Well, Gas Is Still Cheaper Than The Champagne Of Beers…

With gas prices topping $4.00 a gallon in Chicago, Chicagoist started wondering how much gallons of other liquids cost. Turns out gas is still cheaper than the Champagne of Beers…

Milk $3 (on average)

IBC Root Beer $5.33 ($3 for a six-pack of 12 oz bottles)

Miller High Life $5.33 ($15 for a 30-pack of 12 oz cans)

Ketchup $8 ($2 for 32 oz)

Hydrogen Peroxide: $10.32 ($1.29 for 16oz)

It’s a good think we don’t run cars on Chanel nail polish at $5760 per gallon, huh?

Does anyone have a Geo Metro that runs on milk?

How Much is a Gallon? [Chicagoist]

(Photo: Joy of the Mundane )


Edit Your Comment

  1. ARP says:

    Remeber- we’re still a working class town at heart. I don’t know anything about your fancy Miller High Life beer. How much is a Gallon of PBR or a “dirty thirty” of Busch.

    Not sure where you shop for your Miller, but that seems steep.

  2. B says:

    That’s it, I’m converting my diesel to run on Pabst Blue Ribbon. That’s gotta be cheaper than $3.50 a gallon.

  3. Bladefist says:

    You forgot printer cartridge ink. Most expensive.

  4. Gokuhouse says:

    The difference here is usage…How many gallons of peroxide will I go through today? Surely not 2, like I’m going to end up going through of gas for my daily commute.

  5. Bladefist says:

    @B: I’d rather drink diesel then PBR.

  6. tedyc03 says:

    Yeah ink is about $8,000 per gallon.

  7. JollyJumjuck says:

    True enough, until you realize that Miller, hydrogen peroxide, ketchup, root beer and milk are not required for me to get to work (I have a number of part-time jobs during the day — without a car, my workday would be extended by about 2-3 hours by waiting for buses). Plus, even if I combine the total amount of those other five items which I would use in a week, it would dwarf the number of gallons of gas I have to use in a week. So it’s really a specious argument saying, “Well at least gas isn’t as expensive as Coke per gallon!”

  8. JollyJumjuck says:

    “would dwarf” should read “would be dwarfed” in the previous post

  9. HIV 2 Elway says:

    Red Bull and olive oil are priced like they are liquid gold. Can we get a congressional hearing to look into their record profits and obvious price gouging?

  10. HIV 2 Elway says:

    @JollyJumjuck: It’s light hearted marketing. Loosen up.

  11. sir_pantsalot says:

    @JollyJumjuck: Those items are also made from readily available materials. People don’t have to risk life and or limbs to drill into the earth to produce Miller, hydrogen peroxide, ketchup, root beer and milk. The point is that if anyone needs to be investigated for price gouging then the oil companies should not be the first to be investigated or just have a tax slapped on them for their proffits.

  12. AD8BC says:

    $15 copay for 1/8 fluid ounce of prescription nasal spray.

    And that’s just the co-pay.

    (From a local morning show)

  13. sir_pantsalot says:

    @HIV 2 Elway: Aparrently yes because I can’t live day to day without olive oil. It’s tasty.

  14. darkrose says:

    What kind of milk is $3 (average) a gallon? It’s about 3.75 here (NE FL) at the warehouse clubs, and around $4.50/gal in the retail stores, even Super/(Wal-mart)(Target)

  15. HIV 2 Elway says:

    @sir_pantsalot: You’ve got that right.

  16. NumberFourtyThree says:

    A six pack of bottles is not the cheapest way to get A&W root beer. It is a little cheaper to get it in a twelve pack of cans, but the cheapest is to get it in 2 liter bottles. That way is even cheaper than a gallon of milk.

  17. Mayor McRib says:

    If cars were powered by cheap beer there is no doubt in my mind that they will just inflate the prices of the beer. WE WILL THEN HAVE A BEER SHORTAGE along with high beer prices at the pump. I do not want to live in a country that price gouges Natural Light. Can’t we just make cars run on healthy vegetables or something?

  18. HIV 2 Elway says:

    Big deal, the buzz you get from drinking motor oil is worth paying a premium.

  19. 44 in a Row says:

    True enough, until you realize that Miller… [is] not required for me to get to work

    Speak for yourself.

  20. monkey33 says:

    @Mayor McRib: We already have a hops shortage@ARP: PBR is actually more expensive than High Life at the liquor stores I go to.

    I, for one, think its about time we figure out how to make a engine run on milk.

  21. snowmentality says:

    Mayor McRib, in real life we’re having a hops shortage (Wired article). This might translate into, if not a beer shortage, some very, very expensive beer. Severely uncool.

    You can actually run a diesel car on unaltered vegetable oil! Looks like that’s running about twice diesel’s price, though. Now, if you can get used fast-food fryer oil for free….

  22. catnapped says:

    @JollyJumjuck: Coke is cheaper than gasoline these days (<2 x2-liter bottles= ~$2-3)

    And you really are paying too much for peroxide and ketchup.

  23. edosan says:

    @Gokuhouse: Agreed. Seems like a fairly pointless bit of trivia: “see, gas isn’t as expensive as you think,” especially when considering how long it takes for me to go through a gallon of ketchup of hydrogen peroxide.

    How’s this: a gallon of air is free, and a gallon of water out of my kitchen faucet costs pennies! See, gas really is expensive.

  24. chrisjames says:

    We should make cars that run on perspective, so these witty observations can be put to good use. :)

  25. Anonymous says:

    What about scorpion venom.

  26. chewiemeat says:

    Whining about gas prices is just stupid. What is a better deal to you? Walking many hours to walk 30 miles to work and then several more hours to walk back? Or paying $5 to do it in 45 minutes with much less effort?

  27. warf0x0r says:

    Price out HP ink jet printer Ink by the gallon. 31 bucks gets you around 20mL

  28. nedzeppelin says:

    @edosan: the water out of your sink actually cost billions in wasteful water projects from the US govt

    gas still seems cheap to me. takes me a LONG time to go through a gallon of gas, since i use public transportation.

    why shouldn’t a good that is probably the most demanded in the country cost more?
    drive less.
    windfall tax google who makes 25% profit margins and doesn’t provide any kind of valuable service to anyone.

  29. Jeepman says:

    @edosan — Agreed!! It’s like those asshats who tell us how lucky we are because gas is sooooo expensive in Europe. They conveniently forget to mention that in Europe (lived there 8 years) much of the price is taxes that pay for medical and dental, really outrageous unemployment compensation, guaranteed retirement, and a host of other benefits that our system doesn’t provide. Comparing our post-tax fuel prices to Europe’s is like comparing apples to . . . . carrots . . . or rutabaga . . . or rhubarb . . . or some such similar thing.

  30. fever says:

    How much fuel do you think that bus uses? What do you think it cost in natural resources to produce the electricity for whatever you’re using that isn’t a bus. Just because you’re not paying directly doesn’t meant hat you’re not paying.

    The article could have pointed out that at least we aren’t paying what they pay in England, and probably the rest of Europe.

    Also, that is some damn expensive hydrogen peroxide. Really useful stuff, though.

  31. fever says:


    lol, well call me an asshat. And while you are correct that taxes are the main factor causing the price discrepancy, they are not the only factor, and gasoline is still more expensive to buy pre-tax in Europe than it is here. At least, that’s what CNBC told me this morning at 4AM.

  32. Times like this make me glad I live a mile and a half from work and two miles from my grocery store. I fill up my car, on average, once a month.

    No real consumer relevance here, just gloating. Bring on the gas taxes!

  33. Gokuhouse says:

    @nedzeppelin: I am willing to place a bet that most people are kind of stuck in their current gas using situations. Changing jobs isn’t easy for most people, so the commute they have won’t lessen. Moving isn’t easy since many people own their homes and/or have a family that really doesn’t want to move. I believe most people already have cut out much of their extra driving and are just staying home as much as possible now. I know I have made that change. There isn’t much more less driving I can do at this point. If I did any less I would have to miss work.

  34. differcult says:

    E-85 is $2.80 right now

  35. Jeepman says:

    @fever – Nope, I don’t think you’re an asshat. But I sure do think CNBC is.

  36. FromThisSoil says:

    People make this comparison all the time. I believe it was George Carlin that said something along the lines of “American’s are pissed that they’re paying $3 a gallon for gas, but they’ll pay $40 a gallon for Starbucks.”

    That’s all fine and dandy, but I don’t drink a gallon of Starbucks a week, let alone in a month – and take that one step further, I don’t have a 14.5 gallon Starbucks cup that needs to get filled up to take me to work for the week.

    It’s a flawed comparison.

  37. HungryGrrl says:

    I see High Life for $11.99/30 rack.

  38. KD17 says:

    I’ll give up gas before beer, long before.

    I see E85 all the time now cheaper but someone mentioned to me the other day that E85 gets poor efficiency, far less mpg than if you run regular gas. Any truth to that and if so anyone know the actually average savings for people that can run it.

  39. wring says:

    anyone care to throw in the price of a gallon ink for printer cartridges?

  40. dwhicks01 says:

    @darkrose: Fort Wayne, IN milk is always going for 2.69 a gallon, 2.79 for chocolate.

  41. bombaxstar says:

    @nedzeppelin: Try living in a town where you have to drive a minimum of fifteen minutes to get ANYWHERE.

    Your suggestion is flawed and virtually unachievable in certain areas.

  42. camman68 says:

    @KD17: I get about 29mpg with “unleaded” and 24 mpg with E85. At current rates:

    E85 x $2.799/gallon – 24 miles = $0.117/mile
    Unleaded x $3.729/gallon – 29 miles = $0.129/mile

    At this rate, tank of E85 will get me 432 miles while a tank of unleaded will get me 522 miles. (20% more trips to the pump if I use E85 so the extra miles negate any mileage savings.) Plus E85 is still somewhat hard to find depending on your area.

    (I use E85 whenever possible)

  43. Hobie-wan says:

    This is an older article on Cockeyed, but apparently Rob’s been
    keeping gas updated since its at $3.05 and no longer in order in the

    Price of a gallon

  44. guroth says:

    beer is cheaper than ketchup?

  45. ConsumerAdvocacy1010 says:

    @darkrose: Where I live, in NJ, some supermarkets will sell store branded 1% Milk Gallons at $3.09. All other gallons of milk are about $3.99.

  46. planetdaddy says:

    stupid post. in case you forgot cars run on gasoline. wtf.

  47. ElizabethD says:

    My car consumes gas far faster than I could drink that much beer! (or anything else)

    The US is a big, sprawling country. Outside of the city proper, our residential communities today were largely constructed around auto transportation and a burgeoning highway system. We are ill-positioned to become public-transit users on a large scale: both because a good public-transit system doesn’t (and perhaps can’t) exist in such a huge nation, and because residentially and commercially speaking, we are all over the place.

    I would love to see a better and more affordable rail system everywhere (that keeps to a reliable schedule; yes, I’m looking at YOU, Amtrak). But I think cars that run on power other than petro fuels are a must in the long run, because it’s unrealistic to dismantle our suburbs and our need to commute in any foreseeable future.

    End of homily.

  48. dtmoore says:

    high life is usually $12-13 for a dirty thirty here. But really, I get way more satisfaction out of drinking a gallon of beer than I do driving 20 miles :D

  49. theblackdog says:

    Ewwwww, why did you have to baseline it on beer in cans? Bottles are better!

  50. t0fu says:

    Or a “dirty thirty” of milwaukee’s BEAST

  51. ekasbury says:

    Too bad I get less than 15 mpg of Miller when I’m on foot. Maybe driving really is cheaper.

  52. bigmac12 says:

    Need to find a way to run cars on nuclear waste hence solving two problems at once….of course the mufflers would be enormous to contain those explosions!!

  53. LibertyReign says:


    “a better deal” would be a dollar that is backed by commodities instead of good intentions, and an oil industry that is based on necessity not on global domination. Alternative, renewable fuels might make for “a better deal” as well considering the pollution we suffer and the inevitability of eventually exhausting our resources.

  54. LibertyReign says:


    Oil doesn’t cost more, the dollar buys less, and in case you were living in teh woods for the last 25 years, cars run on water now.

  55. Bryan Price says:

    Milk for $3? Only if you cut the cents off. I’ve been paying $3.89 to $4.19 a gallon.

  56. So is that point of the story that in order for folks to keep the price of their drunk driving constant in light of rising fuel prices, they’ll have to go down market on the booze?