What To Mix with Tequila? Pair Tequila with Tepache!

If you’re longing to bring the flavor of Mexico to your dinner party or summer cookout, check out our tequila and tepache cocktail ideas. They’ll pack a sweet, citrusy punch that will surely wow your guests!  

Tepache Basics

Tepache is a sweet, carbonated drink made from fermented pineapple and panela, a type of unrefined whole cane sugar that is popular in Central and South America. The origins of the tepache recipe date back to pre-Columbian Mexico with either the Nauha people of central Mexico or the Mayans. 

There are several varieties of tepache so there’s not one, singular tepache flavor, but for the most part it tastes like a cider with a delicious pineapple aftertaste. Although it technically contains alcohol, much like kombucha the amount of alcohol in tepache is so small it is neither noticeable nor harmful.

Tips for Cocktail Making with Tepache

  1. Given that tepache itself does not have enough alcohol in it to be considered an alcoholic beverage, all of the following cocktails can be made into virgin cocktails.

  2. Just like with any carbonated beverage, you want to add the tepache to the cocktail last to preserve the carbonation.

  3. Given that there is not one set tepache recipe, the sweetness of the drink is variable. For this reason, make sure you try the tepache before adding it to your cocktail to ensure that it brings the right amount of sweetness to the cocktail.

  4. Use more subtly flavored tepache for drinks with several ingredients or more subdued alcohol combinations. 

  5. Tepache pairs nicely with agave syrup, so it’s helpful to have a bottle of this delicious sweetener on hand when making tepache cocktails. 

Types of Tequila

When making cocktails with tequila, it’s important to choose the right variety for your drink. There are three primary categories of tequila to choose from: blanco, reposado, and añejo.

  • Blanco: This is the mildest form of tequila and is often recognizable by its clear, translucent color. It is also known as clear, white, and plata tequila. Given that this variety of tequila is not aged, it’s the hottest type of tequila available and has a strong, earthy flavor. It also retains the most of the original agave flavor when compared to the other tequila varieties. This type of tequila is great for cocktails with other bold flavors.

  • Reposado: Reposado or “rested” tequila is tequila that has been aged between 2 months and a year. After aging this tequila has a light golden color and a woody, sweet flavor. The aging process rounds out the flavor of this tequila so it does not have the same bite as blanco tequila. This is the mildest tequila available and therefore the most versatile. If you’re making tequila cocktails for the first time and unsure of what type to choose, reposado is always a safe bet.

  • Añejo: This type of tequila is aged between 1-3 years and has a dark, amber color. It is significantly sweeter than blanco and reposado tequila and acquires a toasty flavor with notes of vanilla. This tequila is perfect for sweet, citrusy cocktails that don’t require the heat of blanco tequila.

Tepache Margarita

The margarita is one of the most classic cocktails, with the original recipe combining only tequila, lime juice, and some type of citrus liquor. Although it can sometimes be risky to experiment with a classic, if you’re in the mood to give your margarita a makeover, try whipping up a tepache margarita. 

To make this tepache-based cocktail, you’ll need blanco tequila, some type of citrus liquor, lime juice, agave syrup, and pineapple slices for garnish. Combine all the ingredients except for the pineapple slices in a cocktail shaker if you have one. Shake the drink for about 20 seconds and pour it over ice. Top it off with a pineapple slice garnish, and your drink is ready to serve! 

Feel free to experiment with the quantities of the ingredients to get your tepache margarita just right. In general, use a 2:1 ratio of tequila to tepache, liqueur, and lime juice. 

For a more sour margarita, use more lime and less liqueur. Use about half the amount of agave nectar as you did tepache to ensure that your margarita does not end up too sweet. 

A Tepache Twist on the Classic Moscow Mule

A traditional moscow mule is made with vodka, lime juice, and ginger beer and is the perfect simple cocktail for when you’re craving something light and refreshing. 

To make a variation of the moscow mule with more of a citrus twist, you’ll need tepache, lemon, tequila, and agave syrup. 

In a cup (or mug, if you want to keep it classic!), add 1.5 ounces of tequila and half an ounce of lemon juice. Add ice cubes and half a cup of tepache and then stir. Add a slice or cube of pineapple to your mule as garnish, and it’s ready to serve. 

There are a few ways to slightly alter this recipe if you want to get even more experimental. You can muddle fresh herbs such as cilantro to add another flavor to the mix or bring some heat to the recipe by using a slice of jalapeño pepper as garnish.   

Tepache Highball

One of the simplest ways to combine tepache and tequila in a cocktail is to make a tepache highball. In order to make this drink, you’ll only need blanco tequila, tepache, agave, and some kind of carbonated water like club soda. 

You’ll want to use about the same amount of tepache and tequila, adding slightly more tepache to ensure that the pineapple cuts through the acidity of the tequila. In a glass, add your tepache, tequila, and a splash of agave nectar. Stir all three until the agave is evenly dissipated. Fill the glass with ice and the soda of your choice. 

If it’s too bitter, add agave until it reaches the sweetness level of your liking. You can use tajín and sliced pineapple to garnish.

Pineapple Paloma

The paloma is a popular Meixcan cocktail that usually combines tequila and sparkling grapefruit juice to make a tasty summer drink. However, given that tepache is carbonated like the grapefruit juice, you can swap it out to make a delicious pineapple paloma. 

The beauty of the paloma is that it is a delicious cocktail that can be made in under five minutes, so it’s perfect for when you’re entertaining large groups.

In order to make this cocktail you’ll need tepache, tequila, lime juice, salt, and a slice of either lime or pineapple for garnish. If you like a salted rim, feel free to begin making the pineapple paloma by wetting the rim of your glass with lime juice and dipping it in salt. 

From there, combine 2 ounces of tequila with about half an ounce of lime juice. For this recipe, you can use either blanco or reposado tequila depending on how much heat you want your cocktail to have. 

After you’ve added the tequila and lime juice, pour in about 4 ounces of tepache (or double the amount of tequila you used) and stir. You can top it off with lime or pineapple for garnish, and it’s ready to serve! 


Regardless of which cocktails you chose to make, tepache and tequila make for delicious, refreshing drinks that will transport you to the streets of Mexico with just one sip!





Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published