Golden barbecued margaritas

Not yet rated

A rich, golden margarita cocktail recipe made with barbecued lemon and lime, honey and lashings of tequila. Very strong and concentrated, it has tang from added raw citrus and smokiness from the grilled fruit.

First published in 2015

This cocktail uses barbecued fruit as a base to add char-grilled flavour and smokiness to this tart, flavourful mix. More information on this technique can be found in my guide to smoked and barbecued cocktails which includes more recipes and smoking tips.

A golden, char-grilled, very inauthentic version of the queen of cocktails, the margarita. The tequila and lime are the same, but there the similarity ends. The rich colour comes from the tequila, honey and seared, blackened citrus.

Using both raw and barbecued lemon and lime, the contrasting flavours of zingy, tart, fresh citrus as well as caramelised, cooked fruit are present. The drink is sweet, tart, smoky and boozy.

There may be some charred flecks from the citrus in the drink, even after straining –this will serve to emphasise the barbecued element! To further enhance the smokiness, consider using a smoked cocktail glass as well.

This cocktail is very tangy and concentrated, like a true margarita. To lighten it a little, add a splash of natural tonic water before garnishing.




  • 1 lemon
  • 1 lime
  • 2 tsp honey
  • 60ml of tequila, gold
  • tonic water, (optional)
  • 1 slice of lemon, thin, cut in half (for garnish)


Cut the lemon in half. Set one half aside and slice the other half into 1cm slices, discarding the final end slice. Repeat with the lime. Lightly oil the grill and barbecue the lemon and lime slices over medium heat until the first side is seared with blackened grill marks (about 3 minutes), then flip and cook the other side (about 2 minutes). Set aside
Chill the glasses by filling with ice while you make the cocktails
Mix the honey with a splash of hot water to loosen and add to a cocktail shaker. Roughly chop the citrus slices and add to the cocktail shaker with the tequila. Squeeze the reserved lemon and lime halves into the shaker
Using a cocktail muddler, crush and mix the fruit until they are thoroughly pressed and mixed. Fill the shaker about three-quarters with ice. Put on the lid and shake until the shaker is very cold and frosted
Remove the ice from the glasses and pour the liquid through a fine meshed strainer into the chilled glasses. As there is a lot of debris in the mixture, particularly the charred parts of the citrus slices, it’s important to use a fine mesh strainer when adding the liquid to the glass
Add a splash of tonic water (if using) before garnishing with half of the thin lemon slice
First published in 2015

Specialising in vegetarian food, Nancy has cooked her way around Europe and now writes full time for publications and her blog, Delicious from Scratch.

Get in touch

Please sign in or register to send a comment to Great British Chefs.