Mixing Coca-Cola and Milk Is a Thing People Do, I Guess

updated Apr 30, 2019
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(Image credit: From left to right: designs by Jack; Alter-ego)

Milk: I’m a big fan. You’re great with cereal, delicious with my coffee in the morning, and you’re an all-around useful ingredient in anything from cakes to making really good chicken.

Coca-Cola: likewise, big fan. A staple at barbecues, great with a deli sandwich, or sitting right next to some buttery popcorn in a large cup at the movie theater.

Milk, Coke, I love you both, but I love you both separately. And honestly, until today I never thought I’d even have to think of you in the same space. But then the internet learned that people drink milk and Coke TOGETHER and honestly I’m not sure what to make of it all.

Last week on Twitter, @bexin2d — a teaching fellow at the UCL Department of Science and Technology Studies in London — tweeted a question to one of her colleagues. “Can you confirm or deny a thing for me? I am currently being told by @JimMFelton that milk in Coca-Cola is A Brummie Thing. IS IT TRUE?,” she asked David Allen Green, a friend and presumed Brummie (which is British slang for somebody from Birmingham, England).

Although Green’s account is private (so his answer will remain unanswered publicly in the annals of time), the question started a huge discussion on the unusual beverage combination, garnering quite a few different types of responses.

From a confirmation …

To absolute disgust (I’m raising my hand) …

To people trying the combination for themselves …

To even a few messages of support …

To raising a valid point about its flavor profile …

And raising a pertinent question about the mixture …

I’ll give you a minute to recoil at the little science fact you may have known but forgot until now: When you mix a dairy product with an acidic liquid like lemon juice or perhaps a soda like Coca-Cola, the dairy product curdles. It’s simple science, folks. People who enjoy milk coke claim that curdling doesn’t really happen, though.

Well, I don’t believe them.

I may be letting my horror guide my belief system, however — adding a little milk to a glass of coke causes the reaction, but there may be something about mixing the liquids equally that keeps the reaction from happening. (Still, do you want to risk it?)

When I was gauging American interest in this beverage, which, by the way received a unanimous “no,” one friend pointed out that milk and Pepsi was the preferred beverage of sitcom icon Laverne from Laverne & Shirley, a show that premiered in the ’70s and ran until 1983. It might be a hint as to the drink’s popularity that one has to go back 35 years to locate a fan.

Regardless of what you think about the combination of milk and Coke, or as Laverne liked, milk and Pepsi, I think we can all agree that the following take is quite the nuclear option when trying to find a mixer for your glass of milk.

I think we can all agree on this … maybe.