Milky Way vs 3 Musketeers – What’s the Difference?

Here we take a look at the similarities and differences between two classic American candy bars: Milky Way and 3 Musketeers. Be sure to vote for your favorite of the two chocolate bars in our poll at the end of this article.

Milky Way vs 3 Musketeers

Taste Test

It all boils down to if you prefer caramel or not. The caramel in Milky Way is the dominant flavor when you bit into one of these bars. The nougat is overpowered by the caramel but still noticeable. 3 Musketeers is all nougat so lovers of nougat will enjoy this bar.

We did a blind taste test to see what candy bar the testers preferred. Most people could recognize the exact chocolate bar that was being consumed. Preference for one bar over the other predictably centered around the caramel.


Milky Way (pictured left) has a compact layer of nougat on the bar and is top with a generous layer of caramel. 3 Musketeers (pictured right) has a fluffy nougat center and features a darker layer of chocolate on the outside of the bar. Despite the difference in the color of the chocolate, they have a similar milk chocolate taste.

Country Variations

A Milky Way is not the same candy bar in every country where it is sold. A Milky Way in the United States is made of nougat that is top with caramel and covered in milk chocolate. Bars sold outside of the U.S. have no caramel, making them similar to a 3 Musketeers. The Mars bars (not sold in the U.S.) is similar to the U.S. Milky Way with both nougat and caramel inside.

Confused yet? The video below shows the differences between Milky Way (U.S.), Milky Way (non-U.S.), and a Mars bar.

Here is a 3 Musketeers bar:


Both candy bars are owned by Mars, Incorporated. They are two candy bars that have been around since the early days of Mars Inc. Mars is the company behind many other popular candies such as Snickers, M&Ms, and Skittles.


Milky Way – This candy bar was launched in the United States in 1924 and was created a year earlier by Frank Mars. It was named after a popular milkshake of the time and not the galaxy that contains our solar system.

3 Musketeers – This candy bar first landed on store shelves in 1932. It was nothing like the version we know today. It was made in three pieces that were chocolate, strawberry, and vanilla. Strawberry and vanilla were eliminated in 1945 because of rising costs during the war. Its name comes from the classic Alexandre Dumas novel from 1844 titled The Three Musketeers.


According to Statista, people in the United States ate more 3 Musketeers than Milky Way candy bars in 2020. 22 million people consumed 3 Musketeers versus 16.76 million for Milky Way. For comparison, the two most consumed candies were Snickers (48.06 million consumed) and Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups (42.86 million consumed).


Milky Way and 3 Musketeers have nearly the same nutrition. The 5 mg difference in sodium is the most notable difference.

Milky Way ( Full Size Bar)3 Musketeers (Full Size Bar)
Serving Size1 Bar (1.92 oz)1 Bar (1.92 oz)
Total Fat7g7g
Saturated Fat5g5g
Trans Fat0g0g
Total Carbohydrate42g42g
Dietary Fiber1g<1g


You will notice a lot of the same ingredients in these two chocolate bars. This makes sense given that the same company makes both of these candies. Why add costs and complicate manufacturing when they can sell millions of bars with only small variations in ingredients?

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

3 Musketeers – Milk chocolate (sugar, chocolate, cocoa butter, skim milk, lactose, milkfat, soy lecithin), sugar, corn syrup, vegetable oil (hydrogenated palm kernel oil and/or palm oil) cocoa powder processed with alkali, less than 1.5% – salt, egg whites, artificial and natural flavors.

Poll: Milky Way vs 3 Musketeers

Please vote for your favorite between Milky Way and 3 Musketeers. If you prefer not to vote, click the “results” button below to see which one is the favorite of readers.