While overlooking Ipanema Beach in Rio De Janeiro, I found the best recipe for a Caipirinha.
Enjoying these Caipirinha drinks in Brazil is absolutely one of my favorite highlights from my trip.
I had a half day to myself before my friends arrived and I spent it lounging on the rooftop bar of my hotel overlooking Ipanema Beach. Here is where I discovered the best recipe for a Caipirinha.
I tasted many Caipirinha’s during the two years I traveled back and forth to Brazil, but when I ordered this drink, I finally knew what all the excitement was about!
The quality of the liquor (and a little more of it) plus taking time to really mix in the sugar made it perfect in my eyes.
I lapped up three drinks that day, so needless to say, I slept really well. This is a good time to point out that the Caipirinha is a really strong drink since there aren’t any mixers involved, but it sure doesn’t taste like it!
The Caipirinha is made with Cachaça, the spirit of Brazil and is the main ingredient in a Caipirinha, which happens to be the national drink of Brazil.
What is Cachaça liquor?
Cachaça is a liquor only made in Brazil.
Made from sugarcane, which might make you think of rum, but it’s distinctly different. Rum is made from sugarcane molasses whereas Cachaça is made directly from the sugarcane juice.
By using sugarcane juice, Cachaça has a fresher, less sweet taste than rum. If you’ve ordered a Caipirinha in a bar in the United States, it’s very possible that your bartender made it with rum. I promise, using Cachaça gives it a more refreshing and earthy flavor.
There are various grades of Cachaça (like any other liquor) and the better the quality, the better the drink!
Stay away from the cheapest $13 bottle of Cachaça you find in the liquor store. Try the Novo Fogo Silver Cachaça, which is a good quality affordable brand. Or you can step up a bit to one of the various Avua Cachaça varieties.
How to Make a Caipirinha:
- 2 tsp. Extra Fine Sugar
- 1/2 Medium Lime
- 2.5 ounces Cachaça
- Garnish: Lime Wedge or Lime Wheel
- Wash and cut your lime into quarters. Be sure to cut out and discard the white middle core of the lime and the excess peel off the ends (those pieces add bitter flavor)
- Combine your cut lime pieces and sugar into your old-fashioned glass/rocks glass
- Muddle the lime and sugar together
- Add the Cachaça and stir the mixture together
- Fill the glass with ice and stir until chilled
- Garnish and serve
Caipirinha Recipe Tips:
- Increase or decrease the amount of sugar-based on your preferred taste.
- Regular sugar will work in your Caipirinha recipe, but you need to stir your drink longer because the sugar will settle at the bottom and your drink will be tart.
- Gently muddle your lime and sugar. If you do it too vigorously, you’ll get more tart from the lime peel.
- The first time I made a Caipirinha at home, I used a whole lime which was way too much. Now, I only use half of a medium lime. Start with 1/2 and you can always squeeze in more lime juice.
- Your drink should not be super tart or too sweet. If it’s either, adjust accordingly until it’s just right.
Now you don’t need to travel to Brazil just to find the best recipe for a Caipirinha!
Want to save this recipe? Pin it!