Prickly Pear Margarita

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This prickly pear margarita recipe is loaded with delicious flavor and color, thanks to the prickly pear cactus. It’s a cocktail recipe perfect for a celebration!

prickly pear margarita pinterest image

If you enjoy hosting parties as much as I do, I have some tips for prepping the perfect party, and you will definitely want my recipe for Really Good Pasta Salad.

These prickly pear margaritas are as delicious as they are beautiful! They should be on the menu for every party.

I’ve actually been waiting to make something with prickly pear for a long time. Back when I worked at the Four Seasons Hotel in Philadelphia, this was one of the specialty cocktails on the menu.

For more margarita recipes, check out:

prickly pear syrup cocktail with tequila and cointreau

Frequently Asked Questions about Prickly Pear Margaritas

Before we get to the margarita recipe, here are some questions people often ask about it. If you don’t see your question in this list, please leave it in the comments.

What is a prickly pear?

If prickly pear is new to you, you might be surprised to know that it’s not really a pear: It’s a fruit that grows on a cactus. It gets its name from the prickly needles of the cactus.

The flavor is reminiscent of a pear mixed with watermelon and a “natural” bubble gum. I know that sounds a bit odd, but it is pretty delicious and works well in cocktails and vinaigrette dressings.

What does prickly pear syrup taste like?

This syrup is extremely sweet. It tastes like watermelon, strawberry, and bubble gum, all in one syrup. In fact, it isn’t tart at all.

Is desert pear the same as prickly pear?

Yes, they are the same thing. Another name for a prickly pear is a desert pear – and it isn’t even a pear.

2 glasses of pink hued cocktail for cactus themed party

Let’s Make a Prickly Pear Margarita

Not that the prickly pear needs another unique element, but one of my favorite things about this fruit is its neon fuchsia color. When used in a cocktail, it instantly creates a wow-worthy drink. Don’t you agree?


There are only a handful of simple ingredients in these iconic prickly pear margaritas. Here’s what you need to have when you make them.

  • Clear Tequila – It is important to use a clear variety so that the colors in the drink stand out.
  • Cointreau – Any clear orange-flavored triple sec will work.
  • Freshly-Squeezed Lime juice – Jarred lime juice can also work, but it won’t have the same bold and fresh taste.
  • Prickly Pear Syrup – This is the key to the entire drink. Get the highest-quality syrup you can find.
  • Garnish: Always garnish your drinks! I used lime and kosher salt.

The easiest way to use prickly pear is in syrup. It’s likely to be available in specialty food stores, however, I found mine here. (affiliate link)

pink syrup being poured into a glass of liquor

How to Make a Prickly Pear Margarita

Now that we’re all familiar with prickly pears, it’s time to shake up our margaritas. In keeping with the cactus theme of this celebration, I chose to use my cactus margarita glasses.

Mine are vintage – I found them on eBay a few years ago. But you can buy new ones here. (affiliate link) They look identical.

All the exact instructions are in the printable recipe card at the bottom of this post. But, here are some additional tips that will help you as you make them.

salting the rim of a cactus glass
  1. Begin by rimming your glasses with a wedge of lime and then dipping them in some kosher salt. Though the prickly pear syrup will make these margaritas a touch sweeter, I still appreciate a salted rim.
pink prickly pear juice pouring into a glass
  1. Shake the tequila, Cointreau, lime juice, and prickly pear syrup with ice.
  2. Add a bit of ice to your prepared margarita glasses and pour over that delicious libation.
  3. Garnish with a slice of lime.
prickly pear margarita in a salted glass

How to Serve Prickly Pear Margaritas

For added fun, I picked up a few of these cactus cocktail charms. (affiliate link) Their neon color and cute design matched my party perfectly. What do you think? And as a bonus, my guests won’t confuse their drink with someone else’s. Win-win!

close up of fuchsia colored cocktail

How to Store Extra Margaritas

If you want to make a large batch of these margaritas ahead of time, I suggest making a pitcher of it and refrigerating it. Then, all you have to do is prepare the glasses and pour the drinks.

This prickly pear margarita will stay fresh in the refrigerator for up to a week. Don’t add the ice until you are ready to serve or it will make your drink watery!

That’s a Wrap on Prickly Pear Margaritas!

These bright pink drinks are perfect for any summertime party. I imagine they would be so fun at a bridal shower, a 21st birthday party, or even a desert-themed bash. Everyone is going to love the bold citrus flavors in these margaritas. They are so delicious that you should probably sip them slowly – so you don’t get into trouble!

I hope you enjoyed this fun, colorful, and delicious prickly pear margarita. Whether you’re hosting a party or just relaxing at home, I hope your weekend is magical.

colorful margarita garnished with lime

Be sure to check out the full party post here and grab the recipe for Really Good Pasta Salad here.

a pink hued cocktail in a cactus glass


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Celebrate with this unique and colorful cocktail: a Prickly Pear Margarita recipe served in a cactus glass. | Inspired by Charm

Prickly Pear Margarita

This Prickly Pear Margarita recipe is loaded with delicious flavor and color thanks to the Prickly Pear Cactus. It’s a cocktail recipe perfect for a celebration! 
5 from 3 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: American, Mexican
Keyword: cocktail, margarita, prickly pear
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 2 cocktails
Calories: 209kcal


  • 3 ounces clear tequila
  • 2 ounces Cointreau
  • 2 ounces freshly-squeezed lime juice
  • 1 ounce prickly pear syrup
  • Lime and kosher salt for garnish


  • Begin by running a wedge of lime around the edge of your margarita glass. Dip in kosher salt to coat.
  • In a cocktail shaker filled with ice, add the tequila, Cointreau, freshly-squeezed lime juice, and prickly pear syrup. Shake vigorously. Strain into your prepared margarita glasses filled will ice. Garnish with a lime slice to serve.


Calories: 209kcal | Carbohydrates: 13g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Sodium: 9mg | Potassium: 44mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 11g | Vitamin A: 14IU | Vitamin C: 9mg | Calcium: 6mg | Iron: 1mg

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Recipe Rating


  1. What a coincidence — I have all the ingredients except for the prickly pear syrup, but just about to make an order on Amazon.And it’s my birthday.

  2. Made these last night for our girls night in!! So good!! We should have invited you over as the get together was in the North Hills of Pittsburgh!! Enjoy your Sinday!!

  3. Hi Michael, do you mind if I post this recipe as our first recipe and link to it from my site? I’ve added it to my comment, if that’s not allowed please remove it. We will link to your recipe from our new site.

    1. I’m not sure what you’re asking. You’re welcome to use one image and share a link to my site. Please don’t not copy the recipe. Thanks!

      xo Michael

  4. I am getting so many ideas from you for my daughter’s grad party! It’s got a theme of black with gold, white and various shades of pink (you know, the Kate Spade combo) and this drink will be an awesome touch. Is there any reason not to make a large pitcher of these so as not to encumber a friend as bartender?