Your impossibly chic BFF (the one with all the good shoes) and your crazy, party-all-night cousin (the one who never fails to get you in trouble in the best possible way) teamed up to make a cocktail, and it’s this St. Germain Margarita.
A light and bright margarita recipe made with the St. Germain, an elderflower liqueur, this easy twist on a classic margarita is lightly floral and fabulously refreshing.
And, as you will realize after your second round, (hear me now—there is no stopping at just one of these dreamy drinks), they are deceptively strong too.
What is St. Germain?
St. Germain is one of my absolute favorite cocktail additions. If you’ve never had it, it’s pleasantly sweet (though not excessively so), floral, and surprisingly versatile.
I’m loathe to buy an entire bottle of fancy liqueur for a single cocktail recipe, which is another reason I adore St. Germain. Because it’s not too sweet and its flavor blends beautifully with a wide range of other ingredients, I find myself pulling it out again and again.
Here are a few of my favorite ways to use it:
- Today’s St. Germain Margarita (YES!)
- This Cranberry St. Germain Cocktail (a twist on a cosmo that’s a special favorite at the holidays)
- This DIVINE sparkling St. Germain Cocktail with Champagne, gin (or vodka), and lemon that tastes like an even better French 75.
- Topped with bubbly (put a teaspoon or so of St. Germain in the bottom of your champagne glass, then top with Prosecco, champagne, or any other dry sparkling wine). I also like to add a squirt of lemon
And of course, St. Germain Margaritas!
The idea of an elderflower margarita came to me a few weeks ago when I was craving a Skinny Margarita (are margarita cravings a thing in your life too?), then realized that I didn’t have any agave on hand. I could have made a batch of simple syrup to replace it, but that takes time and, hello, I was thirsty. The margarita could not wait.
I opened our liquor cabinet (<—doesn’t it it sound fancy when I call it that? Between friends, it’s probably supposed to be a dish cupboard, but filling it with tequila is more exciting) to survey the options and spied the bottle of St. Germain.
Since St. Germain is sweet, I decided to see if I could make a margarita using it in place of simple syrup or agave.
The combo turned out exceptionally well balanced. The subtle floral undertones of the St. Germain paired beautifully with the citrusy lime, and the tequila gave the St. Germain cocktail just the right amount of backbone. (Another unexpectedly delicious margarita variation: an Italian Margarita!)
Like so many wonderful ideas, it turns out that my tequila St. Germain recipe is not the first St. Germain margarita to hit the menu. I found a few similar drinks online, the most common being a cocktail called the St. Rita. Here’s how to make it, and few other recipe variations too.
After all, now that I’ve convinced you to buy that bottle of St. Germain, I know you are going to want to use it to its fullest…or should I say, it’s emptiest.
- St. Rita Cocktail: Mix equal parts tequila and St. Germain; omit the lime juice and garnish with a lime wedge instead.
- St. Germain Mint Margarita: Muddle fresh mint leaves in the bottom of the cocktail shaker, then follow recipe below. Garnish with fresh mint.
- Elderflower Cucumber Margarita: Swap 1 ounce of the lime juice for 1 ounce cucumber juice (from a peeled, seeded, and pureed cucumber). Muddle cucumber in the bottom of the cocktail shaker. Garnish with a cucumber wedge.
- Tequila, St. Germain, Grapefruit: Use grapefruit juice in place of the lime juice.
Recommended Cocktail Tools
- Cocktail shaker
- Citrus press (life changing!)
- Etched serving glasses
St. Germain Margarita
- 2 1/2 ounces blanco tequila
- 2 ounces freshly squeezed lime juice about 1 small/medium lime
- 1 1/2 ounces St. Germain liqueur
- Kosher salt or margarita salt for rim
- Additional lime wedges for rim and garnish
- Ice cubes
- Rim the glass (optional): Pour a thin layer of salt onto a small plate. Rub a lime wedge around the top edge of each glass to moisten it, then dip the glass into the salt so that it sticks, tapping all the way around. Fill the glass with ice and set aside.
- Fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Add the tequila, lime juice, and St. Germain. Cover and shake vigorously for 30 full seconds (it's longer than you think). Strain into your glass and garnish with a lime wedge. Enjoy immediately.
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From an ex-bartender. Save the largest bottle you can find. Wine bottles are great. Make sure it fits in your fridge. You will store it in the back of fridge.
Make your Simple Syrup and put in a bottle with a cap. This stuff will last for weeks. It’s Happy Hour! Barb
CHEERS Barb! Thanks for the tip and happy Friday!
Erin thank you for this recipe. I’m always lookjng for a new twist on margaritas. You are singing my song. Hahaha! Nice tip about the simple syrup from Barbara. As a quick alternative to simple syrup, honey is a great quick substitution. When I get lazy and do not want to make the simple syrup, I use honey instead. It is better for you and serves the same purpose. Erin, I noticed that you mentioned a cucumber margarita in this post. If you like cucumber flavored cocktails, there is a gin that is made with cucumber and has a mild flavor to it that is really good. I am not mentioning the brand because I am not sure if that is okay. It is great in cosmos too and neat.
Thank you so much for all of the tips Kristen. I really appreciate it. Cheers!
Cheers to this FABULOUS margarita! Sounds delish
Wish we were splitting a pitcher! CHEERS!
Um, yes please! I love St. Germain and am super excited to try out this recipe. Thanks for the cocktail posts. I’m always looking for ways to add some variety to one of my favorite pastimes. :)
An excellent alternative to the classic recipe!
I’m so happy that you enjoyed it! Thank you for sharing this kind review!
Absolutely delicious! Refreshingly light tasting , guests loved it. Sometimes margaritas can taste too sour, this was perfect,much loved by my Mexican M I L
Hi D! So glad you enjoyed the recipe! Thank you for this kind review!
Way, way too much lime IMHO. My 2nd try at this one included 1 tbs lime, not 4 oz.
I’m sorry to hear it wasn’t a hit for you, Warren. Many others have tried it and enjoyed it, but I know everyone has different tastes. I truly wish you would’ve enjoyed it!
I’m not a huge St. Germaine guy but had a large bottle sitting in my cabinet, so I gave this a try. I found it surprisingly delightful and well balanced. I would happily make it again. I did substitute Tajin seasoning for straight salt on the rim, which seemed to compliment the elderflower. Thanks!
Hi Wyatt! So glad you enjoyed the recipe! Thank you for this kind review!
This was so delicious that I’ve been craving it for a whole week since I mixed it up! I love that this recipe doesn’t skimp on the lime juice for a tart, refreshing summery flavor. I did find that it needed about a half oz to 1 oz of triple sec to really meet the mark for my preference. The St. Germain plays well with the floral/citrus palette. Can’t wait for next weekend to make it again!
Hi Angie! So glad you enjoyed the recipe! Thank you for this kind review!