Delicious Cinco De Mayo Recipes

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Are You Ready To Have A Festive Party?

Are you looking for some delicious Cinco De Mayo recipes to serve at your Cinco De Mayo party? Let me help you get your party organized and create a menu that will be easy enough so you aren’t stuck in the kitchen. You deserve to enjoy the party too!

May 5th is probably the most well known Mexican Holiday. And no this is not the celebration of Mexico’s independence from Spain. It is actually the celebration of Mexico’s army of 4,000 soldiers defeating France’s army of 8,000 at Puebla, Mexico in 1862. This battle is known as La Batalla de Puebla.

So let’s celebrate! Cinco de mayo is the day we look to eat Mexican food and drink margaritas, right?

Instead of heading out to a crowded Mexican restaurant, why not try celebrating at home. It really is doable and loads of fun.

Here are some things to consider in addition to your Cinco De Mayo recipes for food and drink. Let’s make this event a fiesta!

You will need the following:

  • Invitations
  • decorations
  • music
  • games
  • Invitations are easy enough. You can buy them online, at your local store, or use

Decorations can be purchased the same way. For decorations, think in terms of bright colors like red, white, and green for basic Mexico flag colors and any other bright colors like blue, yellow and orange.

A very inexpensive decoration you can make is tissue paper flowers. I found two videos below that can help you make these. These are fun and do not take long to make and they really add to the festivities. Give these as party favors for a nice touch.

How to make tissue paper flowers.

Other simple decorations you might want to consider are sombreros and streams of crete paper in bright colors. You can pin the sombreros on the wall or wear them.

Crete paper can be taped decoratively to your walls and red, green, and white balloons filled with helium are a great idea too.

Purchase some Chili Pepper lights to add a nice ambiance, especially if you are decorating your patio. Add a pinata or two for decorating whether you plan to add candy and break them open or not.

I purchased this Sombrero Centerpiece to decorate one of my tables along with this serape table runner.

We’ve Got To Have Music.

One great way to make your party festive is to add some mariachi music or any kind of Mexican or Latin music. This really sets the tone of your party.

You’ve got to have some Herb Alpert and the Tiajanna Brass or Brazill 66 to liven things up.

How About a Game Or Two?

Here is an adult party game you could play at your Cinco De Mayo party. It’s called “Where is my mate?”

If all those in attendance are couples that would be best. Start with blindfolding the ladies.

All the men who are not blindfolded stand in a line. The blindfolded ladies walk down the line and try to find their mate. The blindfolded ladies can only touch one body part, like the men’s hands or face to try and identify there mate.

There is no talking.

When everyone has selected who they think their mate is, the blindfolds come off. You are sure to hear some laughs with this one. Have a little prize for the winners.

Another fun game is the inflatable Cactus Ring Toss. Kids and adults like this game and it’s easy to play. All you need is a little prize for the person who rings the most.

One of my most favorite games to play at parties is trivia. I print out a page of 20 trivia questions for my guests to answer and give them 15 minutes to figure out the answers.

Who ever gets the most right wins a prize. If you have a tie you can either have a tie breaker question or give two prizes. It’s always a good idea to have a tie breaker in case you have a three way tie.

Now that you have some ideas for invitations, decorations, music and games, you are ready to start thinking about some Cinco De Mayo recipes.

Here is a menu that is pretty simple and designed to be self serve.

Cinco De Mayo Recipes


Main Course

You may need to double up on some of these Cinco De Mayo recipes depending on the size of your party. You will definitely need to get some tortilla warmers.  These are a must have for parties as they keep 12 tortillas at a time hot for your self serve food.  Your guests can use the warm tortillas to make burritos if they choose or use the tortillas as bread.


  • Here are some drink ideas to go with those Cinco De Mayo recipes. It’s a good idea to have a variety and some non alcoholic beverages.
  • Mexican beer (Carona, Tecate, Dos Equis, etc)
  • Margaritas
  • Wine
  • Sangria
  • Soda


Tips For A Successful Party

Your best strategy in pulling off a successful Cinco De Mayo party is preparation. Get as much done ahead of time as you possibly can.

Keep in mind that some of these Cinco De Mayo recipes need to be cooked the day of the party to taste their best. This takes planning but is worth it.

I find it helpful to make lists of the things that need to be done and when. For example, write down what time you will start cooking your beans and rice etc. Allow for prepping time for each food as well.

For tortillas I would recommend just buying them but if you are set on homemade but would like less work, check out Costco. They have flour tortillas that are prepared but not cooked yet and they taste way better than what you can buy at the grocery store. They taste homemade.

Cook these up fresh and place the hot ones in a tortilla warmer to go with your Cinco De Mayo recipes.

With the main meal you can prepare the salad early in the day and keep chilled.

I would “clean” the beans early in the day if not the night before. You could even soak the beans in water and leave them on the stove the night before. Soaking is not necessary but I would do it just to have them ready to go.

Start cooking the beans about 4 hours before you plan to serve them.

The rice will taste best if you cook it just before serving. Plan for an hour and a half for this. If you make Spanish rice, prep your onions and bell peppers early in the day.

The pork chalupas are cooked in a crock pot anywhere from 6 to 9 hours before serving depending on what temperature you cook it on. You can easily cook this the day before and just reheat the day of.

The carne asada should be marinaded 1-2 hours before bbqing. Prepare the marinade early in the day and keep chilled in the refrigerator. The carne aside only takes minutes to bbq so do this right before serving.

Prepare the jalapeno poppers the day before. Take them out of the fridge and bake when needed. The guacamole and salsa should be made 2 or 3 hours before serving. Having these freshly made is important.

The 3 milks cake can be made the day before. Just don’t add the whipping cream until the day of the party.

The Almendrado should probably be made the day of the party.

You will be busy but delegate to others as much as you can. Team work goes a long ways in making a successful Cinco De Mayo party. Once you get the food on the table, relax and enjoy the evening.

Best Way To Serve Your Cinco De Mayo Recipes

The best way to serve your Cinco De Mayo feast is buffet style. Buy, rent, or borrow some chafing dishes.

I have three chafing dishes that I own, two large ones and one smaller one. I bought these at, you guessed it, Costco. They are great for entertaining, keeping your Cinco De Mayo recipes nice and hot.

I would put the rice and beans in one chafing dish (with two inserts) and the carne asada in the other chafing dish.

The pork chalupas can be served from the crackpot to stay warm. Now all your hot foods will stay hot through out the evening.

Now you are ready to celebrate Cinco De Mayo in fashion. Ole’!

If you need more Cinco De Mayo recipes check out our recipe index for more ideas.

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