5 Breezy Tequila Drinks That Were Made for Summer Fridays

Plus, low-key bites to snack on while you sip.

July 15, 2022

We’ve teamed up with Patrón Tequila to help you spend your Summer Fridays in style. Whip up a cocktail with one of their handcrafted, high-quality tequilas—like their lightly floral Reposado with just a hint of oak—then pair it with a warm-weather snack to start your weekend off right.

When the weather is warm and my free time is filled with beach trips and barbecues, the last place I want to be is in the office. That’s why I would imagine Summer Fridays—aka the near-mythical tradition of getting to leave work early on the last day of the week—were invented. While I don’t technically have this luxury right now, I like to embrace the spirit of Summer Fridays by celebrating the weekend’s start in a backyard or on a rooftop with good friends, snacks, and a refreshing cocktail.

When it comes to the recipes I’ll make for a Summer Friday hang, I lean into the quick and simple. That means no-cook bites with short ingredient lists: chunky, herby guacamole served alongside a big pile of crunchy tortilla chips, radishes slathered with good butter and plenty of flaky salt, sliced veggies, and a ranch-inspired dip (if the group gets a little hungrier, I keep the fixins for a big tomato salad handy, too). Of course, no Summer Friday chill sesh is complete without a great drink. For me, that great drink usually starts with tequila—one of my favorites is Patrón Reposado for its smooth taste and mix-ability (I love a creative cocktail). Like the snacks, these sips should involve no heavy lifting; I’ll let the fresh agave aromas and citrusy, lightly floral flavors of the tequila do the work. I’m talking simple, sippable Watermelon-Basil Palomas, Cucumber and Grapefruit Tequila Coolers, and the easiest margarita around.

So ready your cocktail shaker—here are 10 recipes to toast your next Summer Friday.

Cheers to the Weekend

1. Watermelon-Basil Paloma

Welcome the weekend with this fresh ‘n’ fruity riff on the classic Paloma: fragrant basil syrup, watermelon and lime juice, and Patrón Reposado. Finish the cocktail with a pour of grapefruit soda, and don’t forget the fresh basil garnish (an optional, but delightful detail).

2. Tequila Lemon-Limeade

Few drinks say summer quite like a sweating glass of lemonade. This lemon-limeade is no different—it has a bit more character, but couldn’t be simpler to put together for an afternoon hang. Just pair fresh lemon and lime juice with blanco tequila and agave. More good news: It can be prepped up to eight hours in advance, so you can get the drinks done in advance and focus on your friends in the evening.

3. Honey-Habanero Paloma

The honeyed notes of Patrón Reposado team up with honey syrup, a fiery habanero shrub, grapefruit juice, and soda in this spicy-yet-refreshing drink. In between sips, cool off with a crispy, crunchy snack—the sweet heat pairs especially well with furikake Chex mix.

4. Hothouse Cooler

Named for the variety of cucumber you’ll juice (yep, cucumber juice; don’t knock it ‘till you try it), the Hothouse Cooler also calls for fresh grapefruit juice and triple sec. Served on the rocks in a salt-rimmed glass, you’ll find it’s similar to a classic margarita, but is just a little more special. And you deserve a special drink on your Summer Friday!

5. Count to 4 (Basic) Margarita

For those who truly can’t be bothered with playing mixologist on their afternoon off, I give you the Count to 4 Margarita, which couldn’t be simpler to shake together. Literally, just 1 ounce orange liqueur, 2 teaspoons simple syrup, 3 ounces añejo tequila, and 4 tablespoons fresh lime juice—you’re done. Cheers.

Bring On The Snacks

6. Ranch Fun Dip From Sohla El-Waylly

This savory Fun Dip isn’t a ranch-flavored candy, but I can say from experience it tends to get gobbled up just as quickly as sweet treats. Blitz together pistachios, nutritional yeast, and Aleppo-style pepper with ranch-y flavors (dry dill, onion, and garlic powders) for a snack that will have everyone glued to the vegetable platter.

7. The Chunkiest, Herbiest, Greenest Guacamole

It’s actually just about as simple (and way tastier) to toss together this herby, chunky guacamole than it is to buy the dip premade. Zippy with touches of jalapeño and grated garlic, this guac is ready for any chip you can throw at it. (PS: If you can’t find tomatillos, it’s totally okay to just skip them.)

8. Furikake Chex Mix Snack

This DIY Chex mix is one of the greatest party snacks in existence. Peanuts, Bugles, rice and corn Chex cereal, Goldfish crackers, and pretzels take a swim in a sweet, buttery syrup mixture. The whole mess is dusted with the umami-rich Japanese seasoning furikake, which will keep you going back for handful after handful.

9. Heirloom Tomato Salad from Harlem and Heaven

This juicy salad recipe comes from Chef JJ Johnson and is basically summer in a bowl: thick, sweet heirloom tomatoes mingle with a spiced lime yogurt dressing. You can take a shortcut and skip the proper onion-pickling by tossing the onions in the pickle ingredients and letting the mixture sit for a few.

10. Alex Raij's Radishes with Vanilla Butter & Salt, 2 Ways

Peppery fresh radishes slathered with butter and hit with a sprinkle of salt feels incredibly fancy, but takes just about two minutes to put together. This recipe from Chef Alex Raij gets a little more creative by adding vanilla bean to the butter, but you could absolutely use a plain stick of whatever you have in the fridge.

What cocktails are you sipping on to celebrate Summer Fridays? Tell us in the comments!

Our friends at Patrón Tequila have been distilling their 100 percent Blue Weber Agave tequilas in Jalisco, Mexico for over 30 years. Each one of their handcrafted tequilas starts with high-quality raw ingredients—from smooth, citrusy Patrón Silver to ultra-sippable, oak barrel-aged Patrón Añejo. To add flavorful depth to your next cocktail, snag a bottle of Patrón at a retailer near you.

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Rebecca Firkser is the assigning editor at Food52. She used to wear many hats in the food media world: food writer, editor, assistant food stylist, recipe tester (sometimes in the F52 test kitchen!), recipe developer. These days, you can keep your eye out for her monthly budget recipe column, Nickel & Dine. Rebecca tests all recipes with Diamond Crystal kosher salt. Follow her on Instagram @rebeccafirkser.