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Cranberry Sauce Margarita

Nathan Congleton / TODAY
Prep Time:
5 mins

Chef notes

Tart cranberry sauce and a cinnamon sugar rim add a fall twist to the classic margarita cocktail. Note that this recipe works best with jammy or whole-berry cranberry sauces — not the jellied variety.

When entertaining, you can multiply the cocktail into a larger batch and keep chilled in a pitcher without ice until it’s time to serve. You can also make the cinnamon sugar for the rim a few days in advance so everything is ready to go when your guests arrive.

Technique tips: When shaking this (or any!) cocktail, the trick is to shake until the cocktail shaker is fully frosted. Always use metal cocktail shakers, which are more effective than glass or plastic shakers.

Swap options: For a nonalcoholic version, swap cranberry juice for the tequila and orange juice for the Cointreau, then top off with some citrus seltzer for a sparkling sip everyone can enjoy. If you don't have triple sec, you can use orange juice.


  • 2 tablespoons granulated white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/3 cup whole-berry cranberry sauce, store-bought or homemade
  • 1/4 cup white or reposado tequila
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon triple sec
  • whole fresh or sugared cranberries on a skewer and orange twist, for garnish (optional)


Whisk sugar and cinnamon together. Rub lip of a cocktail glass with a lime or orange wedge and dip into sugar mixture. Fill with ice.

Combine cranberry sauce, tequila, lime juice and triple sec in a large cocktail shaker. Fill with ice, cover and shake vigorously until the outside of the shaker is frosty. Strain into prepared cocktail glass and, if desired, garnish with cranberry skewer and orange twist.