Well, PepsiCo’s gone and done it again, perhaps as an answer to Coke Zero, with yet another super-tasting brisk cola product with their Pepsi Max Zero Calorie Cola Energy Drink offering. As I drink a warm can of this new product while writing this, I’m impressed with how sweet and so much like regular Pepsi Cola it tastes; somewhat sweeter than their Diet Pepsi products.
Plus, unlike with most diet sodas, I have not experienced any sweetness fatigue with Pepsi Max. I often find that diet pops seem to become less sweet as I drink them near to the bottom of the can. Curious this is, as the diet Pepsi product I’ve sampled over the past several years are sweetened with aspartame as is this one. Yet the Pepsi Max sweet taste appears more enduring to my tongue. I do not drink soda pop regularly anymore. But occasionally when I do, I’ll keep this product in mind as a great mixer with Jim Beam, or just as a refresher after cutting the grass. It’s good.
Benefits, Features, Advantages, and Pros
- An obvious benefit of this Pepsi beverage is that it has no calories; in fact, no carbohydrates of any kind. Though the word diet is nowhere to be found on the can. You will not get fat drinking this thirst quencher.
- It’s sugar-free and very low sodium, at just 40 milligrams per 12-ounce serving. You will not get cavities by consuming this pop.
- At first, I thought that Pepsi Max was simply the old Diet Pepsi re-branded. The fizz, caramel color, and sweetness level closely approximates diet Pepsi’s. But the cola flavor in Pepsi Max might be a hair stronger than Pepsi’s diet soda pop. Plus, Pepsi Max has significantly more caffeine, and it has ginseng, which was not present in the Diet Pepsi line.
- Not sure why they avoided labeling Pepsi Max as diet. Seems that they’d want to make sure that anyone who must avoid the regular, sugary sodas would easily recognize this as a drink suitable for diabetics and diets.
- If I must keep the sleepies away, I find Pepsi Max to do a far better job of keeping me awake than the older diet Pepsi line due to the higher amount of caffeine in this product. You will not get any sleep while enjoying Pepsi Max.
- I just finished my second can while writing this, and despite the extra caffeine, I feel no jitters or racing heart but am very much awake. Perhaps the ginseng reduces somewhat the normal effects of caffeine. But perhaps I’ve just been drinking too much green and black teas. *smile*
- Perhaps they do not call Pepsi Max a diet pop because it does not taste like a diet pop. It tastes much more like regular Pepsi than does Diet Pepsi. You will not sacrifice that real Pepsi flavor by drinking Pepsi Max.
- I experienced no sour aftertaste with Pepsi Max.
- Pepsi Max gives you that little extra boost when you need it but without any sugar. Sweet!
- Immediately after opening, this Pepsi Max bubbled and sputtered, just bursting with carbonation that is perhaps more fizz than in the older diet Pepsi. However, the bubbles exit in a hurry. So drink it fast for max enjoyment of the extra fizz.
- Pepsi Max should prove an effective competitor to Coke Zero, as I don’t know which I like better. One is not clearly better than the other in my view.
Disadvantages, Concerns, Problems, and Cons
- This cola contains 69 milligrams of caffeine, which is quite high for a typical cola beverage. But then again, higher caffeine levels may have in fact been the point of producing this all-new product. But I’d rather not take in so much caffeine.
- Looking for a caffeine-free version, as I generally neither need nor desire the extra kick and jolt of caffeine found in Pepsi Max. Pepsi Max would be a good cola to keep around to cure caffeine withdrawal headaches when they happen.
- The carbonation seems to disappear rather quickly in Pepsi Max. I opened a can and poured some into a glass, took a sip, then let it sit for approximately fifteen minutes, and then took another drink. The second drink was indeed less zippy and bubbly than the first. So, drink up your Pepsi Max quickly after opening the can.
- The best-if-used-by date on the bottom of the can is six months out. So you can store this pop for a little while without any degradation in its taste. However, many products that derive their sweetness from aspartame like this one, can begin losing that sweetness if left in the wine cellar too long. So while I often keep beverages way past this date, I’d not recommend doing so with any diet soda.
Pepsi Max Zero Calorie Cola Energy Drink Ingredients
Carbonated water, caramel color, phosphoric acid, aspartame, potassium benzoate (preserves freshness), caffeine, natural flavor, acesulfame potassium, citric acid, calcium disodium EDTA (to protect flavor), panax ginseng extract.
Phenylketonurics: contains phenylalanine.
Caffeine content: 46 milligrams in 8 ounces.
Pepsi Max Zero Calorie Cola Energy Drink Nutrition Information
- Serving size: 8 Fl. ounces or 240 milliliters. Servings per container: 2.5.
- Calories: 0. Calories from fat: 0.
- Total fat: 0 grams, 0% DV.
- Sodium: 25 milligrams, 1% DV.
- Total carbohydrate: 0 grams, 0% DV.
- Sugars: 0 grams.
- Protein: 0 grams.
In totality then, my taste buds adore this zero calorie product. But the high caffeine concerns me. While I’d recommend this for strapping, young and healthy souls, I’d also caution older folks with prehypertension or full-blown high blood pressure to consume this product with caution. I’d therefore rate this product at 90 of 100.
Where To Buy Pepsi Max
Look for the black bottles, cans, and cartons of Pepsi Max at your favorite larger grocery stores. I bought mine at Walmart. I’ve not yet seen this soft drink sold at little stores as of yet.
- Aspartame on Wikipedia
- Caffeine on Wikipedia
- Ginseng on Wikipedia
- Pepsi Max on Wikipedia
- Pepsi Max Cautions
- : Moved this post to the Tom’s Diet Quest blog, added whitespace, adjusted ad placement, revised content, and rearranged category and tag assignments.
- 2012-04-20: Originally published.