Cornhole is best enjoyed on a lazy summer day with an alcoholic beverage in hand. Even better when you can turn it into a cornhole drinking game!

Cornhole is a classic casual party game enjoyed by people of all ages. It’s perfect for a cookout, a pool party, a tailgate, a wedding, really any time and any place.

Woman playing cornhole outside.

When is Cornhole Played?

According to Google Trends, cornhole becomes much more popular in the summer months. That big spike is 4th of July weekend, and the spike right before it is Memorial Day. No surprises there – cornhole is a popular game at parties and gatherings!

Where is Cornhole PLayed?

I often hear people say cornhole is a Southern thing, but the data show that it’s a Northeast/Midwest thing. The states that search the most topics related to cornhole are New Hampshire, Maine, Wyoming, South Dakota, and Vermont. (Of course, one could argue that maybe Southerners already know how to play and therefore don’t need to look it up!)

Cornhole Playing Rules

Fun data aside, we’ll give a brief overview of the rules. At least, the rules we use and that we based this drinking game off of. People may have different ways of playing, but remember, “house rules” always rule.

Equipment and Setup

All you’ll need is a set of cornhole boards and 8 beanbags. And a drink, of course, if you’re playing a cornhole drinking game.

According to the “official” rules, the front of the boards should be spaced 27 feet apart. If you don’t have that much room, or if you know you’re not good enough to get the beanbags in from that far, feel free to space them however you’d like.

Fun fact: If you need a cornhole set, you don’t have to get a boring ol’ generic one – you can create your own custom cornhole boards (with whatever text and images you’d like) on Zazzle.com. The world is your oyster.

There are 2 teams, and you can either have 1 person on each team (singles) or 2 people on each team (doubles). Partners stand across from each other at opposite cornhole boards.

Two people playing cornhole outside on a red board.

How to Play Cornhole

In a singles game, each person takes turn throwing a beanbag until all 8 have been thrown.

In a doubles game, opposing players standing on the same side will take turns throwing the beanbag onto the board across from them.

The object of the game is to get as many of your beanbags in the hole as possible.

If your bag slides off the board, it doesn’t count. If your bag bounces off the ground onto the board, it doesn’t count. And if your bag is on the board, but touching the ground at all, it doesn’t count. It’s got to be a nice clean landing.

Scoring

At the end of each round, count up how many points each team got.

  • A beanbag in the hole = 3 points
  • A beanbag sitting on the board = 1 point

You don’t automatically get all those points, though. They cancel each other out. So if you scored fewer points than the other team, you get nothing, and they get however many extra points they scored. In other words:

The points gained = points scored by higher scoring team – points scored by lower scoring team

So if your team got 2 in the hole and 1 on the board, that equals 7 points. And if your opponent got 1 in the hole and 2 on the board, that equals 5 points. 7-5=2, so you gain 2 points to your overall score.

How To Win Cornhole

Typical rules say you need a total of 21 points to win cornhole.

But what if you go over 21?

That’s called “busting.” If your team goes over 21, you “bust” and automatically go back down to 13 points. Note that the score is calculated at the end of each round, so you just need to make sure you’re not over 21 by the time everyone is done throwing. So if you start the round at 20, but you get a beanbag in the hole for 3 points, but so does your opponent, you’re still basically at 20.

What Should You Drink While Playing A Cornhole Drinking Game?

Anything you want! If you think you’re going to be sipping a lot (a.k.a if you’re not great at this game) it’s probably best to choose something light. And maybe something that won’t spill easily. There’s nothing like a cold beer during a hot summer game of cornhole.

On to the good stuff!

Cornhole Drinking Game Rules

1. At the end of each round, take the number of sips equal to points gained against you. This means that if your team got more points during the round, you don’t drink, since your opponents gained no points.

2. If you’re playing with the rule about “busting,” and your team goes over 21, drink 8 sips for the 8 points you lose going back down to 13. 

3. The “shot” shot: Once per game, each player can claim they’re making a “shot” shot, and if they happen to get the bean bag in on that throw, they choose someone on the other team to take a shot (or finish their drink).  

4. Additionally, take a sip any time:

  • Your beanbag doesn’t even reach the board
  • You hit someone’s feet or legs
  • Your beanbag knocks the other team’s beanbag into the hole
  • Your beanbag is knocked off the board by the other team’s beanbag

If you want to play a different kind of cornhole drinking game, check out this cornhole board that makes you do different things based on where the beanbags land. It’s completely customizable, so you can either stick with these suggestions or have them make it say whatever you’d like. It’s like drunk Jenga but in Cornhole form!

Check it out Here

After cornhole, see if your team wants to try their hand at Four Corners!

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