This Is Probably Coca-Cola's Secret Recipe (and There's No Corn Syrup)

This American Life thinks it's uncovered one of the most closely guarded recipes in the whole world. You can find it right here.

Save for maybe the seasoning of Kentucky Fried Chicken, no beloved American flavor is guarded more closely than the original recipe of Coca-Cola. That's probably why the team behind the radio program This American Life was stunned to find what looked to be that very recipe published openly in a decades-old newspaper article. More shocked was the food historian TAL interviewed, who said it's very likely the recipe is authentic.

Here, the formula for Coca-Cola Classic, complete with the ultra-secret "7X flavor" that makes Coke so unique:

Standard ingredients:

Fluid extract of Coca: 3 drams

Citric acid: 3 oz

Caffeine: 1 oz

Sugar: 30 (unclear quantity)

Water: 2.5 gal

Lime juice: 2 pints, 1 quart

Vanilla: 1 oz

Caramel: 1.5 oz or more for color

The secret 7X flavor (use 2 oz of flavor to 5 gals syrup):

Alcohol: 8 oz

Orange oil: 20 drops

Lemon oil: 30 drops

Nutmeg oil: 10 drops

Coriander: 5 drops

Neroli: 10 drops

Cinnamon: 10 drops


This American Life has instructions about how to cook your own batch of Coca-Cola here. Make your own and avoid all the terrible corn syrup.