Tequila Sunrise Cocktail Recipe

Teddy Francisco
Published on
by Teddy Francisco

The iconic Tequila Sunrise cocktail was created in the ’70s by Bobby Lozoff and Billy Rice in sunny California and made famous by the Rolling Stones. Some say it was Mick Jagger who tried it and loved it, while others remember it to be Keith Richards.

Tequila Sunrise Cocktail Recipe

One thing’s for certain: this tequila and orange juice cocktail has gone down in rock n’ roll history. Today, it is loved by both cocktail enthusiasts and bartenders alike. Here’s the drink’s ingredient database, recipe instructions, nutrition facts, and kick-ass food pairings.

How to Make the Tequila Sunrise Cocktail

Tequila Sunrise Cocktail

The Tequila Sunrise cocktail has a prep time of 5 minutes, granted that you follow the general nutrition advice in this recipe. Here are the main Tequila Sunrise ingredients you’ll need:

  • 2 oz blanco tequila
  • 4 oz fresh orange juice
  • ½ oz grenadine
  • 1 oz pomegranate flavored syrup
  • Ice cubes or crushed ice

To make this refreshing drink, you’ll start by fixing a highball glass filled with ice cubes and pouring the tequila into the glass. Once the tequila is set, you’ll slowly pour the orange juice over the back of a spoon, allowing it to cascade over the chilled highball glass.

Next, you’ll carefully pour the grenadine, which—due to its high density—will sink to the bottom, giving the drink a layered effect. Even though you can easily find grenadine in liquor stores, the alternatives there are full of high fructose corn syrup and red dye. So, consider making your own grenadine, or purchase organic variations to boost your cocktail’s taste.

Then, you’ll drizzle the syrup on the top of the tall glass, giving it an extra red layer and more sweetness. With these recipes, you don’t have to mix on a shaker, but you can give the cocktail a gentle stir for the flavors to mix with ice. Once you’re done, garnish the glass with an orange slice or orange peel, and top it off with maraschino cherry for the colors to pop.

Besides the orange and maraschino cherry garnishes, consider serving these tasty cocktails alongside light, fresh dishes. Foods like pineapple spread, seafood ceviche, and grilled shrimp skewers go beautifully with the drink’s tanginess, so make sure to try those out. Bon appetit!

Calories and Alcohol Content

If you use the classic orange, tequila, and grenadine recipes, tequila sunrise cocktails have the following content:

Calories: 110 calories per serving

Nutrition information: 0.1g saturated fat, 11g carbs, 0.3g protein

Alcohol content: 13% ABV (alcohol by volume)

Tequila Sunrise Recipe Variations

Tequila Sunrise Cocktail

The orange juice and grenadine mix make a classic drink that few dare change. It‘s that good! However, if you’re one of the brave few, here are some original Tequila Sunrise recipes with brave ingredient variations for you to try:

  • Tequila Sunset: A cousin to the Tequila Sunrise, this drink features a playful change by swapping orange juice for grapefruit juice. The layers now resemble the sun setting instead of rising, but the Tequila Sunset variation holds the same supreme taste.
  • Lime Tequila Sunrise: For citrus lovers, add a bit of lime juice to the cherry-garnished drink. Not only does the lime juice provide a refreshing kick, but it also adds Vitamin C to the mix. You can also pour a splash of club soda, and voilà – you have a zesty drink!
  • Fruity Fusion Sunrise: Elevate the Collins glass by adding a splash of blackcurrant liqueur or creme de cassis. This addition enhances the cocktail’s fruity feel, while the blackberry brandy and crème de cassis match the drink’s earthly tones.


The Tequila Sunrise is a timeless drink with a beautiful presentation and exceptional taste. With a delicate balance of sweet and sour, an orange slice to boost its gradient, and a literal cherry on top to compliment its look, the Tequila Sunrise is the ultimate fan-favorite cocktail.

So, gather your ingredients, mix them up, stir gently, and enjoy sipping on the gorgeous sunset!

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Teddy Francisco
Teddy Francisco
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