Red bell pepper Paloma cocktail

Red bell pepper cocktail is an unexpected delight

Red bell pepper Paloma cocktail
Red bell peppers bring an unexpected flavor to a traditional Paloma cocktail.

Red bell pepper cocktail with tequila and grapefruit juice

If you love a Paloma, you will love this red bell pepper cocktail. The flavor is completely unexpected, but you’ll immediately wonder – why haven’t I thought of this before?

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What makes a cocktail a Paloma?

A Paloma is traditionally made with grapefruit, tequila and grapefruit-flavored carbonated soda. It’s a very popular cocktail in Mexico — some reports say it’s the most popular drink, even more beloved than a margarita.

Why do I call this red bell pepper cocktail a Paloma?

I kept the grapefruit and tequila while adding a spicy red bell pepper simple syrup. It still has a Paloma foundation, I think.

Tequila, grapefruit, red bell peppers create a fabulous veggie Paloma.
Tequila, grapefruit juice, red bell pepper simple syrup and pink peppercorn ice cubes elevate this Paloma cocktail.

For an extra treat, try these pink peppercorn ice cubes

Pink peppercorn ice cubes
These pink peppercorn ice cubes add a spicy kick to the red bell pepper cocktail.

What you’ll need to make the red bell pepper cocktail

Here are the ingredients you’ll need:

  • Red bell peppers
  • Sugar
  • Pink peppercorns
  • Tequila
  • Grapefruit

You’ll also need ice cube trays if you’re going to make the pink peppercorn ice cubes. They’re not necessary, but they do add a super spicy kick and an interesting visual aspect.

Red bell pepper cocktail with grapefruit and tequila

Recipe by Nana JanaCourse: CocktailsCuisine: MexicanDifficulty: Easy

Red bell pepper provides an intriguing new flavor for a traditional Paloma cocktail.

For the red bell pepper simple syrup:

  • 2 red bell peppers, thinly sliced

  • 1 cup sugar

  • 1 cup water

  • 2 tablespoons pink peppercorns

  • For cocktail:
  • 1 1/2 ounces red bell pepper simple syrup

  • 1 1/2 ounces freshly squeezed grapefruit juice

  • 2 ounces tequila

  • For pink peppercorn ice cubes:
  • Pink peppercorns

  • Ice cube trays


  • To make the bell pepper simple syrup: Bring the sugar, water and pink peppercorns to a boil. Add bell pepper slices and allow to simmer on low for 5 minutes. Turn off heat and let bell peppers steep in syrup for at least 30 minutes. Strain through fine mesh.
  • To make the pink peppercorn ice cubes: Fill ice cube trays with water. Sprinkle pink peppercorns over the surface and freeze.   
  • To make cocktail: In a shaker, combine cocktail ingredients and shake. Pour into glass filled with ice cubes.
Frozen Paloma cocktail
This frozen Paloma cocktail starts with traditional ingredients, but the frozen aspect elevates the drink.

Want to try other versions of Palomas?

Here are two very fun Palomas to try, traditional and non-traditional versions.

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