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Mexican Candy Shot

With this delicious Mexican candy shot recipe, you can feel how this explosion of Mexican flavors hits your throat and gives you a boost of adrenaline!

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Mexican candy shot

Mexico is known for having exquisite cuisine with exotic and unforgettable flavors, especially when it comes to hot sauces. However, this beautiful South American country also has another very popular thing: its shots.

A Shot That Can Take Us to Mexico

One of the most famous around the world is the Mexican candy shot. This drink is flavored with distinctive Mexican tequila and watermelon pucker.

Also, it’s usually enhanced with a bit of hot sauce and served in a glass with a chili lime salt-coated rim.

What do you think? The first time I read about it, I was really surprised. I thought it was an explosion of flavors like no other, and I wasn’t wrong!

The Mexican candy shot is one of the best spicy drinks I’ve ever tasted! Now, I want to share this experience with you. If you prefer cake over candy, our chocolate cake shot might be of interest!

Tajin seasoning on spoon

What Are Mexican Candy Shots?

Also known as the Mexican lollipop candy shot or paleta shot, this drink has a unique flavor profile that fans of spicy beverages will love.

Actually, after you try it the first time, you won’t be able to think about it without your mouth watering!

The Mexican candy shot is a perfect combination of sweet and salty flavors. Plus, it’s often served in a glass whose rim is dipped in tajin to give it a super tasty chili-lime touch. If you want to go the peppermint candy route, I would recommend our polar bear shot recipe instead!

Also, many love this shot because they can make the experience completely different by just making a few changes to its main ingredients.

I’ve tried versions made with mango juice, strawberries, raspberries, and even the delicious tropical fruit “guava.”

Where Did the Mexican Candy Shot Originate?

Its name gives us a clue: this drink is Mexican. However, let’s go a little further.

This shot originates from down in the country, where people probably used combinations of fruit juices and alcohol to create fun drinks with lots of character.

Many also say it was born in border towns, specifically in or near El Paso, Texas. However, wherever it originated, this shot has all the hallmarks of Mexican gastronomy. It’s tasty, spicy, and exotic.

Lime on cutting board

How Does a Mexican Candy Shot Taste?

Don’t worry! I was also a bit scared the first time someone invited me to have this drink since I was not used to having spicy beverages. However, I really loved it!

The Mexican candy shot is fruity and sweet, with just a little bit of spice. I could say that this drink has only medium heat.

In addition, such spicy flavors come from the Tajin and the hot sauce, which we can add to taste, and many of us are used to eating.

Why Does It Have That Name?

When I first heard about the Mexican candy shot, I thought it was loaded with candies and lollipops, but the reality was different.

However, while not loaded with candy as I thought, this drink got its name from its taste, which is similar to a Mexican hard candy lollipop (locally known as “paleta”) popular in Mexico: the Vero Rebanaditas paletas, which people usually eat with chili powder.

“Paletas” is a local term that defines a lollipop or popsicle. However, in Mexico, there are very popular lollipops made with watermelon candy and coated with chili powder.

If you haven’t tried these candies before, their flavor can be a bit overwhelming, especially if you add chili. However, I love them! And I’m pretty sure you’d love them, too, after you try them.

Pink drink with tajin rim

What is the Mexican Candy Shot made of?

Another question people often have about this shot is what it is made of, and here’s finally the answer!

The original Mexican candy shot has tequila, but there are versions made in different ways.

In all of them, it is important to make sure that the drink has a fruity flavor. Therefore, the basic ingredients include fruit juices or fruit schnapps.

Also, we have to give it that touch of liquor. Therefore, besides the fruit juices, we need some spirits. If we don’t have tequila, rum and vodka can work perfectly.

How to Make this Mexican Candy Shot Recipe

Are you ready to feel how this explosion of Mexican flavors hits your throat and gives you a boost of adrenaline? Read on and find the best Mexican candy shot recipe!

Equipment We Need

When we already have all the ingredients to make the best Mexican candy shot recipe, we have to look for some tools before getting down to work, including:

  • Martini shaker or cocktail shaker
  • Sharp knife (if we don’t have lime juice and we need to cut the fruit)
  • A shot glass
  • Small bowl where we will mix the sugar and the tajin to dip our shot glasses and have a sugared rim
  • Napkin or kitchen towel

Common Substitutions: Making Mexican Candy Shots without Traditional Ingredients

If we don’t have all the original ingredients to make this Mexican candy shot recipe, we can find some substitutions!

I’ve prepared Mexican lollipop shots with these ingredients:

Sugar Rim

If I don’t have Tajin at home but want to enjoy a delicious candy shot, I only use white sugar in the rim of our shot glasses.

Of course, I think Tajin gives this recipe an incredibly delicious Mexican twist! However, if we don’t have any at home, we can still make this drink and garnish our shot glasses with no problem!

Hot pepper spice on table

Fruit Juice

As mentioned, traditionally, this drink is made with watermelon juice. However, we can use any juice we have at home!

When I don’t have watermelon juice, I use guava juice or raspberry juice. With both substitutes, this Mexican candy drink is equally delicious!

Watermelon juice is also a great substitute for watermelon schnapps. So, if you can’t find this spirit, don’t stress! You can still prepare delicious Mexican candy shots for yourself, your friends, and your family!

Watermelon in watermelon bowl

Hot Sauce

There are so many versions of hot sauce that we can also find many substitutes!

My favorite is Tapatio, which has a chili flavor, but we can use any hot sauce we have in our fridge, such as Cholula, which has a chipotle-like taste.

Hot sauce on table

Different Schnapps

If we don’t have watermelon schnapps, we can also use a different flavor. Actually, I’ve tried this drink with mango schnapps and strawberry schnapps, and I loved the result!

When I want a mango Mexican candy shot, I only do this little twist, and all my friends take more than three shots each!

Mexican Lollipop Candy Shot Variations

In addition to the substitutions, we can also prepare some variations if we are craving the sweet and spicy flavors of this delicious Mexican lollipop shot but want a different experience. These are the ones I like the most:

Mexican Candy Drink

Do you want to enjoy Mexican candy shots’ flavors but prefer something more refreshing? Double the quantities and serve the drink over ice!

Mexican Candy Shot with Rum

We can create a different but equally delicious version if we substitute tequila for rum in our Mexican candy shots. However, I think this is a bit stiffer.

Mexican Candy Shot With Vodka

In addition to rum, we can also use vodka if we don’t have tequila. Don’t worry! As long as you don’t forget the hot sauce, you’ll have the same Mexican flavor.

Mexican Candy Shot With Chamoy

Another great substitute for Tajin is chamoy. You can buy it at your favorite grocery store or make your own recipe at home if you plan to make Mexican lollipop shots.

If you want to make a homemade version of chamoy, you need prunes, dried apricots, chili powder, sugar, dried Jamaica or roselle flowers, and acid fruit juice (it could be lime or orange juice).

I have used chamoy to garnish my shot glasses, and it’s amazing!

Mango Mexican Candy Shot

Finally, there’s my favorite: the mango Mexican lollipop shot! To make this version, I substitute the watermelon schnapps with mango schnapps or mango juice and strawberry juice. It’s delicious!

Yield: 1 serving

Refreshing Mexican Candy Shot

Refreshing Mexican Candy Shot

With this delicious Mexican Candy Shot recipe, you will experience an explosion of Mexican flavors as it hits your throat and gives you a boost of adrenaline!

Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes


  • ½ oz lime juice or water
  • 1 teaspoon Tajin seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • ½ oz schnapps (I prefer to use watermelon pucker schnapps)
  • 1 oz tequila
  • A dash of hot sauce (Tabasco, Cholula, or Tapatio work well)
  • 1 oz fresh watermelon juice (or any other fresh fruit juice)
  • Few ice cubes
  • A fresh lime wedge (optional)


  1. Put the shot glass in the freezer for at least 30 minutes to have an icy cold shot!
  2. Add equal parts of Tajin and sugar to a bowl and mix until just combined.
  3. Wet the corner of a napkin or kitchen towel with lime juice (or water) or you can run the lime around the rim of the shot glass until it is wet.
  4. Roll the rim of the shot glass in the mixture of sugar and Tajin.
  5. Add crushed ice or small ice cubes to a Martini or cocktail shaker.
  6. Add the tequila, watermelon schnapps, and a dash of hot sauce to the shaker.
  7. Add the fruit juice (traditionally, watermelon juice is the best option, but we can add other types, such as guava juice or strawberry juice) and a splash of lime juice.
  8. Shake the shaker vigorously until all ingredients are well incorporated.
  9. Pour the mixture into shot glass and enjoy!

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 147Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 761mgCarbohydrates: 20gFiber: 3gSugar: 12gProtein: 1g

Did you make this recipe?

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