Margarita Bars have a creamy and tart lime filling complete with a splash of tequila that sits atop a salty pretzel shortbread crust. A crispy top dusted with powdered sugar finishes off of this amazing dessert.
It is just over a month away from Cinco de Mayo and I am going to admit that I have been dreaming about these margarita bars since January 4th.
New Year’s Day is a day to rest from the previous night’s festivities and January 2nd is the day I start putting everything away. No, I don’t keep my tree and decorations up for 12 days because I am ready to get things headed for Spring Cleaning.
This is only because the kids are out of school and I can make them pack and carry things for me. A little manual labor builds character. Plus I get to sleep late. Waking up after a great night’s sleep and an empty schedule makes for happy and productive days.
Once I get everything put away I spend January 3rd planning and organizing my calendar (goals and such) for the next few months. I look first at Superbowl. Much like the Oscars awards ceremony, it is a culmination of tapas and appetizer season.
Once I have those recipe ideas written down I look at the rest of the year’s holidays. The next big party day is Cinco de Mayo.
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INGREDIENTS FOR MARGARITA BARS
- powdered sugar
The lemon bar is a classic dessert and Ina Garten is the queen of classics while making everything seem easy and fuss-free. Her motto of using the best ingredients and no matter how simple it is it will be great are words to live by!
Ina’s Lemon Bars are no exception. You can’t go wrong with a shortbread crust, a creamy and tart lemon filling, and a crispy top dusted with powdered sugar. Or can you?
HOW TO MAKE MARGARITA BARS
FIRST: Preheat oven to 350F. Mix the ingredients for the crust and spread in the bottom of a 9×13 baking pan (glass or metal). Make sure you get an even layer and bring up a little on the sides to hold the filling in.
SECOND: Bake the crust at 350F for 15 minutes or until it is a light golden brown. Remove from the oven and let cool a bit while you make the filling. Leave the oven on.
THIRD: For the filling, zest, and juice your limes. In a large bowl combine the eggs, sugar, lime zest, lime juice, tequila, and flour. Stir with a whisk to combine completely.
FOURTH: Pour onto the slightly cooled crust. Put the pan back in the oven and bake for 30-35 minutes or until the center doesn’t jiggle when you give it a gentle shake. Remove and let cool completely.
For the full recipe and detailed instructions, please refer to the recipe card at the bottom of the post.
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I have been dreaming of these margarita bars ever since I made my Margarita Dip. That recipe came about after I made my Key Lime Coconut Cheesecake Shooters.
Because it is a whole new year, we need a new margarita dessert. I am making one to accompany the Margarita Dip from last year.
It is in my top 5 most popular posts and I can understand why. Salty pretzels and a tequila-infused lime dip, what is not to like? I have a feeling these margarita bars will make the top 5 very soon!
These margarita bars are an elevation of classic lemon bars. Lime instead of lemon with pretzels in the crust and tequila in the filing!
I’m already in love!
These margarita bars are just what you are looking for in a dessert, or breakfast because no one judges here. Creamy filling that is tart with lime juice and a hint of tequila all nestled on a crispy shortbread crust studded with salted pretzels.
TAPAS TIPS & TRICKS
- I left the pretzels in pieces and didn’t completely pulverize them so you would get some texture and those bits of salt that you get when you drink a margarita.
- The salt flakes add that flavor contrast to the lime and the sweetness of the filling.
- Can we talk about the top of these margarita bars for a second?
- When the bars are baking, the sugar in the filling caramelize on the top forming a thin crispy crust. When you bite into the bars, it makes a snapping sound much like the burnt sugar on top of a creme brulee. It’s to die for!!
If you love this recipe as much as I do, please write a five-star review in the comment section below (or on Pinterest with the “tried it” button – you can now add pictures into reviews, too!), and be sure to help me share on facebook!
These margarita bars are a definite must for your Cinco de Mayo celebration, any Taco Tuesday party, or just because you are human and need some love!
MORE EASY APPETIZERS
Margarita Bars have a creamy and tart lime filling complete with a splash of tequila that sits atop a shortbread salty pretzel crust with a sugared top!
- 6 extra large eggs (room temperature)
- 3 cups sugar
- Zest of 2 limes (roughly 2 tablespoons)
- Juice of 2 limes (roughly 1/2-2/3 cup) *Use the limes you zested so nothing is wasted
- 1/3-1/2 cup Tequila *notes below
- 1 cup flour
For the Pretzel Shortbread Crust
- 2 sticks butter
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup All-Purpose Flour
- 1 cup crushed pretzels (leave some small pieces)
- Powdered sugar and lime zest for garnish
Bake the pretzel crust layer
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- Mix the ingredients for the crust and spread in the bottom of a 9x13 baking pan (glass or metal).
- Make sure you get an even layer and bring up a little on the sides to hold the filling in.
- If your hands get sticky from the butter, dust them in flour and then press down on the crust.
- Bake the crust at 350F for 15 minutes or until it is a light golden brown.
- Remove from the oven and let cool a bit while you make the filling. Leave the oven on.
Make the margarita bar filling
- For the filling, zest, and juice your limes.
- In a large bowl combine the eggs, sugar, lime zest, lime juice, tequila*, and flour.
- Stir with a whisk to combine completely.
- Pour onto the slightly cooled crust.
- Put the pan back in the oven and bake for 30-35 minutes or until the center doesn't jiggle when you give it a gentle shake.
- Remove from oven and let cool completely.
- I let my margarita bars cool for about 15 minutes and then put them in the refrigerator to cool them quicker. I couldn't wait.
- Garnish with a dusting of powdered sugar and lime zest!
- Slice into 24 bars or triangles.
- Enjoy with a margarita on Cinco de Mayo!
*The total amount of liquid is 1 cup so pour your fresh lime juice in a measuring cup. Make up the difference with tequila to use a total of 1 cup of lime juice and tequila combined. If you don't want to use tequila (just use 1 cup total lime juice.)
*If you like this recipe, please leave me a comment and rate it with some stars. Thank you!
Nutrition Information:Yield: 24 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 269Total Fat: 8gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 20mgSodium: 93mgCarbohydrates: 47gFiber: 1gSugar: 36gProtein: 1g
This nutrition information was generated via a third party, Nutritionix, and can not be held liable for any discrepancies in the information provided.
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Friday 15th of April 2022
We love these but they are way too sweet for us. Is there a way to cut down on the sugar and eggs?
Monday 18th of April 2022
Unfortunately not for this recipe or it won't set up right. They are an indulgence for sure.
Saturday 17th of October 2020
Do these need to stay refrigerated once they’re made? TIA!! :)
Sunday 18th of October 2020
I would recommend keeping them in the refrigerator, especially if you keep your house warm. Enjoy!
Monday 29th of June 2020
hi can i use lemon instead of lime?
Tuesday 30th of June 2020
Tuesday 17th of September 2019
Do you use the butter cold in the shortbread or do you bring to room temperature?
Monday 10th of February 2020
I want to make these so bad but how many eggs do you use!
Tuesday 17th of September 2019
I use it slightly chilled. It is going to melt in the oven of course but too soft and it sticks to everything and doesn't all go into the crust, too cold and it won't mix evenly with the crushed pretzels. I hope that helps:)
Monday 7th of May 2018
Thank you for sharing this recipe...it's in the rotation. Choosing good limes and quality tequila definitely yields good results. The margarita flavor bloomed overnight - made the night before and they were perfect. These bars were the hit of my 5 de Mayo celebration.
Tuesday 8th of May 2018
Thank you so much! I am glad to hear it!!