Coca-Cola has had their secret recipe locked away for over 125 years but according to This American Life, it's been revealed, they claim to have found the ingredients that make up the delicious bubbly cola. Persdoanlly I perfer Pepsi.
The story begins with John Pemberton, a Civil War veteran who's credited with inventing Coca-Cola. His original recipe was written down in a recipe book of various ointments and medicines that was passed down from generation to generation.
A photograph of that recipe, from that very recipe book, was taken in the Feb. 18, 1979, edition of the Atlanta-Journal Constitution and only recently came to light when Ira Glass from This American Life stumbled upon it. Glass tracked down other people who claimed to have discovered the recipe as well and though they didn't match up exactly, they were so similar though that Glass concluded that this recipe was the original.
Fluid extract of Coca: 3 drams USP
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
To this day, Coca-Cola uses a United States license to purify the coca leaf for medicinal use.
Because cocaine is naturally present in coca leaves, today's Coca-Cola uses "spent," or treated, coca leaves, those that have been through a cocaine extraction process, to flavor the beverage. The coca leaves are imported from countries like Peru and Bolivia, and they are treated by chemical company Stepan, which then sells the de-cocainized residue to Coca-Cola. Some contend that this process cannot extract all of the cocaine alkaloids at a molecular level, and so the drink still contains trace amounts of the stimulant. The Coca-Cola Company currently refuses to comment on the continued presence of coca leaf in Coca-Cola.