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Course: Drinks
Keyword: Cinco de Mayo, Cocktails, Entertaining, My Classic Margarita, Summer, Tequila, Tex-Mex

My Classic Margarita

Alton Brown's Margarita Recipe
ACTIVE TIME: 10 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 10 minutes
Yield: 1 cocktail
Fresh lime juice, blanco tequila, and agave syrup are the keys to this classic margarita.
I tend to force my recipes to evolve and mutate over the years, but when it comes to this tequila tipple, I haven’t been able to do a single thing that actually improves it. While this application uses less lime juice than my original recipe, the nuts and bolts are still deliciously the same.
This recipe first appeared in Season 13 of Good Eats.
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  • 2 fluid ounces 100% agave silver/blanco tequila
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 lime
  • 1/2 small Hamlin or Valencia orange
  • 2 tablespoons light agave syrup
  • 3/4 cup (3 to 4) ice cubes

Specialized Hardware

Boston-style cocktail shaker
Alton Brown's Margarita Recipe
ACTIVE TIME: 10 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 10 minutes
Yield: 1 cocktail


  • Pour 1/2 fluid ounce of the tequila into a small saucer. Spread the kosher salt in a separate small saucer. Dip the rim of a wide-rimmed glass into the tequila. Lift out of the tequila and hold upside down for 10 seconds to allow for slight evaporation. Next, dip the glass into the salt to coat the rim. Set aside.
  • Halve the lime. Cut a thin slice for garnish and set aside. Juice lime and orange into a measuring cup through a sieve. You should end up with approximately 2 fluid ounces of juice.
  • Pour juice into a Boston-style cocktail shaker, add the agave and remaining 1 1/2 fluid ounces of tequila and any remaining on the saucer. Add the ice to the shaker, cover, and shake for 30 seconds. Strain the mixture through a cocktail strainer into the prepared glass, garnish with reserved lime slice, and serve immediately.
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