You’ve been trying to wean yourself off soda for years. The regular stuff is packed with sugar, but diet doesn’t exactly scratch your itch for sweet, syrupy bliss either (which means sparkling water and fancy seltzer definitely won’t cut it). But what if we told you there’s a healthy alternative to soda that actually tastes like your beloved pop of choice *and* boosts your gut health? It’s not too good to be true, friends: Meet OLIPOP.
While it certainly tastes like soda, OLIPOP’s drinks are more like fizzy tonics, thanks to all of their beneficial ingredients. Each can is packed with prebiotics (aka food for probiotics), plant fiber and botanicals to boost the health of your microbiome and digestive system. Better yet, each 12-ounce sipper boasts 8 to 9 grams of dietary fiber, 5 grams of sugar or fewer, 3 to 8 net carbs and a maximum of 50 calories. (A typical root beer contains about triple the calories, no fiber and nearly 40 grams of sugar, for reference.)
In case you need more convincing, OLIPOP’s drinks are vegan, non-GMO, gluten-free, Paleo and keto-friendly, as well as free of artificial sweeteners, colors and flavors. Instead of using freaky ingredients to mimic classic soda flavors, the tonics are sweetened with a combination of natural cassava syrup, stevia leaf extract and natural fruit sugars. Years of research went into choosing wholesome ingredients that are known to boost digestive health, and they range from high-fiber nopal cactus to prebiotic-rich kudzu root to soothing calendula. Despite the clean labels, OLIPOP’s flavors are classic, ranging from Vintage Cola to Orange Squeeze.
OLIPOP might be available at a store near you, but you can save yourself some time perusing the aisles by ordering through the online shop. (P.S.: If you don’t go a day without your favorite fizzy bev, consider making your purchase a subscription to save 15 percent on every order.) Before you fill your cart, read on for our ranking of all six flavors.
6. Strawberry Vanilla
Imagine strawberries and cream, only drinkable. This flavor smells (and TBH tastes) like candy and contains both real strawberry juice and vanilla bean. However, while we loved the cream soda-inspired flavor, OLIPOP tonics aren’t as bubbly as standard sodas, which made this one in particular almost too sweet for our taste. We’d split the can with a friend so not a drop goes to waste, or top it off with a bit of plain seltzer to make it more effervescent and less sweet.
5. Orange Squeeze
Hellooooo, nostalgia. We all remember the elation we felt as kids after hitting the cooler at a barbecue and being lucky enough to crack open the last orange soda. This elevated take on the O.G. hits all the right notes, except you can taste that it’s made with real, wholesome ingredients, like clementine and mandarin juices. Win-win.
4. Ginger Lemon
If the smell could be bottled, we’d wear it like perfume: Think the aroma of spicy, fresh ginger floating on bright hints of citrus. This flavor pairs real ginger juice with sweet mulling spices and lemon juice. It’s not as spicy on the tongue as your nose would lead you to believe, but it’s super juicy and refreshing, like a fruity, less bubbly ginger ale. (Ginger is a natural digestive that can increase your blood flow and soothe your stomach, BTW.)
3. Vintage Cola
It just so happens that we first sipped this flavor alongside a big-brand cola to taste the differences. And honestly, there weren’t many, besides notably fewer bubbles in OLIPOP’s. The vanilla- and caramel-like notes you love are all there, along with an energy boost, thanks to the addition of green tea caffeine.
2. Classic Root Beer
This drink is sure to give you all the old-timey feels you’re thirsting for with its perfect balance of bite and sweetness. While root beer is traditionally made with sassafras tree bark, this version is made with the extracts of sweet birch and burdock root, as well as vanilla bean for good measure. We’d be remiss to not suggest using it in an ice cream float (heck, there are only 35 calories in the whole can—you can swing it).
1. Cherry Vanilla
Wow, where do we even start? First of all, it smells like straight-up cherry pie: tangy, vibrant, molten fruit filling that’s begging for to be served à la mode. Thankfully, it basically does come with a side of ice cream, since its tart-sweet flavor is rounded out beautifully with real vanilla. We really have nothing bad to say about this gem. Although, we’d be all over a Cherry Vanilla-Vintage Cola mashup…just sayin’.
*Our final taste score was based on the average of the soda taste test scores.
The PureWow100 is a scale our editors use to vet new products and services, so you know what's worth the spend—and what's total hype. Learn more about our process here.
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