Strawberry Jalapeño Margarita
Spicy, sweet, and deliciously sippable, my Strawberry Jalapeño Margarita is a springtime fav. Made with just 6 ingredients in about 5 minutes, this cocktail brings a whole new meaning to “Happy Hour.”
About This Recipe
One of the best parts of spring simply has to be Strawberry Season! Who can resist their cheery, bright hue and sweet, juicy flavor?? They’re simply magnificent. I love them in my Strawberry Sweet Tea, Strawberry and Pineapple Mojito, and, of course, Homemade Strawberry Shortcakes. They’re basically nature’s candy!
What sets this strawberry margarita recipe apart is the addition of a little heat. Unlike the recipes I listed above that depend solely on the sugary characteristics of the fruit, playing those sweet notes against a backdrop of spicy jalapeños (or even spicier serranos!), brightly acidic limes, and bracing tequila gives this cocktail a layer of gorgeous complexity.
This stunning beverage is also topped with a float of sparkling mineral water for the slightest bit of effervescence. It is truly delightful! Best of all, this is an extremely simple margarita recipe that takes mere minutes to make.
So run, don’t walk, and get yourself a big ol’ bushel of spring’s favorite fruit ASAP! The season for perfectly ripe strawberries is fleeting, and you don’t want to miss this remarkable cocktail.
Ingredients & Substitutions
- Strawberries – Choose fresh, ripe, and in season strawberries for the best flavor. They should have a heady perfume, a deep red color, and no visible bruises or cuts.
- Jalapeños – If you’re someone who can handle a little heat, you shouldn’t have any trouble using jalapeños for these margaritas. If you’re more of a mild salsa kind of person, be sure to remove the seeds and membranes prior to muddling. If you prefer a lot of heat, feel free to amp up the number of pepper slices you use, or opt for a hotter variety like serranos or habaneros.
- Lime – In our house, it is a cardinal rule that we only use fresh lime juice; it tastes so much better than the bottled kind! Be sure to firmly roll your fruit on the countertop for 10-15 seconds before cutting open in order to get the most juice from your fruit.
- Tequila – Feel free to use blanco, reposado, or añejo tequila in this margarita recipe, so long as it is made with 100% agave.
- Agave Nectar – This is the traditional sweetener for making margaritas of all sorts, but feel free to use a splash of simple syrup, honey, or maple syrup in its place.
- Mineral Water – I prefer to use Mexican mineral water like Topo Chico here, but you can easily swap in club soda or seltzer instead.
How To Make Strawberry Jalapeño Margaritas
Making my spicy-sweet strawberry jalapeño margaritas is a snap. Here’s how it’s done:
Step 1: Muddle. Muddle strawberries and jalapeño or serrano slices.
Step 2: Shake. Add lime juice, tequila, and agave nectar. Shake, shake, shake for a full 45 seconds. And because I know you wanna know — You can find a similar hand-painted shaker on Etsy.
Step 3: Serve & Enjoy! Strain the contents of your shaker into a glass with ice and top with mineral water. Salud!
These spicy strawberry margaritas are a snap to make, but I do have some advice:
- The spicy lives in the seeds. When it comes to capsaicin (the compound that makes peppers taste hot), the majority of it resides in the seeds and membranes of the peppers. If you are not a heat-lover, remove the seeds and membranes prior to muddling the flesh of the peppers.
- Shake it like you mean it. Since this strawberry jalapeño margarita is a shaken cocktail, it is important to note what the process of shaking does. While some may believe the process of shaking is simply intended to mix and chill the ingredients — which it does — it also acts to aerate the liquid with tiny shards of ice. This in turn will give your margarita a better mouthfeel. So next time you see a bartender really going for it when he or she is making you a drink, take note: it’s not just to look cool!
Frequently Asked Questions
This Mexican spirit is the heart and soul of most margarita recipes. Depending on your flavor preferences and the recipe at hand, you will need to choose between three primary types of tequila: blanco (unaged), reposado (oak-barrel aged for 2-12 months), or añejo (oak-barrel aged for 1-3 years).
Tequila blanco is the lightest, most citrus and agave-forward of the bunch; Reposado becomes more mellow with notes of oak and vanilla; and Añejo deepens the flavors associated with reposado, boasting strong notes of toffee and vanilla.
No matter which type of tequila you reach for, be sure that it is made with 100% agave for the best flavor (and a lower incidence of hangovers).
If you are unable to get your hands on fresh strawberries, feel free to use frozen ones that you thaw. You can also opt to use strawberry preserves in place of the agave and strawberries.
If you are allergic to strawberries, let me express my condolences. I’m so sad you can’t partake! That said, this jalapeño margarita recipe will also pair beautifully with blackberries or raspberries instead.
Sure thing! In fact, if strawberries aren’t in season, I recommend using frozen instead because they are picked at peak ripeness. Just be sure to let them thaw to refrigerator temperature first so that you can muddle them easily.
More Strawberry Recipes
- Pico de Gallo Style Strawberry Salsa
- Rhubarb and Strawberry Crostata
- Easy Strawberry Horchata
- After School Strawberry Toasts
If you tried my recipe for Strawberry Jalapeño Margaritas, please be sure to rate and review it below! You can also tag me on your socials (@muybuenocookbook) so I can be sure to cheer you on.
Strawberry Jalapeño Margaritas
- 1/2 cup strawberries, stemmed
- 4 jalapeño slices, or sub serrano or habanero for a spicier cocktail
- 1.5 ounces lime juice, fresh is best!
- 1 tablespoon agave nectar, or sub maple syrup
- 1.5 ounces tequila blanco
- 1 splash Sparkling water
- Muddle strawberries and pepper slices in a cocktail shaker.
- Add lime juice, agave nectar, tequila, and ice.
- Shake vigorously until chilled for 30-60 seconds.
- Serve in a salt-lime zest rimmed glass filled with ice.
- Top with a splash of sparkling water.
Photography by Jenna Sparks