Holiday Spiced Cranberry Margaritas.
Spices, cranberries and a festively garnished glass make these margaritas perfect for the fall and winter holidays. Who doesn't love a holiday margarita? Who doesn't love margaritas?
So festive and sparkly!! These are great to sip on while at home watching holiday movies and wrapping presents as well as serving at a holiday party. I love a margarita anytime of the year, and they are so versatile to make in any kind of flavor or combination for any holiday or occasion. I love using tropical flavors in margaritas in summertime as well as spices and seasonal fruits and juices in the fall and winter. The possibilities really are endless.
For the green sugar rum I dipped the glasses in simple syrup ( you can use the sugar water you use for the sparkling cranberries) and dip in the sugar. I got the green sugar from the baking aisle of a craft store. Lots of fun holiday colored sugars this time of year.
The sparkling sugared cranberries are a must for these cocktails as well as the green sugar rim.
Sugared cranberries are so easy to make and are great as a snack, a decoration on cakes and as a cocktail garnish.
For the cranberries all you need to do is dissolve sugar in simmering water, let cool completely. Add the cranberries, cover the pan or bowl and let sit in the sugar water overnight in the refrigerator. The next day drain off all the sugar water then toss the cranberries in a bowl with a 50/50 mixture of super fine caster sugar and regular granulated sugar. Let dry on a baking sheet, if there are any spots on the cranberries without sugar, roll in the sugar again. Let dry completely before using. See? Easy peasy
One of my favorite ways to customize any cocktail is with a flavored simple syrup. These can really elevate cocktails to a whole new level and really couldn't be easier to make. Simple syrups are most often a 1:1 ratio of sugar to water. You can go stronger with a 1.5:1 sugar to water if you like. I stick with 1:1 and add in items such as fruit, herbs, aromatics like ginger or lemongrass, spices like cinnamon sticks to steep flavor into the syrups. The best part about making your own simple syrups is you can make them however you like, cheaper than store bought and they last a few weeks kept in the refrigerator for more cocktails. I even use them in mock-tails, a little flavored simple syrup and soda water. So good.
For the tequila in these cocktails I use Altos silver. I prefer silver tequilas with fruit juices, but you can use what you like. I also like using Patron Citronage in place of cointreau, but you can use that if you like or if you are feeling extra fancy go with some Grand Marnier.
A few notes about this holiday spiced cranberry margaritas recipe first:
- Make the sparkling sugared cranberries and the spiced cranberry simple syrup ahead of time. This will save time the day of serving the drinks
- Use sweetened cranberry juice, you can use 100% cranberry or a cranberry juice blend if you like
- This recipe makes 4 cocktails but can be easily multiplied to make a pitcher
Holiday Spiced Cranberry Margaritas
For the Margaritas
- 4 Tsbp Spiced Cranberry Simple Syrup
- ¾ cup Silver Tequila I love using Altos Tequila
- ½ cup Patron Citronage or Grand Marnier can also use Cointreau
- ¾ cup Cranberry juice
- 4 tablespoon Lime juice
- Cinnamon Sticks
- Sugared Cranberries see notes
- Extra simple syrup and green sugar for rimming glasses
For the Spiced Cranberry Simple Syrup
- 1 cup water
- 1 ¼ c sugar
- 2 tablespoon whole allspice
- 2 tablespoon whole cloves
- 4 cinnamon sticks
- One 2” fresh nob of ginger peeled and sliced
- 2 c fresh cranberries rinsed
For the simple syrup
- Combine all the ingredients in a saucepan and stir over low heat until the sugar is dissolved. Raise heat and simmer the mixture for about 5-6 minutes or until the cranberries start to split. Once most have split remove the pan from the heat and cover with a lid. Let sit for 2 hours for the flavors to infuse. After the two hours strain the mixture into a jar using a mesh strainer, pressing the mixture against the strainer to extract all of the flavor. Keep in a resealable container and chill completely until ready to use.
For the Margaritas
- Dip the rim of the glasses in a shallow bowl of simple syrup and then immediately into a shallow bowl of green sanding sugar. Let dry completely. Once dry fill the glasses with ice. In a cocktail shaker with ice add 4 tablespoon of the spiced cranberry simple syrup, the tequila, orange liqueur, cranberry and lime juice. Cover and shake well then strain into the 4 glasses. Taste and add more simple syrup if desired. Garnish with cinnamon sticks and sugared cranberry skewers.