Made with fresh orange juice, orange liqueur, and tequila, this Italian Margarita recipe is perfect for when you're craving a sweeter and fizzier pick me up. It's a fun twist on a classic margarita. Make it for a refreshing poolside beverage, weekday happy hour, or summer brunch!
Table of Contents
About this Margarita
Jack and I recently tried out a new Italian restaurant in the heart of Midtown for my 24th birthday dinner. (Serena Pacifico for you Atlanta locals!) They didn't have a typical margarita on the menu, they had this Italian Margarita!
And let me tell you—it’s one of the best cocktails I’ve had in quite some time! I was so hooked that I found myself googling their menu and figuring out how I could create this perfect cocktail for the blog
What's the difference between and Italian and regular margarita? Italian Margaritas are made with grapefruit juice and zesty aperol (sometimes a shot of amaretto too), which adds a sweeter and bitterer taste. Regular margaritas are typically made with a tangier orange liquor and sometimes margarita mix and simple syrup.
Indulge in an Italian twist on the classic margarita by incorporating Aperol into this refreshing cocktail made with fresh lime juice, tequila, and club soda. Don't forget to include a salted rim, garnish it with blood oranges and mint for the perfect finishing touch! Enjoy with a Prosciutto and Fig Pizza and you've got a complete restaurant meal at home.
- Tequila: No need for a specific brand. Use your favorite! I do suggest blanco tequila, however.
- Aperol: Italian bitters for an Italian margarita! This is what will give your margarita the beautiful orange color.
- Triple Sec: You can also use orange liquor, almond liqueur, or amaretto liqueur if you have it on hand. A classic cocktail ingredient.
- Blood Orange: Use this to squeeze fresh juice into your margarita and to create dried oranges for garnish. You can also use regular oranges, cara cara oranges, or grapefruit.
- Club Soda: For some fizz! Tonic or another bubbly seltzer would also work.
See the recipe card below for a full list of ingredients and measurements.
How to Make This Recipe
1. Slice an orange or lime wedge and run it around the rim of the glass. Pour salt or sugar on a small plate, then dip the glass to rim it.
2. In a cocktail shaker, add crushed ice, tequila, aperol, triple sec, and fresh citrus juices. Give it a good shake. Fill your glass with ice and pour in alcohol.
3. Using a handheld juicer, extract juice out of ¼ of a fresh orange. Then, add to glass. Note: You may need to cut the orange into smaller pieces to fit it into the juicer. Fill remainder of the cocktail glass with club soda. Stir gently.
4. Top off with an extra squirt of lime if desired and garnish with ming, fresh flowers, or orange wheel. Enjoy!
Don't shake your club soda in your cocktail shaker. It will explode everywhere! Just pour it in the glass at the end. Read this post for more of my mixology tips!
Traditionally, margaritas are made with silver tequila. However, you could substitute vodka, gin, or even rum in this recipe instead. This is an Italian Marg so might as well change everything up!
Nowadays, there are so many different flavors of salt. Typically, coarse kosher salt or margarita salt is best for a margarita. Feel free to incorporate a flavored salt to add complexity to your drink.
One of my favorite things about ordering a cocktail at a restaurant is seeing how they garnish them. Maybe it's just the designer in me. 😂 I think it truly elevates the customer experience, and in this day and age, an "Instagram worthy" cocktail is a winner!
You can really make this Italian Margarita something special (in my opinion) by garnishing it with dried orange slices. I recommend making these in advance as they can take quite a long time. However, this cocktail will still taste fabulous with fresh fruit as well!
If you want to try making your own dried orange slices, you'll also need a wire rack and baking pan. Follow this process:
1. Preheat oven to 200°F.
2. Finely slice oranges. Keep in mind that the thinner the slice, the shorter the dehydrating time.
3. Place a wire rack on top of a baking pan and place your orange slices on top. Do not overlap any slices.
4. Bake for 3-6 hours depending on how thick your slices are. Flip 2-3 times while cooking to ensure each side dries out.
More Recipes You'll Love
Love this recipe? Please leave a 5-star 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟rating in the recipe card below & if you really like the recipe consider leaving a comment further down. Thanks for visiting!
- Margarita glass
- Cocktail shaker
- Cocktail stirrer
- Cutting Board
- Handheld juicer
- 2 cups crushed ice, divided
- 3 oz tequila
- 2 oz Aperol
- 2 oz triple sec, or orange liquor
- 1 lime, juiced
- ¼ citrus, grapefruit or orange
- ½-1 cup club soda, grapefruit flavored
- salt or sugar, for rim
- orange or lime wheels
- fresh mint
- Slice an orange or lime wedge and run it around the rim of the glass. Pour salt or sugar on a small plate, then dip the glass to rim it.
- In a cocktail shaker, add 1 cup of crushed ice. Pour tequila, aperol, triple sec, and the juice of 1 lime into the shaker. Give it a good shake.
- Divide the remaining ice between each glass. Pour in margarita over crushed ice.
- Top each glass with club soda. Garnish with fresh mint, citrus wedges, or edible flowers. Option to add the juice of a orange wedge to the top of each glass for immediate citrus flavor!
- Serve immediately! You might just leave all the ingredients out because you will be making another:P. Please drink responsibly.
Looking for this in MyFitnessPal?
If you're using MyFitnessPal, search 'A Paige Of Positivity' and find Italian Margarita calories and nutrition facts. Disclaimer: for most accurate macronutrients and caloric breakdown, it is recommended that you input each ingredient into your MyFitnessPal food diary.
NOTE: this is counting the alcohol as strictly carbs - remember, if you are counting your macros & alcohol, this is a good reference: Macrostax | How To Calculate Alcohol for Macro Counting
TO COUNT YOUR ALCOHOL AS A CARBOHYDRATE: Use the total number of calories in a drink divided by 4 (Example: 5 ounces of Red Zinfandel = 132 calories 132 calories/4 = 33g Carbs. TO COUNT YOUR ALCOHOL AS A FAT: Use the total number of calories in a drink divided by 9 (Example: 5 ounces of Red Zinfandel = 132 calories 132 calories/9 = 15g Fat) TO COUNT YOUR ALCOHOL AS BOTH A CARBOHYDRATE AND A FAT: Use the a portion of the total number of calories in a drink divided by 4 Use the remainder of the total number of calories in a drink divided by 9. Example: 5 ounces of Red Zinfandel = 132 calories 66 calories/4 = 16.5g Carbs 66 calories/9 = 7g Fat
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