How Many Cups Are in a Fifth of Alcohol?


There are a little over 3 cups of liquor in a fifth of alcohol. This assumes that you are using a standard 8-ounce cup to measure the alcohol.

Number of Ounces in a Fifth of Liquor

A fifth of liquor contains 750 milliliters of liquor. If you want to convert this amount into ounces, you need to know that 1 milliliter is equal to 0.033814 ounces. To convert 750 milliliters to ounces, multiply 750 by 0.033814. This yields a final answer of 25.3605 ounces. 

How to Convert Ounces to Cups

Now that you know a fifth of liquor has 25.3605 ounces, you can convert this figure into cups. Divide 25.3605 by 8 ounces to determine that there are 3.17 cups in a fifth of alcohol.

The Logic Behind the Term “Fifth” of Alcohol

Many individuals wonder why a 750-milliliter or 25-ounce bottle of liquor is referred to as a “fifth.” The name “fifth” refers to the fact that the bottle is equivalent to a fifth of a gallon.

There are 128 ounces in a gallon. If you divide 25.3605 into 128, the answer is 0.1981 of a gallon. Once you round the number to 0.20, it’s equal to a fifth of a gallon. The amount of liquor in a fifth is also equal to four-fifths of a quart or 1.5 pints.

How to Decide How Many Fifths to Buy

If you’re planning an event or hosting a party, you might be unsure as to how many fifths of alcohol you need to buy for your event. This depends on how you want to serve the alcohol, how much alcohol you want to serve and the number of people at your event.

Assume that you plan to primarily serve your guests shots. If you use a standard-sized shot glass that measures 1.5 ounces, each fifth of liquor will provide 16.907 shots. You can calculate the number of shots in a fifth of liquor by dividing 25.3605 by the size of your shot glass. 

If you plan on having 30 guests and want to provide each guest three 1.5-ounce shots, you’ll need 135 ounces of liquor. When you divide 25.3605 into 135, you’ll see that this yields 5.323 fifths of liquor. Round this number up to six.

You might want to make an alcoholic punch for your party. Consult your recipe for the appropriate denominations, and adjust them so they’re suitable for the size of your event. If the recipe calls for 2 cups of liquor and the recipe serves 10 people, this means you only need a fifth of liquor.

However, if you’re having 30 people at your party, this means that you’ll need 6 cups of liquor. Since you know each fifth has 3 cups of liquor, you’ll need two fifths of liquor to accommodate the number of guests at your party.

Size Options Other Than a Fifth of Liquor

Though the fifth used to be the standard denomination when purchasing liquor, it isn’t your only option in today’s liquor market. If you need to purchase a large amount of liquor, you might prefer to purchase a bottle known as a handle. A handle is equivalent to 1.75 liters or 59.2 ounces.

Need something smaller than a fifth? Look for a size known as a pint of liquor. A pint of liquor contains 375 milliliters or 12.7 ounces.