cocktails
4 Easy Salt Rims to Bring Your Cocktail to the Next Level
Give your cocktail a little something extra.
11-18-2020
America's Test Kitchen

Whether you like to use a salt rim to garnish a sweet and sour margarita, a savory and spicy michelada, or any other cocktail you love, it is an important component of the drink that springs it to life. But, we wanted to take that concept even further, so we developed a series of flavored rim salts that could not only season a cocktail but also add a hint of aroma. 

These four recipes are quick and easy to make using simple ingredients and your microwave (plus a food processor for the citrus). Do not substitute table or other salts for the kosher salt, as their additives may impart off flavors. These rim salts can be stored in an airtight container for up to 1 month.


Interested in more cocktail content? Check out recipes from our first-ever beverage cookbook How to Cocktail.


 

How to Rim a Glass

Moistening glass rim with lime wedge
1. Moisten about ½ inch of glass rim by running citrus wedge around outer edge, or by dipping edge of glass in small saucer of water; dry any excess liquid with paper towel. If you prefer, moisten only portion of glass so that you can enjoy cocktail both with and without garnish.
Rolling glass rim into bed of salt
2. Spread ¼ cup kosher salt (for up to 4 glasses) into even layer on small saucer, then roll moistened rim in salt or sugar to coat. Remove any excess granules that fall into glass.

How to Make Citrus Rim Salt

plate filled with bed of citrus salt

What You Need:
½ cup kosher salt
1 tablespoon grated lime zest (2 limes), orange zest, lemon zest, or grapefruit zest

How to make it: Combine salt and zest in bowl, then spread onto large plate. Microwave, stirring occasionally, until zest is dry and no longer clumps, about 2 minutes. Let cool to room temperature, about 15 minutes. Transfer mixture to food processor and pulse until zest is finely ground, 5 to 10 pulses. (Makes about ½ cup.)

How to Make Herb Rim Salt

plate of herb rim salt

What You Need:
½ cup kosher salt
½ cup minced fresh basil, dill, or tarragon

How to make it: Using your hands, rub salt and basil in large bowl until well combined. Spread mixture into even layer on parchment paper–lined rimmed baking sheet. Let sit at room temperature, away from direct sunlight, until completely dry, 36 to 48 hours, stirring every 12 hours to break up any clumps. (Makes about ½ cup.)

How to Make Sriracha Rim Salt

plate of sriracha rim salt

What You Need:
½ cup kosher salt
⅓ cup sriracha

How to make it: Combine salt and sriracha in bowl, then spread onto large plate. Microwave, stirring occasionally, until only slightly damp, 6 to 8 minutes. Let cool to room temperature, about 15 minutes. Transfer mixture to food processor and pulse until finely ground, 5 to 10 pulses. (Makes about ½ cup.)

How to Make Berry Rim Salt

plate of berry rim salt

What You Need:
1 cup freeze-dried strawberries, blueberries, or raspberries (you can find freeze-dried berries in the baking or natural foods aisle of most well-stocked supermarkets)
½ cup kosher salt

How to make it: Working in batches, process strawberries in spice grinder until finely ground, about 30 seconds. Transfer to bowl and whisk in salt until combined. (Makes about ½ cup.)


Interested in more cocktail content? Check out recipes from our first-ever beverage cookbook How to Cocktail.