What’s Inside Nesquik Chocolate Milk?

Nesquik Nutritionals

We asked this question 5 years ago, and posted the answer on our blog. A reader alerted us that the product has changed since then, so we decided to compare Nesquik 2014 to its 2009 former self. We were pleasantly surprised, and here is why:

  1. Chocolate milk is a big hit with kids, and our main beef with Nesquik back in 2009 was the crazy-high amount of sugar added. An 8 ounce serving had 30 grams of sugar but the current version has just 24 grams.
  2. Instead of high fructose corn syrup, Nesquik is now using sugar.
  3. The calorie count has gone down from 200 to 150. Half the loss is due to less sugar, the rest is likely due to use of low-fat milk instead of “reduced fat” milk.

Here is a comparison of the Ingredient lists for reference.

2009 Ingredients: Reduced Fat Milk with Vitamin A Palmitate and Vitamin D3 Added, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Less Than 2% of Cocoa Processed with Alkali, Nonfat Milk, Sugar, Calcium Carbonate, Natural and Artificial Flavors, Guar Gum, Salt, Carrageenan.

2014 INGREDIENTS: LOWFAT MILK WITH VITAMIN A PALMITATE AND VITAMIN D3 ADDED, SUGAR, LESS THAN 2% OF COCOA PROCESSED WITH ALKALI, CALCIUM CARBONATE, CELLULOSE GEL, NATURAL AND ARTIFICIAL FLAVORS, SALT, CARRAGEENAN, CELLULOSE GUM.

You may be wondering why 3 thickeners are added to the list (cellulose gel, carrageenan, and cellulose gum). These thickeners improve the mouth feel of the drink, likening it to the experience of drinking full fat milk, without the added calories. Skim milk tends to feel very runny and watery.

Carrageennan is a seaweed based thickener that has recently been in the news. In some animal studies, carrageenan was shown to cause intestinal lacerations and tumors. It may also cause some people to have an irritable stomach.

Bottom Line: This product is an improved version of its previous self. Still, adding the powdered cocoa version of Nesquik is the better bet if you want to control how much sugar your kids get in their milk.

Want to know how Nesquik rates on Fooducate? Get the free app for Android or iPhone!

Get Fooducated

  • Michael Heffez

    It’s basically an improved version of cancer in a bottle. Those thickening agents are highly toxic and detrimental to anyone’s health, especially children. Companies as such will never get it right. They can easily replace those agents with coconut creams or avocado purée for example but from a sustainable business practice this won’t be in their best interest. The focus is to increase their margins not reduce them. Company execs could care less whether children are exploited from ingesting these harmful toxins. Thanks for providing the article. Hopefully the word spreads.

    • Keke

      Thank u for well stated TRUTH….

    • Dora

      CANCER in a bottle. It doesn’t get any clearer than that.

  • Stephanie

    I used to drink these a lot as a kid! So good. Not so healthy, though. I’m glad they’re changing the ingredients to make it better for us. I hope they continue to make improvements :)

    • Disgusted

      Did you not hear??? No improvement

      • Anne Noise

        “This product is an improved version of its previous self.”

  • Disgusted

    Why don’t the food industries go to jail for putting all this crap into our food and drink

    • Keke

      Imagine that! Smh it’s terrible the effect of evil and greed!

  • Vianney

    I like to drink this or the horizon lowfat milk after a workout/cardio

  • Aria Gonzalez

    And if you use the powdered version, you can use whole fat milk which is arguably better than reduced and skim. However, water would be a better idea…

  • Nicole G

    Shame! So many foods marketed towards kis are extremely bad for anyone’s health. Absolutely sad, they are not trying to improve at all

  • Jr

    If you were a kid would you rather drink a fun chocolate milk with a bunny that all your friends have or horizon low fat milk that doesn’t taste good. Think about it

  • anon316

    High fructose corn syrup is no worse than everyday sugar, I’ve heard. Sugar is sugar.

    • Anonymous

      High fructose corn syrup isn’t bad in moderate amounts. But we can’t get moderate amounts. It’s in everything. And it’s bad for you in high amounts.
      Your comment reads very much like the propaganda that the high fructose corn syrup companies try to spread via commercials.

  • TCarr

    After reading the “improvements,” no wonder it doesn’t taste as good. :P I can’t stand low-fat milk (I was raised on 2%) and (sadly) things with “sugar” don’t taste as good as good ol’ HFCS. -____-;;;

  • http://www.mangodashindia.com mango dash

    Hey, very nice site. I came across this on Google, and I am stoked that I did. I will definitely be coming back here more often. Wish I could add to the conversation and bring a bit more to the table, but am just taking in as much info as I can at the moment. Thanks for sharing.

    Mango Juice

    Keep Posting:)