Cadillac Margarita

Step up your margarita game with the Cadillac Margarita: it uses top-shelf tequila and Grand Marnier liqueur to add sophistication and style!

Cadillac margarita

Want a fun spin on the margarita? Try a Cadillac Margarita! As the name implies, this is a sophisticated version of the margarita. Float Grand Marnier on top of your classic margarita and you’ve got the Cadillac. It has a nuanced flavor that will make everyone say, “Wow! What’s in this?” It’s a great way to step up your cocktail game with very little effort. (Another fun spin: the Italian margarita.) Here’s how to make it!

What’s a Cadillac margarita?

A Cadillac margarita is similar to a classic margarita, but it uses premium ingredients: best quality tequila and Grand Marnier. Cointreau is the standard orange liqueur in margaritas, so adding the more nuanced, sophisticated Grand Marnier flavor takes it over the top. Here are the ingredients you’ll use:

  • Grand Marnier
  • Tequila (best quality or aged)
  • Cointreau
  • Lime juice

You’ll pour the Grand Marnier right onto the other ingredients so that it “floats” on top. You’ll notice that this Grand Marnier margarita has no added sugar! No, a margarita doesn’t need to be sickly sweet. This one is perfectly balanced–and pretty irresistible.

Cadillac margarita

All about Grand Marnier

What’s Grand Marnier? It’s a French liqueur that blends Cognac, bitter orange, and sugar. The bottle you’ll typically see is actually called Cordon Rouge: that’s the Grand Marnier brand’s most popular product. Grand Marnier can also be used as a generic term for orange liqueur. (Yes, it’s confusing.)

What does Grand Marnier taste like? You’ll taste bitter orange and brandy, and then backend notes of vanilla and oak. (Source.) Yes, it’s fancy!

Grand Marnier

Use tequila reposado for a Cadillac margarita!

Most standard margarita recipes use tequila blanco (or “new” tequila) has only been aged less than 2 months and has a strong flavor. But for the Cadillac margarita, you’ll want to use a high quality tequila reposado.

Tequila reposado is aged longer, at least 2 months. We like how it gives the drink a more nuanced undertone. Try to find a mid-price range tequila reposado. You don’t want to be making this drink with the cheap stuff!

How to make a cadillac margarita

How to make a salt rim

As with any margarita, this Cadillac Margarita is best served with a salt rim! The best type of salt to use for a salt rim is kosher salt or flaky sea salt: they have a nice chunky texture. For a festive look, you can also try our colorful Best Margarita Salt — the orange and lime zest makes the glass look beautiful. Here are our tips to making the perfect rim:

  1. Spread the salt on a plate in an even layer.
  2. Take a lime wedge and cut a notch in the middle: then slide it around the rim of the glass. This perfectly moistens the glass rim without having to use your fingers!
  3. To rim the glass, you’ll want the salt on the outside of the glass only, not the inside where it can fall into the drink. To do this, tilt the glass so that only the outside edge goes into the salt.
  4. Shake off any loose salt into the sink.
Cadillac margarita

When to serve a Cadillac margarita

The Cadillac margarita is a sophisticated, premium margarita! It’s perfect for sipping as a:

  • Happy hour drink
  • Dinner party drink
  • Late night drinks drink
  • Guys or girls night drink
  • Cocktail hour drink
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Cadillac margarita

Cadillac Margarita

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  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 1 1x


Step up your margarita game with the Cadillac Margarita: it uses top-shelf tequila and Grand Marnier liqueur to add sophistication and style!



  • 3 tablespoons (1 1/2 ounces) best quality tequila reposado
  • 2 tablespoons (1 ounce) Cointreau
  • 2 tablespoons (1 ounce) fresh lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons (1 ounce) Grand Marnier
  • Kosher salt or flaky sea salt, for the rim
  • For the garnish: Lime wedge


  1. Cut a notch in a lime wedge, then run the lime around the rim of a glass. Dip the edge of the rim into a plate of flaky sea salt (or for a festive look, use our Margarita Salt).
  2. Place tequila, Cointreau and lime juice in a mixing glass and fill with ice. Stir until cold.
  3. Strain the margarita into the glass with the salted rim. Then carefully pour the Grand Marnier onto the top of the drink over an inverted spoon (float it!). Serve immediately.

  • Category: Drink
  • Method: Stirred
  • Cuisine: Cocktail

Keywords: Cadillac Margarita

More great cocktails

This Cadillac Margarita is a knock-out classic! Here are a few more of our refreshing great classic cocktails you might also enjoy:

  • Classic Mojito Here’s a classic mojito recipe, perfectly balanced with lime, rum and fresh mint! This iconic Cuban cocktail is refreshing and just sweet enough.
  • Paloma Cousin of the classic margarita, this easy Mexican cocktail recipe features tequila with grapefruit instead of lime! 
  • Gin and Tonic Here are the keys to the very best gin and tonic, the most refreshing 2-ingredient cocktail! A few secrets take this crisp, botanical drink over the top.
  • Southside Fizz The Southside Fizz is a refreshing cocktail made with mint, lemon, lime, and gin: Tom Collins + a mojito! Top it off with soda water for a sparkle.
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About the Authors

Sonja Overhiser

Cookbook Author and writer

Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.

Alex Overhiser

Cookbook Author and photographer

Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.

1 Comment

  • Reply
    April 11, 2020 at 5:48 pm

    Great drink recipe. I personally like it over rocks, but just my preference.

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