Paloma Tequila Cocktail

Paloma cocktail recipe

The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck

  • Total: 3 mins
  • Prep: 3 mins
  • Cook: 0 mins
  • Serving: 1 serving
  • Yield: 1 cocktail

The paloma is a thirst-quenching tequila cocktail that's very easy to mix up. A favorite drink from Mexico, it is equally popular worldwide and one of the best ways to show off a great tequila. "Paloma" is the Spanish word for "dove," and it's a fitting name for this sparkling grapefruit drink.

Though there are variations, two elements are essential in any paloma recipe: tequila and grapefruit. It's a beautiful match, especially with a tart lime accent and a little fizz. Traditionally, grapefruit soda is used, and Jarritos Toronja has typically been the brand of choice. It's not too hard to find this Mexican soda, especially if you look at markets that sell international food or shop online.

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Click Play to See This Perfectly Refreshing Paloma Recipe Come Together

Ingredients

  • Optional: lime wedge (for wetting rim of glass)
  • Optional: salt (for rim of glass)
  • 2 ounces tequila (blanco or reposado)
  • 1/4 to 1/2 ounce lime juice (fresh; to taste)
  • 4 ounces grapefruit soda

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for a paloma cocktail
    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck
  2. If desired, rim a collins glass with salt. Begin by wetting the rim with a lime wedge, then roll it in a small dish of salt.

    Rim a collins glass with salt
    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck
  3. Fill the glass with ice and add the tequila and lime juice.

    Fill glass with ice
    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck
  4. Top it off with grapefruit soda and enjoy.

    Top it off with grapefruit soda
    The Spruce / Julia Hartbeck

Tip

  • If you cannot find Jarritos, Squirt and Fresca are grapefruit sodas that are easy to find. Try the paloma with any grapefruit soda. For a stronger grapefruit flavor, try a craft soda like Hansen's, Izze, and Q Drinks.
  • Choose a great blanco tequila for a paloma. If you're in the mood to splurge, reposados are nice as well. Fight the temptation to play the cheapskate simply because this is a tall drink. The same quality rules you apply to the margarita should carry over to the paloma.
  • Adjust the lime juice to taste and the soda you're pouring. Start with a small amount—even a squeeze from a lime wedge works—then add more if you like. A lime garnish allows quick adjustments as you drink.

Recipe Variations

  • No grapefruit soda? Pour 2 ounces of grapefruit juice and give it sparkle by filling the glass with club soda.
  • Once you learn to love the paloma, get a taste of the cantarito. The drink is just as refreshing and simply builds on the citrus flavor.
  • Have an adventure with the spicy paloma. The recipe infuses Thai chile pepper into Aperol then adds it to a grapefruit juice-club soda paloma.

How Strong Is the Paloma?

Your paloma can be as strong or as weak as you choose to make it, it all depends on how much soda you pour. Generally, this tall drink is a mild 10 percent ABV (20 proof). That makes this equal to the average glass of wine, so enjoy and salud.