Palomas are a classic Mexican cocktail, but margaritas still outrank them in popularity in the United States. This delicious grapefruit Paloma cocktail recipe uses ingredients easily found at the grocery store to craft a refreshing classic cocktail.
Margaritas are my favorite drink and originally stocked tequila in my home bar just for them. But then I learned about other tequila drinks like the Paloma. With its perfect combination of fresh juice and grapefruit flavor, a Paloma has quickly risen to the top of my list of favorite happy hour sips.
- A grapefruit
- A lime
- Silver tequila
- Simple syrup
- Grapefruit soda
How to Make a Paloma Cocktail
Combine tequila, grapefruit juice, simple syrup, and lime juice in a cocktail shaker filled with ice.
Shake it all up. Strain into a tall glass filled with ice cubes. Top with grapefruit soda or sparkling water.
Stir, sip and enjoy!
Garnish with a grapefruit slice or lime wedge.
- Like a margarita, this cocktail is delicious with a salt rim! Run a piece of grapefruit around the rim of your glass and dip it in a small plate of coarse salt or flaky sea salt before you add ice cubes and pour your drink.
- Want a Paloma recipe without grapefruit soda? Simply make this recipe as directed, leaving out the soda and serve it in a rocks glass.
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FAQs and Substitutions
Your favorite blanco tequila (aka silver tequila) is best in this cocktail. I use Jose Cuervo in my drinks because it’s affordable, easily available, and tastes great in this Paloma cocktail.
Yes! This drink has 5 ingredients, and 2 of those are citrus juice. Take the time to squeeze fresh juice. You’ll need about ½ of a grapefruit and ½ of a lime per cocktail.
I love using Jarritos Grapefruit soda in this drink. But I also enjoy a less sweet Paloma and often choose to use grapefruit sparkling water or club soda in this cocktail in place of the grapefruit-flavored soda.
Only in that they both have fresh grapefruit juice. A salty dog has a heavily salted rim and combines gin with grapefruit, whereas most Palomas are served without salt and contain tequila. But if you love one of these cocktails, you should definitely try out the other.