Fresh Homemade Margaritas — Learn how to make a margarita with just three natural ingredients! Nothing fake, neon green, and no sugary chemicals. This is the best homemade margarita recipe I’ve tried and it’s the easiest!!
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All-Natural Margaritas … Without a Mix!
If there’s one drink that should be so simple, but somehow turns so complicated, I think it’s a margarita. There’s blended, on the rocks, from a mix that comes in gallon-sized jugs — sometimes with alcohol already added and sometimes without.
Some margaritas are made with just tequila and others with a smorgasbord of other booze added, including triple sec, Cointreau, Gran Marnier, Chambord, and more.
People shouldn’t need to look up how to make a margarita because it shouldn’t be so hard. I’ve gone back to the basics, with the classic margarita ingredients.
This fresh margarita recipe has no mix or concentrate, and nothing complicated or fussy. No simple syrup to make, no blender to dirty, just three basics ingredients!
Here’s what is in a margarita:
- Lime Juice: I use freshly squeezed lime juice and recommend doing so.
- Agave: It’s sold in nearly all grocery stores these days. I’ve used honey in a pinch, too. If you prefer to make a simple syrup instead, be my guest.
- Tequila: The choice of tequila is up to you.
How to Make a Margarita From Scratch
This is a super simple margarita recipe — trust me, a drink this good doesn’t need any fussy ingredients or extra steps!
Here’s how to make homemade margaritas:
- Squeeze two juicy limes over a cup.
- Then, stir in a little water, agave, and tequila.
- Give your margarita a taste to see if it needs any tweaks.
- If desired, you can strain the margarita at this point to remove any lime pulp, but I personally don’t mind the pulp.
- Add ice to the glass and stir or shake (if you prefer shaken margaritas, make sure to put another glass on top to prevent spills).
Serve With or Without Ice
This is technically a margarita on the rocks recipe since I poured the mixture over ice; feel free to omit if desired. If you choose to serve the margarita without ice, I recommend chilling the tequila in the fridge or freezer, as well as chilling the glasses, prior to serving. You want your margarita to be cold!
A Note About Measuring
In the recipe section, I referred to the ingredients as shots. Some recipes use ounces, cups, and shots, all in one. Holy confusion after you’ve had a few.
The very average-sized shot glass I use (not a jumbo frat house-style shot glass) holds the same amount of liquid as a 1/4-cup measure, which makes it easy to make the recipe in bulk. X parts this to Y parts that.
While you could technically share the recipe as written, after having one, you’ll want another. So plan on it serving one, nicely. You can sip worry-free since there’s no granulated sugar.
They go down so incredibly easy. Especially on vacation.
Homemade Margarita FAQs
I use Patron Silver or Don Julio Blanco, but the choice is yours. Choose a trusted favorite, or ask for help choosing one at your local liquor store.
Yes! Feel free to make a big batch of lime margaritas and keep it for a few days in the fridge. Between the lime juice and the alcohol, homemade margaritas stay fresh for a couple days.
A few readers have asked if they can completely omit the sugar from this recipe. Technically you can, but I prefer my homemade margaritas to have a little sweetness to them to balance out the lime juice.
Like I mentioned above, I measured this recipe in shots but you can just as easily measure it out in parts. So that means 1 part lime juice to 2 parts water, and so on.
I spend a good chunk of the year in Mexico, and the margaritas there are always made with lime juice.
In a pinch, you can make the margarita with lemon juice, but that will obviously change the flavor of the cocktail.
You can salt the rim of your homemade lime margaritas, but I prefer not to. The choice is yours!
Margaritas belong the to “sour” family of cocktails.
Tips for Making the Best Homemade Margaritas
I prefer my margaritas boldly tart but sweet enough to balance the tartness, and I’m not shy with the tequila. You’ll need to find the exact ratio of ingredients that you enjoy best.
Small changes can have a big effect on taste. Like a half shot glass of lime juice or a small drizzle of agave can really make a difference. Play around with this fresh margarita recipe to find your happy place, pun intended.
You can doctor up the basic mixture as you like by adding other liquors or add a handful of strawberries, put it all in a blender, and you’ve got a frozen strawberry margarita in seconds.
It’s also worth mentioning that you want to look for really juicy limes. In general, paler green limes and those with yellow spots, as well as those with thin skin are juicier than darker-skinned limes or those with thicker skin. Medium/large limes seem to release their juice easier than small limes.
What to Serve with Margaritas
Serve these from-scratch lime margaritas with your favorite Mexican foods. Think: chips and salsa, tacos, quesadillas, you name it!
Here are some of my favorite things to serve with margaritas:
- Baked Cheesy Beef Taquitos
- Loaded Beef Taco Salad
- Roasted Cauliflower Tacos
- Chicken and Grilled Corn Salad
- Grilled Mexican Corn
- Baked Tortilla Chips and Salsa
Pin This Recipe
- 1 to 1 1/2 shots lime juice*
- 2 shots water
- 1 to 2 shots tequila**
- 1/2 to 1 shot agave nectar, or to taste
- ice, as necessary
- Over a large cup, squeeze limes, about 2 medium/large, ripe limes.***
- Add the water, tequila, agave, and stir. Taste and see if you need to make tweaks.
- If desired, strain mixture to remove any lime pulp, although I don’t bother.
- Add ice generously, and stir or shake (by putting another cup over the top).
- Serve immediately. Recipe is intended for those whom alcohol use is legal, done responsibly, and is appropriate.
*Note: 1 shot glass equals 1/4 cup liquid
**I use white/blanco tequila and prefer Patron Silver or Don Julio Blanco
***Paler green limes and those with yellow spots, and those with thin skin are juicier than darker-skinned limes or those with thicker skin. Medium/large limes seem to release their juice easier than small limes.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 340Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 7mgCarbohydrates: 37gFiber: 0gSugar: 30gProtein: 0g
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Republished June 28, 2018 and republished May 28, 2021 with updated text.