This recipe for a Classic Margarita is made with just three ingredients and is my favorite way to make a margarita. To make this adult drink, all you do is shake the ingredients with ice in a cocktail shaker until frosty. To serve, pour the drink into a salt rimmed glass straight up or over ice.

Classic Margaritas are great for nights when you are enjoying a Mexican themed meal. Taco Tuesday, Cinco de Mayo, or any time you are getting together with friends is the perfect time to make a margarita!

two classic margaritas in a clear drinking glass with salt rim and green lime wedge on top of the glass rim.

What is a Classic Margarita

A classic margarita is an adult beverage made with tequila, orange liquor, and lime juice. The glass usually has a rim of coarse salt and the beverage can be shaken with ice, frozen, or served straight up (without ice). It is usually served in a margarita glass, but it can also be served in a rocks glass, wine glass, or any glass convenient for you to serve it in!

While its origin isn’t exactly pinned down, it certainly seems to have Mexican roots and is popular to serve in Mexican restaurants. 

A bottle of Jose Cuervo especial tequila in the center with a bottle of Cointreau to the right and a wooden citrus reamer in front. Three green limes to the left of the tequila bottle and a container of margarita salt in the background

What You Need To Make A Classic Margarita Recipe

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Tequila, I would choose a good tequila. My tequila of choice is Patron. It is super smooth going down, not at all harsh. However, Patron is pricey, so if your serving more than a couple of people, a more affordable tequila such as Milagro Silver or Jose Cuervo Blue Agave (pictured), or Sauza Silver.

Juice from fresh limes are best to use when making a margarita. I do not recommend buying bottled lime juice.

Orange Liquor, I highly recommend Cointreau as I like the flavor better. It also has a higher concentration of alcohol compared to Triple Sec (which you can use in place of the Cointreau).

Cocktail Shaker, I like to use a stainless steel cocktail shaker and measuring jigger.

Citrus reamer, this wooden citrus reamer is my favorite!

Ice cubes

Pouring the measured cointreau into the tequila in a mason quart jar.

Tips and Substitutions

  • Make sure the limes you buy are bright green and heavy in your hand. Squeeze the lime between your thumb and fingers. If the lime gives a little, then it is ripe and should be juicy. A lime that doesn’t give likely is not ripe and won’t have a lot of juice.
  • If you want to cut the alcohol percentage down, substitute triple sec for the Cointreau. Triple sec has about have the alcohol as Cointreau.
  • To make a frozen classic margarita, place 3/4 cup of crushed ice in a blender with the margarita mix and blend until frosty.
  • Substitute a coarse sugar instead of salt to rim the margarita glass.
  • Use a quart glass jar to mix the margarita in if you don’t have a shaker. You will see I did this in my video to improvise as my cocktail shaker was packed away and I couldn’t get to it!
a hand holding a clear glass and the other hand running the cut green lime around the lip of the glass.

Other Drink Recipes To Try

Blueberry Basil Cosmopolitan

Bloody Mary for One

Classic Mojito

Pineapple Jalapeno Margarita

Sauza Southwest Margarita

Strawberry Mojito

Strawberry Vodka Mojito

Vanilla Dark and Stormy

Watermelon Lime Berry Sangria

Watermelon Mojitos

*If you made this Classic Margarita Recipe, please give it a star rating*

A clear glass filled with a classic margarita beverage and ice with a salt rim and lime slice garnish with another margarita in the background.

Classic Margarita Recipe

A classic tequila drink made with fresh lime juice and cointreau.
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Print Pin Rate
Course: Beverages
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: Classic Margarita Recipe
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 3
Calories: 258kcal

Ingredients

  • 6 ounces tequila
  • 4 ounces Cointreau
  • 3 ounces lime juice freshly squeezed (about 2 limes)
  • margarita salt (optional)
  • ½ lime sliced into 3 sections

Instructions

  • Run a lime wedge around the outer rims of 2 rocks glasses. Dip the rim of the glasses in salt. Fill with ice and set aside
    dipping drinking glass in margarita salt.
  • Combine the tequila, Cointreau, and lime juice in a shaker. Shake for to combine liquid. Pour over ice in glasses.

Video

Notes

Tips and Substitutions

  • Make sure the limes you buy are bright green and heavy in your hand. Squeeze the lime between your thumb and fingers. If the lime gives a little, then it is ripe and should be juicy. A lime that doesn’t give likely is not ripe and won’t have a lot of juice.
  • If you want to cut the alcohol percentage down, substitute triple sec for the Cointreau. Triple sec has about have the alcohol as Cointreau.
  • To make a frozen margarita, place 3/4 cup of crushed ice in a blender with the margarita mix and blend until frosty.
  • Substitute a coarse sugar instead of salt to rim the margarita glass.
  • Use a quart glass jar to mix the margarita in if you don’t have a shaker. You will see I did this in my video to improvise as my cocktail shaker was packed away and I couldn’t get to it!

Nutrition

Serving: 3g | Calories: 258kcal | Carbohydrates: 16g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 4mg | Potassium: 57mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 13g | Vitamin A: 20IU | Vitamin C: 12mg | Calcium: 8mg | Iron: 1mg

About the Author: Shelby Law Ruttan

Shelby is the author/owner of Grumpy's Honeybunch. Established in 2007, she shares and preserves family recipes as well as recipes for cooking light and keto. She is an experienced, self-taught home cook who loves to share recipes with others. You can see her work on websites such as Veal Made Easy, Parade, Community Table, SoFab Food, Yummly, and FoodGawker.

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Shelby Welcome! I'm Shelby, author of Grumpy's Honeybunch. I have been sharing family favorite recipes since 2007. I started the Keto Diet in October 2017 and since then I have been creating Keto ... read more

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