Classic Sparkling Paloma Cocktail Recipe

If you like your cocktails cool, citrusy, and refreshing, then there's no doubt that this classic sparkling paloma is the recipe for you. Tequila, lime juice, grapefruit juice, simple syrup, and sparkling water all come together in a bubbly cocktail that's somewhat reminiscent of a hard seltzer, but so much fresher. "I love that this cocktail is simple, classic, and delicious," recipe developer Christina Musgrave says. "Plus, there are only a few ingredients, and it's super easy."

Indeed, this cocktail is so easy to whip up, that it takes a mere 5 minutes, and you can easily make several cocktails at once. There's no shaking or special tools involved — in fact, that would be somewhat of a disaster, given the sparkling water. Instead, you just need a glass, a handful of ingredients, and some ice for optimal refreshment. Enjoy this cocktail for at-home happy hours, or serve it up at your next gathering. The bubbly nature of this cocktail will instantly put your guests in the best of moods (well, the tequila will help, too). 

Gather the ingredients for this classic sparkling paloma cocktail

A paloma's star liquor is tequila, but you'll also need grapefruit juice, lime juice, and simple syrup. It wouldn't be a sparkling cocktail without sparkling water, so you'll top the drink off with some of that. To garnish, you'll want fresh grapefruit slices, which adds an ideal pop of color to an otherwise neutral-looking beverage.

While this ingredients list is pretty straightforward for a paloma, Musgrave strongly advises using fresh juice. "I do recommend using freshly squeezed grapefruit juice," she explains. "It makes all the difference!"

Pour the ingredients in a glass

Like any cocktail, there are a few different liquids that will come together to create a sip-worthy beverage. In this case, you'll want to start by adding the tequila, grapefruit juice, lime juice, and simple syrup to a tall cocktail glass. Use a long-necked spoon to gently stir the liquids together. Add as much ice as you'd like to the glass, then top it off with sparkling water.

Garnish with a grapefruit slice, and start sipping

Garnish your paloma with a grapefruit slice, then you're ready to bask in the refreshment. "This cocktail is great year-round," Musgrave says. "It's a great batch cocktail, so you can make it in advance before your guests arrive — just omit the ice until you're ready to serve."

And, if you are serving this for a gathering, you may want some food on the side, too. "I'd serve this with a shrimp ceviche, tacos, chips, and guacamole," Musgrave suggests. 

Classic Sparkling Paloma Cocktail Recipe
5 from 36 ratings
Whether you are hosting a party, or having an at-home happy hour, this easy paloma cocktail recipe is sure to do the trick.
Prep Time
Cook Time
cocktail with grapefruit slice
Total time: 5 minutes
  • 2 ounces tequila
  • 1 ounce grapefruit juice
  • ½ ounce lime juice
  • ¼ ounce simple syrup
  • 3 ounces sparkling water
  • 1 grapefruit slice, for garnish
  1. Add the tequila, grapefruit juice, lime juice, and simple syrup to a tall cocktail glass. Stir well.
  2. Fill the glass with ice, and top it off with sparkling water.
  3. Garnish with a grapefruit slice, and serve.
Calories per Serving 242
Total Fat 0.3 g
Saturated Fat 0.0 g
Trans Fat 0.0 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Total Carbohydrates 28.8 g
Dietary Fiber 2.7 g
Total Sugars 25.3 g
Sodium 16.3 mg
Protein 1.8 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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