Low Sugar Tequila Sunrise Recipe

Low-sugar tequila sunrises can be just as delicious as their high-sugar counterparts. 

It’s hard to think of another cocktail as perfect as a tequila sunrise for summertime afternoons. Thirst quenching, sweet, and colorful but without the calories, let’s dive into how to make the perfect low-sugar Tequila Sunrise.

What’s in a tequila sunrise cocktail?

Some may think a tequila sunrise is just a regular old tequila and orange juice cocktail, but boy would they be wrong. Out of all the mixed drinks for tequila, the tequila sunrise is the most colorful (and strong) of them all and is the perfect beachy cocktail, no matter where you are.

With a traditional tequila sunrise, the ingredients are:

  • Tequila (0g of sugar per serving)
  • Orange Juice (7g of sugar per serving)
  • Grenadine syrup (9g of sugar per serving)
  • Orange slice (2g of sugar per serving)
  • Maraschino cherry (1.9g of sugar per serving)

The orange juice and grenadine syrup work to make the traditional tequila sunrise very sweet, as they have the most sugar content in them. These will be the ingredients we will focus on. 

What can you use to make tequila sunrises have less sugar?

With our low-sugar tequila sunrise, you’ll be able to cut back at least half the calories and sugar in a traditional one. Instead of regular orange juice, substitute it for 50% fewer calories and sugar with Tropicana Trop50 Orange Juice. Then replace the traditional grenadine with the Teisseire Sugar-Free grenadine. By then, you’ll be able to enjoy your cocktail stress-free. 

How many calories are in a tequila sunrise?

The traditional tequila sunrise has around 268 calories and 30g of sugar per serving. So, having more than one of these is not recommended if you want to cut back on sugar and total calories. 

Does grenadine have a lot of sugar in it?

Unfortunately, the sweet red cocktail mixer, grenadine, has a bit of sugar. Think of it as simple syrup, which is sugar dissolved into water, but with a hint of citrus. In fact, one tablespoon of grenadine has nine grams  of sugar in it. Many recipes call for more than one tablespoon, so it’s easy to add a lot of sugar into your drink fast.

Is there a lot of sugar in orange juice?

Like most fruit, oranges have a lot of sugar in them. And depending on the brand of orange juice you use, there can be a ton of added sugar you don’t realize you’re putting into your body. Even an eight-ounce serving of orange juice contains about 30 grams of sugar, so it’s something to be wary of when making your low-sugar tequila sunrise.

Do you mix a tequila sunrise before drinking?

Crafting your cocktails can be intimidating, especially in making the perfect tequila sunrise and making it look the way it’s supposed to. What goes in first in a tequila sunrise is very important; it’s what makes the sun → rise. 

That said, please do not stir your tequila sunrise well before drinking it. However, a slight stir is encouraged right before taking your first sip. Very gently stir just once from the bottom of your drink so you can create the famous sunrise look. The colors will swirl, and ingredients will ever so slightly mix together. You know you’ve done it perfectly when your glass looks like a sunrise. 

What’s the difference between a tequila sunrise and a tequila sunset?

While a tequila sunrise and a tequila sunset are very similar, two differences set them apart: swap out the grenadine for food coloring and add soda water.

You make it the same way as you would a tequila sunrise. Add tequila and orange juice. Next, add a drop of red food coloring and soda water instead of grenadine. The soda water will make the food coloring float to the top of the drink, making it look like a sunset.

Interestingly enough, the traditional tequila sunset cuts out a massive amount of sugar just by taking out the grenadine and swapping it for soda water and food dye. Swap out the orange juice for Tropicana Trop50, and you’re in the clear, baby.

Tequila Sunrise
5 from 2 votes

Low Sugar Tequila Sunrise

Tequila Sunrises are traditionally high in sugar from the use of orange juice and grenadine. Here is a low-sugar version of the classic tequila cocktail.

Course Drinks
Cuisine Mexican
Keyword Cocktails, Tequila Sunrise
Prep Time 2 minutes
Total Time 2 minutes
Servings 1 person
Calories 220 kcal


  • 3 parts blanco tequila
  • 1 part Teisseire Sugar-Free grenadine
  • 2.5 parts reduced sugar orange juice
  • 1 orange slice
  • 1 maraschino cherry


  1. Fill a glass with ice.

  2. Pour in tequila and orange juice.

  3. Use a spoon to drizzle the grenadine down the side of the glass and let it settle.

  4. Add orange slice and cherry garnish to glass.

  5. Use a spoon and give a gentle swirl towards the bottom of the glass to get the sunrise effect.

  6. Enjoy!

Nutrition Facts
Low Sugar Tequila Sunrise
Amount Per Serving
Calories 220
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Get that swimsuit on, grab your friends, and get to work on making your very own low-sugar tequila sunrise. Grab whatever you need from Saucey-  we’ll be at your door ASAP.

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