Charred Red Pepper & Strawberry Margarita by Chef Claudette Zepeda

April 22, 2020
3 Ratings
Photo by Rocky Luten. Food & Prop Styling by Alexis Anthony.
  • Prep time 15 minutes
  • Cook time 10 minutes
  • Makes 1 cocktail
Author Notes

Consider this summer-ready cocktail recipe from Chef Claudette Zepeda your new favorite way to make a margarita. It stars a charred red pepper and strawberry simple syrup that's not only deliciously refreshing, but also surprisingly easy to make at home. —Food52

Test Kitchen Notes

This recipe is shared in partnership with Don Julio. —The Editors

What You'll Need
  • For the cocktail:
  • 1 1/2 ounces Don Julio Blanco Tequila
  • 1 ounce charred red pepper and strawberry syrup
  • 3/4 ounce fresh-squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/2 ounce orange liqueur
  • 1 pinch salt
  • For the charred red pepper & strawberry syrup:
  • 2 red bell peppers
  • 8 strawberries
  • 8 ounces simple syrup
  1. For the cocktail:
  2. Combine all the ingredients in an ice-filled cocktail shaker. Shake vigorously for 30 to 40 seconds.
  3. Strain into an ice-filled rocks glass rimmed with chamoy and tajin.
  1. For the charred red pepper & strawberry syrup:
  2. Roast the peppers and strawberries over an open flame on the stovetop or in the oven broiler until the pepper’s skin is charred all around and the strawberries are lightly charred (but not burned).
  3. Place the peppers in a bowl and cover with plastic to steam. Peel the steamed skin off of the peppers and remove the stem and seeds. Slice the stems off of the charred strawberries.
  4. While they are still warm, blend the red peppers and strawberries until smooth, slowly streaming in the simple syrup while blending to combine. Let cool and store in an airtight container in the fridge, where it will keep for up to two weeks.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

1 Review

lynx60489 May 17, 2020
I found this recipe intriguing. Having never made a margarita, I decided to start with this one. Everything was easy to make, but my syrup ended up more like a thick coulis. The resulting drink was good, although I would have preferred mine a bit sweeter — maybe the fault of the berries.

The syrup/coulis is pretty cool and versatile. I never would have thought to combine those two ingredients and I was skeptical when I saw the size of my two peppers relative to my eight strawberries, but it works and it’s good! The dominant flavor is still the strawberry but the roasted red pepper becomes almost fragrant. As a cocktail, I prefer the coulis/syrup with Prosecco or Vino Verde similar to a Bellini. I have also poured the coulis over cottage cheese and tonight I ate it with meringue and whipped cream. I may or may not attempt the margarita again, but I will definitely be using the coulis for other purposes.