The Gay Globetrotter

Paloma Cocktail

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A paloma cocktail is bright, refreshing, and the perfect way to enjoy summer. This delicious paloma drink recipe is made with tequila, fresh squeezed grapefruit juice, and lime.

This grapefruit and tequila cocktail is light, freshing, and surprisingly easy to master. They’re so much fun to serve at cocktail parties!

Soda water being poured into a paloma.

What Is A Paloma

A paloma is a tequila based cocktail, made with tequila, lime juice, and sparkling grapefruit juice. Often when ordering a paloma, it’ll be made with Fresca or Jarritos.

While this is an easy way to make homemade paloma drinks, juicing a grapefruit or two first makes a huge difference in how fresh the drink tastes. Trust me.

Choosing The Right Tequila

When selecting the tequila for paloma cocktails, choose a mid price range white tequila. Dark tequilas will overpower the grapefruit and lime when mixed.

Our personal favorite is Patron Blanco, and we love using 4 Tequilas Blanco. If you’re a fan of the mezcal paloma, mezcal grab your favorite mezcal instead.

A paloma garnished with a grapefruit wedge.

How To Make A Paloma Cocktail

To make a paloma:

  1. Rim – rim the glass with salt or sugar. Place honey and sugar on two plates. Dip the top of the cup in honey, then sugar.
  2. Juice – juice the grapefruit and the limes.
  3. Shake – fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Add tequila, grapefruit juice, and lime juice. Shake until chilled.
  4. Pour – strain into a cocktail glass filled with ice. Top with sparkling water.
  5. Garnish – garnish with grapefruit slices or lime wedges.

Two palomas next to a bottle of tequila.

Tips and Substitutions

  • This paloma recipe is tart, as there isn’t added sugar. To sweeten it, add 1 tablespoon of simple syrup to each cocktail when shaking.
  • We enjoy palomas rimmed with sugar rather than salt, as we don’t add simple syrup off the bat. It’s totally up to preference, which one you prefer!
  • After juicing the lime juice and grapefruit juice, place them into wet measuring cups. This makes it super easy to pour them into the jigger while measuring the drinks.
  • We love using our Soda Stream to make fresh, bubbly water to top these cocktails. Club soda will work just as well!
  • Mezcal is a popular choice if you’re not a big fan of tequila.
  • If you don’t have time to use fresh grapefruit, grapefruit juice and soda water will do the trick.

Paloma cocktails next to a lime and a grapefruit.

More Delicious Drink Recipes

Two palomas next to a bottle of tequila.
Rate this Recipe
5 from 1 vote

Paloma Cocktail

Prep Time: 5 mins
Total Time: 5 mins
Servings: 1 cocktail
Author: Bailey
This grapefruit and tequila cocktail is light, refreshing, and surprisingly easy to master.
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Tried this recipe?I'd love to hear what you think. Leave a comment and rating below!


  • 2 ounces tequila white
  • 2 ounces grapefruit juice fresh
  • 1/2 ounce lime juice fresh
  • 4 ounces soda water
  • 2 tablespoons honey for rim
  • 2 tablespoons sugar for rim


  • Place sugar on a plate, and honey on another. Dip the rim of glass into honey, then sugar. Fill with ice, set aside.
  • Fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Add tequila, grapefruit juice, lime juice. Add lid, and shake vigorously until smooth. Pour into prepared glass. Top with soda water.
  • Garnish with grapefruit slices or lime wedges.
Calories: 381kcal | Carbohydrates: 66g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Sodium: 28mg | Potassium: 134mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 65g | Vitamin A: 11IU | Vitamin C: 20mg | Calcium: 15mg | Iron: 1mg

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A paloma with text overlay.


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