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Low Calorie Irish Beers for St. Patrick’s Day on a Diet

St. Patrick’s Day has very little (in fact, nothing) to do with drinking. According to legend, St. Patrick was responsible for ridding Ireland of bothersome snakes. One can’t believe everything one hears, but St. Patrick is in fact the patron saint of Ireland. His feast day, March 17th, has been celebrated by the Irish for centuries but the first St. Patrick’s Day parade took place in New York City during the year 1762.

Even though the origins of the holiday have little to do with the U.S., it’s nice to celebrate the rich culture of the Irish and in the process, have a few Irish drinks. Porters and stouts, while they pack a lot of flavor, contain large amounts of calories. The very nature of Irish beer is the exact opposite of light. Irish style drinks are delicious, and certainly essential to your St. Patrick’s Day festivities, but watch out. Alcohol has a way of packing on the pounds so indulge carefully and as always, drink responsibly.

I’ve hunted down the most popular Irish beers and listed them in order, from the least caloric to the highest. The following nutritional information is approximate and is based on 12- ounce serving sizes:

Guiness Draught: 125 calories

Harp: 142 calories

Beamish Irish Cream Stout: 146 calories

Guiness Extra Stout: 153 calories

Killian’s Irish Red: 163 calories

Murphy’s: 171 calories

Other St. Patrick’s Day drinks and how they stack up calorie wise:


Jameson Irish Whiskey: 69 calories per one ounce serving

Bailey’s Irish Cream Liqueur: 94 calories per one ounce serving

Creme de Menthe: 125 calories per one ounce serving

Irish Car Bomb: 237 calories per 12 ounces

If you’re not worried about the authenticity of your drink, then you can always pop a couple drops of green food coloring into just about anything. Get yourself 12 ounces of Beck’s Premier Light, weighing in at 64 calories, and turn it green for some festive flair. Any light beer of your choice will work just as well. You can also substitute the sugar in most mixed drinks for a low calorie sweetener and add some green garnish. Mint, lime, olives and melon balls could all be good ideas.

Also Read:

Slim Down Your Cocktails for Fat Tuesday

How to Make Irish Soda Bread for St. Patrick’s Day

March 8th, 2011

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