FOOD

Here's The Difference Between Diet Coke, Coke Zero And Coke Zero Sugar

You may be able to taste a difference, but do you know what's actually in it?

01/08/2017 8:01 PM AEST | Updated 01/08/2017 11:17 PM AEST

The Coca-Cola Company recently announced that it’s going to discontinue Coke Zero and replace it with Coke Zero Sugar to give it an “even better unique blend of flavors” than what gave “Coke Zero its real Coca-Cola taste.” 

Even though the whole release seems more like a marketing move than an actual new product release, people were not too pleased with the news. (Ahem, they were livid.) We can’t claim to know the motivation behind the new release, but one thing’s for sure: Coca-Cola is getting in on the anti-sugar train right on time

This upset got us thinking: what is the actual difference between Diet Coke, Coke Zero and Coke Zero Sugar? If you look at the ingredients between the three, they aren’t actually all that different. And, in fact, Coke Zero and Coke Zero Sugar have exactly the same ingredient list.

Here’s the list of ingredients in Diet Coke

Carbonated water, caramel color, aspartame, phosphoric acid, potassium benzoate, natural flavors, citric acid, caffeine.

Here’s the list of ingredients in Coke Zero:

Carbonated water, caramel color, phosphoric acid, aspartame, potassium benzoate, natural flavors, potassium citrate, acesulfame potassium, caffeine.

And here’s the list of ingredients in Coke Zero Sugar:

Carbonated water, caramel color, phosphoric acid, aspartame, potassium benzoate, natural flavors, potassium citrate, acesulfame potassium, caffeine,

Diet Coke is missing two ingredients that the other two sugar-free options have: potassium citrate and acesulfame potassium. Acesulfame potassium is a calorie-free sugar substitute and potassium citrate is a common additive in beverages.

How do these ingredients differentiate them nutritionally? Not at all, actually. 

  • Diet Coke’s nutritional information reads: 0 Calories, 0g Fat, 40mg Sodium, 0g Total Carbs, 0g Protein. 
  • Coca-Cola Zero’s nutritional information reads: 0 Calories, 0g Fat, 40mg Sodium, 0g Total Carbs, 0g Protein.
  • And Coca-Cola Zero Sugar also reads: 0 Calories, 0g Fat, 40mg Sodium, 0g Total Carbs, 0g Protein.

But what about the difference in flavor between the drinks?

Many diet soda drinkers swear their allegiance to either Diet Coke or Coke Zero (now Coke Zero Sugar), but in a previous taste test that HuffPost did between Diet Coke and Coke Zero back in 2012, only 54 percent of tasters were able to tell the difference between Diet Coke and Coke Zero. 

Now, Coke Zero Sugar claims to taste just like Coke Zero, but the verdict is still out:

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