Cherry Margarita

July 14, 2010

For a person who loves a good cocktail, I tend to do very few posts on the subject. I think perhaps it is time to change that.

I have cherries in mind and I’m not alone. It seems they are all the rage around the food blogging world and for good reason. Although they are popular in other countries, after being in South America I’ve come to strongly identify cherries with the US. Yes, all you lucky people who live in the Michigan and Rainier growing regions of the northwest.

Fortunately cherry trees do grow around Kentucky and Indiana, they are just in limited supply and they tend to be done bearing by early summer. I did pick up a bag from the Farmer’s Market back in May, but now I have to resort to the Bing cherries in the supermarket if I want them. Otherwise, I can go for cherry juice.

A few months ago Cheribundi sent me some samples of tart cherry juice to try. Its arrival motivated me to do some more research about the benefits of tart cherries. My Dad swears by it for reducing inflammation and arthritis. Well, okay, he rarely swears, but you know what I mean.

For tart cherries and health it is all about the anthocyanins, those plant substances that give cherries their deep, dark red color. Tart cherries are linked to a reduction in the inflammation that is related to heart disease and diabetes. These anti-inflammatory properties may also be why many people claim that cherry juice eases their arthritis pain.

For all my runners out there, a study in 2009 found that drinking tart cherry juice resulted in faster recovery after marathon running. (I sent my husband this study back in April during our training and after two days the bottle of cherry juice which I had been rationing in our fridge for about a week was gone.)

Tart cherries are beneficial in just about any form – fresh, dried, juice. Just make sure that the dried variety isn’t loaded with sugar or other sweeteners.

The sweet cherries such as Bings which are so plentiful here right now don’t appear to have as much of the antioxidant anthocyanins. However, they still deserve plenty of attention for their health benefits.

After drinking the first bottle of TruCherry, which was very good by the way, I knew I wanted to create something with the second. No rack of lamb with a cherry reduction here, I was thinking cocktail! I decided to combine fresh lime, fresh Bing cherries, tart cherry juice and tequila.

I rimmed the glass with ground Pink Himalayan sea salt which is a new favorite ingredient of mine. Just go easy because a little goes a long way!

Now, I’m not advocating you drink all your cherry juice as a cocktail, but this was one good margarita!

Cherry Margarita

¼ of a fresh lime
3 Bing cherries, pitted
1 oz tequila
2 to 3 oz tart cherry juice

In a cocktail shaker or glass mull the lime and cherries together, extracting as much juice as possible. Pour in the tequila and cherry juice. Add some ice cubes and shake or stir until chilled. Strain into a cocktail glass of your choice. Rim the glass with salt if desired. Makes one drink.


University of Michigan Health System (2008, April 10). Tart Cherries May Reduce Factors Associated With Heart Disease And Diabetes. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 14, 2010, from¬ /releases/2008/04/080407114647.htm
Howatson et al. Influence of tart cherry juice on indices of recovery following marathon running. Scandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports, 2009

Disclosure: Cheribundi Tart Cherry Juice was sent to me free of charge. I was not under any obligation to write about it and I did not receive any compensation for doing so nor did any factors influence my opinion.

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  • MelindaRD July 15, 2010 at 4:19 am

    Yep, that looks like a drink worth enjoying, especially from my roof top patio with an ocean view!

  • Joanne July 15, 2010 at 5:01 am

    Being a HUGE fan of tequila. And margaritas in general…I’m enamored with this!

  • kat July 15, 2010 at 6:11 am

    Being from Michigan, Matt loves his cherries. He’s been muddling them into drinks but I bet he’s love this margarita

  • Marisa July 15, 2010 at 6:11 am

    I could use a big gulp of this right now.

  • Active Foodie July 15, 2010 at 9:08 am

    I love that you turned the tart cherry juice into a margarita!! I am training for a marathon and I drink a cup of tart juice every day and use it in my long run recovery smoothies as well! (But I think I would much prefer it in a cocktail!) 😉

  • Active Foodie July 15, 2010 at 9:09 am

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  • emily(a nutritionist eats) July 15, 2010 at 11:30 am

    These sound amazing and I LOVE your pictures! I’m not a huge margarita fan, but these sound so good!

  • Anderburf July 15, 2010 at 12:05 pm

    This looks and sounds so good! I just got some Himalayan pink salt, HimalaSalt, from Sustainable Sourcing and I think I’ll be using it in my cooking AND on my glasses from now on. YUM! Thanks for sharing.

  • Chow and Chatter July 15, 2010 at 8:03 pm

    oh this looks great I remember picking a bunch of cherries of my bosses tree and making crumble with them yum

  • Debinhawaii July 16, 2010 at 12:39 am

    I love cherries and miss my fresh Rainer ones from when I lived in Washington. I like to buy the frozen organic ones and eat them semi-frozen as a dessert or little snack. Of course drinking them in a margarita is a great way to go too! 😉 It looks delicious.

  • Lori July 16, 2010 at 4:10 am

    Melinda – Oh that sounds like an awesome place to drink it!

    Joanne – Tequila is growing on me, especially mixed with cherry juice.

    kat – I bet he’s made some great ones.

    Marisa – Ha! It’s Fri morning and I could too. 🙂

    Active Foodie – That’s great to know. I think we are going to start incorporating it more in our eating plan as our next races get closer.

    Emily – Yeah, margarita typically isn’t my first choice, but I do like those that have more unique flavors.

    Anderburf – I really like it. I’ve been getting mine at Whole Foods and Trader Joes.

    Chow and Chatter – Cherry Crumble sounds great!

    Deb – Oh, I bet you miss those terribly. The frozen ones sound good though.

  • Erica July 16, 2010 at 5:44 am

    I love cherries! I’ve been wanting to try making a cherry pie forever. I’m not a huge margarita fan, but I think I can get behind this one. I bet the juice tops over the tequila well! Have a good weekend Lori!

  • OysterCulture July 16, 2010 at 6:27 am

    This one has my name on it, and it is shouting to me!!! I hear you and I am coming.

  • Danielle July 17, 2010 at 12:39 pm

    This would hit the spot after a 9 month dry spell!

  • Bo July 18, 2010 at 3:08 am

    I’ve tried many margaritas, but never would have thought of a cherry one…Sounds great!

  • Tangled Noodle July 18, 2010 at 5:33 am

    We’ve been enjoying a variety of cool cocktails all summer (heck, all year, really) and this is definitely one that I’ve got to try! Love that you used fresh cherries as well as the cherry juice. What a terrific hue to this drink!

  • Becky May 10, 2011 at 1:21 am

    Your drink looks great! Could you tell me where you got, or who made the glassware in your first photo? I would love some like that.

    Thanks so much!