Tequila Sunrise Margarita Cocktail
Not just delicious with the flavors of Tequila, Orange Juice and Pomegranate (or Cranberry), this Tequila Sunrise Margarita is beautiful too!
Today is National Margarita Day. A day in the middle of the week, in the middle of winter.
Every year I wonder who decided on that time frame because even though I will now enjoy a margarita in the winter with seasonal flavors, it will forever remain in my heart as the quintessential summer drink.
Mexico. Tequila. Warmth.
None of that says February. But I’m a sucker for a day devoted to my all time favorite cocktail so I’m celebrating with this Tequila Sunrise Margarita Cocktail and it’s a beautiful thing.
I was asked by a tequila brand to feature a recipe of theirs and use their product. The problem is that I had none of their product on hand and I didn’t want anymore because I already have enough for a small liquor store.
I’ve got all of my liquor and liqueurs organized and catalogued and with 14 bottles of tequila on the shelves; I’m not needing anymore for a bit.
Like in five years maybe. So I used their recipe as my inspiration and made it my own.
One thing I know about a Tequila Sunrise, they are supposed to show a layering that mimics the colors of a real sunrise.
The recipe I was given had all the ingredients shaken together and while a sort of pretty pinkish orange color; it just did not work for me. Round One was out of contention.
On to Round Two. I made some revisions; opting to make a cranberry simple syrup instead of grenadine which is basically pomegranate simple syrup.
Why? I had no pomegranate juice in the pantry but did have cranberry and either one works.
Last, but not least by a long shot, I included some orange liqueur. What margarita is made without orange liqueur anyhow; isn’t it one of the main prerequisites? Thanks…I thought so too!
Round Two was much better and I got the results I wanted. The heavier red syrup cuts through the tequila and juice mixture and covered the bottom of the glass.
Yay! BUT I decided to try using an old fashioned margarita glass and even if it looked sort of pretty it bugged me; all of the red cranberry simple syrup was in that little abutment at the bottom of my margarita glass.
I tried mixing it a bit and that was better so I forged ahead with photos. I took probably 50 shots, picked my two favorite and did some work on them in Photoshop and was set to start writing this post about 1pm.
Then something happened. It’s not often but it’s happened before and I’ve learned to not fight it too hard. I just could not wrap my arms around those photos. They weren’t awful, horrible, terrible, no good, very bad photos but they also did not make me happy.
Just as I was ready to start…I quit as suddenly and decided a third go around was necessary. I’m glad I did. Once I do the work to showcase a cocktail; these photos will represent it for many years.
Still, it is why I’m so late getting published today but trust me; no way this margarita loving, cocktail making, food blogger was NOT going to post about a tasty margarita today.
That would have been sacrilege right? So here you have it; a pretty cocktail spiced up a bit and turned into a margarita. Though my intent was to make this Tequila Sunrise Margarita Cocktail for National Margarita Day; trust me, it’s good any day; so pretty and so refreshing.
The good news? I have three batches now sitting in the fridge. Wonder if I can rustle up some drinkers? Hurry before they’re all gone! Cheers!
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PIN IT! ‘Tequila Sunrise Margarita’
Tequila Sunrise Margarita
For the Grenadine (Pomegranate Simple Syrup):
- 2 cups pomegranate juice or cranberry
- 1 ¼ cups granulated sugar
For the Rim
- 2 Tbsp Kosher Salt
- 2 Tbsp Sugar I used cake decorating crystals from Michael's
For the Tequila Sunrise Margarita:
- 4 oz Tequila blanco
- 3 oz orange juice
- 2 oz lime juice
- 2 oz orange liqueur
- 2 oz Grenadine
- 2 orange wedges
- To Make the Grenadine
- Put the pomegranate (or cranberry juice) into a medium pan and heat over medium high heat until reduced by half and you have one cup of liquid. Add the sugar and continue simmering until it is completed combined. Remove from heat and cool completely. Refrigerate for at least an hour.
- To Make the Cocktail
- Combine the Kosher salt and sugar and put on a plate. Using an orange wedge, rub the edge of the glasses then turn them upside down and dip the rims in the sugar/salt combo. Fill the glasses with ice cubes and set aside.
- Combine the tequila, lime juice, orange juice, and orange liqueur in a cocktail shaker filled with ice and shake until cold. Pour the mixture into the prepared glasses.
- Using a small pitcher or a spoon, drizzle the grenadine at the inside edge of the glasses; it should fall to the floor of the glass. Using a knife or straw, mix the grenadine very lightly at the bottom of the glass.
- Garnish each glass with an orange wedge and drizzle additional grenadine over the top of the cocktail right before serving.
i am a little confused, you made the simple syrup let it cool for at least an hr, but never saw where you used it i the recipe? did i misunderstand? looks delish tho…
never mind, the simple syrup is the homemade grenadine.. sorry my bad…
I’m a big margarita fan and this looks so delish. Like on a super hot day this would quench your thirst…hehehe. I’m making these this week .
It is delish! I have so many margaritas on this site so don’t stop with that one!
Why not use grenadine, much simpler and not as sour as cranberries
Well depends on if you mean by much simpler, simply using the bottle from the store? I mentioned in the notes that I had cranberry juice on hand but not pomegranate juice which is what grenadine is made from so I used it…but I’ve revised the post to call for grenadine using either juice. Either one needs a fair amount of sugar when starting from scratch. Of course if someone has a bottle of grenadine on hand or wants to buy it, they can. I just prefer homemade!
This is a bit random, but where did you get those glasses from? They look like the perfect size for margaritas!
I wish I remembered Elizabeth…I have SO many glasses. Some I’ve picked up at Goodwill but if purchasing them it’s usually either World Market or HomeGoods but it could have been Crate and Barrel or Williams Sonoma too. It’s funny; when I first started making margaritas years ago I wanted ‘margarita’ glasses but now I most often simply use a lowball cocktail glass…and most of them are the perfect size.
At first I thought they were the jars I use from Bonne Maman jams but no, there’s no groove for the jar lid but those do make good cocktail glasses…sort of a rustic feel much like a ball jar.
I know that doesn’t help much but I’m sure you will find something perfect!
They look like glasses you can get at William’s Sonoma, they come in 3 sizes. They also have lids!
Thanks Hope…and that could be exactly where I got them!
These glasses are available on Amazon, I believe they are called bistro glasses, and can be ordered in various sizes.
They are similar but not exactly the same. Bistro glasses get larger at the top and these don’t. In lieu of finding the exact match though, they are a good alternative. Williams Sonoma actually has the best set of Bistro glass I found; 6 of the lowball cocktail size.
Omg, that looks absolutely delectable. I’m going to make these tis weekend for my husband’s going away gathering. What a great blog btw.
Thank you so much, I’m always glad to hear someone enjoys this passion project of mine! And it is a good one; so pretty too!
how did I not know it was national margarita day on Feb. 17th. I’m putting that one on the calendar AND putting this cocktail on the “have to try” list! Thanks for the recipe. (ps. I agree with what you shared with Dave…the Paloma is DELISH!)
I’ve always thought it a silly day for Margaritas; their day SHOULD be in the middle of summer don’t you think? But I’ve long gotten over not making them during the winter…the Blood Orange one is another just perfect for that beautiful citrus fruit only available in our neck of the woods during December and January. I think I could make any day National Margarita Day. 🙂
Oh, this sounds killer. I Can hardly wait to spring this on my margarita-loving, Mexican friends. BTW, you have a great recipe repertoire. :-))
Thanks Dave; comments like yours honestly make this work worthwhile. I love to share what I do but even more I want people to enjoy it and use it too! Cheers!
Want to make a cocktail your Mexican friends will love you for? Try a Paloma…it’s their favorite cocktail in Mexico; like we have made the margarita here…and it’s fantastic! I’ve got one on the site; just do a keyword search for it.
I don’t drink a lot of cocktails– I’m mostly a beer drinker. However, a tequila sunrise is something I will happily drink. Wow! Your photo is worthy of your efforts. This is beautifully, and is being pinned for the warmer weather TGIF moments hubs and I have outside, after a hard week at work.
This is a good one and yes, perfect for summer too. Try this for a change of pace; a bit more lime and some orange liqueur than the standard Tequila Sunrise, I do think I like it better!