Skip to Content

What Does Malta Goya Taste Like?

Most of us are not strangers to the flavors of barley, hops, and water. However, there are still people who are not familiar with it and often ask what does Malta Goya taste like. These are the primary ingredients in beer! Malta Goya uses these same ingredients differently.

Instead of turning the sugar into alcohol, malts like Malta Goya are refrigerated with all of the sugar intact. This gives them a sweetness, along with the savory and even bitter flavors of beer.

If you’ve never tried Malta Goya for yourself, it’s a hard thing to explain. Since it’s an acquired taste, it might even take you a couple of bottles to understand it for yourself.

What Is Malta Goya?

Malta Goya is a malt drink manufactured by the Goya company in the United States, Puerto Rico, and the Dominican Republic. 

Malts like this are very popular throughout the Caribbean, as a refreshment and relief from the blazing hot sun.

There are different types of malts produced in different areas, by different companies, but Malta Goya is by far the most popular, especially for export abroad.

Made from the same basic ingredients as beer, Malta Goya is an entirely different drink, even if there are some similarities. First, it’s not fermented or alcoholic.

While barley, hops, and beer are forever linked with alcohol to many of us, Malta Goya is entirely alcohol-free and is enjoyed by people of all ages. Second, it has a sweeter flavor, like cola or molasses, along with a slight natural bitterness.

What Does Malta Goya Look Like?

You can find Malta Goya sold at grocery stores or Caribbean specialty stores, either individually in short bottles, or in packs of 6, like beer.

The characteristic yellow packaging and blue Malta Goya is what you should look for.

What Texture Does Malta Goya Have?

Malta Goya is thick, creamy, and foamy, like beer. It has been called a “sandwich in a bottle” for its viscous thickness and its filling, substantial quality.

Although Malta Goya is not alcoholic, it is best sipped, because it is much thicker and heavier than most other drinks. 

Where Does Malta Goya Come From?

Malta Goya comes from the Caribbean, where it is most popular. It has spread around the world through the Caribbean Diaspora, who have brought the drink with them wherever they go.

However, originally, Malta can be traced back to Germany.

The non-alcoholic malts that spread throughout the Caribbean can trace their heritage back to German malzbier, or kinderbier, which is a similarly non-alcoholic, sweetened version of the beer. 

Malta Goya is the version of Malta that is produced by the Goya company, founded in the United States by Puerto Rican immigrants in New York. It is made and bottled in the Caribbean.

Is Malta Goya Healthy?

Yes, and no, depending on your perspective.

There are plenty of healthy nutrients in Malta Goya that are great to consume, including calcium, potassium, and iron. Malta Goya is also fat-free. Many active people enjoy a Malta Goya after a workout, to replenish their energy. 

It is also naturally flavored, so there are fewer chemicals and preservatives in it than there are in other, comparable sodas.

However, there is an awful lot of sugar in Malta Goya, which makes it considerably less healthy. 

What Are The Dangers Of Drinking Malta Goya?

Drinking too much Malta Goya (more than 2 bottles per day, for an adult) can lead to high blood sugar levels, sugar crashes, stomach upsets, and could increase your risk for chronic illnesses like heart disease and diabetes. 

This shouldn’t sound too scary, however. These are the same dangers presented by drinking any sugary soda to excess.

How Do You Drink Malta Goya?

The traditional way to enjoy Malta Goya is chilled, on a hot day, straight from the bottle. It’s a particularly refreshing drink, like beer, that is great for cooling you off in the heat.

However, there are other ways to drink Malta Goya, too. You can serve it with ice, for example, to keep it colder.

One interesting way that people serve Malta Goya is mixed with condensed milk, creating a much thicker and creamier version of the drink.

RELATED: What Does Boba Taste Like?

Malta Goya vs. Beer

Malta Goya and Beer are both refreshing drinks on a hot day, and they are both made from the same essential ingredients: barley, hops, and water. However, they are very different drinks.

The most obvious difference between them is that Beer is alcoholic and fermented, while Malta Goya is not. Malta Goya is quite similar to the mash that would be used to ferment beer, only the fermentation process isn’t allowed to happen.

Instead, the sugars are retained rather than transformed into alcohol, and you get the sweet yet slightly bitter, hoppy taste of Malta.

Malta Goya is definitely sweeter than beer, and it has its own distinctive flavor. Some describe it as similar to coffee or caramel, in addition to the underlying beer flavor that they have in common. 

Overall, it is healthier than beer as well. There are some health benefits to drinking alcohol and alcoholic beer, but they are dwarfed by the health complications. Malta Goya sidesteps all of that nicely to deliver health benefits without the drawbacks. 

Whether you prefer beer or Malta Goya comes down to your preference. Beer has alcohol, which sets it apart. If you are drinking alcohol on a night out you are going to reach for a beer rather than a Malta Goya.

However, on a hot afternoon, you might replace the beer you would normally have with a refreshing Malta Goya. If you’re not looking for an alcoholic buzz, this drink can be just as refreshing, satisfying, and filling as beer. 

 Malta Goya Nutrition Information

Per One 355ml Bottle Of Malta Goya
Total Fat0g
Total Carbohydrates170mg
Total Sugars67g
Added Sugars38g

Quick Table: Malta Goya Recipes

RecipesPreparation TimeCalories Per Servings
Chicken With Malta Goya Sauce30 Minutes153
Cuban Goya Malta Bread25 Minutes83
Malta Con Leche Condensada (Malta with Condensed Milk)23 Minutes49

1. Chicken With Malta Goya Sauce

This recipe uses Malta Goya to create a delicious adobo sauce that coats the roasted chicken and provides an incredibly rich flavor. Although this recipe comes directly from the Goya company, you can use other versions of the ingredients to get the same great result. 

If you want to cook with Malta Goya rather than just enjoy it as a beverage, this is the perfect recipe for you to get started. Malta Goya lends a complex flavor to sauces, spices, and rubs – much like beer does.

It can add a lot of flavor and moisture to dishes. This recipe, it helps to enrich the flavor of the chicken as well as keep it moist and delicious.

Preparation Time: 30 Minutes

Calories Per Servings: 153

2. Cuban Goya Malta Bread

This unique and tasty bread from Cuba doesn’t taste much like Goya Malta, but it draws on the same flavors to create a rich, sweet, yeasty bread that is ideal for sandwiches or toast. 

If you were expecting bread that is imbued with the taste of Goya Malta, you won’t find it here, but that’s probably for the best. This bread tastes like bread, only it has an added depth of flavor due to the ingredient in Malta Goya.

Preparation Time: 30 Minutes

Calories Per Servings: 83

3. Malta Con Leche Condensada (Malta With Condensed Milk)

Malta is often served with condensed milk in the Caribbean, creating a kind of richer Malta Goya milkshake. This recipe guides you through the process. 

It’s not a complicated recipe, and it takes 5 minutes at most. Mixing Malta Goya with ice and sweetened condensed milk changes the flavor, and makes it much sweeter and creamier.

If you initially struggled with the beer-like flavor of Malta Goya, serving it with condensed milk will help you see the taste from a different angle.

Preparation Time: 23 Minutes

Calories Per Servings: 49

RELATED: What Does A Caramel Macchiato Taste Like?

Frequently Asked Questions

Does Malta Taste Like Alcohol?

Those who are familiar with beer might not be able to help themselves from tasting a bit of it in Malta Goya. 

There is no alcohol in Malta Goya, which has not undergone fermentation. Yet, people still report an alcoholic taste. This is likely because certain flavors can develop deep associations in our minds.

The flavor of barley and hops is one of those. If you have only ever tasted this flavor while drinking alcohol, your brain starts to naturally go looking for those kinds of flavors – and what your brain looks for, it finds.

If you are not already used to the taste of alcoholic beer, you probably won’t notice anything like with Malta Goya. Many complex flavors go into this fascinating drink, including notes of chocolate, caramel, and coffee, but no alcohol.

Why Do People Drink Malta Goya?

The main reason people drink Malta Goya is for the taste, and because it is refreshing on hot days. 

If you haven’t yet acquired the taste, it might be hard for you to understand what people like about it. The taste of Malta Goya is subtle and challenging and doesn’t come easily for everyone. However, once you are a fan, you’ll get why people keep coming back. 

Malta Goya is like a meal in a bottle, and a refreshment that keeps you cool while it fills your stomach. It’s a nice cold beer on a hot day, without the alcohol content. The rich and subtle taste of Malta Goya is just a part of what draws people to it.

Is GOYA Malta Good?

Yes! Malta Goya is a very delicious drink that is popular throughout the Caribbean, and increasingly the entire world.

However, Malta of all sorts is an acquired taste. Many people don’t love it immediately and take some time to get used to the complex and subtle mix of flavors that make up Malta. You might eventually consider Malta Goya to be great, but you also might hate it on your first sip.

Also, if you already know that you don’t like the taste of beer (and you aren’t going to change your mind about that), you should probably steer clear of Malta Goya. The taste is similar enough to beer that if you are put off by one, you’ll probably feel the same about the other. 

The only way to know for sure how you feel about Malta Goya is to give it a chance and sample the flavors at least a few times in different contexts so you can know whether you care for it. 

What Does Malta Drink Do To Your Body?

There are powerful nutritional benefits that come along with Malta drinks, including minerals like potassium, iron, and calcium, and vitamins like B6 that can help keep your heart healthy. 

It is also packed with antioxidants that can reduce inflammation and decrease your risk of harmful, chronic illnesses. 

Many athletes and weightlifters swear by Malta Goya and other malt drinks as recovery aids after challenging workouts or sports games. The sugar burst can also keep you going when you’re tired.

There are even some studies to suggest that malt extract can boost your mood. That would explain the intense love that so many people have for Malta Goya!

As long as you drink Malta Goya in moderation, it is a healthy addition to your diet that will have only positive effects on your body. 

Does Malta Taste Like Guinness?

There are some rich, dark, and complex flavors in Malta Goya that are similar to Guinness, but the two drinks are very different.

The similarity comes from the types of flavors involved. Malta Goya has often been associated with darker flavors like coffee, chocolate, caramel, and dark stouts, similar to Guinness.

There is a depth and complexity to these tastes that unite both drinks.

However, the surface flavors are where the similarities end. Guinness is an alcoholic beer, while Malta Goya is an alcohol-free malt drink.

Malta Goya has layers of flavor that evoke dark stout, or coffee, but it is much sweeter than Guinness and also embodies cola flavors.

Although both drinks are somewhat challenging, Malta Goya is also easier to drink, with less bitterness.

What Does Malta Goya Taste Like?

There are powerful nutritional benefits that come along with Malta drinks, including minerals like potassium, iron, and calcium, and vitamins like B6 that can help keep your heart healthy. 


  • Pick a recipe from the list above
  • Click the recipe name and visit the website
  • Collect the ingredients and cook the food
  • Enjoy – don’t forget to leave a review

Recipe Video

Jess Smith