If you like spicy cocktails, there is a way to make a classic Margarita even better. With this Spicy Grapefruit Margarita, we're not only bringing spice into the drink but also balancing it with some fresh grapefruit juice.
The two modifications, plus a twist on the classic salt rim, make this spicy, low-ABV Margarita alternative an excellent cocktail to enjoy on a hot summer day.
Quick Facts Spicy Grapefruit Margarita
- Method: shaken
- Flavor profile: bittersweet, sour, spicy
- How to serve it: over ice
- Glassware: Margarita glass, rocks glass
- Alcohol content: ~ 11.5% ABV, 15 grams of alcohol per serving
The fresh and tangy grapefruit juice mixed with 100% agave tequila is one more winner-cocktail on the list of Margarita twists. Learn how to make this drink based on jalapeño-infused tequila to perfection.
- 1 Jigger
- 1 Cocktail Shaker
- 1 Hawthorne Strainer
- 1.5 oz Jalapeño infused Tequila
- 2 oz Freshly squeezed grapefruit juice
- 1 oz Freshly squeezed lime juice
- 0.5 oz Agave nectar
- 2-3 slices Jalapeño
- 1 tsp Chili powder
- 1 tsp Coconut sugar - (alternatively regular granulated sugar)
- 1 tsp Fleur de sel - (alternatively sea or kosher salt)
- 1 wedge Lime
- Prepare the salt rim by mixing chili powder, sugar, and salt on a small plate.1 tsp Chili powder, 1 tsp Fleur de sel, 1 tsp Coconut sugar
- Use the lime wedge to rim the glass and apply the spicy salt rim.
- Add Tequila, lime juice, grapefruit juice, and agave nectar to your cocktail shaker with plenty of ice.1.5 oz Jalapeño infused Tequila, 2 oz Freshly squeezed grapefruit juice, 0.5 oz Agave nectar, 1 oz Freshly squeezed lime juice
- Shake until well-chilled and strain into prepared glasses over ice.
- Garnish with sliced jalapeño and an optional slice of grapefruit or lime.2-3 slices Jalapeño, 1 wedge Lime
Ingredients & Recommendations
This Spicy Grapefruit Margarita recipe calls for five ingredients, with jalapeño-infused tequila being the star of the cocktail. Here's a list with some extra info and recommendations for a sensational drink:
- Jalapeño-infused tequila: The spicy, hot flavor that jalapeños bring into the spirit is a real game changer and is super easy to make at home. Use a 100% agave silver or reposado here.
- Fresh lime juice: To make the tequila really shine, you need freshly squeezed lime juices. Lime is essential for any Margarita cocktail and should never come out of a bottle.
- Fresh grapefruit juice: the same goes for the grapefruit part. Freshly squeezed, it adds some superb bittersweet citrus notes to the drink.
- Agave nectar: The natural sweetener brings the required balance to the cocktail. In contrast to regular simple syrup, agave nectar also enhances the agave notes from the tequila. Especially when infusing with jalapeño, a bit of extra agave flavor doesn't hurt.
- Garnish: The final touch to the cocktail! Two or three finely sliced fresh jalapenos are added just before serving.
How to make the Spicy Salt Rim
For our Spicy Grapefruit Margarita recipe, we use a homemade mix of chili powder, coconut sugar, and salt. You can also use regular granulated sugar if you don't have coconut sugar at hand.
To get the most out of this, we like to use sea salt or -even better- fleur de sel. It is beautifully flaky and tastes much more restrained, with less of a bite than ordinary iodized salt.
You should use equal measures of the three rim ingredients and mix them on a small plate before preparing your cocktails. Then you can moisten the rim of your cocktail glass and dip it into the mix.
Another version of flavored salt is also used in other Mexican cocktail recipes, for instance, in the traditional Cantarito. Here, for this Spicy Grapefruit Margarita, the chili powder and coconut sugar add just the right amount of sweetness and spice.
How to make Jalapeño-Infused Tequila
To bring some flavor and spice into your tequila, all you need are these four things:
- fresh jalapeño slices
- a 100% agave tequila (silver or reposado)
- a jar with an airtight lid
- a little time
Pour the tequila into the jar, add the jalapeños, seal the jar tightly, shake the mix, and let it sit until it reaches the level of spice you want and can handle. For beginners, 15 minutes are often enough. You can read all about this and get more detailed time instructions in our recipe for jalapeño-infused tequila.
Generally, infusing spirits is a great way to bring additional flavors and spice to cocktails like the Spicy Grapefruit Margarita. In the case of this jalapeño-infused tequila, we also add some heat into the base spirit, and it is super easy to do.
Tipps that make this cocktail amazing
Here's an overview of our tips, tricks, and best practices for this Spicy Margarita recipe.
First, you should always use 100% agave tequila, to achieve the best taste and avoid a bad headache the next morning.
Secondly, always use freshly squeezed citrus juice for this drink. Bottled juices are too sweet and, even if they are of good quality, they miss this natural acidity you need to get the balance right.
Prepare your salt and the infused tequila well in advance, so it won't get hectic when you mix your drinks.
If you want to adjust the level of heat in your drink, consider using another type of chili for your Margarita.
Other amazing Margarita variations
If you cannot get enough of the Mexican favorite, here are some more top Margarita variations worth trying:
- The famous Tommy's Margarita is another brilliant twist. It omits the triple sec/Cointreau part and only consists of lime juice, agave nectar, and tequila.
- Other variations are more sweet and fruity, like the Mango Margarita on the rocks or the frozen version. Then there's another tropical twist, the Coconut Margarita.
- Last but not least, if you like to keep it classic but still want to try something new, the Mezcal Margarita is a terrific option.