Potato vs Grain Vodka (2023 UPDATED) Read This First

Last Updated on August 22, 2023 by Lydia Martin

Vodka has long been regarded as a great-tasting and versatile alcohol, but did you know that potato and grain are one of the main components of this much-loved liquor? 

Our team researched 72 hours to create an in-depth comparison between the two and help you decide which bottle is better!

Grain or Potato: Which is a Better Vodka?

Grain and potato vodkas have their respective strengths. Some might argue that potato vodka is healthier because it’s gluten-free, but the vodka distilled from grains is too! Although, people who are looking for a distinctive taste and “character” in their vodka will benefit from potato vodka brands more. 

Potato Vodka

On the other hand, grain vodka is the better choice for those who opt to use it as the main ingredient for cocktail recipes.

What is Potato Vodka?

Potato Vodka is a premium vodka with a slightly thick, oily, and earthy finish, resulting in a distinctive tasting vodka. The taste is a complex combination of rustic fruit and vegetables. Generally, Russian potato vodkas are considered the best. However, the best potato vodka is from Woody Creek [1].

Woody Creek Potato Vodka

What is Grain Vodka?

Grain Vodka is an umbrella term to describe the various substrates of grain vodkas.

Wheat Grain for Vodka

The most popular grain vodka types are wheat, rye, and corn, and the Russia-based vodka brand Russian Standard Vodka is one example of this [2].

How Do They Differ?

How Do They Differ?

Aroma & Flavor

The difference between potato and grain vodka is attributed most to this parameter. Potato-based vodka is a clear spirit distilled to have more flavor. The distinctive taste makes it perfect for drinking neat or over ice.

Meanwhile, grain-based vodka is less flavorful, which is perfect for making cocktails. 

A glass of vodka

Although some argue that corn vodka has the most flavor among the spirits, both are smooth to drink, nonetheless.

Base Ingredients

Potato vodka is made from potatoes. Grain vodka, on the other hand, has more selection for its main ingredient. Apart from the ones mentioned above, barley can also be used. Although popular vodka brands primarily focus on the three grains: rye, wheat, and maize in their distillation process.

Aside from the two, grapes and sugar cane can also make a bottle of vodka. However, these tend to be sweet and tangy.

Sugar Content

Both substrates are carbohydrate-rich food, but the good news is that grain and potato vodka are generally sugar-free.

Sugar Cubes

The distillation process in the copper pot eliminates the carbs, making it a tad bit healthier drink. The story differs if you prefer other vodkas that use grapes or canes as substrate. Each drink itself will proclaim the carbs given the added sweetness they offer.

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Calorie Content

Since both types have low carbohydrate levels, they are considered low-calorie drinks. However, the biggest arguments people threw between the two are the gluten contents. Potatoes, for example, are free from gluten. However, grains like rye and barley are gluten-rich. 

The same way carbs are removed in the process; distillers also get rid of the gluten from each bottle they create. Rest assured that cheap and expensive vodkas are both gluten-free and low-carb.

Alcohol Content

The drink from Eastern Europe, specifically Russia or Poland, may differ in terms of the ingredients used to distill them, but the alcohol content is similar across. In the US, the minimum ABV is 40% for all vodka types.

Then again, some go over the top and seem to prioritize the antibacterial properties more than the palatability. Learn all about vodka proof here

Popular Grain Vodka

Product Size Average Price (USD)
Grey Goose 750 ml $29.99-$32.99
Stoli 750 ml $15.99-$19.99
Effen 750 ml $19.99-$21.99
Ketel One 750 ml $19.99-$21.99
Smirnoff 750 ml $8.99-$16.99
Absolut 750 ml $13.99-$20.99
Russian Standard Platinum 750 ml $16.99-$24.99

Popular Potato Vodka

Product Size Average Price
Vesica 750 ml $13.99-$14.99
Chopin Vodka 750 ml $23.99-$26.99
Luksusowa Vodka 750 ml $12.99-$15.99
Karlsson’s Gold 750 ml $19.99-$21.99
Grand Teton 750 ml $22.99-$26.99
Blue Ice 750 ml $18.99-$19.99


Is Tito’s potato or grain vodka?

Tito’s is one of the popular grain vodkas, specifically, a corn-based vodka. Although contrary to other similarly-based vodkas, it comes with a bit of a heavy taste. This is due to the chemical aftertaste from the corn, but extra flavoring aids in controlling the taste of this vodka.

Is Skyy Vodka made from potatoes or grains?

Skyy is one of the popular brands made from American Wheat.  This means it’s regulated, which makes it a good option if you plan on making cocktails like Bloody Mary, as with most vodka made from cereals.

In Summary

Potato and grain vodka is both smooth and healthy options for drinkers looking for a kick minus the carbs. Whether the vodka is made from wheat, maize, barley, or taters, you can be assured of a smooth finish! This is also better than distilleries experimenting with old newspapers as vodka substrates. 

Although they have a few differences, vodka from both sources is good. There is a wide selection of French Vodka and Russian Vodka to try out there, and the abovementioned are some of the best available choices!



Lydia Martin

Lydia Martin hails from Redmond, Washington, where you’ll find some of the best cocktail bars and distilleries that offer a great mix of local drinks. She used to work as a bar manager in Paris and is a self-taught mixologist whose passion for crafting unique cocktails led her to create Liquor Laboratory. Lydia can whip up a mean Margarita in seconds! Contact at [email protected] or learn more about us here or feel free to give Lydia a tip.

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