Finances & Money

Keg, Canned, or 2-Liter Bottles: Which is The Cheapest Way To Buy Root Beer?

cheapest way to buy root beer, purchasing root beer, buying root beer

The keg vs canned beer debate is one that I tackled awhile back, but what about soda?  During a planning discussion for my son’s graduation party my wife suggested getting a keg of root beer, but also wondered aloud if it was really just a novelty or if there was some cost savings involved.  I did some price analysis and since the similar post about beer has been so popular, I decided to share it here on CleverDude to help answer the question, which is the cheapest way to buy root beer?

To help answer the question, I analyzed the cost of getting a keg of root beer vs the same amount of root beer in cans as well as in 2 liter bottles.

How Much Root Beer?

A keg of root beer is usually a 1/4th barrel, or 8 gallons.  With 128 fluid ounces per gallon, there is  1024 ounces of root beer in the keg.

Cost of A Keg Of Root Beer

A phone call to my local liquor store revealed that the cost of a keg of root beer was $60.

An 8 gallon keg of root beer costs $60, or about $0.059 per ounce.

Cost Of Canned Root Beer

A keg of root beer has 1024 ounces, which works out to about 86, 12oz servings.

Walking through my local grocery store, I saw 12-packs of A&W Root Beer on sale for $3 each.  To get the same amount of root beer, one would need to purchase 7.17 12-packs.  Yes, I know you can’t buy a fraction of a 12-pack, but just for cost analysis purposes let’s say you can.

7.17 12-packs cost $21.51, or $0.021 per ounce.

Cost of 2 Liter Bottles of Root Beer

A 2-liter bottle of root beer is 33.8 ounces, requiring 30.28 2-liter bottles.  Again, assume you can buy a fractional bottle just for cost analysis.   2-liter bottles of root beer cost $0.89 at a local grocery store.

30.28 2-liter bottles cost $26.95, or $0.026 per ounce.

Final Analysis

In order of least expensive to most expensive cost of our three product types:

  • Canned Root Beer:  $0.021 per ounce
  • 2-Liter Bottles of Root Beer: $0.026 per ounce
  • Keg Root Beer : $0.059 per ounce

Keg root beer is almost 3 times as expensive as canned root beer (on sale).   This also doesn’t take into account that you would need ice and cups for keg root beer.  Canned root beer may also need ice, but could be put into a refrigerator.
While a keg of root beer might be a great novelty addition to a party, it is certainly not something that will save you money.

How about you, Clever Friends, have you ever purchased keg root beer for a party?

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About the author

Brock Kernin

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