I Tried The Viral “Healthy Coke”; Here’s What Happened

The world has turned to health-conscious living and with it, all the old food habits we had are dying hard. Whether it's simply reducing the amount of meat we eat or switching completely to a vegan diet, everyone’s becoming more and more careful about what we put into our bodies and how to make the things that we do eat better for us. 

One such discovery that came about as part of this culture shift is that of ‘Healthy Coke’ that came from TikToker Amanda Jones, a California-based actor. This ‘revolutionary’ creation is made by mixing balsamic vinegar with flavoured seltzer water to create a dark, fizzy liquid that does look surprisingly like coke. She claims that it tastes just like it too, but given the vast rift between the flavour of coke and that of balsamic vinegar, we have our doubts. 

The first step to making “healthy coke” is to select your balsamic. I recommend one that already has some amount of natural sweetness, just for the sake of your own palate. Think what you’d like drizzled over your salad and go from there. Two tablespoons over some ice should do it. Jones added to that a guava-flavoured La Croix, but assured her viewers that any sparkling beverage would do. (We wonder whether she included coke in that list). Over 6 million people who watched the video – many of whom tried the recipe for themselves – had mixed reports about its success.

So with opinion divided, I did what any concerned netizen would do and headed into the kitchen to try it out for myself. With a big splash from a slightly dusty balsamic bottle, topped up with club soda – call me a purist I guess – and my healthy coke was ready. After a few tentative sips, I have to concede that it’s not unpleasant. Maybe because I already like the taste of balsamic, it didn’t seem too heinous. The acidity was quite jarring and it tasted absolutely nothing like coke. I supposed just from the lack of sugar it might feel a bit healthier, but that’s all it can boast of. 

That being said, some professionals have been questioning the ‘health’ claim altogether since balsamic – like any vinegar – is acidic in nature and ingesting it directly as a drink could lead to heartburn and other gastric distress issues. It does have a few of its own claims such as blood purifying qualities for clearer skin but a spoon or two over your food would have the same effect for these benefits.

Like most things that come from TikTok, this appears to be another ruse to amass views and start a conversation. If you do like drinking diluted vinegar, good for you, glad you found your people but if like me, you’d rather cut back on carbonated beverages than replace them with fizzy salad dressing, healthy coke is probably a trend worth passing on.