Frozen Margarita

This frozen margarita, made with tequila, plenty of lime, ice, and orange liqueur, is the quintessential easy summer cocktail.

A tall glass of frozen margarita with a salt rim and lime wheel beside a bowl of chips and guacamole

There are those people who feel a frozen margarita is a lesser margarita. We are not those people. At least, not when it comes to this frozen margarita. Originally published June 27, 2014.Renee Schettler Rossi

Frozen Margarita

  • Quick Glance
  • 10 M
  • 10 M
  • Serves 2
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Ingredients

  • For the frozen margarita
  • 1 cup crushed ice
  • 3 ounces 100% agave silver tequila
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon orange liqueur, such as Grand Marnier, Curaçao, or triple sec
  • 2 tablespoons Simple Syrup
  • For the lime, salt, and sugar rim
  • Zest of 1 lime, preferably organic, very finely grated
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • Lime wedges, for garnish

Directions

  • Make the frozen margarita
  • 1. Toss the ice, tequila, lime juice, orange liqueur, and Simple Syrup in a blender and blitz on high speed until smooth.
  • Make the lime, salt, and sugar rim
  • 2. Combine the lime zest, salt, and sugar in a small blender or mini food processor and blend until thoroughly combined and very finely chopped. You should have about 1/4 cup. Dump about 1 tablespoon of the lime, salt, and sugar mixture onto a plate. Run a lime wedge around the rims of 2 chilled glasses—they can be margarita glasses, wineglasses, rocks glasses, pint glasses, whatever—and press the rims into the mixture to coat the edge.
  • Assemble the margarita
  • 3. Pour the margarita into the glasses and garnish with the lime wedges.

Recipe Testers Reviews

I love these frozen margaritas. And I've been loving these margarita for multiple days now. I have friends who are sure that they make “The Best” margaritas, and I'm looking forward to making these for them. In my opinion, these are even better.

I use Grand Marnier for the orange liqueur, as it's my orange liqueur of choice. Simple Syrup is just that—simple. Equal parts sugar and water. I'm not a big fan of salt on the rim of a margarita—I can take it or leave it, and I usually leave it. However, the Lime, Salt, Sugar is fantastic. I end up drinking the margarita from all sides of the glass, just to get all of it. I found that just pressing your glass of choice into the mixture does not get enough of the mixture to stick to the chilled glass. I take the lime halves after I juice them, and rub them around the lip of the glass. It makes for a beautifully covered rim. I now have a jar of the Lime, Salt, Sugar in the refrigerator, as well as a jar of Simple Syrup. Is it cocktail time yet?

I've never much cared for frozen margaritas, preferring margaritas on the rocks, but this one is the exception. Since the drink is strained, you aren't left drinking a slushy.

The recipe took about 5 minutes total time to make. I only had ice cubes in the freezer, so I first lightly crushed the ice using a resealable plastic bag and a meat mallet before measuring the ice. I also needed to lightly juice the rim of the glass to get the salt mixture to stick, which I found much more enjoyable to plain salt.

All in all, a great drink.

The lime, salt, and sugar rim is bright and lively. But why stop at cocktails? This would be great to rim a glass of lemonade or sparkling water with lime. (I tried it with sparkling water with lime and it was nice.) Alternatively, I would add a sprinkling of this to whatever needs a slight lime zing...a finishing sprinkling to a lime crema, guacamole, taco meat, Mexican soups and stews, spice-rubbed seafood.

I wonder how long this would keep because it really could have other purposes–I think it would keep well in the fridge in a sealed container. I know a chef who does this with all sorts of chopped fresh herbs. I will have to experiment!

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Comments

  1. Will definitely add the salt/sugar/zest garnish to my favorite agave recipe! Thanks so much for what sounds like an interesting and tasty twist to a classic. And the timing will be perfect for the coming SoCal patio season!

    But I must say, I really think it’s worth the additional expense of using a smoother, more flavorful reposado tequila. …especially when you’re preparing margaritas 2 glasses at a time rather than by the pitcherfuls.

    1. Ah, Rainey, you say reposado, I say blanco. Fortunately there are ample tequilas in the world for each to select what works for him or her! Although I completely agree that it has a smooth and rich flavor. And if you can make these margs go down slowly enough to savor them, yes, all the more respect (and reposado!) to you. Be well and happy patio season, my friend.

  2. Very, very nice – the only problem is making sure Friday Sloshed Friday does not become Any day Sloshed Any day. Well okay maybe once in a while.

  3. If using a VitaMix, would you still have to make the simple syrup? Why not simply add 1 tablespoon water and 1 tablespoon sugar or whatever amount of sugar equals 1 tablespoon melted/dissolved (perhaps 1 1/3 tablespoons of sugar, assuming that 1 tablespoon of sugar melts/dissolves into less than 1 tablespoon of volume?)

    1. Rita, the recipe calls for a blender, not a Vitamix. Of course you can use one, but I find the heat it generates makes frozen drinks too liquid-y. Simple syrup already has the sugar in a dissolved state. It may not fully dissolve in a bender of Vitamix.

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