Sandra Lee makes a sunny sangria and fruity margaritas with pantry staples

Because cocktail hour is always the best time of day.

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/ Source: TODAY
By Sandra Lee

Short on fresh ingredients but still want to make fun cocktails?

While vodka is my all-time favorite liquor because it's so versatile, there are plenty of ways to spruce up whatever you have around the house — whether it's tequila, gin, rum or wine.

Even if you're stuck inside, nothing says "party" quite like a giggly Jell-O shot. The best part is that you can use whatever type of liquor you have on hand. Clear liquors like gin and vodka work well, as do tequila, whiskey or rum. I like to top mine with whipped topping mixed with a bit of vanilla extract to make it taste more homemade.

Now, let's whip up a fruity sangria. This summery wine-based drink is so good and so easy to make. To sweeten it up, there are great canned juice options in the market, like pear, apricot and peach. Then, throw in your fruit. I use fruit cocktail and strain the syrup out (otherwise it's too sweet), but if you prefer to use seasonal fruit, strawberries and peaches are lovely for summer, while apples, pears and oranges are ideal for fall.

Margaritas are famous in my house! I start with frozen limeade concentrate as the base, then I use the empty limeade can to measure out the rest of my ingredients so I don't need to clean any measuring cups. The secret weapon that makes these margs taste extra yummy is peach schnapps. It really takes this classic drink to the next level. This recipe is delicious but beware: The first drink is always the strongest — not that anyone will complain!