Can you reuse beer bottles?

In this brief guide, we are going to answer the question “Can you reuse beer bottles” with an in-depth analysis of can you reuse beer bottles. Moreover, we will have a brief discussion about what are the drawbacks of reusing bottles as well as What kinds of bottles are best for home brewing.

Saving money is something that many homebrewers enjoy. I mean, who doesn’t? Reusing beer bottles purchased from the store is one of the first ways to save money while homebrewing. Sure, it saves money, but it does necessitate some extra effort.

So if you are in search of an answer to whether you can reuse beer bottles, then you need not worry as we are going to answer all your questions.

So without much ado, let’s dive in and figure out more about it. 

Can you reuse beer bottles?

You can and should reuse bottles to produce homemade beer. It will save the environment by repurposing what you already have rather than creating more waste, as well as saving you money. Brown bottles are preferable to clear bottles. However, keep in mind that fully cleaning and de-labeling them takes time.

What are the numerous varieties of beer bottles available in the United States?

Brewers in the United States sell and use two types of bottles: one-way and returnable bottles. One-way bottles, as the name implies, are meant for use only once and are light in weight, making them unsuitable for home brewing.

Returnable glass, on the other hand, is more durable than one-way glass since it is designed to be cleaned and reused. For logistical and financial reasons, these are not as prevalent as “one-way” bottles. One-way bottles are less expensive and easy to use because you don’t have to keep track of pickups or clean them.

What kinds of bottles are best for homebrewing?

You should use brown glass bottles in general, but if you don’t have any, green or clear will suffice. If you choose green or clear bottles, you’ll just have to be more careful about where you store them and keep them away from light.

You should select a darker color bottle because it will shield the beer from UV rays better than a transparent glass container. The darker the bottle, the less light may penetrate and “skunk” the beer.

When beer is exposed to extreme temperatures, it is commonly supposed to “skunk.” In truth, light is to blame; a suitable term would be “lightstruck” rather than “skunked.”

The larger beer bottles are fantastic. The larger 22-oz. and 25-oz. bottles are ideal because they require less cleaning and filling. They also make wonderful holiday gifts!

Be envious of the flip-top: Euro-style bottles with a flip-top are quite cool! It’s certainly worth the effort to reuse these types of beer bottles for home brewing.

First, give them a good rinsing. Mold and other smelly organisms love to take up residence in the leftover liquid at the bottom of a beer bottle. Rinse out the beer bottles as soon as you’re done with them to save yourself the hassle of scrubbing them. Three fast rinses should suffice but check inside for any remaining yeast at the bottom to be sure.

Take the labels off. Expect this task to take a long time. (Because labeling homebrew is perhaps the least favored part of the process, some homebrewers simply leave the labels on.) 

Soaking the bottles in a tub filled with hot water and One Step is the best approach to remove commercial labels. The majority of the labels that employ a glue adhesive should come off after 15-20 minutes. Others may be more challenging.

What are the drawbacks of reusing bottles?

It takes a long time

Before you utilize the recycled bottles, you should remove the labels and clean them. This will necessitate soaking and washing them for a long time. When soaking, Oxyclean is a terrific technique to speed up the process of removing the label and all of the glue.


Brewers want their beer to have a certain aesthetic, and adding another company’s name on the bottle may not be appropriate. Even if you remove the label from a bottle like Sam Adams, the raised letters will remain. Also, when entering a competition, you are usually not allowed to display the logos of other companies.


Some bottles are simply not strong enough for the beer you’re making. These bottles were created to be used once and then recycled. If you’re going to brew a Belgian beer, the bottle needs to be sturdy enough to handle the internal pressure.

You can read why beer bottles are brown here.

Other FAQs about Beer that you may be interested in.

What to do if I accidentally froze beer?

How long can beer sit out?

What happens when adding flavor to be


In this brief guide, we answered the question “Can you reuse beer bottles” with an in-depth analysis of can you reuse beer bottles. Moreover, we also have a brief discussion about what are the drawbacks of reusing bottles as well as What kinds of bottles are best for home brewing.


Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.