Caipirinha Cocktail Recipe

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Caipirinha Nutrition Facts






Created by

Nic Polotnianko

I fell in love with the art of mixology 6 years ago. Since then, I've honed my skills, crafting a myriad of cocktail recipes, and sharing my passion with other enthusiasts.

Last Updated: January 7, 2024


The Caipirinha is Brazil's national cocktail, made with cachaça, sugar, and lime. It is believed to have originated in the early 20th century in the state of São Paulo. The drink was initially consumed by farmers and workers as a way to ward off colds and flu, but it quickly gained popularity and is now enjoyed by people all over the world.

  • The name 'Caipirinha' is derived from the Portuguese word 'caipira', which means 'country bumpkin' or 'hillbilly'.
  • The cocktail is traditionally served in an old-fashioned glass, but it can also be served in a rocks glass or a tumbler.

How Caipirinha Tastes?

The Caipirinha has a refreshing, tangy, and slightly sweet taste. The combination of lime and sugar provides a perfect balance of sour and sweet, while the cachaça adds a unique, earthy flavor. The drink is strong, yet smooth and easy to sip.

Interesting facts about Caipirinha

  • The Caipirinha is often considered Brazil's national cocktail, and it is made with cachaça, a Brazilian spirit distilled from sugarcane juice.
  • The International Bartenders Association (IBA) recognizes the Caipirinha as an official cocktail in its 'New Era Drinks' category.
  • In Brazil, the Caipirinha is often enjoyed during the country's famous Carnival celebrations.


  • Cachaça: 2 oz(60ml)
  • Lime: 1
  • Sugar: 2tsp
  • Crushed ice: 1cup


The heart and soul of a Caipirinha. This Brazilian spirit brings a sweet, grassy flavor to the drink. Without it, you'd have limeade – sweet, but not quite an adult cocktail. Use too much, and you'd overpower the balance – it's about harmony!

Emma Rose


Think of it as the zesty cheerleader that brightens up the party. Limes add zest and acidity, making the drink refreshing. Without it, it's like a beach without the ocean. Alternatives? Try lemons for a twist, but that's another story!

Mary Mitkina


Sugar, oh honey honey... it sweetens the deal and balances the lime's sourness. A little less, you might pucker up too much. A little more, and it's syrupy. It's the peacemaker between the bold cachaça and zippy lime.

Alex Green

Crushed Ice

It chills, it dilutes, it's the unsung hero that tames the fire of the cachaça and ties it all together. Without it, you're in for a rough ride. Unlike cubes, crushed ice melts faster, chilling the drink quickly and smoothing out the flavors.

Emma Rose

Recipe. How to make Caipirinha Drink

  1. Cut the lime into wedges and remove the white pith.
  2. In an old-fashioned glass, muddle the lime wedges and sugar together until the sugar is dissolved and the lime juice is released.
  3. Fill the glass with crushed ice.
  4. Pour the cachaça over the ice and stir well to combine.
  5. Garnish with a lime wedge and serve immediately.

Pro Tips

  • Use fresh lime for the best flavor. The freshness of the lime will make a significant difference in the taste of your Caipirinha.
  • Muddle gently. You want to extract the juice from the lime, not the bitterness from the peel.
  • Use superfine sugar. It dissolves more easily than regular sugar.

Perfect Pairings

Food Pairings

  • Barbecue: The acidity of the Caipirinha balances the richness of grilled meats.
  • Seafood: The tangy lime complements fish and shrimp dishes.
  • Spicy Food: The sweetness of the sugar can soothe the heat from spicy cuisine.
  • Fruit Salad: Enhance the freshness by partnering it with a fruit salad containing tropical fruits.

Drink Pairings

  • Sparkling Water: To cleanse the palate between sips of Caipirinha.
  • Iced Tea: Non-alcoholic option that parallels the citrus notes.

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What you could change in Caipirinha

  • Cachaça: If you can't find cachaça, you can substitute it with white rum or vodka. However, keep in mind that this will change the flavor of the cocktail.
  • Lime: You can use lemon instead of lime, but the taste will be slightly different.
  • Sugar: If you prefer a less sweet cocktail, you can reduce the amount of sugar or use a sugar substitute.

Explore all drinks starting with C here

And of course - twists🍹


  • Add a handful of fresh mixed berries.
  • Muddle them with the lime and sugar.
  • Follow the original recipe thereafter.

This twist adds a fruity punch and lightens the spirit's impact, making it a berry delicious choice for summer.

Tropical Caipirinha

  • Swap the lime for a combination of pineapple and mango.
  • Muddle these tropical fruits with sugar.
  • Follow the standard procedure, and throw in a splash of coconut water.

Enjoy a vacation in a glass, where the traditional lime tang takes a backseat to lush tropical flavors. A sip will whisk you to white sandy beaches.

Herbaceous Caipirinha

  • Muddle fresh herbs like basil or mint with the lime and sugar.
  • Continue as described in the original recipe.

Introducing herbs infuses an aromatic quality that complements the cachaça's grassiness. It's like adding a leafy green hat to the cocktail – dapper and refreshing!

In case you forgot basics how to make Caipirinha

Insert the spoon into the glass until it touches the bottom. Keep the back of the spoon against the inside wall of the glass, and stir in a smooth, circular motion. The goal is to swirl the ice and ingredients together without churning or splashing.

Learn everything on how to stir

The key to proper muddling is to crush the ingredients just enough to release their flavors and not overdo it. Over-muddling can result in a bitter taste, especially with herbs.

Learn everything on how to muddle

Garnishing a bar drink depends on the type of garnish and the cocktail. Generally, it involves preparing the garnish (like cutting a citrus wheel or picking a sprig of mint), and then adding it to the drink in a visually appealing way (like perching it on the rim or floating it on top).

Learn everything on garnishing

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Frequently Asked Questions on Caipirinha

What is the best time to drink a Caipirinha?

Caipirinha is a versatile drink and can be enjoyed at any time. But it is often served as a refreshing beverage on hot afternoons or as an aperitif before dinner.

Can I use brown sugar for Caipirinha instead of white sugar?

Yes, you can use brown sugar instead of white. It will add a slightly deeper flavor to the cocktail due to the molasses content in the brown sugar.

What food pairings work well with a Caipirinha?

Brazilian-style grilled meats, ceviche, spicy foods, and tropical fruit desserts pair very well with Caipirinha due to its tangy and refreshing taste.

Is there a non-alcoholic version of a Caipirinha?

Yes, a 'virgin' Caipirinha or Caipirinha 'mocktail' can be made by replacing the cachaça with sparkling water or a citrus-flavored soda.

Why is cachaça important to a Caipirinha?

Cachaça is a Brazilian spirit distilled from sugarcane juice. The unique taste gives Caipirinha its distinct flavor and authenticity.

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