Mexican Food Recipes For Cinco De Mayo

8 ways to celebrate Cinco de Mayo with Mexican food

Cinco de Mayo is not Mexican Independence Day (that's in September). It's not even a national holiday.

But here we are, with an American holiday where it's almost sacrilegious to turn down a frosty marg or lime-topped bottle of beer. There's never a bad time to eat Mexican food, but you might as well seize the opportunity to go beyond chips and salsa.

Whether you're team taco or more of an enchilada fan, here are eight recipes to cinco your teeth into.

Shrimp Tostadas with Avocado, Radish and Cilantro

Something excellent happens when quickly poached shrimp meet crunchy carrots, radishes and fennel. Make these on small tortillas for the perfect midday snack or beef them up with a side of rice and beans for dinner.


Choose (or don't) between five recipes for Cinco de Mayo: We're not one to pass up a theme. Turn it tiki with creamy coconut milk and hunks of fresh pineapple, or make it smoky by using mescal.

Chicken-and-Poblano Tamales

Roll your sleeves up and get everyone involved in this edible origami project. The prep time is long, but it's mostly hands off—meaning plenty of opportunities to take a break and refill your margarita glass.

Guajillo-Braised Beef Short Rib Taco

We can't talk Mexican food without bringing up tacos. Nestle slow-cooked meat into warm corn tortillas with sauce made from beer-simmered chiles for the ultimate taco night.

Chicken Enchiladas with Salsa Verde

The road to feeding a crowd is paved with chicken- and cheese-stuffed tortilla pockets. Grab the market's first tomatillos for a slightly spicy yet refreshing, verdant sauce.

Octopus Aguachile

Mexican chef Enrique Olvera proves that cooking an eight-legged sea animal doesn't have to be daunting. This refreshing side sneaks in smoky flavor from both charred habaneros and avocado.

Chorizo Chilaquiles

They make a choice breakfast, but if you want to save this sauce-soaked pile of chips for a pre-bedtime snack to soak up some of that tequila, we won't judge.

Chocolate-Habanero Cake with Chocolate-Avocado Buttercream

Every day deserves a chocolate cake, whether it's a holiday or not. To take it one step further, use the rich, distinctly flavored Mexican chocolate in the creamy (and not-green) avocado frosting.