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Best Margarita Makers

It’s always summer somewhere, right? And that means any time is the right time to break out that essential frozen drink – the Margarita. While you may think this easy-breezy, tequila-laced concoction is just an adult slushie, there is an art to making one and it starts with achieving the perfect slurry of ice. Now as any Parrot Head knows (google it), texture is key to Margarita mastery and that’s where you want a professional frozen drink maker on your side. It eliminates the guesswork, prevents a watered-down taste, and ensures an even blend of potent flavors with slushy consistency. We’ve chosen 5 models that work for everyone from the seasoned entertainer with full bar set-up, to the newbie wanting to expand their repertoire, to the budget-conscious who need a unit that does double-duty.

Our Top Picks for Favorite Margarita Makers

Margaritaville Tahiti: For The Serious Entertainer

Overview:

Type: Electric

Material: bamboo, aluminum, stainless-steel

Capacity: 72-ounces

Wattage:  700-watts

Special Features: Blends 3 different drinks at one time

Warranty: 1 year

The absolute must-have for those who do their entertaining around a pool, patio, or deck is this Margaritaville Tahiti frozen beverage maker. It expertly crafts 6 (or more) resort-quality drinks including margaritas, daiquiris, coladas, mudslides, mojitos, plus smoothies for the kids. And for host bartenders or self-proclaimed masters of mixology, you know the drill when it comes to proper prep. Ice cubes and chunks are a no-no – has to be shaved ice so flavors can meld into a smooth yet potent slushie format. So, tackle it like a pro. Not only does this frozen drink maker use an automatic Shave-N-Blend feature for perfectly textured ice, every time, but it can also create up to 72-ounces of perfectly blended Margaritas – or any bevvie – without needing ice replenishment. And its easy; just fill the reservoir with ice, pour your ingredients into each of the three 24-ounce blending jars, choose from 6 pre-programmed drink settings and hit the button to make up to 3 different, yet perfectly blended slushies. You can even customize consistencies for thicker or thinner drinks. And I love that melted ice from the reservoir is channeled out the back of the unit, so drinks are never watered down.

Pros:

  • Blends 3 different drink types at once
  • Shave-N-Blend feature for perfect slushie texture
  • Pre-programmed with 6 different drink recipes
  • Reservoir channels away melting ice
  • Customize for thicker or thinner drinks

Cons:

  • Weight and dimensions require dedicated bar space

If your entertaining style spans beyond just wine and beer, this pre-programmed Margarita maker can expertly prepare up to 6 different frozen beverages.

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Nostalgia Deluxe Portable Frozen Drink Maker: For Those Who Love Margaritas Anywhere, Anytime

Overview:

Type: Electric

Material: plastic

Capacity: 128-ounces

Wattage:  150-watts

Special Features: Portable with double-walled container

Warranty: 1 year

With this Nostalgia Deluxe portable Margarita maker, the party doesn’t start until you get there. And when we say “party”, we mean a crowd because this unit holds a whopping 128-ounces (1 gallon) of Margaritas or slushy drinks for you, your friends, neighbours, and family. Seriously, invite them all. The powerful, patented stainless-steel shaving / blending cage is quick to break ice cubes down to the perfect consistency for mixing up frosty Margaritas, Daiquiris, Mojitos, and more. Just add alcohol and flavorings. Or why not add fruity syrup and use it as a slushy machine for the kids. I love its double-wall insulation that keeps drinks cold for hours and means that whether its sitting outside by the pool or on a hot patio, you know your beverage is going to be a perfectly chilled slurry. The easy-flow spout has a flip handle design for quick, drip-free Margarita dispensing while the carry handle does double-duty as it lifts, locks and secures the lid in place. Great for when you decide to take the party indoors and don’t want to deal with slops and spills. The cord tucks tight into the unit for clutter-free counters and easy disassembly makes clean-up a breeze.

Pros:

  • Large capacity, holds 128-ounces
  • Portable, double-walled container
  • Easy-flow spout for drip-free pours
  • Lockable handle for spill-free transport
  • Cord storage in base of unit

Cons:

  • Not dishwasher safe

If your bar set-up is likely to move from a poolside patio to a kitchen countertop, this easy-to-carry frozen drink maker is the perfect choice.

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KitchenAid Ice-Crushing Blender: For Those Who Need to Make More than Margaritas

Overview:

Type: Electric

Material: Glass jar, plastic accessories

Capacity: 56-ounces

Wattage: 1.5 hp (1100-watts)

Special Features: Includes 16-ounce personal blender jar

Warranty: 1-year full replacement

Your heart says Margarita maker, but your budget and lack of storage space say you need something a bit more multipurpose. Something powerful enough to blend frozen drinks, but capable of doing double-or even triple-duty when it comes to tackling foods or blending up that jaw-dropping smoothie. This is where you’re going to want to check out the super-versatile KitchenAid ice crushing blender. At 1.5 hp, its 4 asymmetrical stainless-steel blades create a blending and crushing vortex that makes quick work out of any ingredient you can throw its way. Without question, its definitely the slushie-making tool you want sitting atop your bar when company arrives. It features 5 variable speeds so you can control the taste and texture of your beverage, as well as 3 pre-set recipe programs including ice crush, icy drinks, and smoothie. A unique, Intelli-speed motor delivers a soft start that gradually draws foods, ice or liquids into the blades for processing and is able to maintain an optimal speed until all ingredients are broken down. So, you never run into that messy backsplash of fluids when you hit the start button. And hosts will love that the main glass container and every single accessory, are dishwasher-safe.

Pros:

  • Multi-Purpose with Ice-Crushing feature
  • Powerful 1100-watt motor
  • 4 asymmetrical blades for quick blending
  • Intelli-speed motor auto-maintains optimal blending power
  • Includes 8- and 16-ounce personal blender jars

Cons:

  • Doesn’t shave ice

If your Margarita Maker needs to also blend foods and prepare smoothies, then this powerful, multi-purpose ice-crushing blender is your perfect bar / kitchen appliance.

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Margaritaville Key West Frozen Drink Maker: For the Host That Wants to Impress

Overview:

Type: Electric

Material: Glass pitcher, plastic, stainless-steel

Capacity: 36-ounces

Wattage: 450-watts

Special Features: 4 pre-programmed drink settings

Warranty: 1 year

For the seasoned entertainer who’s determined to make the Margarita his / her signature libation, this Margaritaville Key West frozen concoction maker, is about to seal the deal for you. Let’s start with the extra-large, easy access ice reservoir that can produce enough shaved ice for up to 2.5 pitchers of frozen beverages. And because it sits on top of the unit, you never have to hold up production as you disassemble to remove for replenishment. Just add your alcohol and flavorings to the large, 36-ounce blending jar, choose one of 4 pre-programmed drink settings, and hit the button. This Margarita maker does all the rest. It has an automatic Shave N’ Blend cycle that breaks ice down into the perfect consistency, then begins the blending process to evenly distribute the flavors for a deliciously potent slushy. When its finished, just remove the pitcher and pour. A handy flip spout means the lid stays in place while pouring and contents stay ideally chilled, longer. What I love is that in spite of the pre-programmes, you can opt for the manual setting to customize your drinks and their consistency to suit your guests. And that all parts are dishwasher-safe.

Pros:

  • Pre-programmed with 4 different drink recipes
  • Extra-large ice reservoir
  • Makes 2.5 pitchers of drinks
  • Shave N’ Blend feature for perfect slushie texture
  • Customize for thicker or thinner drinks

Cons:

  • Weight and dimensions require dedicated bar space

If you want to add making the perfect Margarita, to your bartending credentials, then this automatic frozen drink maker with ice-shaver is exactly what you’re looking for.

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Ninja Professional Plus Multi-Purpose Frozen Drink Blender: For Those Who Want Professional Results at a Reasonable Price

Overview:

Type: Electric

Material: Stainless-steel, glass, BPA-free plastic

Capacity: 72-ounces

Wattage:  1400-watts

Special Features: Total Crushing blades

Warranty: 1 year

You want it all, and with this Ninja Professional Plus, you’ve got it all. From a frozen drink blender that can whip up a 64-ounce pitcher of perfectly blended Margaritas to a food processor that can chop, mince, dice, blend or puree, this one covers all bases. And with 1400-watts of power, it’s no slouch when it comes to speed. In fact, its Total Crushing Blades mean this powerful unit can break ice down into a perfect slush or blend frozen fruits into the ultimate smoothie in just seconds. The multi-functional Ninja features 4 manual programs and 5 pre-set Auto-iQ programs that makes creating frozen drinks, smoothies, and more, a simple touch of a button. I love that it’s ready to go, the moment you take it out of the box – it includes everything you need. A large, 72-ounce crushing pitcher for beverages, a 64-ounce precision processor bowl for tackling foods (that also includes a dough blade) plus two 24-ounce single-serve cups with spout lids for those on the go. Did I mention the recipe book? And at less than 17 pounds, it’s perfect for tucking under your kitchen or bar counter when not in use.

Pros:

  • Powerful motor for fast results
  • 5 pre-set programs for beverages
  • Total Crushing blades for optimal ice shaving
  • 4 manual programs for food
  • Includes two 24-ounce single serve cups

Cons:

  • Can be noisy when in operation

If your idea of the perfect frozen drink maker is one that is both powerful and multi-functional, then we’ve found you the perfect model.

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You’ll Wonder How You Entertained Without a Frozen Drink Maker

When your entertaining style includes fun in the sun – whether its around a pool, a patio, or enjoying the back deck – you need more than just wine and beer to keep your guests entertained. That’s where a frozen drink maker can really up your game. With a Margarita Maker, you get an appliance that not only prepares and blends the drinks, but it also shaves the ice to deliver an authentic, perfectly textured icy beverage. With some of the more expensive designs, such as the Margaritaville Tropicana, it comes with pre-programmed recipes that allow you to prepare up to 3 different drinks at once. And, in a format that lets your guests simply help themselves. And no more running back and forth to the kitchen, because today’s large-capacity frozen drink makers prepare chilled beverages in volume, so you can relax and enjoy the party. These units are quick, can be relatively inexpensive, produce an exceptional quality frozen beverage, and best of all, they’re easy to clean afterwards. You may wonder why you’ve waited this long.

You May be Thinking “But I Already Have a Blender”

There’s a big difference between your standard blender and a frozen drink maker. A Margarita maker blends slushie-style frozen drinks by shaving the ice and then automatically blending it in with pre-loaded flavorings – either alcoholic or not.  It takes the guesswork out of mixing the drink and requires just a touch of a button to produce a perfectly blended pitcher of slushie drinks. A blender that has been designed to crush ice can also produce a Margarita-style drink, however it is not automated so you will have to measure and add the alcohol and flavorings by hand, then pour from the blender. A standard blender will never be able to break the ice down to the appropriate texture for a proper Margarita, Daiquiri, or other frozen drink.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Should I Look for When Buying a Margarita Maker?

Like anything, you need to think about how you’re going to use it. If for entertaining, you need to consider drink capacity – does it need to produce a pitcher of drinks, or do you prefer it dispense individual drinks? Do you have a dedicated bar space that can accommodate one of the larger frozen drink makers? If no, determine how much space you can allot to store it.

What Type of Wattage Should I Be Looking For?

When you need to do more than just blend smoothies, you need a powerful motor. To efficiently crush ice cubes down to a slushy consistency, you should be looking for a unit at-or-above 400 watts. Anything less and you may have to break the ice down into chunks prior to loading it into your machine’s reservoir. Even then, you may not get the smooth blend you’re looking for.

Can I Use a Margarita Maker as a Regular Blender?

No, Margarita Blenders are designed specifically for making slushie-style drinks. As a result, they typically have just one or two pre-set speeds versus the multi-speeds you will find on a blender.

What Size Should Is Best for Entertaining?

That depends on the number of people you typically entertain. As a rule of thumb, the average size of a Margarita or other frozen beverage, is 8 ounces. Some of the models we profiled range up to 128-ounces or around 16 individually dispensed drinks. Others, like the Margaritaville Key West, can produce up to 2.5 pitchers – which can give you greater control when monitoring consumption.

Conclusion:

Every so often, there’s an appliance that makes you wonder how you ever got by without it and in this instance, it’s a proper frozen drink maker. While it may only get hauled out when company comes over, or for special occasions, it elevates the Margarita, Mojito, Daiquiri, and other frozen drinks, to a level you can’t possibly achieve with a standard blender. For those who entertain, it becomes one more perfectly executed beverage, that can be claimed as their signature. And if you have kids, it’s the perfect slushie maker – just add flavoring for a quick and easy treat throughout the summer. This time, we varied it up a bit by choosing a few designs that were specifically designed to produce exceptional frozen drinks as well as a couple that brought a little more versatility to the table. All were chosen based on their power, quality and, range of price points.

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