How to Make Margaritas & the Best Margarita Recipes

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Margaritas are a classic drink that we all know and love. It’s definitely the favorite cocktail here, so I created this guide to show you how to make a margarita, plus some of the BEST margarita recipes to try out, and everything you need to know about making the perfect drink, whether frozen, blended, or on the rocks!

Guide to Making Margaritas: The Best Margarita Recipes

The Best Margaritas

Margaritas are my favorite cocktail, so I created this guide to answer ALL of your questions about the classic drink. And of course I’ll share some of the best margarita recipes too! Find an awesome recipe for Cinco de Mayo, Taco Tuesday, game day, or any party.

I’ve got recipes for every type you can imagine:

  • Classic margaritas
  • Frozen margaritas
  • Strawberry margaritas
  • Skinny margaritas
  • Flavored margaritas

I’ve tried them all, made them all, and loved them all. I’ve shared so many recipes here in the past, and this guide will let you in on all of my expert advice on how to make margaritas that are absolutely DELICIOUS every time.

What’s in a Margarita?

There are 3 main ingredients in a margarita:

  • Tequila
  • Triple Sec
  • Lime Juice

So if you want to make a classic version, that’s all you’ll need. Of course, you can add all kinds of ingredients to change them up and create unique flavors.

Unless you chill your margaritas ahead of time, you’ll want plenty of ice too (on the rocks, blended, or frozen margaritas). And salting the rim of your margarita glass is a must!

How to Make Margaritas: overhead view of 2 grapefruit margaritas
Broiled Grapefruit Margaritas

Essential Tools

You really don’t need much to make these margarita recipes. Just a few simple tools and ingredients and you’re ready to go! These are the things I like to keep around my kitchen for cocktails.

Ingredients

Margaritas are a simple drink. Sure, you can get super creative and make all kinds of flavor combinations. But at the end of the day, all you really need are a few basic margarita ingredients. Be sure to pick these up at the store before you get started.

Short glass of a Classic Margarita with lime wedges
Classic Margarita

How to Make a Margarita

Margaritas are actually really easy to make. It’s a simple drink with simple instructions. If you just want a truly classic margarita recipe, follow these directions.

This will make a single glass. Double it for an 8 ounce drink. If you want to make margaritas for multiple people, check my Pitcher Margarita recipe.

Keep reading below for FAQ and all of my best margarita recipes (of all types!)

Best Margaritas: A pitcher of strawberry margarita punch
Strawberry Margarita Punch

Top Tips to Make the Best Margaritas

  • Keep your tequila in the freezer so the margaritas are nice & cold without extra ice.
  • Mix in a bit of lime zest with the salted rim of your glasses.
  • Always SHAKE your margaritas with ice before serving (no stirring!).
  • Make your own lime juice by squeezing fresh limes.
  • Try some fun, flavored salts on the rim of your glass!

How do you make a skinny margarita?

For my favorite skinny margarita recipe, I just make a couple of tiny changes compared to a classic margarita. Replace the Triple Sec with freshly squeezed orange juice for that simple orange flavor without the extra calories. You can also use agave syrup to add a bit of sweetness to your liking. This comes out to less than 200 calories for a large glass of my skinny margaritas!

Make Homemade Margarita Mix

Homemade margaritas are so easy to make from scratch, so I don’t think pre-made margarita mixes are really necessary. However, you can make your own homemade margarita mix (much better than store-bought mixes).

  1. Combine sugar, orange juice, lime juice, & salt in a saucepan on medium heat
  2. Heat for 5 minutes, until sugar is dissolved, stirring frequently
  3. Let the mixture cool and store it in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week

If you’re planning to host a party, a mix will make the drink-making process much easier!

Pouring a margarita into a glass
Pitcher Margaritas

What is the best tequila for margaritas?

You can use whatever tequila you like for margaritas, but I prefer to go with cheaper options rather than the “best” Tequila. Once it’s mixed in, having the highest quality Tequila won’t matter.

That being said, I also don’t pick the cheapest Tequila. Go for a good mid-range Tequila and you’ll be set. Repasado Tequilas are much smoother than Blanco Tequilas, so I prefer that.

How do you make a frozen margarita?

Frozen Margaritas are a tasty treat for hot summer days. All you have to do is pour the ingredients into a blender, add ice, and mix. You can keep it icy like a slushie or turn it into more of a blended margarita by blending it until it’s smooth (both are great!).

How much alcohol is in a margarita?

This really depends on the recipe and your preferences. My preferred ratio for a great margarita is 2 parts Tequila to 1 part lime juice and 1 part Triple Sec. That’s quite a bit of alcohol in any given margarita (exactly how I like it).

So for a typical glass, you could expect 3 ounces of alcohol. If you want less alcohol in your drink, simply use a 1:1:1 ratio (instead of a 2:1:1 ratio).

How many calories are in a classic margarita?

Typically, you can expect a classic margarita on the rocks to run about 400-500 calories for an 8-ounce glass.

The Best Margarita Recipes

 

Food Pairing Suggestions

I don’t know about you, but I like having some good food to snack on while I’m enjoying a (few) margaritas. These dishes just go hand-in-hand with the recipes above. Chips, salsa, guacamole, tacos…the perfect pairing.

Make some margaritas for Taco Night! Check out the full Taco Tuesday Guide for more tips, ideas, and recipes.

White Wine Margarita in a copper margarita glass
White Wine Margaritas

I hope this guide helped you learn how to make margaritas and find some new recpipes! Don’t forget to try out some  for yourself, your friends, or at your next party. And don’t be afraid to get creative and try new flavors! A classic margarita is great, but you really can’t go wrong here.

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