The number of calories in a glass of wine can range from around 120–165, depending on the type of wine.

Wine is one of the oldest beverages and has been popular for centuries. Even today, it continues to be one of the most consumed drinks in the world. According to the Wine Institute, people in the United States drink more than 3 gallons of this fermented grape juice each year.

Wine has an alcohol content that creates a feel-good effect in the brain, and many of the chemicals in wine can have beneficial health effects.

Experts associate wine drinking with reduced inflammation and lower blood pressure A daily glass of wine may also help prevent heart disease and stroke.

This article compares the calorie content in different types of wine and the source of these calories. It also contrasts wine with other alcoholic beverages, and explores some of the health benefits of wine.

A selection of wine glasses on a table.Share on Pinterest
Aubrie LeGault/Stocksy

The following chart lists the number of calories in some popular glasses of wine, typically five fluid ounces.

Type of WineNumber of calories (kcal)
Pinot noir121
Rose wine126
Sweet wine165
Sauvignon blanc119
Cabernet sauvignon122

Wine is an alcoholic beverage that manufacturers create by fermenting grape juice. It is the alcohol concentration of carbohydrates that provides the calories in wine.

As the name suggests, sweet wines are often sweeter than dry wines. Manufacturers may add more sugar to these wines, contributing to a more significant number of calories than their dry counterparts.

A single glass of wine does not contribute many calories to someone’s daily energy intake. However, people may find it easy to overindulge. Most individuals have more than a single glass of wine in a sitting, leading to an overall increase in calorie intake.

Most glasses of wine contain around 120 calories, with sweet wine containing considerably more calories at 165 calories per glass.

When comparing the calorie content of wine and other popular alcoholic beverages, people must consider the serving size. Bars and restaurants may serve wine, spirits, and beer in different quantities.

Here are some example calories for popular alcoholic drinks:

  • A 12 ounce can of beer contains around 153 calories. However, this can vary greatly depending on the beer.
  • A 12-ounce serving of hard cider contains 199 calories. Again, this can vary.
  • A single 1.5 ounce serving of 80-proof vodka, gin, rum, and whiskey contains around 97 calories.
  • One serving of whiskey sour contains around 158 calories.

The calorie content of wine falls in the middle of these standard alcoholic beverage options. However, wine, specifically red wine, offers health benefits that these other drinks do not.

The alcoholic and polyphonic components of wine have beneficial antioxidant, lipid regulating, and anti-inflammatory effects.

Past studies have found that moderate alcohol consumption can provide health benefits, including increasing the amount of “good” cholesterol in the body and decreasing the risk of diabetes.

There are no conclusive recommendations regarding wine consumption. But many studies have found that moderate consumption of red wine protects against:


Crushed grapes are the basis of wine. Grapes contain the natural antioxidant resveratrol, and this significant antioxidant concentration likely provides red wine with its many health benefits.

Additionally, resveratrol has anti-inflammatory characteristics. These anti-inflammatory properties help to protect the heart and nervous system and make also have antiaging effects.

Red wine also contains the compound proanthocyanidin. This bioactive chemical may contribute to heart health and protect against heart disease and other inflammatory conditions.

The antioxidants found in red wine are beneficial in reducing oxidative stress. The body naturally produces reactive oxygen and nitrogen species (RONS) through some natural processes, damaging cells and tissues.

To combat this, the body also has antioxidant defenses to neutralize any damage. However, if there are not enough antioxidants to combat RONS, oxidative stress can occur.

Oxidative stress plays a role in several conditions, including cardiovascular diseases, chronic kidney disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, neurodegenerative diseases, and cancer.

So, while red wine may not cure these conditions, it may help prevent them by managing oxidative stress.

Endothelial function

The alcohol in red wine, combined with its polyphenol content, can help to improve and maintain endothelial function.

Endothelial cells are crucial in keeping capillaries functional and bringing blood to all tissues of the body. Because of this, the endothelium plays a role in preventing conditions including:

  • stroke
  • heart disease
  • insulin resistance
  • diabetes
  • tumor growth

Red wine helps maintain endothelial function, meaning that it also plays a role in protecting against various diseases and conditions.

Individuals should remember to drink in moderation. Instead of providing health benefits, excessive drinking may cause problems, such as obesity, liver damage, stroke, cancer, and a negative impact on heart health.

Learn more about the potential health benefits of wine here.

Wine comes from fermented, crushed grapes, and its calories come primarily from its alcohol and carbohydrate content.

There are many types of wine, including red, white, sweet, and rose. These wines have a calorie content ranging from 120–165 calories for a single glass.

When compared to other alcoholic drinks, the calorie content for wine falls in the middle. However, red wine, in particular, offers many health benefits that other alcoholic beverages lack.