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Mars Bar vs. Milky Way – Is There a Difference?

Mars Bar vs. Milky Way – which is it?

Last Updated on April 23, 2022 by Jim Edwards

Mars Bar and Milky Way are two of the most popular chocolate bars in the world. Manufactured from the same confectionary brand and having similar ingredients and appearances, the two candy bars are often argued to be the same candy sold under different names. Let’s pit the two confections against each other and see how they differ!


Mars Bar vs. Milky Way – History

Mars Bar vs. Milky Way

Mars, sometimes known as the Mars bar, is the brand name for two versions (British and American) of chocolate bars manufactured by Mars, Incorporated. Forrest Mars, Sr. invented this chocolate bar back in 1932 in Slough, England. The UK version of the chocolate was essentially made up of caramel and nougat coated in milk chocolate. In contrast, the American version of the chocolate had roasted almonds along with a nougat center wrapped in milk chocolate. Later, caramel was also added to the recipe. In 2002, Mars discontinued its American version, however, it was reinstated in 2003 under the name “Snickers Almond” in a slightly altered form.

Our second contender for this comparison, Milky Way, is a chocolate brand that is also manufactured and distributed by Mars, Incorporated. Similar to Mars bar, Milky Way also has two different versions: the US version and the global version. The Milky Way Bar was invented by Frank C. Mars, father of Forrest Mars Sr., back in 1923. The chocolate was nationally introduced in 1924. The trademark for the chocolate was registered in the US on 10th March, 1925. The chocolate coating for the bar was sourced from Hershey’s. The main goal of Frank C. Mars in creating this chocolate was to replicate the taste of a milkshake into a candy bar. The difference between the US and global version of the candy was that the global version had no caramel topping while the US variant did.

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Mars Bar vs. Milky Way – The Appearance

Other than the wrappers of the two candies, there’s no noticeable difference between the appearance of the two chocolates. Mars bars have a solid black wrapper with “Mars” printed on it in bold red font. On the other hand, Milky Way has a brown wrapper with different shades of brown representing the top chocolate coating of the Milky Way. Additionally, “Milky Way” is written atop of the wrapper in a bold green font.

Mars Bar vs. Milky Way – The Taste

Mars Bar vs. Milky Way

Starting off with the Mars Bar, the chocolate coating has just the right balance of hardness and softness to it. However, if refrigerated for long, the chocolate tends to get much harder. While the chocolate is quite enjoyable, it tastes a bit processed and artificial. The nougat center is hard and crunchy, but once you bite into it, you’ll find that it is also significantly more powdery than the alternative. The caramel is dense and thick and the flavor is absolutely delightful.

Even though the ingredients for the two chocolates are nearly identical and the confectionary brand behind them is the same, the taste and mouthfeel of Milky Way does differ slightly from that of Mars bar. The chocolate appears softer and easier to chew. The nougat center has a creamy touch to it and is much less powdery than that of Mars bar. The nougat perfectly blends with the caramel and chocolate blessing your tongue with a rich and premium taste.

Overall, the two bars have an identical malty smell. However, the taste of the chocolate, nougat, and caramel combo does differ ever so slightly making it impossible to decide the winner among the two.

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Mars Bar vs. Milky Way – The Ingredients

Mars Bar

sugar, skimmed milk powder, glucose syrup, cocoa butter, sunflower oil, cocoa mass, milk fat, whey powder (from milk), lactose and protein from whey (from milk), fat reduced cocoa, palm fat, emulsifier (soya lecithin), barley malt extract, egg white powder, salt, milk protein, natural vanilla extract.

Milky Way

Cocoa butter, sugar, chocolate, skim milk, milk fat, lactose, artificial flavor, soy lecithin, corn syrup, hydrogenated palm kernel oil and/or palm oil, cocoa powder processed with alkali, skim milk, less than 2% – milkfat, malted barley, egg whites, salt, artificial flavor.

Mars Bar vs. Milky Way – Nutritional Facts

The serving size for each chocolate equals one bar. Each bar of Mars weighs an estimated 51g while a bar of Milky Weigh comes in at just a little over 52g. The nutritional facts per serving for both confectionaries are given below.


Calories 230
Total Fat 8.6g
Saturated Fats 4.2g
Cholesterol 5 mg
Sodium 70 mg
Protein 2.2 g
Total Carbohydrates 35.3 g
Total Sugars 30.5 g

Milky Way

Calories 240
Total Fat 9g
Saturated Fats 6g
Cholesterol 5 mg
Sodium 70 mg
Protein 2 g
Total Carbohydrates 37 g
Total Sugars 32 g

Milky Way Compared to Mars Bar

In this video, I compare the taste of a Milky Way bar from the US to a Mars Bar from the UK.


 Mars Bar vs. Milky Way

Mars bar and Milky Way are both very similar chocolates and a favorite of all confectionary lovers around the world. The differences between the two confectionaries are so minute that the two have been often mistaken as the same chocolate sold under two different names. Despite the minor differences, we absolutely love both the chocolate bars and would surely recommend them to any candy lover out there.

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Mars Bar vs. Milky Way – Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Is a Mars Bar the Same as a Milky Way?

Both chocolate-coated, nougat-centered confections are manufactured by the same brand but have slight differences as explained above.

What Came First, Mars Bar or Milky Way?

Milky Way was introduced first in 1924 while Mars Bar came later in 1932

Why Were Mars Bars Discontinued?

It was done in order to reintroduce the chocolate under the name of Snickers Almond.

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