A glass with a salt rim filled with classic margarita cocktail and ice, topped with a lime wheel, in the background limes and flowers.

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The Classic Margarita, a mainstay cocktail. Surprisingly easy to make with three ingredients lime juice, cointreau, and tequila.

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A glass with a salt rim filled with classic margarita cocktail and ice, topped with a lime wheel, in the background limes and flowers.

How to make a Classic Margarita

My favorite drink!

Is it yours too? So many people I know will say a Margarita is their favorite and luckily it is so darn easy to make!

With only 3 ingredients, you will never need a mix again!

Barware for the Best Margarita

Margaritas use pretty common place barware and kitchen items.

  • Cocktail Shaker
  • Jigger
  • Citrus Juicer
  • Margarita Glass OR Other Cocktail Glass

You will also need commonplace items like a knife, cutting board, & ice. Also if you want a salted glass, a small plate for the salt.

A cocktail shaker pouring margarita into a glass filled with ice.

Ingredients for a Classic Margarita

The margarita, like so many other cocktails will greatly depend on the quality of alcohol used. So I have included my favorite ‘everyday’ and favorite ‘special’ tequilas below.

  • Tequila – In a classic margarita you will want to use a Blanco or Plata (White or Silver) tequila. Tequila is broken out into four categories; Blanco/Plata, Joven Abocado (Gold), Repasado, and Añejo (aged). If you would like to use a tequila from a different category that is perfectly okay. I recommend using your favorite tequila, that will make the drink all that much better. If you don’t have a favorite my favorite ‘everyday’ tequila is Tres Agaves and my favorite ‘special’ tequila is Casamigos.
  • Cointreau Cointreau is a classic bar staple also used in a Cosmo. This orange flavored liqueur can also be swapped out with Triple Sec.
  • Lime Juice – For the best margarita I urge you to use a fresh lime, it makes a world of difference from the bottled stuff. Typically 1 medium sized lime is the perfect amount of juice you will need for your drink.

And if you want to garnish your drink you will also need a lime slice or wedge. And for a salted rim some salt (sea salt or kosher salt work best).

A salt rimmed glass filled to the top with ice and margarita, topped with a lime wheel.
Yield: 1 drink

Classic Margarita

A salt rimmed margarita garnished with a lime wheel, slight pure through the drink making shadows on a blue background.

The classic three ingredient margarita cocktail. Enjoy this refreshing beverage without a mix! This simple margarita is sure to become your new favorite!

Prep Time 3 minutes
Total Time 3 minutes


  • 1 oz lime juice (1 medium lime)
  • 1 oz cointreau
  • 2 oz tequila

For Garnishing:

  • Sea Salt or Kosher Salt
  • Lime wedges or wheels


  1. To salt the rim of the glass take a lime wedge and run it all along the top rim. Add salt to a small plate and dip the juiced rim into the salt. Add ice to the glass.
  2. Add the lime juice, cointreau, and tequila to a cocktail shaker with a handful of ice. Shake until cold about 10 seconds. Strain over top the ice. Garnish with a lime slice.


One average sized lime produces about 1 oz of lime juice.

Triple Sec may be replaced for the cointreau.

For a sweeter beverage add ½ ounce agave or simple syrup.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:

1 drink

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 223Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 2mgCarbohydrates: 10gFiber: 0gSugar: 8gProtein: 0g

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