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If you’re looking for a little tart twist on a classic cocktail, try out this delicious cranberry and margarita. This beautiful bright red cocktail is the perfect combination of tart and sweet.
What is a Cranberry Margarita?
A cranberry margarita is made from tequila, cranberry juice, lime juice, triple sec and simple syrup. It is essentially a classic margarita with cranberry juice added in. This beautiful bright red cocktail has a strong tart cranberry flavor that is smooth into a sweet citrus with a little zing of tequila.
Tequila comes in several different variations. All of them start by distilling the blue agave plant. Different tequilas are made by the way they’re aged, how long they’re aged and if there’s any additives included.
The most popular and best tequila to use in this drink is silver tequila. It is an unaged, clear tequila It doesn’t change the beautiful color of the cranberry juice and while you can taste it it doesn’t have a super strong flavor so it lets the other ingredients shine.
For cranberry juice, it’s best to use 100% cranberry juice. Try to get one with no sugar added. Also try to not get a cranberry juice cocktail which has other fruits added in. 100% cranberry juice will give you the true tart flavor you’re looking for.
Triple sec is an orange flavored liqueur. It is made from a neutral tasting base spirit that is steeped in orange peels. It is slightly sweet and very citrusy flavored.
When to Make This Drink:
This drink is super versatile. It can be used at a wide range of different parties and seasons including:
- Valentine’s Day
- 4th of July
- date nights
Whether you’re missing an ingredient or just want to change things up a little, here are a few ways to vary this drink:
- Change the tequila. Although silver tequila is the most popular to use in margaritas, and is the one we enjoy the most. You can certainly use a reposado or other tequila variation.
- Use a different orange liqueur. Triple sec is commonly used in margaritas. However, you could use Grand Marnier or Cointreau if you prefer.
- Make sure to rim it. You probably know Margaritas commonly are rimmed with salt and garnished with a wedge of lime. You can do this for this cocktail as well. And, if you want to capitalize on the cranberry flavor, add in a couple of cranberries as garnish.
- Use a sweetened cranberry juice. If you want to use a sweetened cranberry juice, you can cut out the simple syrup.
- Make a large batch. This is a super easy cocktail to serve at large gatherings, simply multiply the ingredients below by five or six times and put it in a punch bowl.
How to make this drink:
The thing that will take the longest when making this drink is adding your salt rim and lime wedge garnish. With only five ingredients you should be able to have everything shaken up in 5 minutes or less.
- 1.5 oz Tequila
- 1.5 oz Cranberry Juice
- 1 oz Lime Juice
- .5 oz Triple sec
- .5 oz Simple syrup
When you get started, first make sure you have everything needed to make the drink. Gather together tequila, cranberry juice, lime juice, triple sec, simple syrup, ice, jigger, cocktail shaker, Hawthorne strainer, Margarita glass.
If you want to rim your glass and add a garnish, now is the time to do so.
First, cut a lime into slices. Then, take one wedge and cut a notch in the pulp.
Place the lime on the rim of the glass with a notch and run it all the way around the glass to get it wet. Then, spread a thin layer of salt on a saucer.
Place the glass rim down into the salt and rock it back and forth until the rim is covered. Then, place your lime wedge on the glass.
Next, take your ice and fill both the shaker and glass with it. Both should be almost completely full of ice.
Take the jigger and tequila. Measure 1.5 oz of tequila and pour into the shaker.
Take the jigger and cranberry juice. Measure 1.5 oz of cranberry juice and pour into the shaker.
Take the jigger and lime juice. Measure 1 oz of lime juice and pour into the shaker.
Take the jigger and simple syrup. Measure 0.5 oz of simple syrup and pour into the shaker.
Take the jigger and triple sec. Measure 0.5 oz of triple sec pour into the shaker.
Place the lid on the cocktail shaker and shake well for around 15 seconds. The outside of the shaker should become cold to the touch.
Replace the shaker lid with the Hawthorne strainer. Then, strain your margarita from the shaker into the glass. Enjoy!
- Hawthorne strainer
- cocktail shaker
- Margarita glass
- 1.5 oz Tequila
- 1.5 oz Cranberry Juice
- 1 oz Lime Juice
- .5 oz Triple Sec
- .5 oz Simple Syrup
- lime wedge, salt, cranberries (optional garnish)
- Take some ice and toss it into the shaker and margarita glass. Both should be about to the top with ice.
- Take your tequila and jigger. Using the jigger, pour 1.5 oz of tequila into the shaker.
- Take your simple syrup and jigger. Using the jigger, pour .5 oz of simple syrup into the shaker
- Take your cranberry juice and jigger. Using the jigger, pour 1.5 oz of cranberry juice into the shaker
- Take your lime juice and jigger. Using the jigger, pour 1 oz of lime juice into the shaker
- Take your triple sec and jigger. Using the jigger, pour .5 oz of triple sec into the shaker
- Put the shaker lid on and shake for 15 to 20 seconds. The shaker should be icy and cold to the touch.
- If you want to garnish your glass:1) cut a lime into slices. Then, take one slice and cut a notch in the pulp. 2) Run the lime around the rim of the glass to wet it.3) Pour a thin later of salt on a saucer.4) Place the wet rim of the glass onto the saucer and rock it back and forth so the salt coats it.5) Stick the lime on the rim of the glass.
- Replace the shaker lid with the strainer.
- Pour your drink into your glass.