If you or someone you know is on TikTok even a little then you surely know about this viral healthy Coke balsamic vinegar recipe. Made with just two ingredients—soda water and balsamic vinegar—it’s said to taste just like Diet Coke. I had to try it for myself—then had to make it better.

Original Viral Balsamic Soda Recipe 

The original recipe that blew up TikTok isn’t really a recipe at all. It consists of ice being dumped into a wine glass with a splash of balsamic vinegar and as much soda water (any kind) as you like. 

There isn’t much to it and I was intrigued. To start I tried a splash of generic balsamic vinegar and lime-flavored Bubbly water. I’m not sure if it was the less-than-stellar balsamic or some preconceived notions, but I wasn’t blown away. But I also didn’t hate it. 

So I kept going. Next, I tried it with a high-end fruit-infused vinegar and, without being dramatic, I was shocked at how much better it was. I started drinking it regularly! 

But alas, I can’t keep well-enough alone and I wanted to try to get it even closer to what a true Diet Coke tastes like. 

cola in a rocks glass with ice


Fruit-Infused Balsamic Vinegar

A high-quality balsamic vinegar is essential for this healthy coke balsamic vinegar recipe. It’s the main flavor enhancer so be sure to use something with a lot of flavor. I like fig-infused balsamic and pomegranate balsamic.

Pure Maple Syrup

To give this “healthy coke” a nice sweetness, you’ll need pure maple syrup. I don’t recommend using honey or agave.

Lime-Flavored Soda

I like lime-flavored sparkling water the best but feel free to use any citrusy soda water such as lemon or grapefruit. Avoid any sparkling water that is sweetened.

How to Make The Best Balsamic Soda 

I found two ingredients to be absolutely essential when for making the best Balsamic Soda, or “healthy homemade Diet Coke.” The first, really good high-quality balsamic vinegar. Preferably a balsamic that is fruit infused of some sort. I’ve tried pomegranate balsamic vinegar and fig balsamic vinegar and both were delicious. The more syrupy and sweet, the better. 

And the second ingredient is pure maple syrup. Just a tiny splash of pure maple syrup adds a dose of sweetness which takes this to true cola territory. 

If you don’t want to add sweetness, you can skip the maple syrup, but a fruit-infused balsamic vinegar is absolutely key. 

As for the soda water, I prefer lime-flavored soda water such as Lime Bubbly. Lemon or grapefruit would also be good options. But steer clear of anything sweetened or with fruit juice included. 


  • Make it boozy by adding a splash of vodka. 
  • Make a cherry “soda” by adding some grenadine. 
  • Instead of maple syrup, add an herb-infused simple syrup such as thyme, rosemary or sage.

Other Drinks to Try

Healthy Coke Balsamic Vinegar Recipe

3.85 from 26 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Yield 1 drink
Category Drinks
Cuisine American


A better version of the viral TikTok Balsamic Soda.


  • 1 teaspoon fruit-infused balsamic vinegar such as fig, balsamic, or strawberry
  • ½ teaspoon pure maple syrup
  • ½ cup lime-flavored soda water


  • Stir together vinegar and maple syrup in a glass.
  • Pour soda water in and give it a stir. Fill fill with ice and enjoy.


Feel free to use any light-flavored soda water such as lime, lemon, or grapefruit. Avoid using soda waters with fruit juices or sweeteners added. 


Serving: 1 drinkCalories: 10kcalCarbohydrates: 2gSodium: 1mgSugar: 2g
Like this? Leave a comment below!I love hearing from you and I want to hear how it went with this recipe! Leave a comment and rating below, then share on social media @zestfulkitchen and #zestfulkitchen!

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Recipe Tests

Here’s what my testing included:

Test 1:

  • ¾ cup lime-flavored soda water
  • 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar 
  • ½ teaspoon molasses

Results: the only flavor present was molasses. Strike one.

Test 2: 

  • ½ cup lime-flavored soda water
  • 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon maraschino cherry syrup 

Results: bland and a little sharp. Strike two.

Test 3: 

  • ½ cup lime-flavored soda water
  • 1 teaspoon vinegar 
  • ½ teaspoon pure maple syrup

Results: light and tasty. On to something here! 

Test 4: 

  • ½ cup lime-flavored soda water
  • 1 teaspoon pomegranate-flavored balsamic vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon pure maple syrup 

Results: also light and tasty! Would drink this anytime. 

Test 5:

  • ½ cup lime-flavored soda water
  • 1 teaspoon fig balsamic vinegar 
  • ½ teaspoon pure maple syrup

Results: delish! Syrupy and tasty. We have a winner. 

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About The Author

Lauren Grant is a professional culinary food scientist, food writer, recipe developer, and food photographer. Lauren is a previous magazine editor and test kitchen developer and has had work published in major national publications including Diabetic Living Magazine, Midwest Living Magazine, Cuisine at Home Magazine, EatingWell.com, AmericasTestKitchen.com, and more.

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How many stars would you give this recipe?


  1. Seems in bad faith to me to call this “healthy diet coke” when a star ingredient is pure maple syrup. People drink diet coke over regular coke bc they’re avoiding sugar, and between the balsamic infusion and the maple syrup, this recipe has 24g sugar per 20 fl oz.

    1. I never encouraged anyone to drink 20 ounces! If someone wants to avoid sugar, they are smart enough to skip this.

  2. Interesting.
    I’ve got caramelized fig syrup in the fridge, can’t wait to pick up some decent vinegar to try it