Are Beer Growlers Recyclable? 8 Easy Ways to Reuse Growlers

Are beer Growlers Recyclable? Yes, you can use them to create a bar display shown in this photo

The popularity of craft beer continues to grow, and that means more people are buying growlers, but are the beer growlers recyclable? A growler is a glass or metal jug that you can fill with draft beer from a brewery or brewpub.

Many establishments offer discount prices if you bring your growler when you come back for a refill. It’s an eco-friendly way to drink locally-made beer at home or whenever you go out drinking with friends. A growler is different from a keg which weighs a lot more depending on the size and the quantity of beer in it.

A growler is a glass or metal jug that you can use to take draft beer home from a brewery. However, these days there are mini-keg pressurized growlers that appear different. It’s also an old-fashioned way of drinking beer making a comeback. Here are some things you probably don’t know about using a growler for transporting and storing beer. Are Beer Growlers Recyclable?

Are Beer Growlers Recyclable?

Beer growlers whether glass or metallic are recyclable. However, even before thinking of recycling, it is important to note that beer growlers are reusable. They can be reused endlessly and should not be part of the waste in a landfill.

When you’re done drinking beer, there are a few ways to get rid of your growler. The most obvious way is to throw it out with the rest of your recyclables. However, we don’t recommend doing that, as growlers are reusable.

You can also return them to the brewery if they accept them. If not, you can always donate it to charity. Because growlers are made of glass or metal, you can recycle them instead.

Finally, some people can create DIY art with them with beer growlers being used in some of the following:

  • As flower vases
  • To create a mosquito-repellant lantern
  • To create a base for your lights

What is a Beer Growler?

A beer growler is a glass or metal jug that you can use to take draft beer home from a brewery. It’s also an old-fashioned way of drinking beer that’s making a comeback.

Traditionally, people would buy a growler full of beer and consume it over a few days. Nowadays, people use growlers as a way to take home draft beer and enjoy it at their leisure.

You’ll often find breweries selling growlers on tap. You can either drink the beer right there or take it home in a growler. If you go the latter route, you have to remember to drink the beer within a few days. Otherwise, it’ll go stale.

Beer growlers are different from beer crowlers because beer crowlers are pre-sealed aluminum containers, about 64oz in size. They can be filled with any draft beer and then sealed up for an airtight, clean seal.

Why Drink Beer From a Growler?

There are a bunch of reasons why you might want to drink beer from a growler instead of a bottle or can. First, growlers are reusable. You can bring them back to any brewery where you want to drink their beer and they’ll fill it up for you again.

In other words, you don’t have to throw the growler out after one use like you would a bottle or can. Another reason you might want to drink beer from a growler instead of a bottle or can is that it’s a more casual way of consuming beer.

It’s not as formal as drinking a beer from a bottle and not as casual as drinking a beer from a can.

Drinking beer from a crowler helps to manage the product cost and also helps you to casually take the beer when you need it. Moreover, it is easy to transport beer growlers as compared to buying beer bottles that are not refillable.

Recycling Your Beer Growler

At the end of the day, growlers are just containers. They’re not magical vessels that will last forever. That means that after having a few pints of beer in a growler a few times, it’ll start to break down.

At that point, you have a few options. You can keep using it until it breaks down completely and becomes useless. You can throw it out and buy a brand-new growler. You can return it to the brewery. Or you can recycle it.

We recommend going with the latter option. You can either recycle the beer growler yourself or take it to the recycling stations. This is because there are several DIY arts that you can do with a beer growler including:

  • As a flower vase– You can put dry flowers or live flowers on a growler for decoration purposes.
  • To create a mosquito repellant lantern– It is an easy way to recycle your beer growler. The mosquito-repellent growler lantern enables you to use the growler in a beautiful yet useful method.
  • To create a base for your lights– Turing your beer growler into a lamp is another method you can use to recycle your growler with medium difficulty. The end result is a beautiful lamp base that can be displayed everywhere.
  • To create a bar display– If you have a bar, you can use the beer growlers as part of your interior design. The beer growlers can be arranged in such a way that they leave an impression on anyone entering your bar. Moreover, there are other ways of storing your beer growlers to make them very appealing.
  • Turn a growler into a succulent planter: This is one of the harder-to-implement DIY for your beer growler. You may need a glass cutter for glass growlers but for metallic growlers, it is a bit easier to do.
  • Turn them into funnels for your beverages: You can turn the beer growler into a funnel for your drinks. This makes it a beautiful way to recycle the beer growler with minimal activity.

Other recycling methods include using your beer growlers to create a terrarium and using them as mini-kegs for homebrewers. Once you’ve selected your growler and you’ve brought beer home in it a few times, you’ll want to clean it out. We recommend rinsing the container out with some water.

Do breweries clean growlers?

Yes, breweries from the onset of covid-19, most craft breweries clean and sanitize growlers. This is to ensure that the beer is not contaminated but also to prevent coronavirus.

Beer may not spoil if mixed with older beer but it is important to clean the impurities and dirt that may be contained in the beer growler. This is very important especially if there has been no refill in the near past.

Most of the breweries and beer depots that sell beer in a growler have invested in high-pressure cleaning machines for growlers. It is also a reason for beer lovers to keep coming back to the craft brewery.

That way, you know that you’re only getting freshly poured beer that hasn’t been sitting around for hours. On top of that, breweries will also sanitize the growler with a cleaning agent. That way, there are no germs or bacteria present in the container when you fill it up with beer.

Can you return the growlers to the beer store?

Most craft breweries accept the growler back but without a refund even though you can identify one that gives a refund. In Ontario, you can return growlers to a beer store.

One of the reasons why the return is possible is because the growlers are reusable and recyclable. Thus, for a beer store, it may be a way of getting more beer containers for reuse.

If you want to return your growler to the brewery, make sure that it’s clean first. You can do that by rinsing it out with some water. Now, breweries don’t always refund the money you paid for your growler. They might, but they don’t have to.

That’s because you’re not technically buying the growler. You’re paying for the beer that’s inside of it. What’s more, the growler is reusable. You can use it again and again to bring home more beer. As a result, breweries don’t always refund money for growlers.

What to do with empty growlers?

There are several ways to reuse the growlers in your home or office. Empty growlers are great for a few things. You can use them as flower vases, mosquito repellent lanterns, or you can upcycle them into a lamp.

If you’d like to do the latter, you’ll have to go to a hardware store and purchase some parts first. As described above, you can use them in any DIY craft that you can think of.

Finally, you can also use empty growlers as a succulent planter. To do that, you’ll want to get some succulent plants first.


Beer growlers are taking the beer industry by storm. They’re a more casual way of drinking beer, and they’re also reusable. Once you’re done drinking beer from your growler, you can clean it out and use it again.

That way, you don’t have to keep buying new containers and pouring beer into containers that you don’t get back. Growlers are also recyclable, so you can always return them to the brewery.

At the end of the day, growlers are a great way to enjoy a draft beer outside of a brewery. Moreover, it is easy to work with and reuse.


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