How to Make a Margarita – The BEST Recipe!

Have you ever wondered how to make a margarita? This Easy Margarita Recipe only needs 5 ingredients! You can make it single serving, turn it into a pitcher margarita for a crowd, or even make a frozen margarita.

Glasses filled with homemade margarita

My Favorite Margarita Recipe

Happy Margarita Monday! I’m pretty sure I need to start every week like this. No more Meatless Monday, I think Margarita Monday has a much better ring to it, don’t you!? AND it will get us through the rest of the week worry free! Can I get an amen!

If you’ve ever wondered how to make a margarita, this post is for you. I’m going to teach you everything you need to know about Margaritas – this recipe is the perfect combination of zesty and sweet! Almost as if you’ve never made one before! From “how to” basics, to margarita flavor variations, or how to make margaritas in a pitcher. I’m even going to show you how to make a frozen margarita!

classic margarita ingredients

What is a Margarita?

A margarita is a mixed drink cocktail made with tequila, orange liqueur, lime juice and a sweetener. The drink is served shaken with ice, blended with ice, or without ice. Some people like to add salt on the rim of the glass, but you can do it without if you’d like. When it come down to “how to make a margarita” there are so many variation options that you can truly make this easy cocktail your own.

homemade margarita drink being poured

What Tools Do I Need to Make a Margarita? 

You don’t need much, but a few items would be helpful.

  • Liquid Measuring Tools: A shot glass or a jigger to measure the liquid is great. If you are making it in pitcher form I’d recommend a regular measuring cup.
  • Citrus Squeezer: Because you will be using fresh squeezed limes instead of a mix, you’ll definitely want to have a lime squeezer on hand. It’s a life saver, trust me.
  • Cocktail Shaker: To really get that shaken foamy effect, pouring all of your ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice then pouring into a glass is key! It’s not quite the same to just stir it around.
  • Cocktail Rimmer: This isn’t mandatory but it is helpful. If you like to put salt on the rim of your margarita this helpful gadget is nice to have and make it’s way easier to salt the rim of your glass. Otherwise you can do it the old fashion way. 
  • Pitcher: If you’re making it in a pitcher you’ll need a large glass pitcher as well as a long bar spoon to stir everything together for a good smooth margarita.

a pitcher full of a margarita drink

Homemade Margarita Ingredients

Wondering what’s in a margarita? The classic recipe includes:

  • Tequila: The biggest thing I can’t emphasis enough, use a good tequila! It was make your margarita that much better and smoother. (Don Julio, Patron Silver, Herradura)
  • Orange Liqueur: For the perfect touch of orange to take your margarita over the top. (Grand Marnier, Cointreau, Triple Sec)
  • Lime Juice: Fresh lime juice
  • Orange Juice: This is not necessary but I’ve found it smoothes out the tang from the lime juice and bite you can sometimes get from tequila.
  • Sweetener: Lots of people use a homemade simple syrup, however I prefer to just use agave. After all tequila and agave go to, they are made from the same plant. 🙂 
  • Ice

How To Salt a Rim

Add course salt to a shallow rimmed plate, then add lime juice to a shallow bowl. Dunk the rim of your glass in the lime juice first then in the salt. Voila. You could also use a cocktail rimmer set that has a holder for both the lime juice and salt in the shape of a glass rim for ease.

MUST-HAVES WHEN STOCKING YOUR BAR 

 

How to Make a Margarita

Making cocktails at home can seem intimidating, but it is so easy to make a homemade margarita you won’t believe it. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Mix ingredients: Add 2 oz. tequila, 1/2 oz. orange liqueur, 1 oz. lime juice, 3/4 oz. orange juice and a splash of agave nectar to a cocktail shaker along with ice. Gently shake with the top on for 30 seconds.
  2. Serve: Pour mixture into a salt rimmed glass (option) and serve.

That’s it!

pouring margarita into a glass

How to Make a Pitcher of Margaritas

Let’s be honest. If you’re having a party, you don’t want to be stuck in the kitchen shaking drinks all night. So the next best option is making a pitcher to your guests can serve themselves! Here’s an easy recipe that makes 8 servings! (need more, just double it, triple it, etc.)

  1. Mix ingredients: To a large pitcher add 2 cups of tequila, 1/2 cup orange liqueur, 1 cup of fresh lime juice, 3/4 cup of orange juice and 1 tablespoon of agave nectar. Mix together with a large bar spoon.
  2. Serve: Pour mixture over salt rimmed glasses filled with ice.

SHOP MY FAVORITE BAR GLASSWARE


 

How to Make a Frozen Margarita

To get that perfect slushy texture you’ll want to follow these simple instructions on how to make a frozen margarita from home. (This recipe serves 6)

  1. Combine ingredients: To a blender add 1 cup of tequila, 1/2 cup orange liqueur, 3/4 cup lime juice, 1/3 cup orange juice, 2 tablespoons agave nectar and 6 cups of ice.
  2. Blend until mixture is slushy and pour into salt rimmed glasses.
  3. Garnish with lime wedge.

glasses filled with classic margaritas

Variation Ideas

Now that we’ve covered the essentials of how to make a margarita, it’s time to start playing with variation ideas!

What Goes With a Margarita?

Ok so you’ve got your homemade margarita – what do you eat with it? Here are some suggestions:

I hope this post answered all your questions about how to make a margarita from scratch! May you enjoy many Margarita Mondays!

a glass filled with a classic margarita

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close up photo of a glass filled with a classic margarita

The Best Classic Margarita Recipe

  • Author: Krista
  • prep_time Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • cook_time Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • total_time Total Time: 5 minutes
  • yield Yield: 1 margarita 1x
  • category Category: Cocktails
  • method Method: Cocktail Shaker
  • cuisine Cuisine: South American

Description

Making The Ultimate Classic Margarita is easier than you think – only 5 ingredients and you’re in margarita heaven! This easy cocktail recipe is a winner every time!

Scale

Ingredients

Single Serving:

  • 2 oz. tequila
  • 1/2 oz. orange liqueur
  • 1 oz. fresh lime juice
  • 3/4 oz. fresh orange juice
  • splash of agave nectar
  • ice cubes

Pitcher for a Crowd (makes 8 servings)

  • 2 cups of tequila
  • 1/2 cup orange liqueur
  • 1 cup fresh lime juice
  • 3/4 cup orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon agave nectar

Instructions

Single Serving:

  1. Add tequila, orange liqueur, lime juice, orange juice agave nectar, and ice to a cocktail shaker. Shake for 30 seconds.
  2. Pour mixture over ice and serve.

Pitcher for a Crowd:

  1. To a large pitcher add 2 cups of tequila, 1/2 cup orange liqueur, 1 cup of fresh lime juice, 3/4 cup of orange juice and 1 tablespoon of agave nectar. Mix together with a large bar spoon.
  2. Pour mixture over salt rimmed glasses filled with ice.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 cocktail
  • Calories: 208
  • Sugar: 14 g
  • Sodium: 3 mg
  • Carbohydrates: 22 g

Keywords: classic margarita, easy margarita recipe, best margarita, best margarita recipe, how to make a margarita, margarita ingredients, homemade margarita, simple margarita recipe

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pinterest image for how to make the ultimate margarita recipe

Making the Ultimate Margarita Recipe is easier than you think, only 5 ingredients and you're in Margarita Heaven! It's a winner every time! | joyfulhealthyeats.com

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Hey There

Krista
Hi! I'm the recipe developer and food photographer behind all these easy healthy recipes! I love food, Jesus, morning lattes, and am obsessed with fantasy football!

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11 Responses
  1. Herb

    This is the best margarita recipe I’ve ever made! Just make sure to use a good quality tequila. Many thanks Krista, I’m in trouble now…

  2. Carole from Carole's Chatter

    Krista, all your cocktail recipes look fantastic – I hope you’ll bring some of them over to Food on Friday: Cocktails/Mocktails over at Carole’s Chatter. Cheers

  3. Shinee

    It’s National Margarita Day?? How did I miss that? Dang, too bad I don’t have limes! Good thing I have some of that Don Julio (the best tequila!!) in the freezer. Will have the hubs stop by the store tonight for limes! Cheers!

  4. Nicole ~ Cooking for Keeps

    Yes please!!!! I can’t tell you how much I despise those pre-made margarita mixes. Ugh. I actually thought I didn’t like margaritas because of them…and then I had a “real” one. Ahhhh so good!

    1. Krista

      ME TOOO!!!! But then I finally a good one with good tequila and my world was changed. 🙂 Hope you are doing well sweet girl! Miss you!

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