• Post category:Ammo / Best Shotgun Ammo
  • Post last modified:August 27, 2022
  • Reading time:22 mins read

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Did you know that the 12 gauge ammo is the most popular shotgun ammo in the world? In fact, it’s so popular that there are literally millions of rounds of it stockpiled in people’s homes and garages all across America. No matter what kind of shooting you’re into – hunting, skeet shooting, or home defense – chances are good that you’ll want to have at least a few boxes of 12 gauge shells on hand. But with such wide availability comes great responsibility: making sure you choose the right loads for your needs. So what are the best types of 12 gauge ammo to use for different purposes? Let’s take a look.

Best 12 Gauge Ammo

Our Selection 15 Best 12 Gauge Ammo – Editor’s Choice

#1 12 Gauge – 3″ – BB Steel – Drone Munitions

12 Gauge – 3″ – BB Steel – Drone Munitions

5 Rounds

Looking for an effective and permanent solution to your drone problem? Look no further than Drone Munitions. Its proprietary ferromagnetic ballistic payload is designed to instantly disrupt critical drone systems upon impact. Each 3 inch, 12 Gauge round is loaded with BB Steel Shot, making it a powerful and efficient solution to your drone problem. Lead-free and available in a 2 shot and BB variant, this ammo is a perfect choice also for hunting or self-defense. So please, be responsible with this product and do not use it in any unlawful manner. It could end up costing you more than you bargained for.

  • Provides a permanent solution to your drone problem
  • Powerful and efficient
  • Lead-free
  • Also good for hunting
  • Not recommended for LE applications

#2 12 Gauge – 3-1/2″ 1-3/8oz – №4 Steel Shot – PMC High Velocity Magnum

12 Gauge - 3-1/2" 1-3/8oz. #4 Steel Shot - PMC High Velocity Magnum

25 Rounds

This 12 gauge magnum load by PMC is perfect for hunting ducks whether they’re close to your decoys or high overhead. It’s loaded with #4 steel shot, .13” diameter pellets that are ideal for shooting at both close and long range. This shell’s steel shot is nontoxic and won’t stay in the environment, making it a more sustainable choice. Steel shot also has a shorter flight time than lead, so it’s less likely to lose energy over long distances. With a muzzle velocity of 1,550 fps, this shell has the power and speed you need to take down your target.

  • Nontoxic steel shot
  • Same power as lead shot
  • Higher muzzle velocity
  • High-quality components
  • Higher price
  • More recoil


#3 12 Gauge – 3″ 1oz №1 Steel Shot – PMC High Velocity Magnum

12 Gauge - 3" 1oz. #1 Steel Shot - PMC High Velocity Magnum

250 Rounds

Looking for a high-powered, environmentally friendly option for duck and goose hunting? Look no further than PMC’s 12 Gauge magnum load! This powerful load features a muzzle velocity of 1,450 fps, making it ideal for taking down fast-flying birds. The super-round steel shot is designed for tight, accurate patterns, while the protective wad helps keep your barrel free of scratches. So whether you’re a hunter who cares about protecting the environment or simply looking for a powerful and accurate option for taking down ducks and geese, this 12 Gauge magnum load from PMC is a perfect choice.

  • Environmentally friendly
  • No toxic lead seeping into your game’s meat
  • Round steel shot designed for tight, accurate patterns
  • Protective wad to help keep barrel free of scratches
  • May be too powerful for some hunters
  • Steel shot may not fly as accurately as lead


#4 12 Gauge – 3″ Super-X Waterfowl BB Shot – Winchester

12 Gauge - 3" Super-X Waterfowl BB Shot - Winchester

25 Rounds

Still wondering what steel shot to take with you on your next waterfowl hunt? Looking for reliability and high-performing? Winchester’s #4 12 Gauge – 3″ Super-X Waterfowl BB Shot is an answer! It`s designed to deliver excellent performance while complying with all applicable laws. Lead-free and loaded with a 1-1/8 ounce payload of BB size steel shot, this ammo has a high muzzle velocity of 1,550 feet per second for great midrange ballistics. The shells feature Winchester’s reliable 209 primers and a one-piece hinged wad designed to keep recoil manageable and enhance patterning. Winchester ammo is manufactured at the company’s new state-of-the-art assembly plant in Oxford, Mississippi – so you can be confident in its quality and performance. Pick up a box or two of this great steel shot today!

  • Reliable
  • High-performing
  • Lead-free
  • BB size steel shot
  • Muzzle velocity of 1,550 feet per second
  • May not comply with all applicable laws
  • Recoil may be unmanageable for beginners

#5 12 Gauge – SUPER-X Shotshell – Winchester

12 Gauge - SUPER-X Shotshell - Winchester

20 Rounds

Winchester’s 12 Gauge SUPER-X Shotshells are perfect for upland and small game hunting. . Since 1922, Super-X ammunition has been providing exceptional quality and outstanding performance for hunters and shooters alike. The Xpert Steel Shot is corrosion resistant and meets federal and state regulations for lead-free projectiles, while the thicker wad segments provide increased barrel protection. This shotshell is also engineered for a muzzle velocity of 1330 ft/s, making it ideal for upland and small game applications. So don’t settle for anything less than the best – choose the Winchester 12 Gauge SUPER-X Shotshell.

  • Superior quality and performance
  • Meets all federal and state lead-free projectile regulations
  • Engineered for increased barrel protection
  • Ideal for upland and small game applications
  • Not always easy to find in stock
  • Muzzle velocity could be higher


#6 12 Gauge – DEFENDER SHOTSHELL – Winchester

12 Gauge - DEFENDER SHOTSHELL - Winchester

20 Rounds

Winchester`s 12 Gauge DEFENDER SHOTSHELL is the perfect choice for protecting your family and loved ones. With its unique three-segment design, this slug provides accuracy, penetration, and the ability to make multiple wound channels. The tough, one-piece construction is made from high-density polyethylene (HDPE) for superior performance. The smooth, bore interior prevents fragmentation upon impact, while the Grex-plated non-toxic shot helps minimize damage to shotguns and fine rifled barrels.

  • Tough, one-piece construction
  • Made from high-density polyethylene
  • Grex-plated non-toxic shot
  • Fragmentation may occur on impact


#7 12 Gauge – Black Aces – Black Aces Tactical

12 Gauge - Black Aces - Black Aces Tactical

10 Rounds

Looking for an affordable hunting round that packs a punch? Look no further than Black Aces Tactical 12 Gauge shotgun slugs. These RS (rifled slug) rounds are designed for use with 12-gauge shotguns and provide high-velocity firepower at an incredible value. Each shell is 2.75 inches long and loaded with a 1oz. slug that can be fired at a muzzle velocity of 1,640 ft/s. That’s some serious stopping power! So grab a box of Black Aces 12ga shotgun slugs today and be prepared for anything.

  • Affordable
  • Reliability
  • Penetration
  • Multiple wound channels
  • May not be available in your area


#8 12 Gauge – TSS – Browning

12 Gauge - TSS - Browning

20 Rounds

Looking to up your turkey game this season? Browning has you covered with their 12 Gauge TSS shot. This lethal load is 60% denser than lead, meaning it will hold apattern out to 70 yards – perfect for those challenging shots. And with a muzzle velocity of 1,200 fps, you can be sure that your turkey won’t stand a chance. Available in #7 shot or a duplex load of #9 & #7, Browning TSS is the versatile way to make sure your turkey hunting is successful. So go ahead and give it a try – your turkey (and your ego) will thank you for it!

  • Much denser than lead shot
  • Consistant lethal pattern
  • Various loads are available
  • Deadly out to 70 yards
  • Pricey


#9 12 Gauge – LUX Hunt – BioAmmo

12 Gauge - LUX Hunt - BioAmmo

25 Rounds

The 12 Gauge – LUX Hunt – BioAmmo is a great choice for the hunter and game shooter who wants an excellent cartridge without using any single-use plastics. The wads and cases are made from biodegradable and compostable materials, so they won’t harm the environment. This shotgun ammo also offers exceptional performance, with great accuracy, patterning, recoil, and effectiveness.

  • Superior quality
  • No micro-plastic pollution
  • Fully biodegradable and compostable
  • Some shooters prefer steel rather than lead


#10 12 Gauge – Centerfire Shotgun Buckshot Ammunition – Fetter

12 Gauge - Centerfire Shotgun Buckshot Ammunition - Fetter

15 Rounds

Looking for a great deal on some quality buckshot ammunition? Look no further than the Fetter .12 Gauge 2.75in Shotgun Buckshot Ammunition. This top-of-the-line ammo is perfect for taking down big game, and it’s available at an unbeatable price.

Fetter has been in the business of making high-quality products for many years, and this buckshot ammunition is their way of showing just how much they care about their customers. Made from some of the most durable and reliable materials available, this ammo will provide you with years of consistent performance. Don’t miss out on this great deal – grab a box of Fetter buckshot ammunition today!

  • Optimum power
  • Reliability
  • Could be more durable


#11 12 Gauge – Centerfire Shotgun Buckshot Ammunition – MILI Ammo

12 Gauge - Centerfire Shotgun Buckshot Ammunition - MILI Ammo

10 Rounds

Ideal for multiple defensive scenarios, this ammo is meticulously engineered to deliver uniform patterns and consistent bulk densities. Combined with our patent-pending technology and carefully selected shot combinations, this ammo is deadly and reliable. With a muzzle velocity of 1350 ft/s, our shells are sure to take down even the biggest prey. So don’t go into hunting season without the best buckshot ammo on the market – pick up our MILI Combinational Load today!

  • Deadly accurate
  • Patent-pending technology
  • Consistent reliability
  • Not money-saving ammo


#12 12 Gauge – Gun Club Target Loads – Remington

12 Gauge - Gun Club Target Loads - Remington

25 Rounds

The Remington Gun Club Target Load line of ammunition represents the company’s commitment to constant improvement. These shells have set a new standard for trap skeet and competition shooting all while delivering an unmatched combination of consistency and reliability. What other company can say that? If you are looking for a high-quality target load that won’t break the bank look no further than the Remington Gun Club Target Load line of ammunition. These shells are packed with Gun Club-grade pellets as well as Remington’s Power-Piston 1-piece wad which helps to ensure tight and consistent shot patterns. So if you are looking for the best of the best when it comes to target loads, make sure to choose the Remington Gun Club Target Loads. You won’t be disappointed.

  • Superior quality
  • Unmatched combination of consistency and reliability
  • Tight and consistent shot patterns
  • Gun Club-grade pellets
  • Pricy
  • Not lead-free


#13 12 Gauge – Rifled Slug Centerfire Shotgun Slug Ammunition – MILI Ammo

12 Gauge - Rifled Slug Centerfire Shotgun Slug Ammunition - MILI Ammo

10 Rounds

The MILI Rifled Slug Centerfire Shotgun Slug Ammunition is the perfect choice for self-defense. This high-velocity ammunition is designed to provide consistent penetration and reliable performance. It is manufactured in small batches to ensure quality and accuracy. The bullet weight is 1 oz and the cartridge case material is brass. This ammunition is designed for use in shotguns with a rifled barrel. It is ideal for situations where accuracy and density are needed at longer distances.

  • High velocity
  • Consistent penetration
  • Reliable performance
  • Small batch manufacturing for quality and accuracy
  • May not be compatible with all shotguns
  • Not for use in smooth bore barrels


#14 12 Gauge – Elite Low Recoil/Training – Kent Cartridge

12 Gauge - Elite Low Recoil/Training - Kent Cartridge

25 Rounds

If you’re recoil sensitive, or just looking to do some high-volume shooting without breaking the bank, Kent’s Elite Low Recoil-Training Diamond Shot line is perfect for you. Their custom blended powders soften recoil considerably while maintaining standard load velocities, and their proprietary Diamond Shot provides consistent patterns for on-target performance. These shells have also been loaded at moderate pressures, making them suitable for use in vintage firearms. The High Performance base-wad is designed to regulate head expansion and optimize cycling in semi-auto firearms, and the High-Density Polymer hull specifically delivers easy loading and smooth ejection. So if you’re looking for a quality, affordable round that won’t beat you up after a long day at the range, pick up a box of Kent’s Elite Low Recoil-Training Diamond Shot.

  • Suitable for use in vintage firearms
  • Great for high-volume shooting
  • Produces consistent patterns
  • Low-pressure loads
  • May not be as powerful as other rounds
  • May not cycle some firearms properly


#15 12 Gauge – Combinational – Migra

12 Gauge - Combinational - Migra

25 Rounds

The 12 Gauge Combinational Migra is the perfect hunting solution for a variety of situations. This top-of-the-line product is meticulously engineered to deliver uniform patterns and consistent bulk densities, ensuring increased kill-ratios with no fillers. Combined with our patented technology and carefully selected shot combinations, the Migra Combinational Load is deadly reliable. With 25 rounds in each shell and a muzzle velocity of 1430 ft/s, this product has the power and precision to take down medium game. Each cartridge is made with high-quality steel materials for durability and longevity, making the Migra Combinational Load a great investment for any hunter.

  • Consistent bulk densities
  • Increased kill ratios
  • Patented technology
  • Carefully selected shot combinations
  • Deadly reliable
  • Durable and long-lasting
  • Shot combinations may not be ideal for all game types
  • Muzzle velocity could be higher



How to pick the right 12 gauge ammo?

Picking the right 12 gauge ammo can be a tricky task. There are so many different types and brands on the market, it can be hard to know where to start. However, by taking the time to learn about the different options and what they offer, you can make the process much easier.

The first step is to decide what you will be using the 12 gauge ammo for. If you are looking for home defense ammunition, then you will want to choose something that is designed for that purpose. There are many different types of 12 gauge ammunition on the market that are designed for different purposes. For example, some is designed to penetrate walls, while others are designed to simply make a loud noise.

Another thing to keep in mind when choosing 12 gauge ammo is the price. Ammunition can be quite expensive, so you will want to make sure that you are getting a good deal. There are many different ways to save money on ammunition, so be sure to shop around.

Finally, make sure that you are buying from a reputable dealer. There are many different places that sell 12 gauge ammo, but not all of them are created equal. Be sure to do your research and only buy from a dealer that you trust.

By following these tips, you can be sure that you will find the best 12 gauge ammo for your needs. With a little bit of research, you can find the perfect ammunition for your needs.

What is the shelf life of 12-gauge ammo?

The shelf life of 12 gauge ammunition varies depending on the specific type of ammunition. For example, birdshot will last much longer than buckshot. In general, however, you can expect 12 gauge ammo to last for around 10 years if stored properly.

What is the difference between a 2-3/4 inch and a 3-inch shell?

The main difference between 2-3/4 inch and 3-inch shells is the amount of powder that each one contains. A 3-inch shell has more powder, which means that it produces more recoil. However, it also has a higher muzzle velocity, which means that it is more effective for hunting.

What is the difference between a lead and a steel shot?

The main difference between lead and steel shot is the weight. Lead shot is heavier, which means that it has more kinetic energy. Steel shot is lighter, which means that it has less recoil. However, steel shot is more expensive than lead shot.

What is the difference between a slug and buckshot?

A slug is a single projectile that is fired from a shotgun. Buckshot is a group of small pellets that are fired from a shotgun. Slugs are more effective for hunting, while buckshot is more effective for self-defense.

How far is buckshot lethal?

Buckshot is lethal out to about 100 yards. Beyond that, the pellets spread out too much and lose too much energy to be considered lethal.


The Best 12 Gauge Ammo can be tough to find, but this guide will help you make the best decision for your needs. We have covered a wide variety of 12 gauge ammo types and manufacturers in order to help you choose the right one for the job. Whether you are looking for birdshot, buckshot, or slugs, we’ve got you covered. Remember to always use caution when handling firearms and consult with an expert before making any decisions about ammunition. Thanks for reading!

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