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Classic Pitcher Margarita Recipe

With just 4 main ingredients, this Pitcher Margarita Recipe is the perfect cocktail for your next summer party! Light, refreshing, and incredibly easy to make – plus, you can double or triple the recipe as needed.

a classic pitcher margarita next to a cutting board with limes

Easy Classic Margarita Pitcher Recipe

Raise your hand if your favorite drink is a margarita! This drink is a crowd-pleaser thanks to its wonderful taste. The combination of orange liqueur, tequila, lime juice, and syrup gives you a blend of salty, sweet, and sour flavors.

The sweetness of the syrup paired with the sour taste of the lime juice and the salt at the rim gives this drink the perfect balance to tingle your taste buds.

This recipe is easy to follow and allows you to make big batch margaritas instead of preparing individual drinks. You’ll have more time to catch up with friends instead of running to the kitchen whenever someone wants a drink.

Plus, you can try some variations, such as spicy margaritas, to suit your taste. Feel free to use this recipe as a base and customize it to your preferences!

Why You’ll Love This Big Batch Margarita

Here are a few reasons we love this pitcher margarita recipe!

  • Easy to make: You don’t need to be an expert at making cocktails to prepare this classic margarita.
  • Versatile: You can tweak or change the recipes a little to suit your taste. Whether you like yours fruity or spicy, you have many possibilities to explore. It can also be served on various occasions, including formal events or casual get-togethers.
  • Refreshing taste: The combination of tequila, lime juice, and orange liqueur gives the drink a tangy taste that will excite your taste buds, with just the right amount of sweetness from the agave syrup.
ingredients and utensils to make a classic margarita cocktail

Recipe Ingredients

Take a look at the ingredients you’ll need for our classic margarita recipe.

  • Tequila: See below on selecting the best tequila for this recipe.
  • Orange Liqueur: You can go with Triple Sec or Cointreau. Orange Liqueur is made with orange peels. I prefer Cointreau as it is more refined, and the orange flavor is subtle.
  • Lime Juice: Use freshly-squeezed lime juice. I know making a big batch requires you to squeeze a lot of limes, which can tempt you to go with bottled lime juice. But for a delicious margarita, you’ll want to prepare your lime juice at home.
  • Sweetener: I like to use agave syrup to sweeten my margaritas but simple syrup works too.
  • Salt: Salt is for rimming the glasses. Plus, it helps to balance the margarita’s overall flavor.

What Tequila Is Best for a Classic Margarita?

While there are many tequilas you can use, I prefer something affordable but also of good quality. This can be Reposado, Anejo tequila or Blanco. Remember, you aren’t drinking it straight but as a cocktail. So you don’t need to go all fancy.

I tend to use tequila blanco (aka silver tequila) in my margaritas.

What’s the Best Orange Liqueur for a Margarita?

The secret to a good margarita lies in the quality of the ingredients. For orange liqueur, you can opt for Triple Sec, Grand Marnier, or Cointreau. While they all taste good, the taste varies a little.

Triple sec is a French liqueur with lower alcohol content than the rest (22%). Since it’s a generic orange liqueur, it’s not as sweet, although the orange flavor is strong.

Grand Marnier is basically cognac that’s blended with bitter orange. It’s delicious and sweet because of the orange flavor.

Cointreau is technically a Triple Sec but more refined. It has 40% alcohol content, just like a Grand Marnier. I prefer it because the orange flavor is subtle, and the drink is sweet.

a pitcher with ice next to a bottle of orange liqueur and a cup of lime juice

How to Make a Margarita Pitcher

The classic margarita pitcher is quite easy to make. We are talking about less than 5 minutes of prep time.

  • Mix the ingredients: Add 2 cups of your tequila to the pitcher, then add the orange liqueur and one cup of lime juice.
  • Add the syrup: The amount will vary with how sweet you prefer your margarita.
  • Stir the mixture: Ensure everything is well combined before serving,
  • Enjoy: Rim your glass with salt, serve the drink, and garnish with the lemon wedge.

How to Rim a Margarita Glass

A salted rim is a must for any margarita. Here’s how to do it!

  • Cut your lime into wedges: Run the wedges along the rim of the glass.
  • Pour salt into a small plate: Gently place the rim on the salt and ensure it’s coated well. Do not twist the glass, just press it straight down and pull it back up.
  • Set the glass down: Allow it to dry before you fill it with ice.
A photo of a a classic margarita cocktail and a margarita pitcher next to a cutting board with limes

Tips for the Best Classic Margarita

Here are a few tips for making a big batch of classic margaritas.

  • Squeeze the lime juice gently: Squeezing too much can cause lime oil from the skin to make its way to the juice and make the margarita bitter.
  • Use more syrup for a sweeter taste: This margarita isn’t exactly sweet. If you want yours to be sweeter, use more agave or simple syrup.
  • Use quality ingredients. Since this margarita is made with just 4 ingredients, the quality of each one matters. You do not want the cheapest bottle of tequila on the shelf – trust me!

Easy Margarita Pitcher Variations

Here are a few simple ways to customize this big batch margarita recipe.

  • Mezcal: Swap the tequila for mezcal or use half mezcal and half tequila for a smoky margarita.
  • Spicy margaritas: Add jalapeno slices in each glass for a spicy margarita
  • Use tajin salt instead of regular salt: Tajin saIt is flavored and will enhance your margarita taste.

Can You Prepare a Big Batch Margarita In Advance?

Absolutely! You can prepare a big batch margarita in advance and keep it in the fridge. Just be sure the pitcher has a lid or top it with plastic wrap. The drink keeps well for three days. However, don’t add the ice until when ready to serve.

More Margarita Recipes

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margarita pitcher

Classic Margarita Pitcher Recipe

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With just 4 main ingredients, this Pitcher Margarita Recipe is the perfect cocktail for your next summer party! Light, refreshing, and incredibly easy to make – plus you can double or triple the recipe as needed.

  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 8 cocktails 1x

Ingredients

Scale
  • 2 cups silver tequila
  • 1 ½ cups orange liqueur
  • 1 cup lime juice
  • *¼ – ½ cup simple syrup
  • Coarse salt and water in a shallow dish for the rim of the glass
  • Lime slices
  • Pitcher filled ¾ with ice
  • Long spoon to stir

Instructions

  1. Add the 2 cups of silver tequila to the pitcher
  2. Add the 1 ½ cups of orange liqueur 
  3. Add 1 cup of lime juice
  4. Add the simple syrup. The amount you add depends on how sweet you want your margarita. 
  5. Stir until the ingredients are well combined. Add lime slices if desired and serve in salt-rimmed glasses with ice!
  • Author: Easy Party Cocktails
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Additional Time: 0 hours
  • Cook Time: 0 hours
  • Category: Margaritas
  • Cuisine: American

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1
  • Calories: 250
  • Sugar: 13
  • Sodium: 81
  • Fat: 0
  • Saturated Fat: 0
  • Unsaturated Fat: 0
  • Trans Fat: 0
  • Carbohydrates: 16
  • Fiber: 0
  • Protein: 0
  • Cholesterol: 0

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