El Diablo Cocktail Recipe

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El Diablo 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


El Diablo is a classic cocktail that was first published in Trader Vic's Book of Food and Drink in 1946. This refreshing tequila-based cocktail has a long history of being enjoyed by those who appreciate a well-balanced, slightly sweet and tangy drink. The cocktail is perfect for warm summer days and is often enjoyed by those who love tequila and ginger flavors.

  • Originally created by Trader Vic
  • Popular among tequila enthusiasts
  • Perfect for warm weather and outdoor gatherings

How El Diablo Tastes?

El Diablo has a complex and well-balanced taste, with a combination of sweet, sour, and spicy flavors. The tequila provides a strong and smooth base, while the ginger beer adds a spicy and effervescent kick. The lime juice brings a refreshing tartness, and the crème de cassis adds a touch of fruity sweetness.

Interesting facts about El Diablo

  • El Diablo is sometimes referred to as the 'Mexican Mule' due to its similarities with the Moscow Mule.
  • The name 'El Diablo' means 'The Devil' in Spanish, likely referring to the cocktail's devilishly delicious taste.
  • Crème de cassis, a key ingredient in the El Diablo, is a sweet, dark red liqueur made from blackcurrants.


A few good options for El Diablo are:

  • Brockmans
  • Silent Pool Gin
  • Hendrick's Gin

Learn everything on which Gin to choose


  • Why 2oz? That's quite enough to let the tequila's presence be known without knocking your sombrero off. Tequila is the backbone of this drink, providing a robust, earthy base that complements the sweetness and acidity from the other ingredients. Without it, you'd be missing the fiesta in this siesta.

Alex Green

Crème de Cassis

  • Half an ounce is just right to add a touch of sweet, dark berry flavor without overpowering the drink. It's like that one mariachi in the band who knows how to hit the right note. No Crème de Cassis, no berry undertone, and the balance is thrown off—it's like guacamole without the avocado!

Emma Rose

Fresh Lime Juice

  • Also 0.5oz, because balance is key. This adds the necessary tartness and freshness that cuts through the sweetness and clears the palate. Think of it as the lime in your taco—without it, something's just missing.

Mary Mitkina

Ginger Beer

  • 2oz gives the cocktail a spicy kick and effervescence that makes it as lively as a dance at a Mexican wedding. Leave it out, and you'll lose the sparkle. It's that little zap that keeps things interesting, like a well-placed sombrero tilt.

Alex Green

Lime Wheel

  • Garnishing with one lime wheel adds both visual appeal and a hint of citrus scent each time you go in for a sip. It's like the perfect accessory for a night out—it doesn't just look good; it completes the whole ensemble.

Emma Rose


  • Exactly three blackberries give a nod to the Crème de Cassis, offering a splash of color and a berry burst in every bite. They're like the backup singers to the lead vocalist that is your cocktail—without them, the show still goes on, but it's not quite a hit.

Mary Mitkina

Recipe. How to make El Diablo Drink

  1. Fill a shaker with ice.
  2. Add the tequila, crème de cassis, and fresh lime juice to the shaker.
  3. Shake well until chilled and combined.
  4. Strain the mixture into a Collins glass filled with fresh ice.
  5. Top with ginger beer and gently stir to combine.
  6. Garnish with a lime wheel and blackberries.

Pro Tips

  • Use fresh lime juice for a more refreshing taste.
  • Chill the glass before pouring the cocktail to keep it cool longer.
  • Use high-quality tequila to enhance the overall flavor of the cocktail.

Perfect Pairings


  • Cheese plates: A selection with a mix of creamy and sharp cheeses can complement the sweetness and acidity of the El Diablo.
  • Spicy Nuts: Almonds or cashews with a spicy coating provide a great contrast to the refreshing cocktail.

Main Courses

  • Grilled Seafood: Particularly shrimp or fish marinated with herbs and spices pairs nicely with the zesty profile of the drink.
  • Tacos or Fajitas: The citrus notes in the El Diablo cut through the richness of these traditional Mexican dishes.


  • Berry Tarts: A dessert that emphasizes fresh berries can mirror the blackberry garnish in the cocktail.
  • Lemon Sorbet: A light, citrus-forward dessert will continue the refreshing theme.

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What you could change in El Diablo

  • Tequila: Can be replaced with Mezcal for a smokier flavor.
  • Crème de Cassis: Can be substituted with blackcurrant syrup or blackcurrant jam.
  • Ginger Beer: Can be replaced with ginger ale for a less spicy kick.

Explore all drinks starting with E here

And of course - twists🍹

Spicy Diablo

  • Add a jalapeño slice to the shaker for a fiery twist that'll make your taste buds dance the Jarabe Tapatío. The heat complements the ginger beer's spice, turning the drink from a charming devil to a spicy sinner.

Tropical Diablo

  • Swap Crème de Cassis for 0.5oz of pineapple juice for a fruitier, tropical vibe. You'll feel like you've been whisked away to a beach in Cancún with each sip. Just don't forget the sunscreen!

Diablo Añejo

  • Use aged añejo tequila instead of the standard blanco. This will add a deeper, more complex flavor that's like the wisdom of an old mariachi—it only gets better with time.

In case you forgot basics how to make El Diablo

Add your ingredients to the shaker first, then ice. Fill it up to ¾ of its capacity to ensure enough space for shaking. Hold the shaker with both hands (one on the top and one on the bottom) and shake vigorously. The shake should come from your shoulders, not your wrists.

Learn everything on how to shake

Place your chosen strainer on top of the shaker or mixing glass, ensuring a secure fit. Pour the cocktail into a glass through the strainer, which will catch solid ingredients and ice. If double straining, hold the fine mesh strainer between the shaker and the glass.

Learn everything on how to strain

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

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 El Diablo

Can I create a non-alcoholic version of El Diablo?

Yes, you can make a mocktail version of El Diablo by substituting the tequila with a non-alcoholic spirit or simply leaving it out. The Crème de Cassis can be replaced with blackcurrant syrup or juice.

Can I use lemons instead of limes?

While lime is the traditional citrus used in El Diablo cocktail, lemons might still work but they will fundamentally change the taste because they are more acidic and less sweet than limes.

Is Trader Vic's a popular cocktail author?

Yes, Trader Vic or Victor Jules Bergeron was an iconic figure in the cocktail world known as one of the fathers of the tiki culture in America. His book 'Trader Vic's Book of Food and Drink' is considered a classic in the cocktail literature scene.

Is El Diablo a strong cocktail?

El Diablo can be considered a moderately strong cocktail due to the presence of tequila. However, the sweetness and acidity from the Crème de Cassis and limes as well as the spicy and effervescent kick from the ginger beer helps to balance out the alcohol content.

What tools are required to make El Diablo?

You will need a cocktail shaker to mix the tequila, crème de cassis and lime juice. Other tools include a strainer, Collin's glass, measuring jigger, and a long spoon or stirrer.

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