This homemade Spicy Jalapeño Infused Tequila recipe is a concoction with a kick. Made with fresh jalapeño peppers, this spirit — your choice of tequila or mezcal — will bring the heat to all your margaritas and palomas, and help you say goodbye to summer!
Whenever I see spicy drinks on a cocktail menu, I have to order them.
Cayenne on the rim, hot sauce, horseradish, jalapeño-infused tequila… I want it all.
But this hasn’t always been a quirk of mine. Just the other day I was chatting with a friend about how I had to teach myself to like spicy foods.
My friends used to order the most amazing buffalo chicken wings at a bar we frequented, but they were too spicy for me — at first.
The first time I ordered them, I loved them, but it was too much all at once. So I forced myself to order it every time. At least, until the spice became palatable.
And now? I can eat some spicy foods. I’m not a 24-types-of-hot-sauce-in-my-fridge kind of person, but I do enjoy a little kick here and there.
I can handle more spice than my husband, who likes things a step above mild, but I also won’t be ordering anything with ghost pepper. And definitely not Carolina Reaper!
Spicy cocktails don’t have to be enjoyed only in restaurants and bars, though!
You can buy already infused spicy spirits, or you can make them at home by infusing your favorite spirits with peppers.
Infusing your own spicy spirits is my preferred way because you can control how much spice you bring into the spirits.
Spicy jalapeño tequila recipe
All you need are some jalapeño peppers and tequila to soak together, and a mason jar or bottle to make it happen.
To make it, thinly slice the jalapeños and discard the seeds if you desire a milder end product.
Then soak them in tequila for about a day.
They are going to lose their rich, green color — this is a-okay and totally normal, though not as pretty.
Remove the peppers, and you’ve got a spicy spirit worthy of the best cocktail bar in town.
Spicy cocktails with jalapeño tequila
It’s also delicious in a Bloody Mary. Well, when you use tequila, it’s called a Bloody Maria! (A Bloody Mary is made with vodka.)
However you choose to enjoy your spicy tequila, I say bring on the fire!
What kind of tequila should I use?
Blanco (or silver) tequila is going to be your best bet because it is clear and colorless — a perfect blank slate.
If you prefer an aged taste, try a reposado, which is aged in oak barrels for between two months and one year.
Anejo tequila is aged over a year, and it’s meant to be sipped straight like a fine whiskey or wine, and purists would tell you not to infuse it. But me? I say be creative! You do you.
Still not sure? I have just the tequila guide for you!
Can you use other spirits?
Of course! Mezcal would be a great, smokier alternative to tequila. (Though technically tequila is a type of mezcal…)
Anyway, rum and vodka make great bases for infusions, too! You could make habanero rum, or pepper vodka.
You might want to check out this Hatch Chile Vodka recipe I made that shows you how to use another kind of pepper and another spirit!
Can you use other peppers?
Sure! Jalapeños are milder, but you have options. If another type of pepper strikes your fancy, go wild and experiment!
Be sure to warn anyone you’re serving the tequila to in case they’re sensitive to spice.
Here are a few ideas:
- bell peppers
- hatch chile peppers
- shishito peppers
- ghost peppers
Can you use other flavors?
Sure! Try adding a few cloves of garlic, pearl onions or slices of onion, peppercorns and/or horseradish to your bottle as you infuse.
You can also try roasting your peppers for added smoky flavor. Check out this tutorial for roasting peppers.
How do you make it more spicy?
The number of peppers and time both play a key role in the spice level of this jalapeño infused tequila recipe.
More peppers — especially if you include the seeds — equals more spice. More time infusing means more of the spicy flavors can be absorbed into the tequila.
If you want more spice, use another half or whole pepper and/or infuse the tequila for an extra day or two.
If you do add more peppers, you are probably going to need a bigger jar! My rule is 1-2 peppers for 1 cup (8 ounces) of mildly spicy tequila.
Feel free to taste-test it with a spoon every day during the infusion process so you know for sure how spicy it’s getting as it sits.
How do you make it less spicy?
There are three ways you can make your jalapeño tequila less spicy from the get-go:
- Use a milder pepper.
- Use fewer peppers/slices.
- Infuse for less time.
But if you still wind up with a too-spicy tequila, you can dilute it by mixing it with a little more regular, un-infused tequila.
I hope you enjoy this jalapeño-infused tequila recipe!
Comment below with what you use it in so I can try your spicy concoctions. // susannah
- 1 jalapeño
- 2 cups blanco tequila or mezcal
- Thinly slice the jalapeño. (Remove the seeds if you prefer less spice.)
- Place jalapeños in the bottom of a 16-ounce mason jar. Top with tequila and cover with lid. Let sit 1-2 days. (The longer it sits, the spicier it gets.)
- Remove jalapeño slices with a slotted spoon or strainer, and store in an airtight container.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 10 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 91Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 0mgCarbohydrates: 0gFiber: 0gSugar: 0gProtein: 0g