Naturally Sweetened Lemonade Margaritas

It’s Monday. You look like you could use a drink.

Naturally Sweetened Lemonade Margaritas

Over the weekend, I was jogging with one of my girl friends and all I could think about (aside from bacon cheeseburgers and sweet potato fries) was lemonade.  Where are all the lemonade stands when you actually need them? It was hot outside, we were being little ninnies, and the fact that I had hit the wine bottles the night before just made me feel like I was Odysseus on his epic journey home.

Except in my story, there were no cyclopses (how unfortunate), sirens, pissed off Poseidon, and the only thing keeping me from Ithaca was my inability to run at a halfway decent pace and the fact that I don’t live in Ithaca. So pretty much, I was nothing like Odysseus on his epic journey home, but since I’m the one who’s calling the shots here (get it? shots?), I’m assigning myself points for dramatic effect.

Naturally Sweetened Lemonade Margaritas

By now, you know I’m not a huge fan of cane sugar and tend to replace it with natural sweeteners whenever possible. So in honor of my dire need for lemonade, I whipped up a batch using pure maple syrup in place of cane sugar. It hit the sweet spot.

My favorite part about the lemonade, other than it breathing life back into my dried-up veins, was the fact that I didn’t have to dissolve sugar on the stove and wait for it to cool down. You simply pour everything into a pitcher and stir it right up.

BOOM! Lemonade.

Naturally Sweetened Lemonade Margaritas

But then I got to thinking…”Wait a tick…this lemonade needs something. Booze. This lemonade could use some booze.”  So in light of the tequila that has been going anywhere a booze can go, I broke out the bottle and made naturally sweetened lemonade margaritas. And so the cycle continues.

Naturally Sweetened Lemonade Margaritas

This is kind of like a homemade skinny girl margarita…right? Right.

If you want to get real genius, you can add some herb infusion to the lemonade by chopping up fresh herbs and heating them up with the lemon juice and maple syrup to create a mock herb-y simple syrup. Basil, thyme, parsley, lavender, sage…pretty much any herb goes well in lemonade and also adds a unique element to a margarita. Adding fruit is permissible, too.

Naturally Sweetened Lemonade Margaritas

Naturally Sweetened Lemonade Margaritas

So now that we’ve determined all lemonade should be naturally sweetened, and all naturally sweetened lemonade should contain tequila, we can rejoice in the fact that we have both our lemonade and our cocktails down pat.

It’s 5 o’clock somewhere.

Naturally Sweetened Lemonade Margaritas

Naturally Sweetened Lemonade Margaritas

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Author: Julia


For the Naturally Sweetened Lemonade:

  • 1 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup or agave nectar or more to taste
  • 7 cups cold water

For the Lemonade Margaritas

  • Tequila
  • Naturally Sweetened Lemonade
  • Lemon wedges


Make the Naturally Sweetened Lemonade:

  1. Mix all of the ingredients for the lemonade together in a large pitcher.

Make the Lemonade Margaritas:

  1. Rim glasses with salt, then fill them with ice. Add about 1 to 2 shots (1.5 to 3 ounces) of tequila to each glass and fill the rest of the way with lemonade. Stir, squeeze a wedge of lemon into each glass, and serve. (You can also shake the drink in a tumbler before serving).


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  1. Taylor @ Food Faith Fitness

    We had the same idea for Monday. Add booze. Make it better.
    ALSO…running after drinking is the worst? You know what I do…run WHILE drinking.
    Well, I actually rode a bike while drinking (not a run) on vacation. It was a wise idea.
    Also, the sequel: Gimme these. Pinned!

    1. Julia Post author

      Welp, that’s it. Margs in my water bottle…that’ll solve all the things. 😉 Let’s go road biking under the influence. Don’t tell the po I said that.

  2. Julie

    Please keep all good thoughts going on Friday that I will get in rickety-tickety and get this over with so that I’m ready to rock and roll with you and Stephie next month. Because I plan on having fun and not be shuffling around like an old woman. Can’t wait to see you!!

    1. Julia Post author

      Can’t wait to see you, too, Momma! And I’m sending my best wishes and all the good jujus your way. Plus, if we can’t rock out with the margs on the rocks in September, we definitely will some other time! xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxox!

    1. Julia Post author

      YES! September, my dear. Dinner + drinks, followed by a run the next day. I’m inserting the clapping hands emoji here.

    1. Julia Post author

      Oof Boardwalk lemonade just has an amazing ring to it. Can we drink it down by the sea?! Congrats on the bun in the oven, dear! We can toast with the tequila version after the babe is born 🙂

    1. Julia Post author

      I always end up running in the heat of the day on weekends because I’m too hungover to make it out before it gets scorching hot. Mondays should have the pre-requisite of booze. As in, you don’t get to Monday until you booze. Whatever that means 😉

  3. Kare @ Kitchen Treaty

    Oh goodness gracious, I need one of these in my life, stat. I’ve been cutting out cane sugar lately and trying a lemonade sweetened with honey has been on my list. But maple syrup – I love this! And tequila, hello. LOVE.

    1. Julia Post author

      You’ll love it, Kare! Amazing how wonderful things can taste when they’re naturally sweetened. Let’s boycot cane sugar!

  4. Isadora

    Running in the heat after a night of hitting the wine sounds like absolute torture! I feel like I need a drink just thinking about how horrible that would be! I’ve been trying to use less refined sugars too lately and I love that you used maple syrup in these! I’m now craving a margarita and a huge basket of chips and salsa 🙂

  5. Emily

    Almost the exact same thing happened to me: I was running with a friend who mentioned the awesome lemonade we had at the farmer’s market a few weeks before. Except, when we got there, they were all out! I think I’ll have to use your recipe to quench my craving!

    1. Julia Post author

      Ohhhh noooooooooo that would kiiiiiiiill meeeee! Sorry….little drama queen over here. Hope you try the lemonade!

    1. Julia Post author

      Haha! This message has been approved by Joanne. Brought to you by Joanne, of Eats Well with Others.

      Let’s hang

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