You’d never guess how easy it is to make everyone’s favorite spicy margarita recipe. Tequila, fresh lime juice, jalapeños, agave, and Cointreau are all you need!
There are many ways to spice up a margarita. In fact, this Mexican cocktail practically begs for a little heat. You can marinate the jalapeño slices in the liquor or make a spicy simple syrup and both of those work great but require a bit of planning and time.
What do you do however, when you need—no, sorry—want a spicy jalapeno margarita, stat?!
The easiest way to jazz up a classic margarita is to muddle fresh jalapenos right in the margarita glass or cocktail shaker. Simple as that!
Crushing the jalapeño slices in the glass releases the oils (the spicy part) which then get mixed with the cocktail when you pour it in. Adjust the spice level by adding more (or less) jalapeño slices and also how much you crush them will make a difference too. Want to make the spiciest margarita? Crush those babies into little bits. Let me show you how!
What Makes This The Best Spicy Margarita Recipe
There’s lots of good spicy margaritas out there, but none are this simple. Which makes it perfect for budding bartenders and lazy Saturdays. I also love this recipe because it tastes wonderfully balanced—a bit spicy, sweet, and sour—just the way a margarita should be. Lastly, it’s the best because you can easily adjust the spice level, just add more (or less) jalapeño slices!
My Favorite Tequilas For Margaritas
You don’t need a fancy, high-priced tequila to make an awesome margarita, save those for sipping. I like to use a Blanco tequila or sometimes a Reposado tequila. The most important thing when selecting a tequila is to make sure it says “100% agave” on the label. Some cheaper brands are mixed with molasses or high-fructose corn syrup.
Roca Patrón Silver is good and I’m always a fan of Cazadores Tequila Blanco. If you wanted a smoky kick you could also mix this with mezcal instead of tequila. Del Maguey Mezcal is pretty widely available and good as is Yuu Baal Joven Espadin.
A spicy margarita is made of:
- Blanco Tequila or Reposado tequila also works. Whichever you choose make sure it says 100% Blue Weber Agave on the label.
- Kosher salt. I always use Morton’s kosher salt unless otherwise noted.
- Orange liqueur. My favorite is Cointreau but Grand Mariner also works.
- Limes. Only fresh-squeezed lime juice please.
- Granulated sugar. I like to rim my spicy margaritas with an equal mixture of salt and sugar.
- Agave syrup. No need to make simple syrup!
How To Make This Recipe
Rim the glass. Combine equal parts kosher salt and sugar on a plate. Rub a lime wedge along the edge of a rocks glass or margarita glass. Dip the glass into the salt mixture to coat.
Muddle the jalapeños. Place 3-4 jalapeño slices (or as many as you want for your preferred spice level) in the bottom of the glass. Crush the slices with a muddler or the handle of a wood spoon.
*If you don’t want the bits of jalapeño in your finished drink, you can do this inside the cocktail shaker instead, then strain them out, but it won’t be as spicy.
Shake the spicy margaritas. Squeeze the juice of 2 limes into the cocktail shaker, then add 3-4 ounces tequila, 1 ounce triple sec or your favorite orange liqueur, and 1 ounce agave syrup. Fill the shaker halfway with ice and shake vigorously for 15-30 seconds.
Serve. Pour the spicy jalapeño margarita recipe over the crushed jalapeños in the glass. Garnish with a few more jalapeño slices if you’d like. I also like these dehydrated lime slices for garnish held in place by these adorable Alebrije picks from my friend Lola’s shop. ¡Salúd!
What To Serve With It
The spicy-sweet flavor of this margarita goes well with so many dishes from tortilla chips and salsa to pozole. Here are my favorites:
- Chile Colorado
- The Best Crispy Instant Pot Carnitas Recipe
- The Perfect Mexican Cheese Board
- Summer Squash Tacos
More Drink Recipes You’ll Love
- The Original Cadillac Margarita
- Spicy Raspberry Margaritas
- Super Creamy Authentic Horchata
- The Best Paloma Recipe
- Cucumber Margarita with Mezcal
- Sparkling Blood Orange Margaritas
- An Easy and Refreshing Mojito Recipe
Who’s Ready For Happy Hour?
This classic recipe will add a little heat with almost zero prep time. Let me know when you make it by snapping a pic and tagging me on Instagram @holajalapeno and #holajalapeno so I can see or leave me a comment below (don’t forget to leave a ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ rating) ! Also, sign up for my weekly newsletter, lots of good stuff there too!
Super Simple Spicy Margarita Recipe
You'd never guess how easy it is to make everyone's favorite spicy margarita recipe. Tequila, fresh lime juice, jalapeños, agave, and Cointreau are all you need!
- 2 limes
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1 jalapeño, sliced
- 3 ounces (1/3 cup) blanco tequila
- 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) Cointreau
- 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) agave syrup
- Dehydrated lime slices, for garnish (optional)
- Rim glass. Cut limes in half. Take one half and rub it around the rim of the glass. Combine salt and sugar on a plate. Dip the rim of the glass in the salt-sugar mixture.
- Mash jalapeño. Add 3-4 jalapeño slices (or more if you want it spicier) to the bottom of the glass. Smash the slices with a muddler or the handle of a wood spoon.
- Mix margarita. Fill the cocktail shaker halfway with ice. Squeeze 2 of the limes (4 halves) into the cocktail shaker. Add tequila, Cointreau, and agave. Close and shake vigorously.
- Serve. Pour margarita (ice and all) over the crushed jalapeños. Give a stir. Garnish with more jalapeño slices and dehyrated lime slices if you want. Enjoy!
- If you don't want bits of jalapeño in your drink you can muddle them in the bottom of the cocktail shaker and then make the drink as directed. Strain over fresh ice in the margarita glass.
- Cointreau can be substituted for a different orange liqueur like Grand Marnier or triple sec.
- Fresh limes are a must, do not substitute bottled lime juice.
- I always use Morton kosher salt unless otherwise noted.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 1 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 311Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 4mgCarbohydrates: 7gFiber: 2gSugar: 1gProtein: 0g
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