Red Bull vs Coca Cola Energy vs Classic Coke

Coca-Cola has recently joined the energy drink market by creating their own version of a pick-me-up drink, called Coca-Cola Energy which comes in two main variants – with and without sugar.

Now, some people wonder how this new energy drink compares to the already popular Red Bull. How much caffeine does it have? What about sugar? In this Red Bull vs Coca Cola Energy comparison, you will find out the main differences between these two energy drinks and learn whether one is better than the other. You will also see where classic Coke sits in this comparison.

Red Bull vs Coke – Ingredients

First, let’s look at how these drinks compare in terms of their ingredients.

Red Bull Energy DrinkWater, Sucrose, Glucose, Acidifier Citric Acid, Carbon Dioxide, Taurine (0.4%), Acidity Regulator (Sodium Carbonates, Magnesium Carbonate), Caffeine (0.03%), Vitamins (Niacin, Pantothenic Acid, B6, B12), Flavourings, Colours (Caramel, Riboflavin)
Coca Cola EnergyCarbonated Water, Sugar, Dextrose, Acidifier: Phosphoric Acid, Natural Cola Flavors, Caramel Color, Caffeine, Preservatives: Sodium Benzoate & Potassium Sorbate, Guarana, Vitamins B: Vitamin B3 (Niacinamide)  & Vitamin B6 
Coca Cola Energy ZeroCarbonated Water, Colorant (E150d), Acid (E338), Sweeteners (Acesulfame-K, Sucralose), Caffeine (0.03%), Preservatives (E211, E202), Natural Flavours, Vitamins (Niacin (B3) and B6), Guarana Extract (0.001%)
Coca Cola Original tasteCarbonated Water, Sugar, Colour (Caramel E150d), Phosphoric Acid, Natural Flavourings Including Caffeine

Red Bull and various variations of Coca Cola all contain water and sugar as their main ingredients, the only difference is that Coke is made with carbonated, not flat water.

Here are the main differences between Red Bull and Coca Cola Energy:

  • They contain different acidifiers – Red Bull contains citric acid and Coca Cola Energy contains phosphoric acid. These ingredients make drinks acidic and better tasting.
  • There is Taurine in Red Bull but not in Coca Cola Energy. Taurine is an amino acid found naturally in various foods but when added to energy drinks, it’s not clear how safe it actually is, especially if you drink energy drinks excessively.
  • Acidity regulators are added to Red Bull but not to Coca Cola Energy
  • Both drinks have added B vitamins which help to convert food into energy but there are only B6 and B3 vitamins in Coca Cola Energy whereas Red Bull also contains B12 and B5
  • Coca Cola Energy also contains guarana which is not found in Red Bull. Guarana can reduce fatigue and improves focus naturally.
  • In the case of Coca Cola Energy Zero, there is no added sugar, only artificial sweeteners.

Classic Coca Cola does not contain added vitamins which are in Red Bull and Coca Cola Energy.

Red Bull vs Coca Cola Energy vs Coke – Caffeine content

Caffeine is one of the main ingredients in energy drinks that will give you a quick boost of energy. 

In the table below we compare caffeine content in Red Bull vs Coca Cola Energy vs classic Coke (Original taste).

Red Bull
250ml can
Coca Cola Energy
250ml can
330ml can

Both Red Bull and Coca Cola Energy have 80 mg of caffeine which is roughly the same amount of caffeine you will find in a cup of coffee (instant black coffee).

A standard can of Coke, on the other hand, contains only 32mg of caffeine.

Sugar content in Red Bull vs Coca Cola Energy vs Coke

Both Red Bull and Coca Cola Energy contain added sugar but how much and which drink has more sugar? The table below compares sugar in Red Bull vs Coca Cola Energy vs Classic Coca Cola.

Values per 100mlRed BullCoca Cola EnergyCoke

Red Bull contains more sugar than Coca Cola Energy but the difference is very small. There is 11g of sugar per 100ml in Red Bull while Coca Cola Energy has slightly less sugar – 10.4g per 100ml. Classic Coke has almost the same amount of sugar as Coca Cola Energy (10.6g per 100ml).

All three drinks are considered to be very high in sugar. In a 250ml can of Red Bull, there is 27.5g of sugar which equals almost 7 teaspoons of sugar (one teaspoon equals around 4 g). A can of Coca Cola Energy, on the other hand, has 26g of sugar or 6.5 teaspoons and a can of Coca Cola Original Taste (330ml) contains 35g of sugar or almost 9 teaspoons.

Red Bull vs Coca Cola Energy vs Coke – Calories

Finally, we compare calories in Red Bull, Coke and Coca Cola Energy to see which one has the most calories and which one the least.

It shouldn’t come as a surprise that Red Bull has the most calories as it also has the most added sugar.

Coca Cola Energy and classic Coca Cola have the same amount of calories per 100ml (42kcal).

Values per 100mlRed BullCoca Cola EnergyCoke
Calories46kcal 42kcal42kcal

Conclusion: Red Bull vs Coke – Which one is better?

If you are looking for a quick boost of energy and are trying to decide between Red Bull and Coca Cola Energy, then Coca Cola Energy is definitely better since it contains less calories and doesn’t contain controversial taurine. None of these drinks is healthy though and should not be consumed regularly due to high sugar content. In comparison, classic Coca Cola is not much better in terms of sugar content as it contains pretty much the same amount of sugar per 100ml as Coca Cola Energy.