Olive Garden Italian Margarita

Olive Garden Italian Margarita is a classic cocktail with a twist! The Olive Garden’s Italian margarita is prepared with top-shelf ingredients and served on the rocks with a side of amaretto. Their riff on the classic margarita cocktail is a fun twist on the classic margarita. I hope you enjoy this Olive Garden copycat recipe. 

homemade Olive Garden Italian Margarita served with amaretto

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What makes the Italian version of the margarita so unique? 

​I am sure you have tried a lot of margarita recipes. The main difference in this drink is the addition of amaretto. The Amaretto makes a sweeter cocktail, so if you like your classic favorites on the sweeter side, this may be the perfect alcoholic drink for you. 

Olive Garden Margaritas

Olive Garden restaurants may be famous for their American-Italian cuisine, but if you check out the menu, there are some pretty unique cocktails on it as well. Take the Olive Garden Italian Margarita, for example.

The chain puts an Italian twist on the classic Margarita with an additional shot of amaretto liqueur. This extra fruity, sweet and sour drink is not for the lightweights, with its three and a half ounces of booze in every glass.

It also has a sugar rim for an extra touch of sweetness instead of the classic Margarita salt rim.

Olive Garden also has a Watermelon Margarita that’s a fruity twist to a traditional margarita.

Not every location serves mixed drinks, so if you can’t order the glass at your Olive Garden, why not try making a few at home?

What’s In the Olive Garden Italian Margarita Recipe?

Jose Cuervo Especial Silver

Tequila is made from the blue agave plant and is one of the world’s most popular liquors. Using the best quality tequila is always lovely at the heart and soul of a good Margarita. There are five different categories. Blanco tequila is the purest form because it doesn’t undergo any aging in oak barrels and, therefore, has the mildest taste. Most bartenders prefer to use this tequila category in the Margarita they make.

Jose Cuervo Especial Silver, often called Jose Cuervo Blanco tequila, is a popular choice because it is moderately priced and widely available. But you may use any Blanco tequila at home without affecting the cocktail’s taste.

Triple Sec

Triple Sec is an orange-flavored liqueur originally from France. The bright citrus flavor comes from the peels of sweet and bitter oranges and other ‘secret’ ingredients blended with neutral spirits. The Combier brand was the first Triple Sec, but many brands exist. Although formerly drank straight as an after-dinner digestif, Triple Sec today is more commonly added to cocktails. The orange flavor makes for the perfect drink, giving an excellent balance of citrus flavors. 

If you don’t have a bottle labeled “Tripe Sec” on hand, you can substitute another citrusy spirit like Grand Marnier, Cointreau, or Pierre Ferrand Dry Curaçao, 


The Italian influence for this Margarita comes from Amaretto, an almond-flavored liqueur from Italy. There are many mixed drinks with Amaretto, but it’s also common to serve this Italian liqueur over ice. Many brands produce a decent Amaretto, but Disaronno Amaretto Liqueur is probably the most famous in the US. Olive Garden serves its Italian Margaritas with a shot of Amaretto on the side to allow the diner guest to add it. When you make the cocktail at home, you might as well mix it with the rest of the drink.

Fans of Amaretto drinks may want to try a few, like Amaretto di Saschira or Lazzaroni Amaretto, to find your favorite.

Sour Mix

A better name for a sour mix might be a “sweet and sour” mix. It is simple syrup with lemon and lime juice to balance the sweetness. You can buy the sour mix in almost any supermarket, but it is simple to make at home and tastes much better than anything on the shelf. The fresh citrus juices add brightness to this cocktail, perfect in this Olive Garden margarita. 

How to make the homemade sour mix:

  1. Combine one cup of water with white sugar in a small saucepan.
  2. Slowly bring to a boil while stirring.
  3. Once the sugar mixture comes to a boil, remove the pan from the heat and add a half cup of fresh lemon juice and an equal amount of fresh lime juice.
  4. Stir and let it cool.
  5. Store it in a container with a lid in the refrigerator.


Here’s a full list of what you need to make this copycat recipe:

  • Jose Cuervo Blanco or any white tequila
  • Triple sec orange liqueur
  • Orange juice
  • Sour mix
  • Amaretto almond liqueur
  • White Granulated Sugar
  • Orange
  • Lime
Olive Garden Italian Margarita ingredients

How to Make Olive Garden Italian Margarita

Here are the simple steps for making this drink:

  1. Cut a lime wedge and rim the margarita glass with the lime.
  2. To rim the glass, dip the wet rim of the glass into a dish filled with sugar. 
  3. Fill a cocktail shaker with tequila, triple sec, orange juice, and sour mix.
Collage of rimming a margarita glass with sugar and adding Italian margarita ingredients to a cocktail shaker.
  1. Shake until blended.
  2. Pour into the sugar-rimmed margarita glass filled with ice cubes.
Collage of shaking and pouring an Olive Garden Italian margarita.
  1. Garnish with orange and lime slices or an orange wedge.
  2. Serve the margarita with the amaretto in a cordial glass.
  3. Pour the amaretto into the margarita and enjoy!
homemade Olive Garden Italian Margarita, amaretto, and ice in glasses

Tips for Making an Olive Garden Italian Margarita

  • You got to move it, move it. Give your cocktail shaker more than a few shakes. Shaking helps to aerate the drink and bring out the flavors thoroughly. If you are ever confused about whether to shake or stir a cocktail, the rule is that anything with fresh ingredients like fruit juice or cream must go into the shaker.
  • Choose your shaker wisely. There are two types of shakers: Boston and Cobbler. A Boston shaker is better at aerating but takes longer to chill. The extra time in the shaker may cause drinks to become more watery. On the other hand, a Cobbler shaker chills cocktails quicker but doesn’t incorporate as much air into the cocktails. Most bartenders prefer using a Boston shaker for making Margaritas.

Check out more delicious cocktails on YouTube!

homemade Olive Garden Italian Margarita with amaretto on the side.

Love Olive Garden? Try these copycat recipes!

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homemade Olive Garden Italian Margarita served with amaretto.

Olive Garden Italian Margartia

Olive Garden Italian Margarita takes a classic cocktail to a whole new tasty level! Get the easy copycat recipe and learn how to make the best margarita with tequila, triple sec, orange juice, sour mix, and a side of amaretto. This delicious homemade margarita on the rocks is great for any fun occasion.
5 from 19 votes
Print Pin Rate Add to Collection
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: Cocktail
Keyword: Olive Garden Italian Margarita
Prep Time: 2 minutes
Cook Time: 3 minutes
Servings: 1
Calories: 323kcal


  • 1 1/2 ounces Jose Cuervo Blanco Tequila you can use your favorite tequila
  • 1 ounce triple sec
  • 1 ounce orange juice
  • 3 ounces sour mix
  • 1 ounce amaretto this is served alongside the margarita
  • sugar for rim
  • orange slice
  • lime slice


  • Cut two lime wedges and rim the margarita glass with one lime slice. Dip the wet margarita glass into a dish filled with sugar. Save the other lime wedge for garnish.
  • Fill a boston shaker with tequila, triple sec, orange juice, sour mix, and shake. Pour into a margarita glass full of ice.
  • Service with a cordial glass full of amaretto, it’s recommended to pour the amaretto inside the margarita glass before serving.




Calories: 323kcal | Carbohydrates: 31g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 21mg | Potassium: 75mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 30g | Vitamin A: 57IU | Vitamin C: 14mg | Calcium: 4mg | Iron: 1mg

About Stephanie Manley

I recreate your favorite restaurant recipes, so you can prepare these dishes at home. I help you cook dinner, and serve up dishes you know your family will love. You can find most of the ingredients for all of the recipes in your local grocery store.

Stephanie is the author of CopyKat.com's Dining Out in the Home, and CopyKat.com's Dining Out in the Home 2.

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Reader Interactions


  1. Lynette Hedrick

    Love this Italian margarita, but they line their glass with orange flavored sugar. Is this something they make there or purchase a flavored sugar?

  2. Sheree

    5 stars
    This tastes exactly like the original!! Thank you for taking the time to perfect it. It will be my mew go to Margarita recipe.

5 from 19 votes (15 ratings without comment)

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