5 Min Cranberry Orange Margarita: Festive Holiday Cocktail!

Take an ordinary cocktail and turn it into something a little more festive with this cranberry orange margarita! The red hues from the cranberries are perfect for fall and winter, and the flavor combination is a classic for a reason. I love serving this up when entertaining because it’s so easy too!

cranberry orange margarita cocktail recipe dinners done quick featured image

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

In just a few minutes, you have a simple yet delicious cocktail! This cranberry orange margarita is a twist on the classic that’s perfect for fall and winter, from Thanksgiving to Christmas, and more!

Since a traditional margarita already has orange liquor in it, it’s the perfect fit for this festive twist. Add some cranberry juice for a little tartness and gorgeous color and you’ve got an impressive drink worthy of company.

I also love margaritas because they’re easy to scale up, so go ahead and make a pitcher and take the stress off! Even if you make them one at a time, they’re still incredibly quick and convenient (perfect for surprise visitors)!

cranberry orange margarita against a black background with pine needles and holly

Ingredients List

ingredients to make cranberry orange margarita
  • 1 Β½ ounces tequila (blanco or silver)
  • 3 ounces 100% cranberry juice (such as Ocean Spray)
  • Β½ ounce orange juice
  • Β½ ounce triple sec (or another orange liquor)
  • 1 Tbsp simple syrup (or more to taste) 
  • Β½ ounce fresh lemon or lime juice (I use lemon)

Optional Rim:

  • Orange wedge (or orange juice)
  • Granulated sugar (or sea salt, or a mix of both)

Pitcher (Batch) Recipe (serves 5-6):

  • 1 Β½ cups tequila
  • 2 Β½ cups cranberry juice
  • Β½ cup orange juice
  • Β½ cup triple sec
  • ΒΌ cup lemon juice
  • ΒΌ cup simple syrup

Ingredient Tips and Substitutions

  • You can use cranberry cocktail instead of the 100% cranberry juice but should omit the simple syrup if you do. For a sweeter cocktail when using the 100% juice, you can reduce to 2 ounces if preferred (it will be slightly more orange-forward)
  • In place of the triple sec, you can use Cointreau, or any other orange-flavored liquor
  • The simple syrup can be swapped for honey, agave, or maple syrup if you prefer a natural sweetener
  • Garnish options include cranberries (I like frozen to cool the drink), sugared cranberries, orange slices or twists, or a sprig of fresh rosemary

Step By Step Instructions

  1. (Optional) If you’d like to rim your glass, place the sugar on a plate (or similar flat surface). Run an orange wedge around the outside of the rim to wet it (or dip it in orange juice). Then, dip the wetted glass into the sugar to create a rim
rim the glass of your cranberry orange margarita with sugar
  1. In a shaker (or mason jar) combine the tequila, cranberry juice, orange juice, triple sec, lemon juice, and simple syrup, along with a few ice cubes
combine tequila, cranberry juice, orange juice, triple sec, lemon juice, and simple syrup in a shaker
  1. Shake for 30 seconds, until cold and well mixed, then strain into a margarita glass filled with ice
shake and strain cranberry orange margarita into a glass with ice
  1. Garnish with fresh or frozen cranberries and a slice of orange if desired, and enjoy!
overhead view of cranberry orange margarita with a slice of fresh orange

More Fall and Winter Margarita Flavor Variations

Recipe FAQs

Are There Non-Alcoholic Versions of This Margarita?

Absolutely! To make a mocktail version of this margarita, simply omit the alcohol and adjust with extra cranberry or orange juice.

You can also use cranberry or orange sparkling water for a fun twist!

How Can I Make This Margarita Less Sweet?

Decrease the added sweetener, make sure to use unsweetened cranberry juice, or add more lemon juice to make this margarita less sweet.

This drink is not overly sweet, thanks to the citrus and tart cranberry juices present.

Can I Prepare a Large Batch for a Party?

Certainly, scale the ingredients accordingly and mix in a larger container. Store in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours.

Give it a stir, and then pour over ice into individual glasses when ready to serve.

Are There Any Garnish Recommendations for This Cocktail?

Garnish with a slice of orange, sprig of rosemary, or a few cranberries for a festive touch.

Frozen cranberries are a great option to reduce the amount of ice needed, resulting in less drink solution.

Can I Prepare This Margarita Ahead of Time?

Yes, you can pre-mix without ice and store it in the refrigerator until serving, then add ice when ready.

Due to the fruit juices in this recipe, I generally only recommend making it 24 hours in advance at the most.

Recipe Pro Tips

  • For a frozen version of the cranberry orange margarita, place all the ingredients (including ice cubes) into a blender and blend on high until a slushy consistency is reached. Then, pour into your glass, garnish, and enjoy!
  • If you are squeezing your own citrus for juice, I’ve found that 1 medium lemon nets approximately 2 ounces of juice, and one lime generally gives me about 1 ounce of juice, as a guideline to assist in how many to get if you plan to scale the recipe. Of course, this will vary based on the variety of the fruit and the season (so I always get one extra to be safe)!
cranberry orange margarita christmas and holiday cocktail surrounded by festive winter decorations

Storage and Serving Tips

  • Glassware. Recommended glasses are margarita glasses (stemless or traditional), mason jars, stemless wine glasses, or even an etched whiskey glass
  • To make a larger batch, follow the pitcher directions, adjusting the sweetness to taste. You can mix your margaritas in a pitcher up to 24 hours in advance (I typically don’t do more due to the fruit juices). Then, simply add ice to individual glasses and pour to serve!

More Recipes Featuring Cranberry Flavor

Final Thoughts

This cranberry orange margarita is the perfect choice for holiday entertaining! It fits in equally well at Thanksgiving and Christmas!

With just 6 ingredients and about 5 minutes to throw together, it’s a simple recipe that’s still big on flavor. Plus, the red color adds a festive touch that really ties things together.

It’s one of my favorite options to serve up for the myriad of guests I end up with during the fall and winter, but honestly it’s great any time of year if you enjoy this flavor combination.

If you’re looking for brunch options around this time as well, make sure to check out my Pomegranate Mimosa and my Peppermint Bark Mimosa for some great choices!

cranberry orange margarita cocktail recipe dinners done quick featured image

Easy Cranberry Orange Margarita Recipe

Just 6 ingredients and 5 minutes is all it takes to make this easy cranberry orange margarita. The flavors are perfect for fall and winter, including Thanksgiving and Christmas!
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Course Drinks
Cuisine American, Vegetarian
Servings 1
Calories 221 kcal

Equipment

Ingredients
  

  • 1 Β½ Ounces tequila (blanco or silver)
  • 3 Ounces 100% cranberry juice (such as Ocean Spray)
  • Β½ Ounce orange juice
  • Β½ Ounce triple sec (or another orange liquor)
  • 1 Tbsp simple syrup (or to taste)
  • Β½ Ounce fresh lemon or lime juice (I use lemon)
  • Ice cubes

Optional Rim

  • 1 Wedge fresh orange
  • 2-3 Tbsp granulated sugar (or sea salt, or a mix)

Instructions
 

  • (Optional) If you’d like to rim your glass, place the sugar on a plate (or similar flat surface). Run an orange wedge around the outside of the rim to wet it (or dip it in orange juice). Then, dip the wetted glass into the sugar to create a rim
    1 Wedge fresh orange, 2-3 Tbsp granulated sugar
  • In a shaker (or mason jar) combine the tequila, cranberry juice, orange juice, triple sec, lemon juice, and simple syrup, along with a few ice cubes
    1 Β½ Ounces tequila, 3 Ounces 100% cranberry juice, Β½ Ounce orange juice, Β½ Ounce triple sec, 1 Tbsp simple syrup, Β½ Ounce fresh lemon or lime juice, Ice cubes
  • Shake for 30 seconds, until cold and well mixed, then strain into a margarita glass filled with ice
  • Garnish with fresh or frozen cranberries and a slice of orange if desired, and enjoy!

Notes

  • You can use cranberry cocktail instead of the 100% cranberry juice but should omit the simple syrup if you do. For a sweeter cocktail when using the 100% juice, you can reduce to 2 ounces if preferred (it will be slightly more orange-forward)
  • In place of the triple sec, you can use Cointreau, or any other orange-flavored liquor
  • The simple syrup can be swapped for honey, agave, or maple syrup if you prefer a natural sweetener
  • Garnish options include cranberries, sugared cranberries, orange slices or twists, or a sprig of fresh rosemary
  • For a frozen version of the cranberry orange margarita, place all the ingredients (including ice cubes) into a blender and blend on high until a slushy consistency is reached. Then, pour into your glass, garnish, and enjoy!
  • You can mix your margaritas in a pitcher up to 24 hours in advance (I typically don’t do more due to the fruit juices). Then, simply add ice to individual glasses and pour to serve!
  • Exact nutritional values will vary based on brand and flavor of ingredients, any garnishes or rims added, and actual quantity consumed, so please consider this a guideline only

Nutrition

Serving: 210gCalories: 221kcalCarbohydrates: 32gProtein: 1gFat: 0.2gSodium: 3.5mgPotassium: 120mgFiber: 0.2gSugar: 31gVitamin A: 11.5IUVitamin C: 22.1mgCalcium: 11mgIron: 0.3mg
Keyword christmas cranberry orange margarita, cranberry orange cocktails, cranberry orange lime cocktail, cranberry orange margarita, fall cocktails, festive margarita blends, holiday mixed drinks, ocean spray cranberry orange margarita, tequila mixed drinks, winter cocktails, winter margarita flavors
Tried this recipe?Mention @TheDinnersDoneQuick or tag #dinnersdonequick!
cranberry orange margarita cocktail recipe dinners done quick pinterest
Katie Vine