Liquid calories are often misunderstood and easy to ignore - even more so when they’re in alcohol. In this first in a series of articles looking at calories in alcohol, we take a look at where calories in wine come from, how they differ between different types of wine, and the choices you can make to reduce unwanted calories whilst still enjoying a glass here and there.
How many calories are in 175ml of wine? The calories in 175ml of white wine come in at 142 calories, on average. Red wine comes in at a similar measure of 148 calories per large glass, and rosé contains the least amount of calories at 138.
Which is better for you, red, white, or rosé wine? The wine which contains the least amount of calories per glass. Red wine, however, is rich in antioxidants which come with a number of health benefits including keeping your memory sharp, lowering cholesterol, and reducing blood sugar.
Read on to find out the facts behind the calories in the wine that you’re drinking, our recommendations of lower calorie options, and our top tips for managing the calories you consume.
How Many Calories Are There in White Wine?
According to Drinkaware, a typical 175ml glass of white wine contains on average 159 calories. However, across the spectrum of popular white wines, due to their typical alcohol and sugar content, a chardonnay will often have a slightly higher number of calories compared to a pinot grigio or a sauvignon blanc.
Reflecting this trend, our lowest calorie white wine is a sauvignon blanc at 106 calories per 175ml (33% fewer calories on average), followed closely by a pinot grigio at 109 calories per 175ml (31% fewer calories on average).
How Many Calories Are There in Red Wine?
There isn’t actually that much of a difference between the number of calories in a bottle of red and white. Statistics from Drinkaware, for example, show that a typical 175ml glass of red wine is 160 calories - just 1 calorie more than white wine. Again, however, there is a spectrum in terms of the different types of red wine and the number of calories typically contained. Toward the higher end are the likes of a cabernet sauvignon or malbec, but towards the lower end are your pinot noirs or merlot.
With regards to our own selection of lower calorie red wines, our skinniest option is the exquisite bottle from Mas Olivier that comes in at 109 calories per 175ml (32% lower on average).
How Many Calories Are There in Rosé Wine?
Rosé wines tend to be a bit lighter than red and white wine, meaning less alcohol, and less calories in general. For instance, according to Drinkaware, a standard 175ml glass of rosé wine has on average 147 calories - 13 and 12 calories lower than red and white respectively.
In terms of our own collection of lower calorie rosés, we have one particular bottle that comes in at 63 calories per 175ml, which is in fact 57% less calories on average when compared to a regular bottle. This particular bottle from First Cape does, however, have a relatively low ABV at 5.5%, but it is still an amazing alternative for those who love the taste of rosé but seriously want to reduce their calorie intake.
How Many Calories Are There in Sparkling Wine?
Our favourite bubbly beverages aren’t usually drunk in 175ml measures, but instead, smaller 125ml measures. On average, a standard glass of bubbly, whether that be prosécco, cava, or champagne, contains just 80 calories! This is due to the lower ABV, which sits a couple of % lower than wine, and therefore contains fewer residual sugars, and less calories.
If you’re looking for lower calorie alternatives to your favourite bubbly beverages that don’t compromise on quality, look no further. Our range of low calorie sparkling wines offer vegan, low carb, and no sugar options - with tasting notes to suit everyone. Explore the full collection here, or explore our larger cases.
Where Do the Calories in Wine Come From?
The number of calories contained in a bottle of wine is dependent upon its alcohol and its sugar content. Out of these two variables, though, it is the alcohol content that typically has the greatest significance. For instance, alcohol has 7 calories per gram, sugar (or carbohydrates) has 4 calories per gram.
Therefore, when unsure about the number of calories in the bottle of wine that you’re drinking, the best indicator you can use to approximate is typically the Alcohol By Volume Percentage (ABV%). Considering that ABVs vary from 5.5% for certain lower alcohol wines up to 17% for certain dry wines, paying close attention to this number is an important first step in monitoring your calorie intake from wine.
What Is Residual Sugar In Wine?
Nevertheless, it is still really important to understand the impact of sugar in the fermentation process and the consequent classification of the wine into dry, semi-dry, semi-sweet and sweet. As you’re probably well aware, grapes contain sugar and it is this sugar that during the process of making wine ferments into the alcohol. Once reaching a certain level of alcohol during this process, the fermentation stops leaving a certain amount of sugar in the wine, which is called residual sugar.
Although there will always be a degree of residual sugar in the wine that you’re drinking, this can vary significantly depending on the type of wine. Whereas dry wines will have a small amount of residual sugar, sweeter wines will have a higher amount of residual sugar.
Which Wine Has the Least Calories?
Sparkling wine is the winning option when it comes to wine with the least amount of calories, particularly if you stick with the drier types (brut). This is due to the slightly lower ABV, and therefore sugars in the wine. Out of red, white, and rosé, rosé wine would be your best option for lower calorie content, with white (think chardonnay and sauvignon blanc) following in a close second.
Calories in Wine: What You Need to Remember.
As with anything related to calories, the portion size is what really matters. Even discounting the number of calories, moderation should always be taken with alcohol for overall health and wellbeing. As such, perhaps it could be worthwhile keeping a diary on the amount of alcohol you’re drinking to better understand the actual number of liquid calories you’re drinking.
That to one side, to reduce the number of calories consumed from wine, an important change could be as simple as switching from the regular bottle you buy from the supermarket to stocking up on the excellent selection of lower calorie wines we have here at DrinkWell. As discussed in a recent article, the difference it can make when you start to calculate calories saved across a month or year can be quite staggering.
If you’re looking for more resources about healthier wine alternatives, why not explore similar articles that we’ve listed below?
- How Many Calories Are in a Bottle of Red Wine?
- How Many Calories Are in a Bottle of White Wine?
- Does Lower Calorie Wine Taste the Same as Regular Wine?
Lower Calorie Wine From DrinkWell
Whatever your goals, we’re here to help by offering the UK the best information on the calories contained in alcohol, whilst providing the finest selection of lower calorie alternatives. On each product page, you’ll be able to view a detailed description of the nutritional information for each wine, as well as if it’s suitable for veggies, vegans, keto, or gluten-free diets! You won’t find a more helpful wine retailer… That being said, here are our current favourite low calorie wine options:
For those who love a deep, rich, red wine, our Pour Le Vin Merlot is for you. Pour Le Vin is an energetic range of wines made from grapes sourced in the Languedoc and Gascony, providing the perfect balance between ripeness and freshness. The brand specialises in showcasing the talent in French wine making, and it shows in each product. This wine, coming in at just 83 calories per small glass, offers top notes of vibrant plummy and blackberry fruit, with a well-rounded fruity finish.
One of our best selling white wines comes in at a brilliant 82 calories per small glass, so you can sip all summer long without compromising on your diet. Experience vibrant aromas of tropical fruits and peaches, layered perfectly with rich, buttery notes and a hint of acidity. The Viña Echeverría pairs beautifully with fresh Mediterranean foods, seafood, and creamy pasta dishes. Order online from DrinkWell for just £13.99 per bottle!
If you’re looking for a delicious rosé that all of your friends will enjoy, explore our Provence collection. This gorgeous wine is a firm favourite of our team, with aromatic notes of rosé and cranberry, followed by notes of cranberry and strawberry fruits on the palate with a mouthwatering finish. The St Louis de Provence Rosé is only 79 calories per serving, and you can pick up a bottle for £12.99.Browse Our Lower Calorie Wine Collection