Aug 18, 2023 | Samuel Albert

How do beer growlers work? Things You Should Know About Beer Growlers.

Taking your favorite beer along without any compromise in its quality, taste, and flavor - to be relished at home or on a day trip is now possible, thanks to the growlers! A growler is an eco-friendly option that comes in handy when you want to carry a lot of beer at a time.

Photo by Lindsay Martin on Unsplash

Growlers are beer jugs that help transport beer from pubs, breweries, or beer bars while maintaining the freshness and carbonated state of the drink. They must be stored in refrigerated condition and consumed within 72 hours of purchase for the best drinking experience.  

Growlers are reusable, refillable kegs (taking the burden off the environment!). They are available in different sizes and materials.

Growlers offer the comfort of enjoying your favorite beer anywhere. But remember, a beer drink is best tasted chilled, so make sure you carry coolers or chillers to keep them cool.

1. How Do Beer Growlers Work?

Beer growlers are popular carry-away beer options as they give you the "straight from the tap" worthy beer at home.

Though a 64-ounce container is the most preferred size of a beer growler, other sizes are also available. Also, there is a wide range of materials- ceramic, glass, and stainless steel - to select from.

Breweries and pubs usually sanitize, clean, and cool your growler before filling it in. While filling the beer, they will force the oxygen out of the container by filling it in with carbon dioxide (purging). Then they insert the tube and start filling the beer from the bottom (to avoid turbulence). They fill it up so that the foam is up and bubbly and close the lid over the foam and secure it tight, leaving no chance for any oxygen to be inside the bottle. 

Time to seal it airtight.

2. Does Beer Stay Fresh In A Growler?

Yes, beer does stay fresh in a pressurized growler. But remember, stored beer is delicate, so to ensure it stays fresh, you must be mindful of some factors and finish the beer as soon as possible to enjoy it at its best.

Photo by Brock DuPont on Unsplash

It should be noted that the stability of different beer varies. While some hold up well in a growler for a long time, others may not. So, it is always better to enquire about the durability of the purchased draft beer in the brewery where you are filling your growler.


Here are a few factors to consider:

  1. Choose an Airtight Growler: Oxidation is the worst enemy of fresh beer. As soon as you fill your growler, secure it tight with a seal. This will help your beer stay fresh. A swing-top or screw-top will ensure a tight seal and keep the air out.

  1. Growler Material Matters: Beer can imbibe the flavor of the keg it is stored in. So, stowing it in a container like glass or other non-reactant containers designed primarily for beer storage is essential. 

  1. Store in a Cold, Dark Place: Sunlight and temperature variations can affect the quality and taste of your beer. Store your beer in dark-tinted growlers and refrigerate them until they are ready to be opened.

If it is a long drive home from the brewery, prepare a beer cooler or chiller to transport your growlers.


  1. Consume It Quickly: Even with all the above precautions, keeping your beer in its prime condition for a long time in a growler is difficult. So, if you would like to enjoy it the best, try not to store it for more than 3 days and finish it as soon as possible. Did you know that your beer's niceties will stealthily creep out of the bottle even as the clock ticks?

Also, the hop aromas that add much interest to the beer taste tend to quickly disappear as time passes.  

And once you open the growler, try to finish it ASAP, or you might lose all the fizz and be left with a flat beer.

3. Are Growlers Dishwasher-Safe?

Some growlers are dishwasher-safe, and many are not. If you would like to know if your growler is dishwasher safe, you can easily look it up, so no worries.

While glass and stainless steel growlers can be dishwasher safe, ceramic growlers are not, for they can get chipped, and their beautiful glaze work can get ruined while running in the machine; so, handwashing them is their best bet.


Photo by Brenan Greene on Unsplash

Cleaning the growlers can be tricky as we are not always in the mood to clean after having a beer. This can result in the leftover beer settling down at the bottom, making the cleaning process challenging later on.

To avoid this,

  1. Empty the beer bottle down to the last drip.
  2. As soon as the bottle is empty, store them in a refrigerator to stop the increase of microbes. 
  3. If you have immediate access to water (or as soon as possible), rinse the growler thoroughly with hot water. Repeat the rinsing process till you are satisfied that your growler is spotless.
  4. Now turn your growler upside down and let it air dry.
  5. Never replace the cap back on.
  6. Sanitize it again at the bar before your next beer refill.
  7. If you have left the growler to sit outside for a long time without cleaning, use a brush and mild detergent to clean the inside thoroughly. Now meticulously wash off and clean the insides of any soap residue that can spoil your beer's taste.  
  8. Always look up the manufacturer's instructions for cleaning, storage, and care of your growler.

4. Can A Growler Of Beer Get Warm?

No, the beer in the growler can't be left to get warm.

Transportation of your growlers can be problematic, especially if you don't have a cold storage unit to store your growler on its way home.

Heat can impact your beer in the following ways:

  • The beer's flavor profile, aroma, and taste can significantly alter when exposed to temperature fluctuations.
  • When exposed to heat, the CO2 gas (which causes the fizz) is also lost quickly, causing the beer to become tasteless and flat.
  • Exposure to sweltering temperatures for a prolonged period can cause the beer to get spoiled, posing a health hazard. So, it is advisable to consume the beer immediately if it has been exposed to too much heat. 

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