Popular Snapple Flavors, Ranked Worst To Best

In 1972, Arnold Greenberg was running a health food store in New York City's East Village when he and two friends, Leonard Marsh and Hyman Golden, came up with the idea of marrying two seemingly opposing consumer trends: soft drinks and health food (via The New York Times). Under the name Unadulterated Food Products, the trio started selling apple soda made with the juice of real apples. They called it "Snapple," a portmanteau of "snappy" and "apple." It soon exploded onto the marketplace, almost literally — all that lovely natural apple juice fermented in the bottle, sending bottle caps a-blasting. 

Even with that initial hiccup, Snapple quickly caught on. Soon the flavors multiplied and branched into teas, becoming so popular that Quaker snapped up the Snapple brand in 1993, winning a bidding war against Coca-Cola (via Harvard Business Review). Throughout the 1990s and beyond, through word of mouth, brilliant advertising (remember Wendy, the Snapple Lady with the big Long Island accent?), and perhaps even more brilliant product placement, the drink brand has persisted and even thrived in the present day. Today Keurig Dr. Pepper-owned Snapple drinks come in a wide variety of flavors, the 22 most popular of which we sampled with the goal of ranking them from worst to best.

22. Diet Snapple Cranberry Raspberry

Before we get into why Snapple's Diet Cranberry Raspberry came in last in our ranking, it's probably worth noting many of us have been huge Snapple fans since 1987, when Snapple introduced its first flavored iced tea (via Thrillist). For that reason, when we think of Snapple, we'll always think first of its teas. 

That's not to say we have no room in our hearts for Snapple's juice drinks. However, while every popular Snapple flavor we tasted for purposes of this ranking turned out to be at least somewhat pleasant, if not necessarily something that we might actively seek out, one of them had to come in last. 

That dubious honor has gone to Diet Cranberry Raspberry. The issue we have with this flavor, which Snapple describes as a "cranberry raspberry juice flavor collaboration that will certainly bring down the flavor house," is that it's not nearly as tart as we would have expected and wanted, especially with the legendarily tart "cranberry" being the first fruit mentioned in the branding. In fact, its most prominent flavor note is raspberry — and a very sweet raspberry at that. It's unclear how we might feel if this were not artificially sweetened because this flavor does not come in a non-diet version. In fact, that's another strike against it, with the sometimes odd taste of artificial sweetener really affecting this last place Snapple offering. 

21. Snapple Orangeade

Turning up second-to-last in our ranking of popular Snapple flavors is Snapple's Orangeade — primarily because we can't quite wrap our heads around why Snapple would bother making orangeade in the first place. Snapple has been known for making some truly outstanding lemonade flavors throughout the years, to be sure. However, the reason we drink lemons as  "lemonade," as opposed to "lemon juice" should become obvious when you say this sentence out loud. Lemon juice is not meant to be sipped undiluted and unsweetened. Even those who willingly quaff unsweetened lemon juice tend to do so in the form of diluted lemon water.

Orange juice is a horse of an entirely different color, however, in that it's best enjoyed straight up. Once you start adding water to it, its sweet pungency all but disappears. When you start adding sugar to the mix, the sugary taste is soon all that's left, reminding us of something known as "summer camp bug juice". In fact, "Bug Juice" was the name of an old Disney Channel television series, so titled for the sticky-sweet fruity drink that was served ubiquitously in summer camps in the days before sugar came to be known as the enemy of both good health and good behavior (via Vice). Yet, even some powerful nostalgia can't save this sad Snapple drink from obscurity.

20. Snapple Tea Green Tea

Snapple's Green Tea flavor has a clean, refreshing taste that we would categorize as "fine." But once again, it's worth noting that in very ranking, something has to come in last. As far as Snapple teas go, Green Tea earned that honor because we don't happen to enjoy the taste of green tea enough to bother drinking it as iced tea — certainly not when there are so many other flavors of Snapple iced tea out there, every one of which we preferred to the Green Tea. 

The issue we have with green tea, in general, is that among its various earthy and otherwise pleasant flavor notes is a distinct bitterness. While some people may enjoy that quality, others can't quite latch on to it.  We happen to fall into the latter category, meaning, we would likely not choose green tea for its flavor, even when it comes to a sweet treat like ice cream. Rather, if you ever see us drinking green tea, it's probably mostly because we know of its numerous potential health benefits. But, since Snapple's Green Tea lists sugar before green tea in its ingredients, it seems as if flavor and not its healthy qualities are meant to be the draw here. That's where we drew the line.

19. Snapple Strawberry Pineapple Lemonade

Snapple knows how to make some truly fine lemonade. So, we were expecting a little better here, to be honest. We wanted the tart taste of lemon, sweetened ever-so-slightly with a hint of strawberry, and accented — subtly, the way an olive accents a martini — with just a hint of tropical pineapple. Of course, maybe it's our expectations that are to blame. After all, Snapple's Strawberry Pineapple Lemonade has pineapple placed prominently in its name, and pineapple juice is listed as one of its primary ingredients, after the lemon but before the strawberry. So, you might say that we should have known. Nevertheless, we couldn't help but find ourselves wishing that Snapple's Strawberry Pineapple Lemonade didn't taste quite so much like pineapple. 

It's not that we don't like pineapple. In fact, pineapple rocks, especially in upside-down cake and French martinis. It's just that it struck us as a bit "extra" in this context. The only hint we have as to why Snapple chose to include pineapple here is in Snapple's product description, which begins by saying, "We voted boring off the island with this one" (via Snapple). But, Snapple, we say this with only the utmost affection: sometimes "boring" is better.

18. Diet Snapple Tea Trop-a-Rocka

Snapple's Diet Trop-A-Rocka flavor "blends healthy green tea and tasty black tea with pear, cinnamon and mango flavors," according to a 2011 press release from Snapple regarding this drink's promotion to the company's permanent product line. Also, it's "rockin'" because the flavor was developed by none other than rock band Poison's frontman, Bret Michaels. Indeed, we wanted to love this sugar-free flavor because its development was not just a television stunt but also a labor of love for Michaels, who has lived with type 1 diabetes his whole life. Also, the drink is made with two ingredients that are known to be good for our health: green tea and cinnamon.

Nevertheless, green tea and cinnamon do not take us to our flavored iced tea happy place. The addition of green tea to Snapple's usual black tea base gave the overall flavor a strangely flowery note (at least it wasn't bitter). The addition of cinnamon just seemed kind of weird to us as well. You, of course, might feel differently.

17. Snapple Raspberry Tea

The fact that Snapple's Raspberry Tea came in towards the bottom of our popular Snapple flavor rankings surprised us, frankly. We do like it, to a certain extent. It's just that we thought it would be one of our favorite Snapple flavors and were unfortunately surprised. As it turned out, we found it wasn't nearly as good as many of Snapple's other flavors, coming in as the second weakest performer of all of Snapple's flavored iced teas.

Snapple's Raspberry Tea is one of the first flavored teas Snapple ever made, and according to a brand representative who spoke to Mashed, Snapple is so loyal to its customers that it tends to steer clear of making gratuitous "new and improved" changes to flavors that its customer base already loves. And this is one of those flavors. "For years, this has been my favorite drink," one fan wrote in a five-star review on Snapple's site (via Snapple). "Easily my favorite flavor of tea ever," wrote another. We can't argue with actual customer opinions, but we can volunteer that it is our opinion that Snapple Raspberry is just a bit too syrupy sweet, while the raspberry flavor leaves a mild medicinal aftertaste. 

16. Snapple Go Bananas

Snapple's Go Bananas is, as a brand representative told Mashed, "beloved by its fans" despite being a bit "under-the-radar." Indeed, Go Bananas hits the sweet spot in terms of sweet banana flavor, which happens to be surprisingly close to the flavor of actual fresh, ripe bananas. However, as with Strawberry Pineapple Pink Lemonade and Diet Trop-A-Rocka Tea, the fact that Go Bananas delivers on "bananas" promise isn't necessarily to its advantage, at least not in our opinion. 

Of course, you might feel differently about drinking banana-flavored juice. And we would feel differently if we were looking to make ourselves, say, a banana daiquiri and didn't feel like breaking out the blender. In fact, if this were a ranking not of Snapple's most popular flavors, but rather of clever soft drinks that make truly inspired cocktail mixers, Snapple's Go Bananas would have ranked considerably higher. Alas, that particular ranking will have to wait until another day. 

15. Snapple Fruit Punch

Snapple's Fruit Punch is pretty darn good for the multi-fruit-flavored, red-hued sugar water that it is. Since that is all that most commercially available bottled fruit punch will ever be, we can't rightfully hold that against Snapple. In fact, in our view, Snapple Fruit Punch sits among the best of the not-really-juice genre. However, there are two things to understand about Snapple's Fruit Punch. One is that its ingredients by no means match the picture of an apple, orange, pineapple, and grapes on its label. Indeed, Snapple's Fruit Punch contains no orange or pineapple. Its only clearly fruit-based ingredients are "apple, pear, and grape concentrates." 

The other thing to know is that Snapple sells a canned juice drink called 100% Juiced Fruit Punch, which is, as the name suggests, made entirely from 100% fruit juice. It also has no added sugar. Of course, that doesn't mean it has no sugar. In fact, an 11.5 ounce serving of 100% Juiced Fruit Punch has one more gram of sugar than a 12-ounce serving of Coke (via Coca-Cola). 

That being said, maybe we should be nicer to Snapple's Fruit Punch. After all, you can clean your toilet with Coca-Cola, according to Bob Vila, and no one ever suggested you should pour anything made by Snapple down the toilet. That's at least a point in this drink's favor.

14. Snapple Peach Tea

Although Snapple Peach Tea was not the first Snapple Tea flavor (that honor goes to Snapple Lemon Tea), it may nevertheless be the most iconic. And that's not just a reflection of how many people like to drink it. It also reflects the impressive number of cameos that Snapple Peach Tea has made in film and movies over the last 30 or so years, including the 2001 film, "The Fast And The Furious," and televisions shows such as  "30 Rock" (via Reuters) and "Cobra Kai" (via Product Placement Blog). 

Not that it matters to us whether or not Snapple Peach Tea qualifies for its SAG card. What matters to us is taste. And Snapple Peach Tea offers a smooth, round mouthful of sweet, ripe, peachy flavor. That's the good news. The not-necessarily good news is that Snapple Peach Tea packs almost as much peach scent as it does flavor. If you're down with that, then you're in luck. If you're someone who is a bit more sensitive to smells, you might find it a bit cloying. 

13. Snapple Lemon Tea

Released in 1987, Snapple's Lemon Tea was Snapple's very first flavored tea, according to Snapple. At the time, it was seen by some as something of a revelation in terms of iced tea's true potential as an everyday soft drink, rather than something your grandmother served to her friends over a game of mahjong. As writer Matt McCue so astutely put it in 2015, "in 1987, [Snapple] introduced flavored iced teas, and for the first time in history, iced tea tasted appetizing" (via Thrillist). 

McCue does not exaggerate. Snapple Lemon Tea tasted nothing like the bland, vaguely chemical-flavored Lipton ice tea that you got when you mixed those little drink crystals into some water. Nor did it taste anything like actual brewed tea, and that was a good thing. Instead, it delivered a full-on lemon flavor, one that promised that iced tea did not have to actually taste like just tea at all. And that is still the message since Snapple does not fix what ain't broke when it comes to its iconic flavors, according to a brand representative who spoke to Mashed. If you're wondering why Snapple Lemon Tea didn't rank higher, it's only because it has such stiff competition.

12. Snapple Apple

Snapple's very first flavor ever was apple. Snapple's Snapple Apple flavor is clearly an homage to the future beverage giant's first foray into bottled juices (via The New York Times), with Snapple noting that "you can't spell Snapple without apple." In fact, the company, which clearly has a sense of humor when it comes to its explosive past, slyly references the fact that those first bottles of apple juice had a tendency to blast their caps off, thanks to gas build-up caused by unplanned fermentation action going on within the bottles. 

With today's Snapple Apple flavor, which benefits from vacuum-sealed bottles, and, more importantly, a complete absence of fermentation, there is no danger of exploding bottle caps. There's also little danger of you becoming hooked on this flavor, at least not with all the other Snapple flavors out there that you can choose from. Made from "apple and pear juice concentrate," and offering enough added sugar in a single serving to get you 84% of the way towards your recommended daily allowance of added sugar, Snapple Apple is basically your average apple-flavored juice-drink. No better, no worse. 

Assuming you don't want to consume most of your daily sugar allowance in a single gulp, you might want to consider Snapple's 100% Juiced Green Apple Juice, which boasts 100% apple juice, albeit not necessarily green apple-apple juice. But since canned juices were not among our sample, you'll have to judge that one for yourself. 

11. Diet Snapple Lemon Tea

It looks like we're finally beginning to close in on the popular Snapple flavors that we think belong in the top 10. Coming in at 11, Snapple Diet Lemon tea is obviously not among that hallowed half-score of most elite flavors, However, we feel it's important to point out that it came very, very close. In fact, it was virtually a toss-up between Diet Lemon and Diet Raspberry, and if we had been ranking only Snapple tea flavors (as opposed to both teas and juice flavors), Diet Lemon would have been in the top five, right behind Diet Raspberry tea.

Why did we rank Diet Lemon just behind Diet Raspberry, you might ask? The truth is, the only thing that held Diet Lemon back in the rankings is that its smooth, refreshing, and delicious flavor is not nearly as remarkable as that of Diet Raspberry. Back when it first came out, Diet Lemon was, in fact, remarkable. It was simply the very best-tasting commercially available diet iced tea, period. Nowadays, plenty of beverage brands make diet lemon-flavored ice tea that could hold its own in a Snapple Tea taste-off. But the same isn't true with most of the sweeter flavors of iced tea. 

10. Diet Snapple Raspberry Tea

Like we said, whereas good-tasting diet lemon-flavored iced teas have become readily accessible from a variety of beverage brands, diet teas flavored with sweeter fruits such as raspberry are a far rarer breed. And Snapple's Diet Raspberry tea is absolutely delicious. Its raspberry flavoring is assertive but gentle. Smooth and refreshing, it carries just the right level of sweetness with no artificial sweetener aftertaste. And there's nothing medicinal about it, which is something to be said when compared with some other brands employing similar flavors. 

In fact, it's something to be said when compared with Snapple's own Diet Cranberry Raspberry drink, which can sometimes bring to mind unpleasant notes of cherry-flavored cough syrup despite not containing even a drop of cherry juice. That being said, we can't say for sure how much raspberry juice, if any, is in a bottle of Snapple Diet Raspberry. The ingredients list makes no reference to raspberries in particular, though it does mention some vague "natural flavors". But that doesn't mean we don't love ourselves some Snapple Diet Raspberry on a hot summer day.

9. Snapple Watermelon Lemonade

Alright, we're just going to put this out there. Before we tasted Snapple Watermelon Lemonade, we were feeling a bit reluctant. While we love both lemonade and watermelon, any time we've tried to combine them ourselves at home, it's turned out to be a rather disappointing waste of both good lemonade and good watermelon. Fortunately, that's precisely the opposite of our experience tasting Snapple's version, which happens to taste almost exactly like one of the most beloved of childhood penny candies, Watermelon Jolly Rancher

Like the Jolly Rancher candy, this Snapple flavor is both sweet and tangy, with an unmistakable watermelon flavor. And while we aren't entirely sure how Jolly Rancher got that ripe watermelon taste into its hard candies, we know from Snapple that its Watermelon Lemonade contains actual watermelon juice concentrate (not to mention actual lemon juice concentrate). If only Snapple would consider bottling a diet version.

8. Snapple Takes Two To Mango Tea

As much as we love Snapple, and as much as we love mangos, somehow, we had never managed to try Snapple's Takes Two To Mango Tea until now. And boy are we glad we did. Takes Two To Mango Tea has a wonderful, clean mango flavor with no funky smell and no sticky-sweet aftertaste. In fact, it tastes exactly like you might expect mango-flavored tea to taste. That is, if it were made with actual mango. 

You might think it unfair when we tell you the only thing keeping Snapple's Takes Two To Mango Tea out of the top five — as well as out of our favorite three Snapple tea flavors — is that there is no mention of mango anywhere in its list of ingredients (via Snapple). From that, along with a quick perusal of the ingredients list for Snapple Mango Madness, which does contain mango puree concentrate, we are left to infer that the Takes Two To Mango Tea contains no actual mango, except perhaps some distillation of mango into the "natural flavors" listed at the end.

7. Snapple Black Cherry Lemonade

As big fans of Snapple's various lemonade flavors over the years, we were pumped to see that Snapple Black Cherry Lemonade even existed. The combination of lemon and cherry isn't exactly among the most popular flavor combinations. Not like, say, blueberry and lemon (which as far we know has never been a Snapple flavor, and we want to know why), or that old standard of lime and lemon. And being huge fans of basically anything cherry-flavored (except cherry-flavored cough syrup), we were excited to find out if Snapple had gone with the safe option of cultivating a sweet Bing cherry-flavor profile, or perhaps the riskier but more sophisticated option of debuting a sour cherry drink. 

As it turned out, we never really got around to figuring that out because the lemon flavor here had the perfect level of assertive tartness. it so perfect that it made us forget to think about whether the cherry was tart or sweet, which is to say that although Snapple's Black Cherry Lemonade comes in seventh overall in our ranking of popular Snapple flavors, it's our favorite among Snapple's fruit-flavored lemonade flavors.

6. Snapple Raspberry Peach

Snapple's Raspberry Peach is an amazing and, frankly, surprising combination of two of Snapple's most popular tea flavors (though it contains no tea here). In fact, it's even greater than the sum of its already impressive parts. If you're not a tea drinker, for whatever reason, then this flavor is a great way to experience Snapple's talents as far as peaches and raspberries are concerned. 

Plus, if you're a fan of historic punch, you may have an enhanced opinion of this Snapple flavor. The original punch originated in colonial India. Its name comes from the Sanskrit word for five ("panch") because it combines five elements of alcohol, water, sugar, spice, and citrus (via Live History India). If that sounds intriguing, then this might be your own personal number one Snapple flavor. And we happen to know that it makes a really delightful mixer for either vodka or a blanco tequila, so if you're of the age and persuasion to mix an adult beverage for yourself, you may want to reach for this particular Snapple flavor. 

5. Snapple Half N' Half Lemonade Iced Tea

That brings us to the best five in this ranking of popular Snapple flavors. Considering that there are no truly "bad" Snapple flavors (just flavors that aren't as good as some of the others on offer) it actually is quite an accomplishment for Snapple's Half N' Half Lemonade Iced Tea flavor to turn up in this top-five pantheon. 

Every other member of this flavor club is not just a tried-and-true Snapple favorite, but also seriously old school — as in dating back to Snapple's earliest days. That means that all those flavors had years in which they could be tweaked to perfection before people even started craving the half lemonade, half iced tea mashup that Arnold Palmer made popular starting in 2001 via a collaboration with AriZona iced tea (via Arnold Palmer). Yet this newbie flavor is still a beautifully polished combination of sweet, sour, and bitter goes down easy and is surprisingly refreshing for a full-sugar beverage.  

4. Snapple Mango Madness

Mango Madness has been around almost as long as the Snapple brand itself, which is amazing when you consider the velvety, richly sweet flavor of mango has only begun to catch on in popularity in the last several years. But that's how good it was back in the 1990s — good enough to catch on before mango was cool. What made this so good then and today is that it has all the depth of flavor that you'd expect in a mango nectar drink. Yet, it's not nectar, and it doesn't have the thick, viscous mouthfeel of other similar mango drinks. 

Instead, Mango Madness is a light, refreshing, deeply mango-flavored juice drink that would be nearly perfect except for the fact that it contains 45 grams of sugar, 39 of which are added sugars, according to the nutritional facts. For people watching their sugar intake, that might be too much to handle.

4. Snapple Kiwi Strawberry

If pink had a taste, Snapple's Kiwi Strawberry flavor would be it. Indeed, perhaps it is because of its very paloma-esque appearance that we selected Kiwi Strawberry over Mango Madness for the number two slot. You see, whereas the Mango Madness had us thinking of brunch, the Kiwi Strawberry flavor all but literally transported us to a dockside bar at sunset. And while we're all for brunch, at this point many of us are seriously missing the days of idyllic dockside drinks enjoyed in the sunset. So, Kiwi Strawberry wins by a margin as narrow as a martini glass stem. 

Also, there's this one other thing that gave the Kiwi Strawberry flavor the edge. We remember it from the "Friends" episode, "The One With Joey's Fridge," where the diet version of Kiwi Strawberry was apparently Rachel's soft drink of choice (via Product Placement Blog). Whatever happened to the diet version anyway? Snapple, we're looking at you. 

2. Snapple Pink Lemonade

Whether yellow or pink, Snapple lemonades are always welcome in any glass — well, at least in any glass of ours. But from what Snapple's brand representatives have told Mashed, we're far from the only ones to hold that opinion. Lemonade happens to be something Snapple has a particular talent for concocting, making it a "perfect fit" for the brand. And apparently, people have figured this out over the years because Snapple lemonade has remained a perennial favorite — sometimes to the point where it can be challenging for stores to keep it in stock. In fact, from time to time, this leads some to think it's been retired as a flavor (via Twitter). Rest assured, it has not.

At various times, Snapple has sold yellow lemonade as well as pink. For now, it seems to be all about pink, which is completely fine by us. We just wish we knew which fruit it is that Snapple uses to get the pink into the Pink Lemonade. Alas, it's only obliquely referred to in Snapple's ingredient list for this flavor as "vegetable & fruit juice concentrates" (via Snapple).

1. Diet Snapple Peach Tea

And finally, without further ado, we arrive at what is quite possibly the most popular Snapple flavor. It comes in at last in our ranking because it is truly the very best of the best of what Snapple has to offer: Diet Peach Snapple Tea. As Snapple describes this flavor: "Smooth Snapple tea, perfect peach flavor. You won't believe this peach of an iced tea could have this much taste and still be called diet. Life's a peach, and we're just drinking it in." 

Truth be told, they had us at "smooth" and "perfect peach." And by "perfect peach," we mean that as we sipped it, it tasted so much like a true peach that we were tempted to bring a napkin to our chin to catch an errant drivel of peach juice. Yet as true as the peachiness tasted and felt on our tongues, somehow, this flavor managed to not hit us with a big, overwhelmingly peachy scent like the non-diet version. And we greatly appreciated that. Not for nothing, Diet Peach is Kim Kardashian's favorite Snapple flavor, which she once showed off with a custom label sporting her face and the "RoyalTEA" moniker (via Refinery29).