This investigation evaluated the effects of alcohol consumption, controlled for the energy in alcohol and chronic effects of smoking, on resting energy expenditure (REE) in college-aged social drinkers. Sixteen women who both smoked and drank alcohol were administered, on 4 separate days in a counterbalanced order, 1) cigarettes alone, 2) alcohol alone, 3) alcohol plus cigarettes, or 4) cigarettes with an energetic control. Each session consisted of a 25-min REE baseline, treatment in a randomly assigned order, and a 105-min assessment of REE. Analyses indicated that alcohol significantly (P < 0.05) increased REE for up to 95 min after ingestion [increased of 29.6-68.4 kJ (124-287 kcal)/24 h], increases that could not be accounted for by the energy content of the drink alone. Smoking and alcohol together also raised REE above baseline but not more than alcohol alone. It was concluded that alcohol intake raises REE; potentially explaining why alcohol interferes with energy utilization. Potential implications for alcohol intake, nutrition, and weight loss are presented.