The Skinny Margarita

by Shawnda on August 10, 2012

in Cinco de Mayo,Citrus,Lime,Margaritas,Mexican & TexMex

Skinnier Margarita

It’s Friday! And we’re feeling even more celebratory than usual because this morning I got dressed and then immediately took my jeans off.

Without unbuttoning them.

Over the last few months, I’ve been “running,” which is code for “mostly walking between weeks-long hamstring problems” and keeping an eye on calories in vs calories out. Such a rude awakening the first time I punched my daily calories into my phone and saw just how terrible those weekend margaritas actually were. I mean I knew they weren’t great… but times 3? Ouch.

A single lime margarita was an empty calorie bomb with 300+ calories and nearly 40g of sugar. Per glass. And, um, let’s be honest here. I’m pretty sure that I’ve never stopped at just one margarita.


Skinnier Margarita

Sure, they’re completely fresh and so much better tasting than any mix you’ll ever find but it is a lot of sugar for something that isn’t frosting. Or doesn’t have frosting on it.

And in it.

So we set out to make a skinny margarita by replacing the sugar in the homemade mix with liquid stevia* and the orange liqueur in the margarita with fresh orange juice. How does that stack up in numbers?

Original Margarita Skinnier Margarita
Calories 311 118.4
Sugar 36.9g 1.0g

But more importantly, how does it stack up in taste? The skinnier margarita is refreshing, citrusy, and really easy to drink. The orange flavor is brighter and sweetness can easily be adjusted with a couple extra drops of stevia per glass (and I find that it usually needs a couple extra drops but the standard serving amounts are listed below).

And even two of them won’t break your calorie bank or undo all the good you did in the gym earlier today. It’s also a paleo diet friendly if you, like me, have a margarita-loving paleo-following friend.

Skinny Margarita

Save the calories and sugar - this margarita is fresh, homemade, lower-carb, and much skinnier than the original. And bonus! It's Paleo-friendly!


  • 1 cup lime juice
  • 1 cup water
  • 20 drops liquid stevia
  • 6 oz tequila
  • 2 oz fresh-squeezed orange juice
  • Ice
  • Salt for glass rim (optional)


  1. To make a pitcher of margaritas, stir all ingredients together and taste for sweetness.
  2. Add additional stevia, if desired.
  3. Serve over ice in salt-rimmed glasses.


Yields: 4 servings

Source: Confections of a Foodie Bride

Estimated time: 10 minutes

*Stevia, agave, and other not-real-sugar sweeteners are either the greatest thing on earth or they’ll kill you, just depends on what you’re reading. Use your preferred not-sugar-sweetener and tweak the recipe to your tastes.


{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Ann P. August 10, 2012 at 1:47 am

AWESOME!! Props to you for being so pro-active about your health! You’ve made it easy for us to get our margarita fix without the added guilt! Now the only thing left is to find out where they sell liquid stevia… :)


2 Laura August 10, 2012 at 5:57 am

I need to give Stevia a try…


3 Erin @ Dinners, Dishes and Desserts August 10, 2012 at 10:24 am

I LOVE margaritas, but they have so many calories. I love this alternative, and that it still tastes good is key!
Congrats on not unbuttoning your jeans – that is Awesome!


4 Jill August 10, 2012 at 10:59 am

I’m hoping by the time someone figures out fake sweeteners will kill me, I will be too old to care :) Can’t wait to try this margarita recipe. Regular ones have been killing my calorie intake.


5 Kelsey August 10, 2012 at 3:48 pm

Congratulations, Shawnda! What a serious accomplishment! These margaritas looks like a great adaptation to those love you/hate you calorie bomb margs.


6 Chung-Ah | Damn Delicious August 10, 2012 at 4:08 pm

This is just what I need tonight! And a skinny version is even better – my skinny jeans are getting to be a bit too tight these days!


7 Patti T. August 10, 2012 at 7:15 pm

I have the packets of stevia, I am guessing this would work in this recipe. Great idea to slim down these cocktails. Congratulations on your accomplishment with your jean situation.


8 Amy @ The Nifty Foodie August 11, 2012 at 9:51 am

You GO girl! I’m counting calories too…it really is crazy how many calories you can eat (drink) when you don’t think about it!

Thanks for sharing this recipe though…I really miss my ‘ritas!


9 holly August 11, 2012 at 10:08 pm

just a quick question, where do you buy liquid stevia?


10 foodiebride August 12, 2012 at 7:45 am

It’s on the health/”natural” food aisle at my store, next to the supplements.


11 Tina @ mylifeasamrs August 12, 2012 at 9:07 am

CANNOT wait to try these!!!! :)


12 Joanne August 12, 2012 at 7:15 pm

I tend to avoid margaritas when out because usually they are calorie bombs that aren’t even that good! I’d totally rather have this skinnier version!

And YAY on the pants situation! Or lack thereof. :)


13 Liz Parker August 13, 2012 at 11:27 am

This is exciting! We just finished off our last pitcher of regular margaritas and now I will make this skinny version. Congrats on the weight-loss, too. YAY!!


14 Deborah Jones May 5, 2013 at 1:07 pm

I would like to see info that says stevia,will kill you.


15 trev May 22, 2014 at 2:35 pm

Is there a way to make this with fresh stavia leaves from my garden?


16 Shawnda May 23, 2014 at 8:22 am

Sure. Have you tried making homemade liquid stevia with them? That would be the most direct substitute for the recipe – just add it to taste.


17 Dawn June 11, 2014 at 9:59 pm

What kind of lime juice? fresh squeezed? bottled? what do you suggest?


18 Shawnda June 12, 2014 at 8:21 am

Always fresh.


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