This lip-smackingly good watermelon cocktail is inspired by a hard Mexican candy that’s watermelon flavored and dusted in chilli; a sweet and spicy shot guaranteed to delight your tastebuds. Made with tequila and vibrant fruity flavors, our Mexican Candy Shot recipe is one of the very best you’ll ever try and designed to get you and your party guests dancing for joy.
Chill to the max: Shake up your ingredients over ice for that icy chill for the best flavor
Leftover Tajin seasoning makes fantastic easy bites sprinkled on cucumber circles or into guacamole.
Tap a watermelon and, if you hear a deep hollow sound, it means it is ripe and juicy
For a sweet Tajín-style rim
For the Mexican Candy cocktail
For the Tajín, mix all the ingredients together in a bowl
Run a slice of lime around the rim of the glass
Dip the shot glass into the sweet Tajín mixture and twist to coat the rim
Fill a shaker (or mason jar) with ice and add all the remaining drink ingredients. Shake well until chilled
Strain the mixture into the shot glass
Garnish with a lime wheel and enjoy
What’s in a Mexican Candy shot?
It all starts with a good quality tequila (as most good stories do) — and we recommend Cabo Wabo. Any of the tequila flavors (blanco, reposado or añejo) work well here. Aim for a good ratio of 1 part tequila to 2 parts juice, but you can always top up the fruit juice to your taste if you find it has too much of a kick.
Next, remember when it comes to cocktails, fresh is always best! Combine your chosen tequila with your favorite fresh tropical juice. Traditionally, pretty pink watermelon is the favorite, just like the candy that inspires the cocktail. Strain the juice from the pulp for best results. Variations of this Mexican candy drink recipe skip the fresh juice entirely using a 15% alcohol sweet-sour schnapps called watermelon pucker. If trying this version, stick to the same tequila to watermelon ratio and only add a touch of lime juice to taste.
For authenticity, spice it up with a dash or two of hot sauce, if you’re feeling brave. We love Tabasco but you can pick your favorite chilli sauce.
For the final touch, you can add the popular Mexican seasoning called Tajín. The real deal is a tangy blend of various dried chillies, árbol, guajillo and pasilla, dehydrated lime and salt. Make a similar one up at home with granulated sugar, zingy lime zest and fine chilli powder—it adds a sweet and spicy texture to the rim. Don’t worry if you’re not into spice; using just crunchy sugar is jfine too.
Top tricks to make the best Mexican Candy shots
When making the ultimate Mexican Candy cocktail, there are a few tips that can raise your game. Fill your shaker or jar with enough ice cubes and shake well until your hands get cold—this will make the flavor ping more on your palate. If you have time, freeze your shot glasses for at least 30 minutes for extra chill. For the ultimate sweet-sour puckering, suck on the lime wedges between sips!
If you have Tajin seasoning left over, it can be used to make fantastic easy bites to serve alongside. Sprinkle on some cucumber circles or onto cream cheese-stuffed celery sticks or swirl into your guacamole.
Looking for an alternative to watermelon? Use other typically bright and beautiful ingredients like all classic Mexican Cocktails contain—colored pink juices like grapefruit and guava, or extra sweet mango and strawberry are just as tasty.