How to Create Your Personal Michelada Recipe

spicy michelada mexican beer

The Spruce

Prep: 3 mins
Cook: 0 mins
Total: 3 mins
Serving: 1 serving
Yield: 1 cocktail
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
184 Calories
0g Fat
23g Carbs
2g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 1
Amount per serving
Calories 184
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 0g 0%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 187mg 8%
Total Carbohydrate 23g 8%
Dietary Fiber 2g 7%
Total Sugars 2g
Protein 2g
Vitamin C 30mg 151%
Calcium 44mg 3%
Iron 1mg 4%
Potassium 227mg 5%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

It's hard to resist a michelada, the popular beer mixed drink that is based on the classic chelada. This recipe requires very little effort, a few common kitchen ingredients, and it has a great spicy kick that's perfect for your favorite Mexican beer.

Essentially, the michelada is simply a way to spice up beer. From the hot sauce to the beer, the entire drink can be customized to fit your taste. In that way, it's much like the bloody mary. The key to a great michelada is finding a good balance; take it easy on each of the ingredients and add more as needed. After a couple of rounds, you will find the perfect mix for you.

The best part of the michelada is that it's likely you have everything you need right there in the kitchen. This makes it one of the easiest drinks to mix up at home. Of course, there are a few bottled micheladas available, but they don't match up to the customization that this drink deserves.


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Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

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  2. Fill a chilled beer mug or pint glass halfway with ice.

    Ice in a glass
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  3. Add the lime juice, sauces, and pepper.

    Making a Michelada
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  4. Stir until well mixed.

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  5. Slowly top with beer.

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  6. Garnish with a slice of lime. Serve and enjoy.

    Recipe Variations

    • Rim the glass with salt or mix it with cayenne pepper if you like. Be careful when pouring the beer because if it hits the salt, you may have a foamy mess. If you don't want the salty rim, add a pinch or two of salt to the drink.
    • Add a couple of dashes Maggi Liquid Seasoning to give it more dimension.
    • Add a pinch of celery salt, all-purpose meat seasoning, smoked paprika, or cayenne pepper.
    • Add a splash of tomato or clamato juice to give it more of a red beer feel.

    Choose Your Hot Sauce

    Quite honestly, the beer is secondary in importance when it comes to making a great michelada. What is more important is the hot sauce, and it can be used to give this drink a personal spin.

    There are many hot sauce options available. Tabasco is always a favorite for spicy drinks, and it is one of the more popular options for the michelada.

    Cholula is a great choice as well. It has less of that vinegar bitterness that is a signature of Tabasco. Give either the Original Cholula or their Chili Garlic a try in this drink (or any that call for hot sauce). You might find the drink has a better balance and more flavor.

    Beware of super spicy sauces. There are some hot sauces that take the spice to an extreme and it's best to be cautious about using any of these "kick ass" hot sauces to create spicy cocktails. They may be great for tacos, but it is very easy to burn drinks and make them undrinkable. What's the point of that?

    Less is definitely more when it comes to the hot sauce! No matter which you choose, start slowly. Just a few dashes will have a big impact on your michelada. You can always add more if you feel it needs it, just be sure to stir properly with each addition.

    More Tips

    • It is customary to use a Mexican beer in the michelada. These tend to be very light lagers with rather transparent flavors, just the kind of beer that needs a little spicing up! Corona may be the obvious choices for American drinkers, but you might want to try something like Bohemia Clasica or Tecate. Darker beers like Negra Modelo or Dos Equis make an interesting michelada as well.
    • Choose a good soy sauce to improve your michelada; the best options are not next to the ramen noodles at the average grocer. Instead, take a trip to an international food market and explore their options.

    How Strong Is the Michelada?

    The michelada has a beer-only base, so it is a very light drink. To estimate its alcohol content, let's use Bohemia Clasica as an example. Factoring in a little ice melt with the 4.7 percent ABV beer brings the michelada down to a very mild 3.7 percent ABV. Pretty much count on any beer being reduced by 1 percentage point.

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