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This Blackberry Margarita recipe is not your average cocktail; it's a blend of bold flavors and refreshing ingredients that sets the mood for any gathering. With the sweet tang of fresh blackberries and a hint of citrusy lime, this cocktail offers an enticing twist on the classic.
The real star here is the Blackberry Syrup, freshly made from ripe berries. Melding seamlessly with the traditional taste of tequila and orange liqueur, it stands in for typical simple syrup. Made in just 5 minutes without any cooking and lightly sweetened with agave nectar, it enhances the natural berry flavor without overpowering. Whether hosting a festive soirée or winding down after a long day, this libation promises sheer joy with every sip.
Ingredients for Blackberry Margaritas
The Blackberry Syrup
- Blackberries: Choose firm, plump blackberries that are deep in color without any signs of mold or excessive softness.
- Agave Nectar: Opt for a light nectar that pours easily (not crystalized).
- Water: Use filtered water if possible for a cleaner syrup taste.
For Rimming Glass (optional)
- Margarita Salt: Opt for coarse, flaky margarita salt that adheres well to the glass rim. Granulated sugar is a sweet alternative.
- Lime: Look for limes that are bright green, feel heavy for their size, and have a smooth skin, a good indicator of juiciness.
To Make a Single Margarita
- Ice: Be sure your ice is made from clean, filtered water.
- Blanco Tequila: Choose a tequila that's clear, meaning it has not been aged.
- Orange Liqueur: While Cointreau is a popular choice, any high-quality orange liqueur will do.
- Blackberry Syrup: Prepared from the ingredients above (see recipe for specific instructions).
- Lime: Select limes that are juicy and heavy for their size.
- Blackberries: Look for firm and plump berries.
- Thyme and/or Fresh Sage: Choose fresh sage leaves or thyme sprigs with aromatic, vibrant green leaves.
Tequila Types: Blanco vs. Aged
Both made from the blue agave plant, blanco and aged tequilas offer distinct flavor profiles influenced by their production and aging processes. Blanco tequila, clear and unaged, delivers a fresh, sharp taste with pronounced agave notes, often with hints of citrus or herbs.
Aged tequilas like reposado and añejo are stored in wooden barrels, absorbing flavors like vanilla, caramel, and oak, which gives them a smoother, more complex profile. And while blanco remains transparent, the aging process adds a golden hue to its aged counterparts.
- Freshness Matters: While you can use thawed blackberries for the syrup, fresh blackberries add a brighter, more vibrant flavor to the margarita. So, if they're in season or available, go fresh!
- Shake It Up: When combining the margarita ingredients in the cocktail shaker, give it a vigorous shake for 10 to 15 seconds. This not only helps the ingredients mix well but also slightly dilutes the mix, balancing out the flavors.
- Glass Prep: If you're going for a salt or sugar rim, make sure the glass rim is wet enough to make the salt or sugar stick. Using a lime wedge is perfect, as it provides just enough moisture and adds a hint of lime flavor.
- Adjust to Taste: Everyone's preference for sweetness or tartness varies. After shaking the ingredients, do a quick taste test. If it's too tart, add a bit more blackberry syrup or agave nectar; if too sweet, an extra squeeze of lime can balance it out.
- Chill Your Glass: Before pouring the margarita, place your serving glass in the freezer for a few minutes. A chilled glass will keep your drink colder for longer and enhance the overall sipping experience.
- Sweetener Choices: If agave nectar isn't on hand or you prefer a different natural sweetener, both honey and maple syrup are excellent alternatives.
- Herbal Variations: While thyme sprigs or sage leaves provide a fresh, aromatic undertone to the drink, fresh rosemary is another great option. Its earthy, piney notes can add depth and intrigue to your margarita.
- Garnish Glamour: For special occasions or when you want to add a touch of elegance, consider adorning your margarita with edible flowers. Nasturtiums bring a peppery taste, pansies offer a mild and grassy flavor, while orchids, with their vibrant colors, are more about visual appeal than taste.
- Rimming Variations: While coarse salt is traditional for rimming the glass, granulated sugar offers a sweeter touch. If you're feeling adventurous, try a mix of chili powder and salt for a spicy kick!
More Must Try Cocktails
- The Vesper
- Rhubarb Cocktail
- Homemade Tonic Water
- Boulevardier Cocktail Recipe
- The Last Word Cocktail
How to Make A Blackberry Margarita
For the Blackberry Syrup: Blend blackberries, agave nectar, and water until smooth, then strain.
For a Margarita: Optionally rim the glass: Mix salt (or sugar) with lime zest in a dish. Swipe a lime segment around the glass edge and dip into the mixture.
Add ice to your glass. In a shaker, combine tequila, orange liqueur, blackberry syrup, lime juice, and ice. Shake for about 10 seconds. Adjust sweetness if needed. Pour into the glass over ice, garnish with blackberries, lime, and thyme or sage, then serve.
Blackberry Margarita Recipe
To make Blackberry Syrup (~10 ounces)
- 8 ounces blackberries fresh or thawed
- 4 ounces agave nectar or honey or maple syrup
- ½ cup water ideally filtered
For Rimming Glass (optional)
- margarita salt or granulated sugar for rimming the glass, optional
- lime zest to mix with salt or sugar for rimming the glass
- lime wedge for wetting the glass rim
For a Single Margarita
- 1 ½ ounces blanco tequila
- 1 ounce orange liqueur such as Contreau
- 1 ounce Blackberry Syrup or more to taste, (recipe above)
- 1 ounce fresh lime juice from about 1 lime, plus more for garnish and wetting glass rim
- lime wheels for garnish, optional
- fresh blackberries for garnish, optional
- fresh thyme sprigs or fresh sage leaves for garnish, optional
To make Blackberry Syrup
- Combine fresh or thawed blackberries, agave nectar and water in a blender pitcher. Blend until smooth and pour through a fine mesh strainer. (Makes ~10 ounces of syrup.)
To make 1 Margarita (see recipe note #2)
- For a salted or sugared rim (optional): in a wide, shallow dish stir salt or sugar and lime zest together with a fork. Run the flesh of a lime around the rim of your serving glass (highball or footed glass). Dip rim in the salt/sugar and lime zest mixture to coat.
- Fill serving glass with ice.
- To a cocktail shaker add tequila, orange liqueur, Blackberry Simple Syrup, lime juice and several ice cubes. Shake or stir until combined (10 to 15 seconds); taste and add more simple syrup if desired. Strain into ice filled glass; garnish with fresh blackberries, lime wheels and fresh thyme sprigs / sage leaves if desired and serve.
- For blended margaritas, add drink ingredients along with a ice cubes to a high powered blender pitcher and blend until smooth. Serve in salt or sugar rimmed glasses and garnish as desired.
- A standard cocktail shaker is large enough to make 2 margaritas at once. So feel free to double the recipe. Cheers!
- You can also make a pitcher of margaritas to share. Prepare individual glasses as stated in recipe. Then multiply the recipe ingredients by the number of drinks you want to make or the capacity of your pitcher. Add ingredients to ice filled pitcher and stir well; pour serve.