Enough margaritas to serve a party! This make-ahead margarita recipe can easily be scaled up or down depending on how many guests you’re expecting.
The classic margarita recipe can be made ahead to prepare for a crowd. It consists of 4 simple ingredients: tequila, triple sec, lime juice and agave.
My husband and I frequently host gatherings and making individual cocktails can get time consuming when trying to entertain guests! I prefer to make pre-batched cocktails and keep them in a jug or carafe in the refrigerator so they can simply be given a quick stir and served over ice. This recipe is based on my individual margarita recipe found here. I don’t add the ice until just before serving so the cocktails don’t get watered down. Pour a small tester of the margaritas to give it a taste and see if any adjustments need to be made based on preference.
Tequila – When choosing a tequila, I use tequila blanco, also known as silver tequila, in my margaritas. Look for a higher end brand (trust me it will help with your hangover the next morning) – the label should say 100% agave. I like Espolòn, Casamigos and La Gritona.
Triple sec – Triple sec is a sweet, clear, orange liqueur made with 15%-40% alcohol from sweet and bitter orange peels. Cointreau is a type of triple sec. It’s a higher end label with a higher alcohol content than most other triple secs.
Lime juice – While I prefer freshly squeezed lime juice, bigger batch cocktails can require a lot of limes and a lot of patience squeezing them, so I forgive the use of bottled lime juice in this situation!
Agave – Agave syrup is a natural sweetener. It’s the base ingredient fermented to make tequila so it naturally complements the cocktail.
Salt – Coarse salt (I use kosher salt) is best for rimming glasses. Rub the glass with a wedge of lime and dip the glass into a shallow bowl or small plate of salt.
How to Make Margaritas for a Crowd
Step 1: Add ingredients to a pitcher.
Add the tequila, triple sec, lime juice and agave into a large pitcher or carafe and stir to combine.
Step 2: Chill.
Refrigerate the pitcher or carafe until ready to serve.
Step 3: Prepare glasses.
When ready to serve, prepare the glasses. Add kosher salt to a shallow bowl. Rub the edge of the cocktail glass with the lime wedge then dip the glass in the salt.
Step 4: Serve.
Give the margarita a quick stir. Fill the glasses with ice cubes and pour the margaritas over the top.
Tips and Tricks for This Recipe
Swaps and substitutions
If you don’t have agave, swap it for either simple syrup or maple syrup.
Honey will do but it doesn’t combine quite as well as the other options.
Variations on the Classic Margarita
Mezcal – For a smokier margarita, use half tequila and half mezcal or swap all the tequila for mezcal in the recipe.
Infused tequila – If you prefer more flavor in your margarita, try using an infused tequila (homemade or store bought)! I like using tequila infused with jalapeños for more spice, prickly pear for a pretty pink color or ginger for a different kind of kick.
Juice – Add ½ cup (118ml) of your favorite juice (pineapple, orange, pomegranate etc.) to subtly mix up the flavors.
Rim – Rather than using salt to rim the glasses, try switching it up with sugar or a flavored salt like Tajin.
Other Recipes to Try
If you enjoy this big batch margarita recipe, give these cocktails a try and follow me on Instagram for more updates: