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Smoky, spicy  Mezcal Margarita Recipe with jalapeno, cilantro and lime… complex and so refreshing – designed for the “grown-up” palate. If you like Scotch, you’ll love this!

Mezcal Margarita w/ jalapeno and cilantro and lime...a refreshing twist! |

I must confess, this Mezcal Margarita has been happening a lot around here lately. Our catering season started off with a bang a few weeks ago, and by the end of the day, all I want to do is get home, put my feet up, sit outside on the patio and sip one of these delicious babies… a Mezcal Margarita with muddled jalapeño, cilantro and fresh lime. So flavorful and refreshing!

To keep this a bit healthier, omit the sugar-based simple syrup and mixer altogether.

Substitute agavemaple syrup or honey syrup for simple syrup and always always always use fresh-squeezed citrus.

Slices of jalapeño give just a bit of heat, and a few sprigs of cilantro add an overall refreshing “green” flavor.

What is Mezcal?

Mezcal, in essence, is a smoky flavored spirit originating from Oaxaca, Mexico, similar to tequila, in that it is made from agave but is processed a little differently. When making Mezcal, the agave hearts, or pinas, are grilled over hot rocks prior to distilling – which imparts a rich, earthy, smoky flavor. It’s more for the grown-up palate – and may not be for everyone, but I personally love it.

Ingredients in Mezcal Margarita:

  • Mezcal
  • fresh limes and an orange (or mandarin, tangerine, grapefruit!)
  • Triple Sec or Orange liquor
  •  Agave, honey syrup, or maple syrup
  • jalapeno (optional)
  • cilantro (optional)
  • Salt for the rim

A delicious "healthier" recipe for Mezcal Margaritas- with fresh limes, jalapeno, and cilantro...smoky, spicy and oh so refreshing! Designed for the "grown up" palate. If you like Scotch, you'll love this.

How to make a Mezcal Margarita:

  • Rub the rim of the glasses with lime, then dip in salt. Fill glasses with ice.
  • Muddle jalapeno and cilantro in a shaker (both optional) and add ice.
  • add mezcal, triple sec, lime juice, orange juice and honey syrup
  • Shake and pour over the ice.
  • Serve with lime.


To change it up a bit, I’ll add either freshly squeezed grapefruit, mandarins, oranges, clementines,  tangerines, or sliced cucumber into the shaker. Here’s the basic recipe, but please, have fun and make it your own.

You also could make fancy flavored salts for the rim. Chile salt, chipotle salt,  smoked salt, mandarin salt, lime salt, … get the idea.

What I love about Mezcal!

Mezcal adds another dimension to margaritas, making them much more complex, and in my opinion, sultry and alluring. If you are a strawberry margarita kind of person, Mezcal will not be for you, but if you like more complex flavors like whiskey or scotch, this is right up your alley!

A delicious "healthier" recipe for Mezcal Margaritas- with fresh limes, jalapeno, and cilantro...smoky, spicy and oh so refreshing! Designed for the "grown up" palate. If you like Scotch, you'll love this. #mezcal #margarita

And yes, Mezcal can a bit of a splurge. Sometimes I’ll use a mix of both reposado tequila and Mezcal,  for just a hint of the smokiness and to help with the budget, especially if pouring for large gatherings.

It’s perfectly fine to substitute a good quality tequila in its place or to even use both, some of each, to cut down on the smokiness.

 Mezcal Margarita w/ jalapeno and cilantro...a refreshing twist! |

Enjoy the cocktail and cheers!!!


Other cocktails you may enjoy!

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Smokey Spicy Mezcal Margarita w/ jalapeno and cilantro...a refreshing twist! |

Mezcal Margarita


A delicious “healthier” recipe for Mezcal Margaritas- with fresh limes, jalapeno, cilantro….smoky, spicy, and oh so refreshing! Designed for the “grown-up” palate. If you like Scotch, you’ll love this.


Units Scale
  • 46 slices of jalapeno
  • a handful of cilantro sprigs (optional)
  • Juice from 2 medium limes, plus extra lime for garnish
  • Juice from 1/2 an orange (optional) or a mandarine or tangerine
  • 3 ounces Mezcal or tequila (6 tablespoons)
  • 1 1/2 ounce triple sec or Orange liquor (3 tablespoons)
  • 1 tablespoon agave, Honey Simple Syrup or maple syrup


  1. Rub the rims of 2 glasses with lime, then dip the rims into a small plate of salt. Fill the glasses with ice.
  2. Place the jalapeño and cilantro into a shaker (Or use a jar with a lid). Muddle.
  3. Add ice to ⅔ full.
  4. Squeeze the limes, and 1/2 an orange into the shaker.
  5. Add the Mezcal, triple sec, and agave.
  6. Shake well and taste- adjusting sweetness and lime. Find the right balance ( for you!).
  7. Pour into the salt-rimmed glasses, over ice, or strained and serve up.
  8. Garnish with a lime slice.
  9. Prepare to melt into your chair.


If using other citrus instead of lime ( like orange, mandarin or grapefruit) you may need less sweetener. If using just limes, you may need more sweetener. So taste it! 🙂

To make a spicy salt rim, mix salt with smoked paprika and chili powder and a pinch of sugar.

2 Tablespoons = one fluid ounce


  • Calories: 255

Keywords: mezcal margarita, mezcal margarita with jalapeño, spicy mezcal margarita, cilantro margarita, spicy margarita recipes, mezcal recipes






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  1. We are staying safe at home and I was wanting my favorite cocktail from my fave restaurant. Since this isn’t possible I thought I’d try the next best thing. I went on the hunt and found your recipe, purchased the necessary ingredients and ohemmmgeee… so delicious. Thanks for the easy to follow directions as well as the pictures! Cheers!

  2. Delicious!! For some reason I have not made many mixed drinks and your recipes have been a great introduction. I used a large hinged mason jar to shake this up and it worked really well. Sylvia, I appreciate the great instructions you provide with your recipes. This was wonderfully refreshing.
    I made your lovely Hibiscus margaritas with ginger and lime too! Without sounding like a lush, I will say I am looking forward to peach season more than ever so I can try the peach sangria recipe!! Thanks for delightful ways to stay cool and embibe!!

  3. This was so good! I made it just like the recipe says and loved it! I’ll definitely be making it again. It’s so fresh tasting.


  5. I love Mezcal-Maragitas… just had some delicious Margaritas with eucalyputs in Copenhagen. Extract of the eucakyptus root… very interesting.

    P.S. Your glasses look much better than the classic glasses. Where are they from?

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Hi, I'm Sylvia!

Chef and author of the whole-foods recipe blog, Feasting at Home, Sylvia Fountaine is a former restaurant owner and caterer turned full-time food blogger. She currently lives in the Pacific Northwest and shares seasonal, healthy recipes along with tips and tricks from her home kitchen.

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