This Italian Margarita recipe is tart, slightly sweet and boozy! Made with a mix of fresh citrus juices, reposado tequila and amaretto liqueur, this amaretto margarita will surprise you!

What is an Italian Margarita?

The Italian Margarita is an Italian take on the classic Mexican cocktail. Traditional margaritas are made with tequila, orange liqueur and lime juice. This version swaps the orange liqueur for almond liqueur, aka Amaretto. It also adds both lemon and orange juice to the fresh lime juice for some added Italian flair. 

Ingredients in an Italian Margarita


To give this Italian Margarita some depth of flavor, we recommend using reposado tequila. It pairs beautifully with the amaretto.

Amaretto Liqueur

Amaretto liqueur is the star of the show here! It’s a sweet almond-flavored liqueur and is key to giving this cocktail it’s Italian twist.

Lime Juice

Every good margarita needs lime juice! We always, always recommend using fresh lime juice.

Orange Juice

We use a splash of orange juice for added sweetness and body. We recommend using fresh squeezed, but bottled will do.

Lemon Juice

A bit of lemon juice gives this even more Italian flavor (just imagine if they were Amalfi lemons!). Like with the other citrus juices, fresh is always best.

italian margarita_for web

How to Make Italian Margaritas 

  1. Rim a rocks glass with salt (or a combination or sugar and salt).
  2. Combine the tequila, amaretto and citrus juices in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Secure the lid and shake vigorously until well-chilled. 
  3. Strain the margarita into a rocks glass filled with ice and garnish with lemon and lime wheels. 

Instead of shaking up margaritas one at a time, you can make two or three at a time. You can also stir up a large batch in a pitcher and simply pour over ice. 

Homemade Sweet and Sour Mix

We find most sweet and sour mixes, whether store-bought or homemade, are just too sweet. A combination of fresh lime, lemon and orange creates a perfectly balanced and very fresh sweet and sour mix.

What is Amaretto Liqueur?

Amaretto is an Italian almond-flavored liqueur that’s infused with a bit of vanilla and lovely burnt sugar flavors. It has a burnt-orange hue and is bittersweet.

Amaretto is thought to have originated in the Italian town, Saronno (just outside Milan). It was originally named Amaretto di Saronno, or “Amaretto from Saronno.” Today there are many brands of amaretto made in a variety of locations however  family-owned DiSaronno remains the best-selling brand .

It’s used in a variety of classic cocktails including the Amaretto Sour, Bird of Paradise, and Mai Tai. Amaretto can be found in most liquor stores next to other Italian Liqueurs.

What’s the Best Tequila to Use for Italian Margaritas?

We recommend using reposado tequila for these Italian Margaritas. Most Reposado tequilas have notes of caramel and warm spices which pair well with the bittersweet almond-flavored Amaretto liqueur.

You can certainly use Anejo if you have that on hand. Blanco will also work, but the cocktail will be lighter and more mild in flavor. 

When it comes to brands of tequila, our go-to in the test kitchen is always Casadores or Don Julio. Casadores is slightly more affordable, but you can’t go wrong with either.

bright yellow cocktail in a rocks glass rimmed with salt and garnished with a lemon sliced and a lime slice

Why This Recipe Works

A combination of citrus juices—lemon, lime and orange—is key to creating a well-balanced Italian Margarita. Tequila, lime and orange are classic margarita flavors while lemon and amaretto pair beautifully and offer that quintessential “Italian” note. 

Additionally, the amaretto an orange juice add just enough sweetness to balance out the tart juices and boozy tequila. 

More Cocktail Recipes to Try

Italian Margarita Recipe

5 from 4 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Yield 1
Category Drinks
Cuisine Italian, Mexican
Author Lauren Grant


An Italian take on the classic margarita made with a trio of citrus juices and amaretto liqueur.


For 1 margarita

  • 2 ounces reposado tequila
  • 1 ounce amaretto liqueur
  • 1 ounce fresh lime juice
  • ½ ounce fresh lemon juice
  • ½ ounce fresh orange juice
  • kosher salt
  • lime slices and lemon slices for serving

For a pitcher (8 margaritas)

  • 2 cups reposado tequila
  • 1 cup amaretto liqueur
  • 1 cup fresh lime juice
  • ½ cup fresh lemon juice
  • ½ fresh orange juice
  • kosher salt
  • lime slices and lemon slices for serving


For 1 margarita

  • Run a lime wedge around rim of rocks glass. Dip rim in kosher salt to coat. Fill glass with ice.
  • Add tequila, amaretto, lime juice, lemon juice and orange juice to a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Secure lid and shake vigorously until thoroughly chilled.
  • Strain margarita into prepared glass. Garnish with lemon and lime wheels.

For a pitcher (8 margaritas)

  • Run a lime wedge around rim of rocks glasses. Dip rims in kosher salt to coat. Fill glass with ice.
  • Combine tequila, amaretto, lime juice, lemon juice and orange juice in a large pitcher. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
  • Stir in ½ cup ice then pour into prepared glasses. Garnish with lemon and lime wheels.


Serving: 1drinkCalories: 215kcalCarbohydrates: 4.5gSodium: 2mgSugar: 1g
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bright yellow cocktail in a rocks glass rimmed with salt and garnished with a lemon sliced and a lime slice

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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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