10 Largest Beer Brands In The United States

By Jack Flynn - May. 31, 2021

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Whether you’re watching sports, eating at a restaurant, or simply relaxing by the campfire, a cold, refreshing beer will fit any of these occasions. In fact, of the 63% of Americans who drink alcohol, a whopping 42% prefer beer over any other alcoholic beverage.

With that in mind, it’s no wonder there are a few highly popular brands out there.

From light to bitter, craft to IPA, various brands dominate the market. Though, as tastes change, what’s popular and best-selling can fluctuate year to year. Companies change and adapt their brands to fit the desires of their consumers all the time, and new brands emerge on the regular.

So with that in mind, what are the best-selling beer brands in the United States today? To answer that, we’ve gathered a list of the top 10 best-selling beer brands in the U.S., based on their dollar sales in 2020.

  1. Budweiser — St. Louis, Missouri, United States

  2. Michelob — St. Louis, Missouri, United States

  3. Modelo — Mexico City, Mexico

  4. Corona — Mexico City, Mexico

  5. Coors — Golden, Colorado, United States

  6. Miller Lite — Milwaukee, Wisconsin, United States

  7. White Claw — Chicago, Illinois, United States

  8. Busch — St. Louis, Missouri, United States

  9. Natural Light — St. Louis, Missouri, United States

  10. Heineken — Amsterdam, Netherlands

Detailed List of the 10 Best Selling Beer Brands

  1. Budweiser

    2020 Dollar Sales: $7.07 billion
    2020 Sales Growth: +0.3%

    Introduced 145 years ago in 1876, Budweiser has been one of the most popular lager beers in America for a long time. In fact, Budweiser is sold in over 80 countries worldwide. The brand’s parent company is the well-known AB InBev, a massive beer company headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri.

    The name Budweiser comes from a German derivative adjective, meaning “of Budweis,” which is modernly known as České Budějovice in the Czech Republic. Beer has been made in this region since its founding in 1265.

    However, Budweiser’s composition is quite different from its original Czech counterpart, as it’s made with up to 30% rice.

    Budweiser is also well known for its advertising in the U.S. Surely everyone has seen the famous Budweiser Clydesdales in Superbowl commercials. In 2019 alone, AB InBev spent upwards of $25 million on Budweiser Superbowl ads alone.

  2. Michelob

    2020 Dollar Sales: $2.89 billion
    2020 Sales Growth: +21.7%

    A staple brand of AB InBev, Michelob Ultra’s original ABV pale lager was developed in 1896. Today, the brand encompasses several different variations of beer, including Michelob Classic Dark, Michelob Golden Draft, Michelob Honey Lager, Michelob Pumpkin Spice Ale, and more.

    Michelob is well known for its 1960s teardrop bottle, which was awarded a medal from the Institute of Design in 1962. However, the bottles were inevitably redesigned due to inefficiency.

    That hasn’t slowed down the brand’s more modern marketing, though, as AB InBev regularly advertises the brand during sporting events. Some of these events are even sponsored by the brand, such as hockey events, golf tournaments, and bicycle tours.

  3. Modelo

    2020 Dollar Sales: $2.66 billion
    2020 Sales Growth: +21%

    Despite being a Mexican beer brand, Modelo is still incredibly popular in the United States. The brand was originally founded in 1925 and began exporting to the U.S. in 1933.

    Modelo is made by Constellation Brands and has been one of the faster-growing beer brands within the last decade. For instance, from 2007 to 2017, the amount of Modelo shipped to the U.S. increased from 1.6 million barrels to 7.2 million barrels.

  4. Corona

    2020 Dollar Sales: $2.62 billion
    2020 Sales Growth: +8.2%

    Also produced by Constellation Brands, Corona is another Mexican beer that’s highly popular in the United States. Unlike some other brands on this list, Corona tends to advertise drinking on the beach above any other setting. The beer is also often complemented with a lemon or lime, as noted by the phrase “A Corona gets its lime.”

    Interestingly, the brand saw a dip in sales during 2020 due to the name being associated with COVID-19 (Coronavirus). A February (2020) CNN survey showed that as many as 38% of Americans refused to buy Corona due to association with the coronavirus outbreak. Another 14% said they would not order a Corona in public.

    However, since this survey, the brand’s sales growth has picked up again.

  5. Coors

    2020 Dollar Sales: $2.60 billion
    2020 Sales Growth: +4.6%

    Created by the Molson Coors Beverage Company in the 1940s, Coors is the company’s best-selling beer brand. This American beer is especially well known for its “Cold Certified” label, which turns the mountains on the label blue when the beer’s temperature hits 39 °F.

    Coors is generally advertised toward younger demographics, and its ads seek to capture their imagination by situating them in cool places they’d like to be. This is typically done under the slogan: “the most refreshing place on earth.”

  6. Miller Lite

    2020 Dollar Sales: $2.16 billion
    2020 Sales Growth: +6.4%

    Competing mainly with Coors Light and Bud Light, Miller Lite is a newer beer introduced in 1973. Back then, this brand was the most successful light beer to hit the mainstream U.S. market. Today, Miller Lite’s parent company, Molson Coors, ships roughly 13 million barrels per year.

    Miller Lite has a heavy sports association, as it’s the official beer sponsor of the Dallas Cowboys (NFL), Green Bay Packers (NFL), Milwaukee Brewers (MLB), Milwaukee Bucks (NBA), and Bellator MMA.

    Other sports the brand has sponsored or used to advertise their beer over the years include NASCAR and Boxing. In 2020, Miller Lite also sponsored a podcast known as Dirty Sports in an attempt to move into the podcast sphere.

  7. White Claw

    2020 Dollar Sales: $1.64 billion
    2020 Sales Growth: +245.8%

    Introduced in 2016, this Irish beer brand is the newest and fastest-growing on this list. While White Claw technically falls under the umbrella of hard seltzers, it is a malt beverage made by the alcoholic fermentation of malted barley and hops.

    White Claw is manufactured by Mark Anthony Brands, which is based in Dublin and has a U.S. headquarters in Chicago. In the past four years alone, White Claw has seen triple-digit sales increases annually.

    The brand was so popular that there was a nationwide shortage, resulting in the company opening more factories to produce more inventory.

  8. Busch

    2020 Dollar Sales: $1.58 billion
    2020 Sales Growth: +8.4%

    Introduced in 1955 as Busch Bavarian Beer, Busch is another brand on this list made by AB InBev. This brand was originally marketed as an economy beer, being less expensive than AB InBev’s flagship Budweiser, and is still one of the most popular brands in America today. Busch competes directly with Milwaukee’s Best and Keystone.

    A few other noteworthy beers under the same Busch brand are Busch Light, Busch Ice, and Busch NA. Regardless of the variation, the brand’s ingredients include hops, malt, and corn.

    One interesting fact about Busch is that they released a Dog Brew in September 2020. This fun non-alcoholic beverage for dogs is made with pork bone broth, water, vegetables, herbs, and spices.

  9. Natural Light

    2020 Dollar Sales: $1.44 billion
    2020 Sales Growth: +4.6%

    Yet another brand produced by AB InBev, Natural Light, otherwise known as “Natty Light,” was introduced in 1977. Today, the brand has fairly low pricing, as not to compete with Budweiser Light.

    This low price can partially explain why Natural Light is so popular with college students, as inexpensive 30 pack cases are a good way to start drinking games.

    Natural Light’s main ingredients include water, barley malt, cereal grains, yeast, and hops. Originally, its main competition was Miller Lite, and the two have a similar calorie count of 97 to 96 kcal.

  10. Heineken

    2020 Dollar Sales: $842 million
    2020 Sales Growth: +5.9%

    Made in the Netherlands, Heineken is one of the most popular European beer brands in the United States. Originally manufactured in Amsterdam, the beer’s first production dates back to 1873. By 1875, Heineken won the Medaille d’Or at the International Maritime Exposition in Paris.

    Heineken is a major sports sponsor, hosting events like the UEFA Champions League and Rugby World Cup. In 2016, Heineken also became the official beer of FIA Formula One World Championship, the highest international auto racing class for single-seater formula racing cars.

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Jack Flynn

Author

Jack Flynn

Jack Flynn is a writer for Zippia. In his professional career he’s written over 100 research papers, articles and blog posts. Some of his most popular published works include his writing about economic terms and research into job classifications. Jack received his BS from Hampshire College.

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