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Grapefruit Paloma Cocktail

Crisp, sweet, and refreshing, this grapefruit Paloma recipe makes the perfect drink to kick off the summer. With such incredible flavor, your friends will never guess how easy this tequila-based cocktail is to make!

Vertical view of the tall collins glass with the cocktail with a stirrer and wedge of grapefruit. There is a shorter glass in the background and a whole grapefruitPin

Did you know that paloma means dove in Spanish?

But what does the word dove have to do with this grapefruit cocktail, you ask?

I have no clue. Not a lot is known about the history of this beverage. Some say it is named after a song “La Paloma” that was popular at the time it first appeared. Leave me a comment if you’re in the know!

I heard about the grapefruit Paloma many years ago when I worked at the Mexican restaurant.  

I had never heard of this drink before that. The customer who ordered it told me what it was. He told me it contained white tequila and grapefruit soda, like the brands Squirt, Izze, and Fresca.

Now, we didn’t have any of those sodas at the restaurant so the guy settled for a margarita.

We got to talking and he told me he had more than his share of Palomas on his vacation to Mexico and he really liked them. I asked, “Better than a margarita made with grapefruit juice?” His answer was yes, because they were so refreshing.

I had to try one. Just to see. For research.

He was right. It is very refreshing.

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Helpful tips

  • If I’m making one Paloma, I build it in the glass. If I’m making two or more, I combine the first three ingredients in my shaker then strain and divide among the glasses, topping each off with club soda separately. You don’t want to shake soda.
  • I always recommend buying the best alcohol you can afford but because this cocktail calls for fruit juice, it will still taste fine using a brand that isn’t premium or even mid-level.
  • Before I squeeze citrus or use it as garnish, I always wash it. You don’t want to be ingesting pesticides. Here’s how: Squirt some natural, unscented foaming hand soap (I get mine at Whole Foods) in your hand. Take the citrus fruit between your hands and rub the soap all over it. Next, take a vegetable brush and scrub the skin of the fruit. Run under cold water and make sure it is soap free.
  • To garnish, cut a small wedge from a fresh grapefruit and/or use a channeling knife (if you have one) to cut a twist from the circumference of the grapefruit.
  • If you don’t have a channeling knife, cut a grapefruit in half around the equator. Next, cut a thinnish slice. With your knife, cut the flesh out of the round (and eat). Cut a slit in the round, wrap it into a spiral and use a martini pick to hold the spiral together. See photo of finished cocktail below.

How to make a grapefruit Paloma

Pre-step

Gather a cocktail shaker and fill it halfway with ice. Also get a measuring glass and glassware. I use a double old fashioned glass and a Collins glass.

Cut the garnish. (See helpful tips above.)

After measuring out the ingredients, pour into the shaker.

Step one

Gather the ingredients – tequila, limes, grapefruit juice, and club soda.

Tequila, grapefruit juice, limes, club soda, a grapefruit and shaker in backgroundPin

Step two

Measure 4 ounces of tequila. (A)

Step three

Measure 1 ounce of lime juice. (B)

Left - tequila measured with the bottle and cork. Right - lime juice measured with two limes and the shakerPin

Step four

Measure 6 ounces of grapefruit juice. (C)

Step five

Cap the shaker and shake for 10 seconds.

Step six

Add fresh ice cubes to the glasses and strain and divide the liquid between the two glasses. I also add some of the ice from the shaker as well. Get club soda ready. (D)

Left - grapefruit juice in a large measuring glass. Right - grapefruit cocktail poured into the glasses with club soda in the backgroundPin

Step seven

Pour club soda to the top of the glass and add the garnish. I chose the twist for the short glass and the wedge for the tall glass.

A double old fashioned glass and tall glass filled with the grapefruit cocktail, both have garnishes of grapefruitPin

Looking good!

Overhead view of the cocktail with the twist garnish and chunked and sliced grapefruit with itPin

Yum.

Vertical view of the cocktail in the short glass in front of the collins glass. Both are garnished and there is a grapefruit in the backgroundPin

The only thing left, is to pick up the glass and sip. Ahhhhh, refreshing!

I hope you enjoyed this grapefruit Paloma cocktail recipe.

Other cocktails with grapefruit

And as always, may all your dishes/drinks be delish!

If you’ve tried this recipe, I’d love the know what you thought about it in the comments below. I love hearing from you! You can also FOLLOW ME on FACEBOOKTWITTERINSTAGRAM and PINTEREST to see more of my delicious food and delightful cocktails!

Glass with a grapefruit garnish on the side of the glass with a big grapefruit and slices in the background - squarePin

Grapefruit Paloma Cocktail

Crisp, sweet, and refreshing, this grapefruit Paloma recipe makes the perfect drink to kick off the summer. With such incredible flavor, your friends will never guess how easy this tequila-based cocktail is to make!ย 
5 from 7 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Cocktail
Cuisine: Cocktails
Keyword: grapefruit cocktail, paloma, paloma cocktail
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 2 cocktails
Calories: 174kcal

Ingredients

  • 4 ounces Patron silver tequila
  • 1 ounce lime juice
  • 6 ounces grapefruit juice
  • club soda (a few splashes)

Garnish

  • grapefruit slice (a quarter)
  • grapefruit twist

Instructions

  • Fill the shaker halfway with ice.
  • Add tequila, lime juice and the grapefruit juice.
    4 ounces Patron silver tequila, 1 ounce lime juice, 6 ounces grapefruit juice
  • Cap shaker and shake for 15 seconds. Add fresh ice to the glasses. Divide and strain between the two glasses. (There should be a 1 – 2 inch gap from the liquid and the top of the glass.
  • Add club soda to fill that gap.
    club soda
  • Add grapefruit slice to the side of the glass or a twist, whichever you prefer.
    grapefruit slice, grapefruit twist
  • Sip
  • Smile
  • Enjoy
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Notes

Helpful tips
  • If I’m making one Paloma, I build it in the glass. If I’m making two or more, I combine the first three ingredients in my shaker then strain and divide among the glasses, topping each off with club soda separately. You don’t want to shake soda.
  • I always recommend buying the best alcohol you can afford but because this cocktail calls for fruit juice, it will still taste fine using a brand that isn’t premium or even mid-level.
  • Before I squeeze citrus or use it as garnish, I always wash it. You don’t want to be ingesting pesticides. Here’s how: Squirt some natural, unscented foaming hand soap (I get mine at Whole Foods) in your hand. Take the citrus fruit between your hands and rub the soap all over it. Next, take a vegetable brush and scrub the skin of the fruit. Run under cold water and make sure it is soap free.
  • To garnish, cut a small wedge from a fresh grapefruit and/or use a channeling knife (if you have one) to cut a twist from the circumference of the grapefruit.
  • If you don’t have a channeling knife, cut a grapefruit in half around the equator. Next, cut a thinnish slice. With your knife, cut the flesh out of the round (and eat). Cut a slit in the round, wrap it into a spiral and use a martini pick to hold the spiral together. See photo of finished cocktail below.

Nutrition

Serving: 1cocktail | Calories: 174kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Sodium: 3mg | Potassium: 156mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 13IU | Vitamin C: 27mg | Calcium: 9mg | Iron: 1mg
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16 Comments

  1. Oh Elaine!! The Paloma is one of my favourite hot afternoon cocktails. It’s so refreshing after a bit of gardening work. In fact, we have a bottle of squirt all ready ‘in case of emergency’.

  2. Hmm refreshing! This Grapefruit Paloma Cocktail looks absolutely tasty and perfect for this summer.

  3. After I have made those for my friends, they can not stop talking about it. Now I have to try it alcohol-free because my kids are asking as well.

  4. We really like grapefruits and grapefruit juice. Never heard of grapefruit paloma before, but now with summer in full swing it seems like the perfect time to get to know this drink! Thank you for the inspiration!

    1. Thanks Eva! Grapefruit is a favorite of mine. The cocktail is so refreshing and I think you’ll love it.

  5. I love the Paloma, though I make mine a mocktail these days. Love your grapefruit-peel decoration and that elegant stick pin!

  6. I must say this grapefruit Paloma recipe looks very refreshing and tasty! After the day I had yesterday, I could go for one right now. It’s 5 pm someplace, lol! This will be on my list of drinks to make. Have a great day!

  7. Love your Paloma cocktail! ๐Ÿ™‚ Fabulous recipe and the perfect way to celebrate 5 oโ€™clock today (and tomorrow, etc.). Thanks so much for this recipe!