Coke vs. Pepsi: Here’s Why They Taste Different & Comparison of Flavors

Coke vs Pepsi

Coke vs. Pepsi: Here’s Why They Taste Different & Comparison of Flavors

The great battle between Coke vs. Pepsi has existed for years. Since The late 1800s, there has been a rivalry between these drinks that has only intensified over the last fifty years. But what makes them different, and what are the taste differences that exist between them?

Coke vs. Pepsi are actually very different in taste. The recipes of each soda are said to be a secret formula. However, given what is known about sodas, we can determine different things, like citric acid vs. phosphorus acid, and what sweeteners are used. There are also many more flavors beyond the traditional Coke and Pepsi flavors. In this guide, we break down why they taste so different and the comparison of flavors that have existed between them over the years.

The Taste Difference Between Coke vs. Pepsi

Coke vs Pepsi

The origins of either side start in the late 1800s. Pepsi was originally made to help digestion and give people more energy. A pharmacist in North Carolina created the soft drink because he hoped to create another soft drink like Coke, which was made earlier. As the 1900s progressed, there was increasing demand over the drink. In fact, in 1939, Pepsi created the first radio advertisement for the drink.

Coke was created with a similar purpose. Invented by Dr. John Pemberton, Coke was designed to help with common ailments. In fact, Coke was originally called Pemberton's French Wine Coca. One of the more interesting things about Coke is how they use glass bottles. When sales for Coca-Cola increased, the glass bottle for Coca-Cola was trademarked with the label on it. It was also a way to stand out from competitors. In 1915, the Coca-Cola company officially released a bottle distinct from its competitors, which led to the Coca-Cola bottle you see today.

The Ingredients Behind Coke and Pepsi

Coke often has a vanilla-raisin taste that gives a smoother taste than Pepsi. And Pepsi has more of a citrus taste that makes it appealing to certain people. Coca-Cola has no citric acid because it contains phosphoric acid instead, which gives it less of a distinct taste. It also gives Coca-Cola more of a vanilla taste. Pepsi's citric acid gives it a tangy and fruity flavor.

While these are the core differences between these sodas, they do have a lot of similarities when it comes to other ingredients. For instance, they contain corn syrup, carbonated water, caramel color, and caffeine. If you're looking for a healthier choice, it will be hard to find one. They are nearly identical in nutritional value, except when you look at grams of carbohydrates.

The Comparison of Flavors Between Coke vs. Pepsi?

Coke vs Pepsi Nutritional Facts

Over the years, there have been a lot of different flavors between Coke and Pepsi. In fact, Coca-Cola had a marketing campaign that failed horribly in 1985. It introduced New Coke, a different taste and ingredient, trying to compete against Pepsi. However, fans of the original Coke hated the new drink. However, the most successful marketing campaign for Coke was in 1971, “I'd Like to Buy the World a Coke.” This song was played as an advertisement. It led to thousands of letters and people wanting to hear that song over and over again on the radio.

On the contrary, Pepsi has had some successful marketing campaigns that have made them very successful. For instance, “Pepsi Generations” was a campaign that was launched in the Super Bowl in 1984. It featured different actors and actresses supporting Pepsi. The campaign appealed to a younger generation. This specific campaign worked incredibly, reaching millions of new young fans.

The Flavors of Coca-Cola and Pepsi

As Coca-Cola and Pepsi have changed over the years, they've introduced new flavors. Comparing these flavors shows how different they are. Here's a look at the current Coca-Cola flavors.

  • Coca-Cola Cherry
  • Coca-Cola Cherry Vanilla
  • Coca-Cola Vanilla
  • Diet Coca-Cola
  • Zero Sugar Coca-Cola
  • Coca-Cola Cherry Vanilla Zero Sugar
  • Coca-Cola Vanilla Zero Sugar

Here is the current list of flavors for Pepsi.

  • Pepsi Max
  • Pepsi Wild Cherry
  • Diet Pepsi
  • Nitro Pepsi
  • Pepsi Zero Sugar Mango
  • Pepsi Zero Sugar

What's the Better Choice?

Infographic comparing Coke and Pepsi.
Coke and Pepsi are both tasty, popular drinks.

There's no perfect choice between Coca-Cola and Pepsi. They are both iconic drinks that have lasted the test of time. They have continued to evolve over the years. They have changed for the better, introducing new flavors. They also have a unique history that shows what they've tried and how they have failed in their marketing efforts. While they are different soft drinks, they are still considered some of the best soda drinks on the market. Both are delicious choices no matter what you choose.

Looking for a tasty recipe that uses Coca-Cola? We've got one right here for you:

clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
Bowl of Cherries

Cherry Coke Salad

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (No Ratings Yet)


  • Author: Moms Who Think



40 ounces cherries; dark, pitted (2 cans)
3 ounces cherry Jell-O (1 package)
20 ounces pineapple; crushed (1 can)
1 cup Coca-Cola
1/2 cup chopped pecans


1. Heat cherries and their juice to boiling.

2. Remove from heat and add Jell-O. Stir.

3. Add pineapple, including juice. Pour in cola and nuts.

4. Pour into an oiled 6-cup mold. Let cool, then refrigerate at least 2 hours or until set. Serve cold.

To top