Draft Beers

How Much Beer is in a Keg?

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There are not only many different types of beer available on the market, but you can also purchase beer in many different forms. At a bar, you may order by a pint. In a grocery store, you may get bottles or cans. But what about getting a keg of beer? How much beer is in a keg?

What is a Keg?

First of all, you may want to know what a keg is. A keg means a small barrel, implying there is a lot of beer. Using a keg makes storing, transporting and serving beer easier. Some people even think that getting a keg of beer is very economical.

How It Works

Many people assume that a keg is just a vessel that keeps the beer. Actually, a keg serves some specific functions. A keg is a part of a dispensing system that keeps the quality of the beer. Every keg contains a valve that allows gas to flow.

On one hand, it can prevent any external content from entering. At the same time, it is the inlet of the pressurized gas in the beer. Keeping your keg airtight means that your beer will stay flavorful.

How Much Beer is in a Keg?

You probably have a basic idea of what a keg means now. When you make a purchase for an occasion, you may wonder: how much beer is in a keg before you enjoy the beer?

The fact is, kegs come in different sizes, so the volume of the beer depends on the size of the keg that you choose. While keg is an unfamiliar unit for you, the following sections will show you what keg means in other units that you are more familiar with.

For example, how many beers in a keg, how many liters in a keg and how many pints in a keg.

Half Barrel

Many people refer to the half barrel as a keg. This vessel is often used for sharing macro brews around. Most bars and restaurants use this type of keg and they will fit into a standard kegerator.

When we are considering a half barrel as a keg, how many liters are there in a keg then? This half barrel can hold 58.67 liters, which means 124 pints (16 oz) of beer. In terms of a 12 oz bottle, the capacity of a half barrel is equal to 165 bottles of 12 oz beer.

If you are curious to know how many beers are in a half keg, you will get the answer by dividing the above numbers into half. A half barrel is close to 24 inches tall and about 16 inches wide. It is also called the full-size keg or the full keg.

Quarter Keg

A quarter barrel is also known as a pony keg or a stubby quarter. It is one of the most common types of kegs that people like to buy. A quarter keg might look different and there are two main types. One of them is taller, which is known as the tall keg.

It is as tall as a half barrel, which is about 14 inches in height. Its width is about 11 inches, meaning that the girth is halved. You are probably curious to know how many beers in a quarter keg. If you are guessing that the capacity is about half of the half barrel, then you are right.

A quarter keg is about 29.34 liters of beer, meaning that it contains the same volume of 82 bottles of 12 oz beer. Another type of quarter keg is commonly known as the pony keg. This type of quarter keg is shorter, but the girth remains unchanged.

Regarding how many beers are in a pony keg, it will be the same as above. This is because a pony keg only looks different in shape, but the volume of the keg remains unchanged. It is common for people to purchase pony kegs for some medium-sized parties.

Sixth Barrel

The sixth barrel keg is not very common and it is known as the sixtel. It can hold 19.55 liters of beer, which means 53 bottles or 40 pints. This barrel is about 23 inches tall and 9 inches wide.

Cornelius Keg

Homebrewers prefer to use this type of keg and sometimes, they might be used to serve customers in breweries. It is the smallest size of the keg and it has a capacity of 18.93 liters. This means that it can hold 53 bottles or 40 pints of beer.

Kegs Around the World  

The sizes of kegs might vary, depending on where you are purchasing your kegs. There are U.S. keg sizes and European keg sizes. For European, the standard keg size is about 50 liters, which is about 88 pints.

On the other hand, a half barrel would be 30 liters, which is equal to the volume of 52 pints. The numbers provided in the previous sections are in U.S. keg size. When the same terminologies are used in the European standard, it means different things.

How Long Will It Stay Fresh?

It is difficult to determine how long the beer can stay fresh in the keg because it depends on the type of beer the keg contains as well as how you keep the keg.

The way you choose to dispense the beer and the storage temperature are two major factors to consider. For example, if you use a manual pump to dispense your beer, the beer can typically stay fresh for 8 hours.


Beer is a must have for so many occasions. When you are hosting a party, it is important to ensure you have enough beer to satisfy your guests.

For now, you should have a better sense of what a keg is. This information should be helpful for you to make a better estimation of the amount of beer your guests need. Purchase some kegs of beer accordingly and keep your guests happy.

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