During the holidays, I love a good cocktail. Hanging out and visiting with friends and family is what I enjoy the most. On that same note, a light refreshing keto friendly cocktail is also one of my favorite holiday treats and this Keto Cranberry Margarita does not disappoint. Tart with a hint of sweetness and a sleigh load of holiday flare, this is my go-to holiday keto cocktail.
Now I can hardly wait to sip on one of these babies, so lets get started!!
Margaritas are one of my FAVORITE cocktails and the variations are endless! The classic margarita is made with just a few ingredients, orange liquor, lime and tequila served either frozen or on the rocks in a salt rimmed glass. From here, the possibilities are endless, but for the holidays cranberry is my go to flavor!
Traditionally, a cranberry margarita would be made with cranberry juice but as we all now this is a keto no-no. Cranberry juice, even the no sugar added versions, have too much sugar to be keto friendly and will almost definitely kick you out of ketosis.
So how do we get cranberry flavor into this Keto Cranberry Margarita? Well, we are going to create a cranberry gel that will be the base of this yummy keto cocktail!
How do I make the base for the Keto Cranberry Margarita?
Making the cranberry base is so easy and takes just a few minutes. Fresh cranberries go in the pot with some sweetener, orange peel and water and gets cooked for a few minutes till the berries burst and it thickens up. The cranberry mixture gets strained through a sieve, cooled and its ready to go.
Can the cranberry gel be made in advance?
Absolutely! The cranberry gel will last in a covered container in the fridge for a few days and is great to have on hand during the holidays to whip up a batch of cocktails any time for holiday company!
Is orange liquor keto friendly?
No its not! Classis orange liquor like Triple Sec or Grand Marnier are sweetened with sugar. So for this Keto Cranberry Margarita the hint of orange comes from the orange in the cranberry and hibiscus tea! Hibiscus tea and cranberry are a match made in heaven. First, the color is absolutely gorgeous and screams holiday. Second, hibiscus tea is tart like cranberries and is often combined with orange and cinnamon (hello holidays!) for amazing flavor. So, for this keto margarita, hibiscus tea is our go to!
Brewing Hibiscus Tea for the Keto Cranberry Margarita
I always have a box of hibiscus tea in the pantry. I use it in the summer for my Hibiscus Lemonade Cooler, we love to drink it as iced tea for something a little different and during the holidays for this festive cocktail. I like the flavor of Tazo “passion” tea, but feel free to use any hibiscus tea you have on hand or find in the store. It most likely will be found around other herbal tea bags in the grocery or grab it here.
Tazo also makes am Iced Passion tea which can be used as well, just use what you can find and enjoy!
Hot water and a few teabags and a couple minutes later, fragrant tart hibiscus tea! The tea gets a little sweetener and its ready for a party! The tea can also be made in advance and kept in the fridge until needed.
Making the Keto Cranberry Margarita
These delicious margaritas can be made in a pitcher or by the glass, so great for entertaining a crowd or a few friends!
In a shaker filled with ice, in goes a tablespoon of the cranberry gel, some hibiscus tea, a squeeze of lime and tequila. After a few shakes, this gorgeous cocktail is ready to enjoy! Pour into a glass rimmed with salt and filled with ice, pour and enjoy! Cheers!
Keto Cranberry Hibiscus Margarita
- 12 oz. fresh cranberries
- 1 cup water
- Peel of a small naval orange
- 3/4 cups + 2 tablespoons Monkfruit/Erythritol blend sweetener divided
- 4 hibiscus tea bags
- 8 oz. tequila
- 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
Garnish: salt rimmed glass, orange zest, lime wedges, fresh cranberries
To make the cranberry base:
- Combine the cranberries, sweetener, water and orange peel in a saucepan. Bring the cranberry mixture to a boil over medium heat and simmer 10-15 minutes or until thickened, stirring often and breaking up the cranberries as the mixture cooks. Strain the cranberry mixture using a mesh strainer and set aside to cool. At this point the cranberry gel can be refrigerated for later. You should have about a cup of cranberry gel.
To make the hibiscus tea:
- Bring 4 cups of water to a boil, add the 4 hibiscus tea bags and let sit for 5 minutes. Remove tea bags and sweeten with 2 tablespoons of sweetener. Stir to combine and chill until serving time.
Make by the glass:
- Fill the shaker half way with ice. In the shaker place 1 1/2 tablespoons of the cranberry gel, 1/2 cup hibiscus tea, 2 tablespoons (1 oz) of tequila and a teaspoon of lime juice. Place the lid on tightly and shake. Pour over ice salt rimmed glass filled with ice and garnish as desired.
Make by the pitcher
- In a pitcher combine, the cranberry gel, hibiscus tea, tequila and lime juice. Stir to combine. Serve over ice in salt rimmed glasses and garnish with orange zest, lime and fresh cranberries.