Does Margarita Mix Go Bad?

So, you’re about to put your lips to a freshly prepped margarita, and a sour smell fills your nose. Margarita mix is naturally acidic; it must be nothing, you think. Still, the question lingers… does margarita mix go bad?

Margarita mix does go bad; how fast it does, however, depends on how it is stored. Unopened margarita mix lasts between 12 to 18 months or longer when stored in a cool, dark place. Opened margarita mix usually stays fine between 6 to 9 months in the fridge if you open it long before expiry. 

There is no need to be sour (pun intended) if your mix has gone past its due date – it will probably be fine.

Below you will find all there is to know about preserving your margarita mix for ultimate freshness and how to avoid drinking margarita mix that might make you sick or offend your taste buds.

With this guide, every margarita will make you and your guests want to say “¡salud!”

Does Margarita Mix Go Bad?

The simple answer is yes, Margarita mix does go bad after some time.

Chances are, however, that it won’t necessarily make you sick, but rather that the color, smell, and flavor may have degraded a little.

Worst case scenario is that you and your guests might not quite like the taste of your favorite tequila tipple. 

Where To Store Margarita Mix For Prolonged Shelf-Life?

Unopened margarita mix stays freshest in the pantry or other cool, dark, and dry spaces, such as kitchen cabinets or the basement.

Under these conditions, your margarita mix will likely last for 12-18 months. The most important thing is keeping the mixture away from heat and direct sunlight.

Why Does Margarita Mix Last So Long?

Sugar and lime/lemon is directly attributable to the long lifespan of both store-bought and homemade margarita mixes.

Anti-bacterial and absorbent compounds found in the sugar and the acidity of the mix act as natural preservatives and prevent it from spoiling for a very long time.

Store-bought alternatives often last longer than homemade mixes since they generally have added preservatives.

What If My Margarita Mix Is Past Its Best-Before Date?

Do not fret; more often than not, best-before dates are quite conservatively estimated, and the chances are that your mix will still be fine to consume even if it’s expired according to the label.

It will likely still be fine for a couple of months after the best-before date, but remember to smell, taste, and see before serving it to guests or drinking too much of it yourself.

When To Throw Out Old Margarita Mix?

If your margarita mix is tasting more bland than usual, you can revive it with an extra squeeze of a lemon or lime and maybe some more simple syrup.

However, if your margarita mix is smelling or tasting foul, its color does not seem normal, or you can see unknown particles such as mold growing in the bottle, you should probably throw it out. Saving a few pennies won’t be worth it.

How Long Does Homemade Margarita Mix Last?

Margarita mix made at home within the first 24 hours.

The lime juice will quickly lose its potency and may even go foul.

Homemade mixes don’t have all the preservatives that store-bought margarita mix has; some may see this as a plus, others may not.

Either way, your homemade mix will likely last around seven days in a pitcher in the fridge (so it’s best to freeze it).

How Long Does Margarita Mix Last In The Fridge?

Unopened margarita mix won’t last long in the fridge than in the pantry or other cool, dark places.

Therefore, it would be a waste of fridge space to store the unopened mix in the refrigerator. 

On the other hand, opened margarita mix will benefit from being held in the fridge and keep it fresh for another 6 to 9 months (given that it is still fresh when opened) and not the end of its expected life.

How Long Does Margarita Mix Last In The Freezer? 

Freezing margarita mix is a great way to preserve its quality (if you’re willing to sacrifice the space for it).

The constant temperature a freezer environment provides is the preserving factor in this case.

If you have already added your tequila to the mix before freezing, it will stay a liquid due to the high alcohol content of the tequila, but in return, you will have frozen margaritas – ready to serve!

Does Jose Cuervo Margarita Mix Expire? 

Jose Cuervo margarita mix, the counterpart of the iconic tequila, is a popular choice for consumers who want to enjoy an easy, authentic-tasting tequila at home.

As long as you store your Jose Cuervo mix under the right conditions, it can last unopened in cool, dark places for 12 to 18 months and open in the fridge for 6 to 9 months.

Does Margarita Salt Go Bad?

Regular salt doesn’t expire and is, in fact, one of the oldest preservatives known to humankind.

These days, however, people like to be more extravagant with the type of salt they use to cover the rim of their margarita glasses.

Your margarita salt may contain ingredients of a different nature than just plain kosher salt.

Margarita salt, generally, contains kosher salt, lemon zest, and lime zest – all crushed together.

As a result of the zests, the margarita salt does have a limited lifespan, and some say this will be around one month when stored in an airtight container in a cool, dark space.

One month, however, is a very conservative estimate, and it could last much longer.

A Couple Of Interesting Facts Regarding Margaritas

Margaritas are, without a doubt, one of the most widely known drinks and a staple of any cocktail bar’s repertoire.

But there are many mysteries surrounding this sweet, salty, and sour favorite. Maybe you can share some of this information next time you sip on this liquid treat.

What Are The Origins Of Margaritas?

Although many have claimed to be the discoverer of the famous cocktail, one of the oldest claims dates back to 1938.

Carlos “Danny” Herrera, a restaurant owner from Tijuana, had allegedly made the recipe on the spot when a picky diner said she could only drink tequila.

By combining the three main ingredients in the shot (tequila, salt, and lime), Danny had supposedly invented an instant classic.

Other accounts believe that the drink is derivative of a famous Prohibition cocktail called the Daisy.

One essentially makes a Daisy with the same recipe, but brandy is the spirit of choice instead of tequila.

Later tequila started being used for its complementarity to the limy flavor. Funnily enough, “margarita” is Spanish for “daisy.”

Margarita’s Popularity Is Immense

According to Drinks International’s list of the world’s most ordered cocktails for 2021, Margarita ranks fifth and is number one for all tequila-based drinks.

This rank is two positions higher than it attained in 2020. This status says a lot since tequila is a spirit most people tend to shy away from (come one, we’ve all had that experience at least once).


We can all understand why margaritas are such a popular drink.

The perfect balance between sweet and sour with a salty edge to bring it all out.

Naturally, we would like to preserve it as long as possible (or at least not get sick from our desire to have an ice-cold tequila tincture right now).

Hopefully, the tips discussed will prevent that from ever happening and help you plan the next fiesta with success!