

Cheers! Photo Credit: Shutterstock

Brewing malt liquor at home has been achieved by many home brewers. With a proper brewing kit, you can ferment barley, sugar, and yeast over the course of a few weeks and create your very own batch of this tasty beverage. However, be careful, as this brew is significantly stronger than traditional beer!

Nutrition Facts

Beverages, Malt liquor beverage
Serving Size :
Water [g]94.5
Energy [kcal]40
Energy [kJ]165
Protein [g]0.35
Ash [g]0.07
Calcium, Ca [mg]3
Iron, Fe [mg]0.03
Magnesium, Mg [mg]5
Phosphorus, P [mg]13
Potassium, K [mg]33
Sodium, Na [mg]3
Zinc, Zn [mg]0.08
Copper, Cu [mg]0.01
Manganese, Mn [mg]0.01
Thiamin [mg]0.03
Riboflavin [mg]0.04
Niacin [mg]0.4
Pantothenic acid [mg]0.15
Vitamin B-6 [mg]0.04
Folate, total [µg]4
Folate, food [µg]4
Folate, DFE [µg]4
Alcohol, ethyl [g]5.5
Sources include : USDA


Rich in B vitamins, malt is a good source of thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, and folate. It has many amazing benefits, including the following:

Bone Health

One study showed that beer contains dietary silicon, which may help prevent osteoporosis.

Blood Pressure

People who drink one beer per day have been shown to have a lower risk of high blood pressure.


Enjoying a beer or two can help relieve certain stress-related anxiety symptoms.


It contains vitamin B6, which can boost serotonin levels and improve your mood.

Digestive Issues

This type of alcohol contains small amounts of fiber, which can aid in digestion by bulking up your stool.

Word of Warning

When consuming alcohol, you should always drink in moderation, as exceeding 12 ounces per day will negate most benefits of this alcohol. Malt liquor is high in alcohol and sugar, both of which are highly addictive substances, so alcoholism, liver disease, and obesity are the primary side effects of overindulgence.

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About the Author

John Staughton is a traveling writer, editor, publisher and photographer with English and Integrative Biology degrees from the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana (USA). He co-founded the literary journal, Sheriff Nottingham, and now serves as the Content Director for Stain’d Arts, a non-profit based in Denver, Colorado. On a perpetual journey towards the idea of home, he uses words to educate, inspire, uplift and evolve.

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