What Does Juice Mean in Sports Betting?

Betting on sports isn’t just about the excitement of the game; it’s about the potential to win big and turn a profit. When you start, you quickly realize that knowing the lingo is crucial. Terms like “point spread,” “payout,” and “juice” are essential to navigate all the sportsbooks.

Knowing what juice means and how it affects your payout can make a big difference. So, if you’ve ever wondered what juice means in betting, you’re in the right place. In this article, we’ll break down juice betting explained, the amount of juice, and why it’s crucial for your betting strategy.

By the end, you’ll have a clear understanding of the juice you need to win in the sports betting industry. Let’s dive in and get you up to speed!

Key Takeaways

  • Understand juice or vig meaning to become a better sports bettor.
  • Find out which sportsbook to pick for successful sports betting action.
  • Read our examples of juice in sports bets to master the topic.

What Does the Term Juice Refer to In Sports Betting?

Juice is the primary way sportsbooks make money in sports betting. Juice, also known as vigorish or vig, refers to the fee bookmakers charge on every wager. Different sportsbooks might use varying terms, but they all mean the same thing.

Juice isn’t charged as a separate commission. Instead, it’s included in the odds of events you bet on.

For instance: The juice of -110 means you need to bet $110 to win $100.

The vig fee applies to various types of bets, including point spreads, moneylines, and player props. Regardless of whether you win or lose, the bookmaker’s juice is collected, ensuring their profit.

Examples of Where You’ll Find Juice in Sports Betting

Juice, or the commission fee, is included in all events offered by bookmakers. There’s no such thing as “no juice” betting in sports betting. This fee is most noticeable on spread bets and totals, particularly in NFL games.

Example 1: Let’s take the case with NFL betting:

  • Philadelphia Eagles +4.5 (-110)
  • Houston Texans -4.5 (-110)

The odds of -110 indicate the commission fee the house charges. To win $100, you must wager $110. These negative odds mean you have to bet an amount greater than $100 to win back your stake plus the profit. 

Example 2 — Let’s consider another example with different odds:

  • New York Giants -3.5 (-105)
  • Dallas Cowboys +3.5 (-115)


  1. The juice of -105 means you need to bet $105 to win $100.
  2. While the juice of -115 means you need to bet $115 to win $100.

In both cases, the odds are just the sum of the stake required to break even and the bookmaker’s commission. Different sportsbooks may offer varying juice rates, such as -120 or -105.

Regardless of the specific odds, the principle remains the same: you must wager an amount greater than $100 to win $100, ensuring the sportsbook would make a profit.

How Do You Calculate How Much Juice is Charged on a Bet?

Calculating the juice on sports bets is straightforward. Here’s a quick guide using a football game as an example:

  1. Understanding Probability:
    • Actual Probability: Always adds up to 100%. For example, a coin toss has a 50% chance for heads and 50% for tails, totaling 100%.
    • Implied Probability: Always exceeds 100% due to the bookmaker’s commission.
  2. Formulas:
    • Favorite: (Negative odds/(Negative odds+100)) × 100
    • Underdog: (100/(Positive odds+100)) × 100
  3. Example Calculation:
    • For odds of -110, the implied probability is (110 / (110 + 100)) x 100 = 52.4%.
    • Adding both sides of a point spread, 52.4% + 52.4% = 104.8%, indicating the juice is 4.8%.
  4. Using Betting Tools:
    • To remove juice, calculate the actual probability: Divide each implied probability by the sum of the implied probabilities (52.4/104.8).
    • This approach gives you a 100% actual probability.

For convenience and accuracy, I, personally, prefer using a betting juice calculator. There are plenty of free, easy-to-use betting apps available that can quickly handle these calculations.

Do Bookmakers Make Money from Juice?

Yes, bookmakers make money from juice, also known as vigorish. Juice is included in the odds they offer, ensuring they profit regardless of whether bets win or lose. You pay a commission on every bet, making it a profitable business for bookmakers.

Is There Juice on The Spread?

Yes, juice is most definitely charged on spread bets. It is shown separately and shows the exact value charged. Usually, it is listed next to the spread bet odds.

Example: Using the earlier example:

(Philadelphia Eagles +4.5 (-110) – Houston Texans -4.5 (-110))

If I want to win $100 by placing a bet on the Philadelphia Eagles or the Houston Texans, I must wager exactly $110. The extra $10 in my wager is the juice that the house charges.

Is There Juice Against the Moneyline?

As with any sports betting market, bookmakers include juice in moneyline odds. Unlike spread bets and totals, moneyline bets often don’t have balanced or near-balanced odds.

Example: A case in point is using 110 odds for both the Philadelphia Eagles and Houston Texans as my example. Here, the odds on this moneyline bet show a clear favorite and an underdog.

To further clarify, in a head-to-head encounter between the high-flying Edmonton Oilers and struggling New York Islanders. The favorites have (-460) odds, while the strugglers offer (+350) odds.

Here, I have to risk a high of $460 to win $100 on the favorites. In contrast, a $100 wager on the strugglers will win me $350.

The juice in this example reflects the risk difference between favorites and underdogs.

Are Futures Wagers Subject to Juice?

As with other sports markets, the futures wagers are also subject to juice. However, the rules are different in this market owing to the nature of these bets.

With futures bets, there aren’t different outcomes to bet on, such as either Team A or Team B to win. Instead, it’s all about betting for a specific outcome. Futures wagers are somewhat more complex to predict since they offer high-risk odds, which in turn results in higher commission fees.

Example: With the Kansas City Chiefs as reigning Super Bowl champions for their second season running, if I back the Chiefs at +1100 odds to pull off a three-peat in 2025, I must bet $100 for a $1000 win.

The extra $100 juice fee goes straight into the bookmakers’ coffers.

Why Is it Important to Reduce Juice?

Bookmakers display the juice as a percentage. As the percentage lowers, the house will charge me a lower commission.

Paying a lower commission charge is of benefit to you because of:

  • Significantly improves my return on investment.
  • Reduces the risk amount (wagered) on any event.

To make your sports betting activities as profitable as possible, you should do your best to reduce the commission fees that you must pay to bookmakers. Before placing any bet, you must shop around for the bookmaker with the lowest commission percentages.

Reduced juice betting sites market themselves via advertisements that boast how the brand offers the lowest percentages. Their advertisements make it much easier for me to discover plenty of trustworthy reduced juice betting sites.

So, Ready to Calculate Juice in Sporst Betting?

Ready to calculate the juice amount in sports betting? Now that you understand what juice means in sports betting, you’re equipped to make smarter bets. Juice is a standard commission included in the odds, so you can’t avoid it. However, you can reduce fees by finding reduced juice betting sites, using arbitrage strategies, or betting exchanges.

Apply the guidelines from this article to improve your betting decisions and profitability. For more expert advice and tips, visit our section on sports betting education.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can You Remove the Juice?

You can’t completely remove the juice since it’s a standard commission fee included in the odds by sportsbooks. However, you can minimize its impact by:

  • Finding reduced juice betting sites: Some sportsbooks offer lower commission rates on bets.
  • Using arbitrage betting: This involves placing bets on all possible outcomes across different sportsbooks to guarantee a profit.
  • Betting exchanges: Here, other users charge the commission, which can sometimes be lower than traditional sportsbooks.

While you can’t eliminate juice entirely, these strategies can help reduce the amount you pay.

Does Juice and Vigorish Mean the Same?

Yes, juice and vigorish mean the same thing in sports betting. Both terms refer to the commission or fee that sportsbooks charge on bets. They both represent the bookmaker’s cut.