The Best Homemade Margaritas: All-Natural, 3-Ingredients

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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!

Homemade Margarita next to whole limes

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.

homemade Margarita made from a simple margarita recipe with just 3 ingredients

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. 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.
  • 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. 

Note: Scroll down to the recipe card section of the post for the ingredients with amounts included and for more complete directions.

Adjusting the Flavor of Your 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.

Simple Margarita Recipe with just 3 natural ingredients

How to Make a Margarita at Home

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 fresh homemade margaritas: 

  1. Squeeze two juicy limes over a cup.
  2. Then, stir in a little water, agave, and tequila.
  3. Give your margarita a taste to see if it needs any tweaks.
  4. If desired, you can strain the margarita at this point to remove any lime pulp, but I personally don’t mind the pulp.
  5. 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!

How to make margaritas from a simple margarita recipe

Margarita FAQs

What’s the Best Tequila for Margaritas? 

I prefer blanco (white) tequila for my margaritas and something like Patron Silver, Don Julio Blanco, or Don Julio 70 are perfect for me, but the choice is yours. Choose a trusted favorite, or ask for help choosing one at your local liquor store. There are SO many tequilas on the market these days and in my opinion, you don’t want and shouldn’t be making margaritas with Clase Azul. Casamigos, great, but save the super top (top!) shelf for sipping and drinking neat.

Can I Prep Fresh Margaritas in Advance? 

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. 

Can I Omit the Agave? 

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. 

How to Make Pitcher Margaritas

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. 

Is a Margarita made with lemon or lime juice?

I spend a good chunk of the year in Mexico, and the margaritas there are always made with lime juice.

Can lime juice be substituted in a margarita?

In a pinch, you can make the margarita with lemon juice, but that will obviously change the flavor of the cocktail.

Should a margarita be served with a salt rim?

You can salt the rim of your homemade lime margaritas, but I prefer not to. The choice is yours!

What type of cocktail is a margarita?

Margaritas belong the t family of ‘sour’ family of cocktails.

A Note About Measuring This Recipe

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.

What to Serve with Margaritas

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4.42 from 87 votes

Homemade Margaritas

By Averie Sunshine
How to make a margarita with just three natural ingredients! Nothing fake, neon green, and no sugary chemicals!
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 1 serving
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Ingredients  

  • 1 to 1 ½ shots lime juice*
  • 2 shots water
  • 1 to 2 shots tequila**
  • ½ to 1 shot agave nectar, or to taste
  • ice, as necessary

Instructions 

  • 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.

Video

Notes

*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.

Nutrition

Serving: 1, Calories: 340kcal, Carbohydrates: 37g, Sodium: 7mg, Sugar: 30g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

More Easy Cocktail Recipes: 

ALL OF MY COCKTAIL RECIPES! 

Beer Margaritas — Summer tastes better with a pitcher of these delightful and refreshing beer margaritas are made with Corona, tequila, triple sec, lime juice, agave, and a sugared (or salted) rim! Cheers to beer-garitas!

Tequila Sunrise — Not only is it pretty to look at, but a Tequila Sunrise is also refreshing, nostalgic, and the grenadine sweetens it up enough that you may not even notice it packs quite a punch!

Tropical Party Punch — This alcoholic punchis one of my all-time favorite party drinks! Feel free to leave the alcohol out if desired. This punch tastes delicious even without it!

Rum Runner — A fruity and tropical cocktail, but not in a strawberry daiquiri doesn’t-do-much kind of way. This delicious Rum Runner recipe (complete with my secret ingredient!) packs a punch that can sneak up on you!

Malibu Sunset — A fun, fruity, easy Malibu drink recipe! Because there’s really no wrong way to do pineapple, orange juice, coconut rum, grenadine, and cherries! 

Pomegranate Mojito – Everyone will love this fruity twist on a classic mojito recipe! The tart pomegranates and lime blend beautifully and are paired with simple syrup, mint, and white rum for a refreshing cocktail that’s perfect all year long!

Grilled Strawberry Pineapple Sangria — EASY, light, refreshing, and perfect for your next warm weather PARTY!! Grilling brings out pineapple’s natural sweetness and it’s DELISH!!

Chocolate Covered Strawberry Martini – An indulgent chocolate martini that’s perfect for Valentine’s Day, anniversaries, date-night-in, or a girls-night-in! Plenty of chocolate flavor in this festive, fun, and easy martini!

Republished June 28, 2018 and republished May 28, 2021 with updated text.

4.42 from 87 votes (71 ratings without comment)

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Please note: I have only made the recipe as written, and cannot give advice or predict what will happen if you change something. If you have a question regarding changing, altering, or making substitutions to the recipe, please check out the FAQ page for more info.

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Comments

  1. We just finished off our first batch of these — perfect for this hot day in the middle of June. Awesome, simply awesome. Thanks so much !!

    1. Thanks for trying the recipe and I’m glad it came out great for you! I’ve had more than my share of these on this hot weekend as well! :)

  2. This recipe is awesome. It is the same as a Puro Margarita or “Pure” Margarita. A classic that need not be messed with! Thanks for sharing.

  3. I’ve been on your site several times but finding this recipe seems like divine intervention! I made chicken enchilada soup and got the idea that a margarita would be a great compliment. I’ve had an unused bottle of tequila since cinco de mayo 2014…which is strange because I LOVE margaritas…anywho I had all the ingredients for this and it is amazing! No more mixes for me! Also I used Trader Joe’s raspberry lime sparkling water to top it off, added at the end to keep the fizz! Thanks so much!

    1. Thanks for trying the recipe and I’m glad it hit the spot and that you don’t need marg mix now! Woot! It’s Sat. night and I’m about to pour one of these myself :) And with the soup you made, I bet that was a perfect pairing!

  4. Averie–

    I appreciate your attempt to create a more natural margarita, but agave is not a healthier or more natural alternative to sugar. It is highly processed and contains more fructose than HFCS. There are several resources you can find if you google.

    1. We all have our own opinions and my attitude is everything in moderation and life will be just fine. :) This is a hotly debated topic, one which I have been following for about 10 years now, and am well aware of all the hoopla surrounding agave.

  5. Love this margarita! Made these two weekends in a row–such a hit! Thanks for the recipe; everyone loves them. Tastes so fresh.

  6. I just love all of your photos, girl. Every single one is stunning! And this drink sounds lovely! :)

  7. So this is PERFECT bc I used to think I didn’t like margaritas bc I don’t like sweet drinks, but lately I’ve been getting margaritas on the rocks with salt and I’m obsessed. I love this recipe because I can control the sweetness…what can I say, I’m apparently a cocktail control freak!

    1. I HAVE to be able to control my drinks. Nothing to do with sugar either. More to do with taste. Bad drinks are as bad as bad desserts…NOT worth the calories and cardio (and possible hangover LOL)!

  8. Great job Averie! You’ve really captured the secret to the best homemade margaritas. Simple, fresh ingredients.

  9. These margaritas look crazy good. I mean need one – or two – after today ;) Pinned!

    1. I need at least a few. Oh boy, it’s been a couple of doosies around here! thanks for pinning!

  10. Could this margaritas be any prettier? What gorgeous lighting, and styling! I need drink shooting tips from you, friend!

    1. You start with really bad lighting to begin with, crank up your ISO to 1000 and pray. You lay on the floor of a 90F hot house with no A/C and hope.to.god. you get your shot. You make the drinks with real liquor, not stunt drinks, and sip while shooting. And pray. And I am not kidding. So many minor miracles all had to come together :)

  11. I had this made for Jon when he walked in the door. I told him it was one of your recipes and asked what I should tell you about it. He said “it’s excellent–you can make me another”. Good thing the rest was in the fridge! This is the perfect margarita for his taste.

    1. Oh wow, so glad it passed Friday night muster after a long week – whew! :) It’s so simple but I find it just really hits the spot & glad he liked it!

  12. I love your simple spin on the classic margarita, Averie! Can’t even tell you how badly I could for a tall, sweaty glass with lots of ice and limes!

  13. All of your cocktails look wonderful Averie!! I love the idea of only 3 ingredients too ~ perfect for this time of year & pretty too! Pinning now :)