Spicy Paloma Pitcher

Paloma 4

I can’t believe I lived most of my life assuming that tequila was the devil and could only be consumed as an end-of-the-night shot that resulted in a disgusted face and a hangover that I didn’t think I’d ever survive. Paloma’s were probably the first tequila-based cocktail I ever enjoyed, and I ordered it by mistake (thought it was vodka). I woke up the next day and was like, huh…no hangover. What the hell happened? Fast forward to a romantic Mexican getaway where I insisted on ONLY making Paloma’s in our hotel room since they were easy, refreshing, and made me feel like the queen senorita I am. The rest is a tequila soaked history.

I’ve dabbled in different concoctions during this quarantine, but my tried and true Paloma is just so hard to beat. I’m also a spicy fan and crave that lil kick, BUT it’s definitely not required if you’re weak (just kidding. Am I?). This Paloma…is…everything. And better yet, I’m sippin’ on one as I write this and I’m probably inhaling it, so we’ll see how this post turns out…lolol.


The key to flavor for this is to make it like, an hour or more ahead of time so that the peppers can marinate and you get that good kick. All you need is a measuring cup and some cut limes and boom. You’re practically there.

What you’ll need

  • 1 large pitcher.
  • 1 measuring cup.
  • 4 cups of grapefruit juice. You can do fresh grapefruits, but like, why delay time between sober you and boozy you? I try to go for the most natural juice, and not one that’s pumped full of sugar.
  • 2 cups of good tequila. I’ve had a lot of questions on wtf “good tequila” is. If you enjoy tequila, you feel me on this. It’s like if you like wine, but you chose a jug of Carlo Rossi and wondered why you felt so hungover the next day: why would you do that to yourself?? For the novice tequila-drinker: get a blanco, and don’t get Jose Cuervo. That’s all I’m gonna say.
  • 7 limes, juiced. I usually will buy 9-10 limes so I can use some for garnish, or for the guests who want a lil more lime taste. I use a lime/lemon juicer to reduce time.
  • 1/4 cup of sugar. You can omit, but your Paloma will taste healthy. I don’t know how else to describe this, but the little bit of sugar makes it more “inhalable”. It’s a word, chill.
  • 2 serrano peppers, diced, seeds included. You can use jalapenos, but I love how mini the serrano peppers are and they don’t all clunk in your glass when you pour it up. You can omit the seeds if you’re worried about the spice.
  • Sparkling water. This is optional but I’d say necessary. That little bubbly on the top is just so good. I used grapefruit sparkling water from Whole Foods and topped each drink with a generous splash. For 8 drinks, this was roughly 2 cans.

For the salty + sugary rim

  • 1 tablespoon of sugar.
  • 1  tablespoon of salt.
  • 1/4 teaspoon of cayenne.
  • Flat plate + one lime wedge (the soak the rim of your glass so that the spicy rim can stick).

Total Prep Time: <5 minutes

Total Cooking Time: 5 minutes to an hour (depending if you let it all soak in in the fridge).

Servings: 8


  • Set out all your ingredients. Cut limes in half, and dice serrano peppers.
  • Add grapefruit juice, tequila, and sugar together. Squeeze all the limes into the pitcher.
    • If you only have 7 limes, save half of one for the garnish.
    • You also want at least 1 wedge for the spicy rim.
  • Put your serrano peppers into the mix–if you are worried about the spice, keep some of the seeds out.
  • Mix to combine and place in the fridge for at least an hour. If you’re thirsty, I get it. This isn’t a step that’s required but highly recommended.
  • While the mix is soaking in all the flava flav, prepare your rim station: Mix the sugar, salt and cayenne on a flat plate. Set out your glasses and, using a lime wedge, rub along the edge of the glass. Turn your glass upside down on the plate and turn into it gets a nice salty/sugary rim. Set aside.
  • Once your glasses are ready to go, and your pitcher has been in the fridge for an appropriate amount of time, you are ready to serve!
  • Start with a few ice cubes, add your Paloma mixture and leave some room at the top. Add a generous amount of sparkling water (or however much you’d like, you can doctor this as you go). Garnish with a lime wedge and serve immediately!

Paloma 1Paloma 2


  • Three encouraging words of advice: Do the good tequila, let this B sit in the fridge for an hour, and don’t be ashamed if the whole “8 servings” turns into “1 serving” because YOU DESERVE IT.
  • Pair this with literally the best crunchwraps on this planet: Healthier Crunchwrap Supremes
  • This can stay in the fridge for like, 1-2 days. Don’t disappoint me and keep it for longer, you are thirsty and you know it.

Hope you enjoy! If you make it, I wanna hear about it! Tag me on IG @ basickneadss



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