Grocery Coupons

Grocery Coupons

Members can print free savings coupons

Brain Health Center

Brain Health Center

Learn how to live smart and stay sharp

Amazon Kindle

Amazon Kindle

Members save on e-
readers and tablets

Caring for loved ones?

Caring for loved ones?

Find the resources you need

Contests and

You Could Choose Your Dream Vacation!

Hawaii, the Grand Canyon or an Alaskan Cruise! No purchase necessary. Ends May 31. See official rules.

Most Popular


Pancho’s Original Margarita Recipe

Course: Beverage
Total Time: Under 15 Minutes
Skill Level: Easy
Cost: Moderate
  • Print
  • Bookmark
  • Recommend
Pancho’s Original Margarita

Photo by: Joseph De Leo

Ciudad Juárez bartender Francisco “Pancho” Morales invented the margarita on the Fourth of July, 1942, according to the most plausible of many stories about the drink’s creation. Pancho says a woman wandered into his bar and ordered a “magnolia,” a gin cocktail. He didn’t know the drink, so he made up a Mexican substitute based on tequila and called it a “margarita,” the Spanish word for daisy. Ridiculing most versions of the cocktail as impostors, Pancho insists it should be made with clear silver tequila, Cointreau, and the juice squeezed from half of a limón (key-style Mexican lime). This is our rendition of his margarita, modified slightly for home preparation.

Yield: Serves 1

  • Cracked ice
  • ½ lime, preferably the small, key-type limón
  • Salt
  • 2 ounces premium silver tequila
  • 1 ounce Cointreau


Fill a cocktail shaker or lidded jar with cracked ice. Squeeze the juice from the lime into the container and then rub the lime half around the rim of an 8-ounce glass.

Place a thin layer of salt on a saucer and dip the lime-rubbed glass into the salt. Shake off excess salt to leave only a light sprinkling on the rim of the glass.

Pour the tequila and Cointreau into the container with the ice and lime juice and shake to blend. Strain the margarita into the prepared glass and serve.

Regional Variations: The typical margarita proportions are 3 parts tequila to 1 part lime juice and 1 to 2 parts orange-flavored liqueur, usually Cointreau or Triple Sec. From that starting point, the troops depart in all directions. Some people alter the ratios in favor of the tequila or lime juice, some like it frozen or “on the rocks” instead of “up,” and some have a strong preference for either the “pure” taste of silver tequila or the “rich” body of the gold variety. Cookbook author Jane Butel, founder of the Albuquerque cooking school that bears her name, adds part of an egg white for a little froth. The most unusual variations change the liqueur, substituting Curacao perhaps to make a blue margarita, or they combine another fruit flavor, from cranberry to prickly pear, with the Cointreau or Triple Sec.


By Mexican government regulations, all tequila must contain at least 51 percent distilled liquor from the blue agave plant. The best brands, for our tastes at least, use 100 percent agave. They come in three types, depending on the degree of barrel aging: plata, or silver (no aging), oro, or gold (aged in wood up to a year), and añejo, or old (aged in oak, usually for several years). Make margaritas with silver or gold tequila and reserve the añejo for serious sipping, like a cognac.

© 1995 Cheryl Alters Jamison

Nutrients per serving (% daily value)

Nutritional information is based on 1/4 teaspoon added salt per serving.

186kcal (9%)
14mg (1%)
10mg (16%)
1mcg RAE (0%)
0mg (0%)
585mg (24%)
0g (0%)
0g (0%)
0mg (2%)

Discounts & Benefits

From companies that meet the high standards of service and quality set by AARP.

denny's restaurant member discount membership

Members save 15% all day, every day when dining at participating Denny’s restaurants.

Member Benefit Discount Dunkin Donuts Cream

Members get a FREE Donut with purchase of a L or XL beverage at Dunkin' Donuts.

Outback membership benefit aarp festive steak dinner

Members save 15% on lunch and dinner every day at Outback Steakhouse.

Member Benefits

Join or renew today! Members receive exclusive member benefits & affect social change.