Tequila is a delicious and versatile spirit that can be used to make some of the most creative meals. It’s no wonder why tequila is a favorite among home cooks looking for something special to pair with their drinks.
But what is the best food to pair with tequila? Whether you’re a fan of creamy seafood dishes or robust Mexican classics, there is a perfect tequila for every dish.
Let’s explore some delicious food and tequila pairings that will make your next gathering the talk of the town!
Tequila is often thought of as a party spirit, but it is much more than that. Here are some of the best dishes to pair with tequila that will delight your taste buds and have you experiencing all the nuances in flavor this spirit has to offer.
20 Best Food to Pair with Tequila
1. Seafood Dishes & Blanco Tequila
If you’re looking for a something light and refreshing to pair with your favorite Blanco tequilas, look no further than fresh seafood dishes like ceviche or grilled fish tacos.
The bright citrus notes of blanco tequilas highlight the subtle sweetness of fresh fish while providing a balance to the acidity of lime juice.
For an extra kick, try adding a dash of spicy chili powder to your tacos or ceviche!
Explore More: Best Drinks Must pair with Seafood Boil
2. Mexican Staples & Añejo Tequila
For an unbeatable combination of flavor and texture, try pairing classic Mexican staples like carnitas, enchiladas, verdes, or chiles rellenos with an aged añejo tequila.
The rich smokiness of these dishes pairs perfectly with the smooth caramel notes found in most añejos.
For an added bonus, try using your favorite añejo in place of salt when seasoning your proteins – it adds depth without overpowering the dish!
3. Vegetarian Fare & Reposado Tequila
Tequila isn’t just for meat lovers – vegetarians can also enjoy this spirit when paired with the right dishes!
To bring out the sweet spice notes found in reposado tequilas (like cinnamon and nutmeg), opt for hearty vegetable-based meals like roasted eggplant topped with salsa verde or black bean enchiladas smothered in mole sauce.
The earthy flavors found in these vegetarian-friendly dishes pair perfectly with reposado tequilas, making them a great option for any occasion!
4. Tequila-Marinated Steak Fajitas
Nothing beats a good steak fajita, especially when it’s been marinated in tequila! Marinating your steak in tequila not only adds flavor but also helps keep the meat moist and tender.
To make this dish, simply combine garlic, cilantro, jalapeno peppers, lime juice, olive oil, and your favorite brand of tequila in a large bowl. Add your steaks to the mixture and let them marinate overnight.
When you’re ready to cook them up, just heat up a skillet on medium-high heat and add the steak.
Cook until they reach your desired doneness. Serve with warm tortillas and all your favorite toppings—guacamole, cheese, sour cream—for an unforgettable meal.
5. Tequila-Lime Shrimp Tacos
Shrimp tacos always make for a great dinner option—and when you add tequila into the mix? Even better!
Start by marinating your shrimp in lemon juice and tequila for at least an hour before cooking them up in a skillet over medium heat. Once cooked through (about 4 minutes), set aside while you prepare your tacos shells (store-bought or homemade).
For added flavor, spread some mayonnaise over each taco shell before adding your shrimp; top with lettuce, tomatoes, avocado slices or guacamole if desired. Serve with extra lime wedges on the side for squeezing over each taco.
The combination of lime juice, garlic, chili and cilantro creates the perfect backdrop for tequila’s bright and refreshing qualities.
7. Mexican Mole
Mole is a complex sauce made up of chiles, nuts and spices, which makes it an ideal match for a smooth tequila sipper such as an Añejo or Reposado Tequila.
8. Grilled Fish Tacos
The smoky flavors in grilled fish tacos pair perfectly with a blanco or silver tequila. Agave-infused citrus marinades bring out the sweet notes of the spirit while still allowing for the freshness of the fish to shine through.
Discover More: Creative Side Dishes to Serve with Grilled Fish Tacos
9. Octopus Tostadas
Combine salty octopus with tangy avocado crema and crunchy tostadas for an appetizer that will have your guests wanting shots of silver or blanco tequilas all night long! (Recipe)
10. Chipotle Shrimp Cocktail
Tequila’s herbal notes contrast nicely against the chipotle shrimp cocktail’s spiciness and sweetness. Silver or Blanco tequilas work particularly well to highlight both flavors without getting lost in them.
11. Charred Pork Shoulder Tacos
The sweetness of charred pork shoulder pairs extremely well with aged Añejo or extra-aged Extra Añejo Tequilas, which bring out its smokiness without overpowering it with spice.
12. Sweet Potato Empanadas
Empanadas filled with creamy sweet potatoes make for a surprisingly delightful pairing with smooth Reposado Tequilas, whose sweetness helps bring out the subtle spicy flavors in both dishes.
Explore More: Best Side Dishes to serve with Sweet Potato Soup
13. Tamarind BBQ Ribs
Tequila’s herbaceous flavor complements tangy tamarind BBQ ribs beautifully when paired together in harmony; try an aged Añejo or Extra Añejo Tequila to really bring out their complexity!
14. Cheese Enchiladas Verdes
Creamy cheeses combined with tomatillo salsa verde create a flavor profile begging to be accompanied by silver or blanco tequilas, whose sharp herbal notes cut through each layer one bite at a time!
15. Chorizo Stuffed Poblano Peppers
Spicy chorizo stuffed into roasted poblanos gives off earthy aromas that are brought alive by aged Reposado Tequilas, whose savory hints add depth to each bite! (Recipe)
16. Agave Glazed Baby Back Ribs
The sweetness from the agave glaze on baby back ribs blends harmoniously with full-bodied Oaxaca-style mezcal, bringing out its smoky essence without overwhelming it!
17. Grilled Sea Bass Skewers
Balance out smoky grilled sea bass skewers with bright citrus notes from citrus-infused reposados – creating an unforgettable flavor experience that won’t be soon forgotten!
Find Out More: Best vegetables to serve with sea bass
18. Carnitas Burrito Bowl
Bring together slow cooked pork carnitas burrito bowl with white oak barrel-aged blancos – enhancing its richness while balancing its tartness!
19. Spicy Turkey Quesadillas
Kick up your quesadilla game, serving them alongside lightly herbed tequilas – highlighting their smokiness while tempering their spiciness!
20. Cochinita Pibil
Achieve ultimate flavor bliss by pairing ancient Mayan recipe cochinita pibil (citrus marinated pork) alongside reposado flavored with tropical fruits like mango and coconut – enhancing its zesty flavor profile without overpowering it!
Tequila is not just great for margaritas; its unique flavor makes it perfect for pairing with all kinds of dishes!
Whether you opt for steak fajitas or shrimp tacos (or both!), these recipes will ensure that you get the optimum flavor out of every sip of tequila you enjoy with dinner tonight.
So go ahead — break out that bottle of tequila from the back of your cabinet and get cooking!
What flavor doesn’t go well with tequila?
Tequila is a popular alcoholic drink that is enjoyed by many people all over the world.
However, not all flavors go well with this drink. In particular, one flavor that doesn’t pair well with tequila is cherry.
The strong and sweet taste of cherry can overpower the taste of the tequila, leaving a strange aftertaste.
Moreover, tequila is best enjoyed with flavors that complement its unique flavor profile. For example, the smoky and earthy taste of tequila pairs well with lime or grapefruit.
The citrusy notes in these flavors help to balance the intensity of the tequila, creating a well-rounded and enjoyable drinking experience.
Additionally, tequila can be paired with spicy flavors such as jalapeno, which can enhance the drink’s flavor by adding a kick of heat.
In fact, there are several traditional Mexican cocktails that are made with tequila and other complementary flavors, such as the Paloma, which is made with grapefruit juice and Club Soda, and the Margarita, which is made with lime juice and Triple Sec.
These cocktails have stood the test of time and are loved by many tequila enthusiasts all over the world.
In conclusion, while tequila may not pair well with all flavors, there are plenty of complementary options to choose from.
By experimenting with different flavor combinations, you can discover your own unique tequila cocktail and enjoy the full range of flavors that this popular drink has to offer.