Impressive 3-Ingredient Cocktails

Click here for awesome 3-ingredient cocktails you can make for your friends!

by Anne Middleton, on May 17th, 2016

Who says a good cocktail needs a dozen obscure ingredients? Some of the most enduring and popular recipes actually have a short list of ingredients and are the easiest to create. While there are very simple drinks that are just alcohol and a mixer like a Gin & Tonic, when you add just one more component, you can often create greater complexity and depth in your cocktail and more importantly, impress your friends during your own Happy Hour. Examples of stylish 3 ingredient cocktails include the always festive margarita, the Cuba Libre and the Old Fashion.


Margaritas are not just for Cinco de Mayo anymore.  A margarita is cocktail made of tequila, triple sec and either lime or lemon juice served in a cocktail glass with (or without) salt rubbed on the rim.

The basis of any margarita is the wonderful taste of tequila, one of America’s favorite and most popular spirits.  In 2014 alone, 13.8 million nine-liter cases of tequila were sold. Making a great margarita for your friends will boost your own popularity, especially with the song “Margaritaville” by Jimmy Buffet playing in the background.

So throw away the sweet-and-sour mix and any notions you might have of hangover-inducing margarita. Instead shake up a pared-down and oh-so-refreshing version of ingredients. This perfect partner to any summertime meal makes the margarita the must-have cocktail at any party.

Watching those calories during the summer bathing suit months? No worries.  There is a simple way to create a Skinny Margarita with a 3 ingredient recipe. With this super easy, super skinny margarita, you’ll have nothing to worry about!

By the way, the Guinness world record for the largest margarita is 32,176 liters and took 300 hours and 60 people to prepare.

Cuba Libre

The Cuba Libre is a cocktail made of cola, lime and dark or light rum. The Cuba Libre has a colorful history that dates to the early 1900s.

Cuba Libre translates to "Free Cuba." Legend has it that this was the battle cry of the Cuba Liberation Army during their war of independence from Spain that ended in 1898. But there are multiple versions of how it became associated with the Cuba Libre alcoholic beverage.

For their part, Bacardi, a leader in the sale of rum, describes a scenario in which a Havana bar owner created the drink for U.S. customers toasted each other with the now famous phrase “Cuba Libre!” and the name of the cocktail was born.

The Cuba Libre cocktail is a humble mixed drink similar to a traditional rum and coke, but with the addition of fresh lime or lime juice to differentiate and lighten it up.

Rum seems to never have been popular.  U.S. dollar sales of rum in the retail sector were $8.42 billion, compared to $3.61 billion generated by wholesalers.

Old Fashion

Although the Old Fashion is a drink said that predated not only the motor car but also the presidency of Abe Lincoln, it is still popular today.  The Old Fashion is truly a fashionable and trendy drink that will impress your friends, while only you will know how simple it is to make.

In fact, the Old Fashioned is one of those drinks that prove that a cocktail doesn't need to be complicated to be good. Whiskey or Bourbon, sugar and bitters are all you need.

Many of us don’t even know what “bitters” is when making a cocktail. Bitters are like the spice rack of the cocktail world. More literally speaking, bitters are a liquid extraction of seeds, herbs, bark, roots, flowers, leaves and fruit of various plants. They are highly concentrated and are used by the dash to flavor cocktails.

Today bitters come in little bottles with eyedroppers, and a drop or two can drastically change the flavor profile of a drink. Angostura aromatic bitters have been around since the early 1800s and are most popular for making an Old Fashion cocktail.  It is not bitter at all, but rather a flavor enhancer.

Raise Your Glass

So remember, you don’t need a full bar to mix a cocktail to impress your friends. You can create simple, show stopping drinks featuring great flavors with just 3 ingredients. Offer your friends the always admired Margarita, Cuba Libre or traditional Old Fashion to liven up any gathering without spending a lot of time behind the bar. Cheers!