Sunny D Vs. Orange Juice: What’s The Difference?

Sunny D may look like orange juice, but a review of its ingredients reveals something much different. Here you will find a comparison of these beverages to help you determine what sets them apart. At the end of this article is a poll where readers can vote for their favorite between Sunny D versus orange juice. If you have tried both drinks, please consider voting!

Sunny D Vs. Orange Juice


It is easy to quickly look at the nutrition facts below and declare that Sunny D is the better beverage nutritionally. After all, it has fewer calories, carbs, and total sugars. However, a review of the ingredients (see below the ingredients) puts these nutrition facts into a clearer perspective.

The orange juice (we used Tropicana Pure Premium for comparison) is made of only 100% orange juice. Sunny D Original, on the other hand, contains water and high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) as its primary ingredients.

While the 100% orange juice has more sugar, it’s all-natural. The World Health Organization (WHO) indicates in its guidelines that natural sugar does not count toward daily sugar intake recommendations (source). Rather, we should be much more concerned about added sugar.

The majority of sugar in Sunny D Original is added sugar (12 of the 14 grams) that comes from HFCS. Keep in mind that the American Heart Association (AHA) recommends that women consume a maximum of 25 grams of added sugar daily. Men are advised to consume no more than 38 grams a day.

Drinking a single 8-ounce glass of Sunny D Original will result in women consuming almost half of their recommended added sugar and greatly reduces the amount of added sugar men will be allowed to consume the remainder of the day.

Sunny D – Tangy OriginalOrange Juice – Tropicana Pure Premium (Original – No Pulp)
Serving Size8 fl. oz.8 fl. oz.
Total Fat0g0g
Total Carbohydrates16g26g
Total Sugars14g22g
Added Sugars12g0g
Vitamin C100%100%
Vitamin D
Calcium20mg 2%
Potassium450mg, 10%
Niacin0.8mg, 4%
Vitamin B60.1mg, 6%
Folate60mcg DFE, 15%
Magnesium25mg, 6%

Sunny D – Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, And 2% Or Less Of: Concentrated Orange Juice, Concentrated Tangerine Juice, Concentrated Apple Juice, Concentrated Lime Juice, Concentrated Grapefruit Juice, Concentrated Pear Juice, Citric Acid, Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C), Thiamin Hydrochloride (Vitamin B1), Natural Flavors, Modified Cornstarch, Canola Oil, Sodium Citrate, Cellulose Gum, Sucralose, Sodium Hexametaphosphate, Potassium Sorbate To Protect Flavor, Yellow #5, Yellow #6, Calcium Disodium Edta To Protect Color.

Tropicana Pure Premium (Original – No Pulp) – 100% Orange Juice

Is Sunny D Orange Juice?

Sunny D is not orange juice. As previously indicated, it’s primarily made of water and high-fructose corn syrup. It does contain juices but in small quantities (5% total for all juices). These juices include concentrated orange juice, concentrated tangerine juice, concentrated apple juice, concentrated lime juice, concentrated grapefruit juice, and concentrated pear juice. Yellow dyes #5 and #6 help give it its vibrant orange color similar to orange juice.

In short, Sunny D does not contain enough actual orange juice to be considered orange juice. Rather, it is an “orange-flavored citrus punch” as described on the Sunny D website.


Below you will find the prices for Sunny D and a selection of orange juices at our local Walmart. Sunny D is priced below all orange juices listed because it has inferior ingredients.

BeverageContainer SizePricePrice/Ounce
Sunny D64 oz.$1.98$0.03
Great Value Original 100% Orange Juice64 oz. $2.68$0.04
Simply Orange Juice52 oz.$3.98$0.08
Tropicana Pure Premium – No Pulp52 oz.$3.78$0.07
Florida Natural Orange Juice With Pulp52 oz. $3.18$0.06
Minute Maid Pulp Free Orange Juice 59 oz.$3.18$0.05

Poll: Sunny D Vs. Orange Juice

We ask you to compare the orange juice brand you typically buy to Sunny D. Now, please consider voting for your favorite in our poll! If you prefer not to vote, simply click the “Results” button to see the data. Thanks for reading!

Jacob, Divya. “Does Natural Sugar Count toward Daily Intake?” MedicineNet, MedicineNet, 16 Oct. 2020,
Image Credit – Willis Lam/flickr – Sunny D/Tropicana