The Devil’s Margarita is one of the most stunning and simple-to-make cocktails. The Devil’s Margarita is surprisingly nuanced for requiring just 4 simple ingredients (plus it’s a great way to use up the last of an open bottle of red wine). Can’t quite picture it? Think of this cocktail as the tequila version of a New York Sour! The base of the cocktail is a simple tequila sour—tequila, lime juice and simple syrup. Once it’s shaken and strained, the drink gets finished with a splash of fruity red wine.


Tequila: we like to use tequila blanco to make this Devil’s Margarita. It’s clean and smooth in flavor. As we always say, the “best” liquor to use in cocktails is one you enjoy. Our go-to tequila is either Cazadores or Don Julio.

Lime Juice: fresh squeezed lime juice is key to a good margarita! To get the most out of your limes, look for limes that have a smooth skin and are slightly soft when squeezed.

Rich Simple Syrup: a rich simple syrup is different from a regular simple syrup in that it’s made with 2 parts sugar to 1 part water (instead of 1:1). The increased amount of sugar makes for a sweeter, thicker syrup which results in a smoother cocktail.

Red Wine: use something fruity and medium bodied such as a ganache, pinot noir, or nebbiolo.

How to Make the Devil’s Margarita

  1. Shake up the base by combining tequila, lime juice and simple syrup.
  2. Strain the cocktail into a coupe glass.
  3. Top with red wine and serve.
layered cocktail in a coupe glass set on a marble platter with a bottle of tequila and a plant set in the background

How to Layer the Red Wine

Topping a cocktail with a red wine float can be tricky. The key is to gently pour the red wine over top instead of just dumping it into the cocktail.

The best method for getting a nice red wine layer is to slowly pour the red wine over the back of a spoon held just above the surface of the cocktail. We also find it’s easier to control the pouring of the wine if we add the wine to a small glass or jigger instead of pouring from the bottle.

What to Serve with the Devil’s Margarita

Serve this fun and festive margarita with a trio of dips! Include our go-to Guacamole RecipeFresh Tomato-Chipotle Salsa, and Salsa Verde.

Give our Korean-Inspired Chicken Nachos a try. They’re always a hit!

Our Chicken Barbacoa is a natural pairing—stuff the shredded chicken into tortillas with all the fixin’s or make burritos, nachos or quesadillas.

Planning and appetizer spread? Make our Mexican Pinwheels.

More Tequila Cocktails to Try

Our Mezcal Margarita is the perfect balance of smoky and tart.

If you love our Mezcal Margarita, try our Spicy Mezcal Margarita—flavored with pineapple, cilantro and jalapeno.

Or keep it classic with a Tommy’s Margarita. You only need 3 ingredients—tequila, lime and agave!

When apples and apple cider is in season, try our Apple Cider Margarita!

One of our favorite margaritas is this Italian Margarita. It’s made with a trio of citrus juices and a splash of amaretto. It’s deliciously addictive for sure!

Devil’s Margarita Recipe

5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Category Cocktails / Drinks
Cuisine Mexican Inspired


A sour tequila base gets shaked until chilled, strained into a coupe glass and topped with a fruity red wine float. This is the tequila version of a NY Sour!


  • 1 ½ ounces blanco tequila
  • 1 ounce fresh lime juice
  • ½ ounce rich simple syrup
  • ½–1 ounce fruity red wine


  • Shake 1 ½ ounces tequila, 1 ounce lime juice, and ½ ounce rich simple syrup in a cocktail shaker partially filled with ice until thoroughly chilled, about 15 seconds.
  • Strain into a coupe glass then gently float ½ to 1 ounce red wine on top using the back of a bar spoon.



To make a rich simple syrup: combine ½ cup sugar and ¼ cup water in a small saucepan over medium. Bring to a simmer and cook until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat and let cool completely before using. 
Store simple syrup in a glass container with a tight fitting lid in the refrigerator for up to 1 month.


Like this? Leave a comment below!I love hearing from you and I want to hear how it went with this recipe! Leave a comment and rating below, then share on social media @zestfulkitchen and #zestfulkitchen!
layered cocktail in a coupe glass set on a marble platter with a bottle of tequila and a plant set in the background

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About The Author

Lauren Grant is a professional culinary food scientist, food writer, recipe developer, and food photographer. Lauren is a previous magazine editor and test kitchen developer and has had work published in major national publications including Diabetic Living Magazine, Midwest Living Magazine, Cuisine at Home Magazine,,, and more.

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