Tequila Rickey Cocktail Recipe

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Tequila Rickey Nutrition Facts





Alcohol content:14%

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 16, 2024


The Rickey is a classic cocktail that traditionally features gin or bourbon. The Tequila Rickey is a modern twist, substituting tequila for the original spirit. Its creation is attributed to the American bartender George A. Williamson in the late 19th century, originally made for Colonel Joe Rickey. It's a hit among those who prefer a refreshing, less sweet cocktail.

How Tequila Rickey Tastes?

The Tequila Rickey has a crisp and refreshing taste with a balance of tartness from the lime and a subtle sweetness from the agave nectar. The blanco tequila provides a smooth, earthy base, while the soda water adds a fizzy lift.

Interesting facts about Tequila Rickey

  • The Rickey was originally made with bourbon or gin before tequila became a popular substitute.
  • It's a low-calorie option for those watching their intake but still wanting to enjoy a spirited beverage.
  • The cocktail is often associated with summer months due to its refreshing qualities.


  • Blanco tequila: 1.5 oz(45ml)
  • Agave nectar: 0.25 oz(8ml)
  • Fresh lime juice: 0.75 oz(23ml)
  • Soda water: 1 oz(30ml)

Blanco Tequila

The heart and soul of our Tequila Rickey is blanco tequila (1.5 oz). It brings the distinctive agave flavor and a slight peppery kick. It's about the right balance; too much, and you'll overshadow other flavors, too little, and the drink lacks spirit. Without it, well, it wouldn't be a Tequila Rickey, right? Replace it with mezcal for a smokier version.

Mary Mitkina

Agave Nectar

Agave nectar (0.25 oz) is a sweet symphony to the tequila's lead guitar, offering a silky mouthfeel and a subtle sweetness that doesn't overpower. Too much could turn your drink into a sticky mess, too little, and you miss out on that roundness of flavor. Honey could be a substitute, introducing a more floral twist.

Emma Rose

Fresh Lime Juice

Pour in fresh lime juice (0.75 oz) for that zesty zing! It's the crucial counterbalance to the sweetness, providing a refreshing tang. An overpour might lead to a pucker-worthy potion, whereas not enough would make the cocktail flatter than a tortilla. Lemon juice might do the trick in a pinch, but expect a different kind of tartness.

Alex Green

Soda Water

Finally, soda water (1 oz) is the effervescent element that brings lightness and sparkle. It's essential for that refreshing feel. Too much and your drink is diluted, too little, and you lose the fizz. Switch it up with tonic water for a bitter edge, but the simplicity of soda is usually best.

Mary Mitkina

Recipe. How to make Tequila Rickey Drink

  1. Fill a shaker with ice.
  2. Add 1 ½ oz. blanco tequila, ¼ oz. agave nectar, and ¾ oz. fresh lime juice to the shaker.
  3. Shake well until the mixture is chilled.
  4. Strain the mixture over 1 large ice cube in a rocks glass.
  5. Top with 1 oz. soda water.
  6. Garnish with a lime wheel if desired.

Pro Tips

  • Use freshly squeezed lime juice for the best flavor.
  • Chill the rocks glass before serving to keep the drink colder for longer.
  • Adjust the amount of agave nectar to suit your taste for sweetness.

Perfect Pairings

Food Pairings

  • Grilled Seafood: The smoky flavor of grilled shrimp or fish complements the agave and lime in the Tequila Rickey.
  • Chicken Tacos: Pair with a zesty chicken taco to mirror the fresh lime juice in the cocktail.
  • Chips and Guacamole: The creamy texture and rich flavor of the guacamole balance the crispness of the cocktail.
  • Ceviche: The acidity of the ceviche pairs nicely with the citrusy notes of the cocktail.

Drink Pairings

  • Cold Pale Ale: A crisp beer can cleanse the palate between sips of the Tequila Rickey.
  • Iced Hibiscus Tea: Non-alcohol option that shares some floral notes with the agave nectar.
  • Sparkling Water with a Splash of Grapefruit Juice: Complements the drink without overpowering it.

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What you could change in Tequila Rickey

  • Tequila: If blanco tequila is not available, a reposado tequila can be used for a slightly richer flavor.
  • Agave Nectar: Simple syrup can be used as a substitute, though it will alter the flavor profile slightly.
  • Soda Water: Club soda or sparkling mineral water are suitable alternatives.

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And of course - twists🍹

Smoky Tequila Rickey

Replace blanco tequila with mezcal. The smoky notes of mezcal will add a new layer of complexity, delivering a Tequila Rickey with an assertive edge. This twist is for those who want to take a walk on the wild side of agave spirits.

Herbal Tequila Rickey

Add a fresh sprig of mint or basil. Herbs bring a fragrant aroma and a cool, refreshing twist. Muddle the herbs lightly before shaking to infuse your drink with garden-fresh goodness. It's like a summer breeze for your taste buds!

Spicy Tequila Rickey

Infuse your tequila with jalapeño slices for a few hours. The spicy kick of jalapeño will give your cocktail a daring punch. This variation is perfect for spice lovers looking to turn the heat up a notch. Just be careful not to over-infuse, or you might end up with a fire in your glass!

In case you forgot basics how to make Tequila Rickey

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

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 Tequila Rickey

What type of glass should be used for a Tequila Rickey?

A Tequila Rickey is typically served in a highball glass, which allows plenty of room for ice and carbonation.

Can I make a Tequila Rickey in a pitcher for a party?

Yes, you can scale up the recipe and mix the tequila, agave nectar, and lime juice in a pitcher. Add soda water when you're ready to serve to preserve the fizz.

Is there a non-alcoholic version of a Tequila Rickey?

Yes, for a mocktail version, you can omit the tequila and increase the lime juice and agave nectar to taste, then top with soda water.

What is the shelf life of agave nectar?

When stored properly in a cool, dark place, agave nectar can last for several years due to its natural preservative qualities.

Are there any seasonal variations of the Tequila Rickey?

You can add seasonal fruits like berries or cucumber to infuse different flavors appropriate to the season.

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