Mango Grand Marnier Margaritas & Food Blog Camp 2011, Cancun

by Sally on January 10, 2011 · 22 comments

in Beverages

Mango Grand Marnier Margaritas

A week at the Grand Velas Riviera Maya Resortnear Cancun, Mexico was a fantastic way to kick off the New Year.  We were there for Food Blog Camp 2011 to learn from some of the top food bloggers, photographers and food stylists in the world. It was a fantastic week with good food, sunshine and warm tropical breezes, high-powered teaching, new friendships and food-blogger fellowship.

Elise Bauer, Todd Porter, Jaden Hair, Matt Armendariz, Adam Pearson, David Lebovitz, Diane Cu

It was such a privilege to meet and be taught  by (yes, and hang out with)Elise Bauer of Simply Recipes, David Lebovitz, Diane Cu and Todd Porter ofWhite On Rice Couple, Matt Armendariz of Matt Bites, Adam Pearson, and Jaden Hair of Steamy Kitchen.

Oh, did I mention the margaritas?

We couldn’t resist a refreshing margarita in the land of tequila. Traditional, Cadillac, ruby red strawberry, cool white coconut, lime green lime, pale peach, or bright orange mango. It was hard to decide. The mango won, but it needed a little something more.

Colorful margaritas at the Grand Velas Riviera Maya resort

With the intent of not only getting a margarita, but a lesson and recipe, I sauntered up to the pool bar. The smiling bartender, Santos, was happy to oblige.  I requested a mango margarita made like a Cadillac margarita with Grand Marnier. It was hit.

Sweet mango puree, citrusy lime juice, good tequila plus the famous bitter orange cognac flavor of Grand Marnier all blended with ice.  Instead of just salt or sugar on the rim, Santos used a special Mexican red chile-lime-salt blend called Tajin. The Tajin really added a special kick as well as beautiful color to the rim. Find it online from Mexgrocer and Amazon, or substitute coarse salt as for regular margaritas.

A margarita lesson and recipe with the chili lime salt blend, Tajin

Blend with ice in a blender (a Vitamix makes it easy and fast), pour into a tall glass and enjoy a taste of the Mexican Caribbean. We will definitely be making these at home while we read up on the adventures of all of our new friends from Food Blog Camp. Click on their links below for some good reading. You will be glad you did. What a week!

Pathway at the Grand Velas Riviera Maya

Mango Grand Marnier Margaritas & Food Blog Camp 2011, Cancun

I watched the bartender make this and had to estimate some of the quantities that he poured. Adjust with additional mango puree, lime juice, or simple syrup to get the flavors just right for you. For the mango puree, purchase frozen mango chunks, thaw, and puree in the blender until smooth. Simple syrup is just equal amounts of water and granulated sugar simmered until the sugar is completely dissolved. Cool before using and refrigerate after use.

Serves 2


2 shots (3 ounces) good tequila such as Don Julio Reposado
2 shots (3 ounces) Grand Marnier liqueur
6-8 ounces mango puree
4 ounces fresh squeezed lime juice, divided use
Simple syrup, to taste for sweetness (equal amount water and sugar boiled together until sugar dissolves, cooled)
Ice, about 2-3 cups
Tajin or coarse salt to rim glasses if desired


If rimming the glasses in spice blend or with salt, place half of the lime juice in a saucer and add a little water. Dip rim of glasses into the water-lime mixture, then into salt or spice blend. Set aside.

To make margaritas, place tequila, Grand Marnier, mango puree, the rest of the lime juice, and ice. Whirl until smooth. Add simple syrup to taste and adjust sweetness to your preference.

A note on blenders – A Vitamix makes fast and easy margaritas.

Pour into prepared glasses and enjoy.

For more fun reading about food blog camp, click on:

Food Blogger Camp 2011 (David Lebovitz)

Food Blog Camp – Cancun (What’s Gaby Cooking?)

10 Lessons From Food Blog Camp 2011 (Food Woolf)

What I learned… Food Blogger Camp 2011 (A Communal Table)

Food Blog Camp 2011 & Dancing Video (The White On Rice Couple)

Food Blogger Camp 2011 (Kitchen Corners)

Food Blog Camp 2011 in Mexico (Matt Bites)

Food Blogger Camp Riviera Maya (Family Fresh Cooking)

Food Blog Camp 2011 (Deliciously Organic)

Food blogger camp: Overview (The Recipe Renovator)

Food Blog Camp: Seeing the Light (The Confections of a Foodie Bride)

Food Blog Camp: Hello from Mexico! (Daily Nibbles)

Community Across the Globe-Food Blog Camp 2011 (The Urban Baker)

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{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Janice January 11, 2011 at 8:46 am

Hello Sally! Happy New Year! I cannot wait to make this Margarita…my favorite cocktail! Question: In lieu of simple syrup can I use Agave Nectar?


2 Chef Sally January 12, 2011 at 8:22 am

You know Janice, I thought about that. I would try it. It may have a slightly different taste depending on what kind you use. It might also add richness, which would be good. Let me know how it works out. I will try it too. Good question!


3 Fran January 12, 2011 at 8:10 am

Beautiful shots! Thanks for posting the information on where to purchase the Tajin. I thought it made the margaritas reall special. I’m adding that to my next Amazon order for sure!

It was nice to meet you guys.


4 Diane and Todd January 12, 2011 at 8:32 am

You two are such an amazing and talented duo! Thanks for coming, we had a great time lunching with you and getting to know you more.


5 Chef Sally January 12, 2011 at 8:38 am

Thanks Diane! The feeling is mutual. The feedback from you, Todd and the team was invaluable. We are working through all of the recommendations. Hope to see you soon? If you need a studio slave for a day or so, let us know! We do’t live far!


6 marla January 12, 2011 at 12:11 pm

Hi Sally! It was wonderful meeting you at Camp. I hope to see you guys around the OC some time soon :) Lovely post. xo


7 Nancy@acommunaltable January 12, 2011 at 5:54 pm


It was great to finally meet you both at Food Blog Camp!! Gorgeous photos and I love the info on the Tajin – will definitely need to stock up before summer!!

Looking forward to getting together to cook or eat or both!!!


8 susan January 12, 2011 at 7:09 pm

you two are such a fab team! gorgeous photos and love the the recap of the Tajin!


9 Damaris @Kitchen Corners January 13, 2011 at 8:54 am

I really enjoyed meeting you both. Thanks for coming to my rescue at the airport. It made traveling bearable.

You two make a great team.


10 angela January 14, 2011 at 8:23 am

Where was I when these were being made? Actually any margarita is a treat for me as, unless I make them myself. they are few and far between in Provence! Lovely photos.


11 susan April 8, 2011 at 3:42 am

what gorgeous photos! that was a fun 5 days….wouldn’t it be great to make that happen again?!


12 Sally April 8, 2011 at 4:00 am

Count us in Susan! Thanks for the kind words.


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