How much is one shot of liquor: pouring out the truth!

When enjoying a drink or two, it’s important to keep a handle on how much you’re consuming. Understanding how much alcohol is in each drink is helpful, but it’s not always clear how much a “shot” of liquor actually is. It can vary depending on several factors, such as where you are, what type of liquor you’re drinking, and even the shape of the glass. In this article, we’ll be diving into the world of liquor shots, exploring different measures of alcohol volume, and answering the question of how much is one shot of liquor.

The Standard Shot Measurements

The most commonly accepted standard measurement for a shot of liquor in the United States is 1.5 fluid ounces. This measurement is used in most bars and restaurants throughout the US, and is recognized by the United States Department of Agriculture.

In the UK, the standard shot measurement is slightly smaller, at 25 milliliters, or just under 0.85 fluid ounces. However, Scotland and some other countries use a 35 milliliter measurement, which is just over 1.18 fluid ounces.

Whether you’re in the US or the UK, you will typically be served a shot of liquor in a single-serving shot glass. However, depending on the establishment, the shot may be served in a different type of glass, which can affect the amount of alcohol you’re consuming.

The Jigger

The jigger is a small measuring device usually used by bartenders to measure out a standard shot of liquor, as well as other quantities of alcohol for cocktails and mixed drinks. Jiggers come in a variety of sizes, but the standard size is 1.5 fluid ounces.

When measuring out a shot with a jigger, simply fill the narrow end of the jigger to the top with the desired liquor, then pour the contents into the drink or serve the shot directly to the customer.

The Shot Glass

A typical shot glass is a small glass with a wide, short shape, which holds roughly 1.5 fluid ounces in the United States. However, some shot glasses may be larger, with a capacity of up to 2 fluid ounces. It’s important to note that in some establishments, shot glasses may not be the standard measuring device used for serving shots of liquor.

Different Liquors, Different Volumes

While the standard shot measurement in the United States is 1.5 fluid ounces, different types of liquor may contain varying amounts of alcohol by volume and calories. Here is a breakdown comparing shots of some popular types of liquor.

Liquor Type Standard Shot Size Alcohol by Volume (ABV)
Vodka 1.5 fl oz 40%
Tequila 1.5 fl oz 40%
Rum 1.5 fl oz 40%
Gin 1.5 fl oz 40-47%
Whiskey 1.5 fl oz 40-50%
Brandy 1.5 fl oz 35-60%
Scotch 1.5 fl oz 40-50%

Other Factors to Consider

Aside from the type of liquor being consumed, there are several other factors that can influence the amount of alcohol in a shot, including:

  • The size and shape of the glass used to serve the shot
  • The amount of ice used in the glass
  • How heavy-handed the bartender pour is

It’s important to be aware of these factors so that you can take them into consideration when trying to calculate the amount of alcohol you’re consuming.

The Risks of Drinking Too Much

While it’s important to know how much alcohol you’re consuming, it’s equally important to understand the risks associated with drinking excessively. Consuming more than the recommended daily intake of alcohol can have numerous negative impacts on your health and well-being, including:

  • Increased risk of liver disease and liver failure
  • Increase in blood pressure and risk of developing heart disease
  • Increased risk of certain types of cancer, such as breast and colon cancer
  • Increased risk of depression and other mental health disorders

It’s recommended that men and women limit their alcohol intake to no more than one standard drink per day. Consuming more than this can lead to the negative health consequences listed above, as well as an increased risk of accidents and injuries associated with alcohol consumption.


Q: How many shots are in a bottle of liquor?

A: The number of shots in a bottle of liquor depends on the size of the bottle and the size of the shot being poured. A standard 750ml bottle of liquor contains approximately 16 shots.

Q: How do you calculate the amount of alcohol in a mixed drink?

A: To calculate the amount of alcohol in a mixed drink, you need to know the volume of each type of alcoholic beverage being used, as well as the percentage of alcohol in each beverage. Once you have this information, you can use a simple formula to determine the total amount of alcohol in the drink. For instance, if you’re making a gin and tonic using 1.5 ounces of gin, which has an alcohol content of 40%, and 4 ounces of tonic water, which has no alcohol content, the total alcohol content of the drink would be:

(1.5 ounces gin x 40%) / (1.5 ounces gin + 4 ounces tonic water) = 0.3, or 30% alcohol by volume.

Q: How long does a shot of liquor stay in your system?

A: The amount of time that a shot of liquor stays in your system can vary depending on several factors, including your weight, age, gender, and how quickly your body metabolizes alcohol. On average, the liver can process about one standard drink per hour, so a single shot of liquor will generally remain in your system for approximately one hour.

Q: What is considered a “double” shot of liquor?

A: A double shot of liquor is generally considered to be two standard shots, or 3 fluid ounces in the United States. However, the exact amount can vary depending on the establishment and the type of liquor being served.


“Alcohol Use and Your Health.” National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services,

“Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC).” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, US Department of Health and Human Services,

“Standard Drink.” National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services,

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