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.

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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. Hello! I love these and we’ll be making them for a large party very soon! I’m wondering how much ahead we can combine the ingredients, if at all? I’m talking hours, not days. ;) Thanks in advance!

    1. Yes just combine everything (not ice) into a huge punch bowl or whatever you’re using, get it flavored how you want it, cover it well, and before serving figure out your ice situation. Note that if you add ice directly to the mixture, it will water it down. In these situations it may be better to only ice individual drinks and not the punch bowl as to not have to worry about the dilution factor that will come with melted ice.

      1. OK yes we definitely wouldn’t add the ice ahead of time; just the other 3 ingredients. But it will be SO nice to be able to just pour the margaritas into cups of ice. Thank you for the quick response; party is tomorrow! :D

  2. 5 stars
    I have been drinking margaritas for years and have tried many many recipes. Last year, while in Seattle, I had what I believe to be the best margarita ever. The waiter gave me the recipe and I’ve been making them since. Guess what?! It’s the same as your recipe. These are sooo good. Also, there isn’t any citric acid in these like with so many mixes have.

  3. 5 stars
    I have been drinking margaritas for years and have tried many many recipes. Last year, while in Seattle, I had what I believe to be the best margarita ever. The waiter gave me the recipe and I’ve been making them since. Guess what?! It’s the same as your recipe. These are sooo good. Also, there isn’t any citric acid in these like with so many mixes have.

    1. Thanks for the five star review and I’m glad that you think this is the best margarita recipe out there!

  4. 5 stars
    I received this recipe in my inbox, this morning and have made it this evening. Its simple, easy and delicious. I couldn’t find the perfect recipe until today, and have tried many. This is the absolute best. Will be my go to recipe. Thank you Averie, for posting this.

  5. 5 stars
    I received this recipe in my inbox, this morning and have made it this evening. Its simple, easy and delicious. I couldn’t find the perfect recipe until today, and have tried many. This is the absolute best. Will be my go to recipe. Thank you Averie, for posting this.