Simple, Easy, Authentic Cinco de Mayo Menu

April 21, 2017

Photo Credit: Shutterstock

Known by many, understood by few, Cinco de Mayo is a holiday with many faces here in the US. For some, it means tacos, chips, and cheap margaritas (which we love…don't get us wrong!), but for 33.7 million Mexican-Americans, it’s one of the few occasions that their culture and heritage enjoy the fanfare they deserve.


Historically, Cinco de Mayo commemorates the Mexican army’s decisive defeat of French forces three times as strong in the village of Pueblo during the French occupation of Mexico in the 1800s.  While their triumph was short-lived, the battle came to represent unity and pride amongst the Mexican people. Now, the holiday means bright-colored parades, passionate mariachi music, bustling street festivals, and – most importantly – delicious traditional foods.


Photo Credit: Shutterstock

While the typical avocados, tomatoes, and cilantro are certainly an important part of the cuisine, Mexican food is much more complex than most people might imagine. Surprising traditional ingredients include banana leaves, fava beans, plantains, chayote squash, pomegranate, squash blossoms, and a diverse array of chile peppers ranging in flavor from earthy and metallic to searing-ly hot and fruity.


Some traditional dishes, like Chiles en Nodaga (a walnut-stuffed pepper dish garnished with pomegranate seeds) or an authentic mole poblano (with over 20 ingredients!), are complicated recipes that take some serious planning and commitment – but if you’re strapped for time this Cinco de Mayo, there are plenty of simple, seriously delicious recipes to celebrate Mexican-American culture this spring.


Our Favorite Easy Cinco de Mayo Menu


Starter: Chalupas Poblanas

A popular street food made of thick tortillas that are fried with salsa, chalupas have been a favorite in Mexico forever! Try this recipe with different salsas and see which is your favorite, the options are endless!



Main Entree: Pork Tamales

While they may be time-consuming to prepare, tamales are a classic Mexican dish that is always worth the wait. Pork, salsa, and soft dough all wrapped up in a corn husk, we're not sure this recipe could disappoint!



Side Dish: Mexican Street Corn

Grilled corn on the cob with a garlic mayo, shredded cheese, lime juice, and chili powder. Often served on a stick so that you can walk with your corn after buying it from a street vendor!



Side Dish: Calabacitas Gratinadas Rellenas de Vegetales 

A traditional side dish in Mexico, this recipe consists of squash stuffed with an assortment of traditional vegetables, including onions, carrots, and celery, that are then smothered with melted cheese.



Dessert: Homemade Churros with Chocolate Sauce

Arguably the most popular of Mexican desserts, churros have spread far and wide for one reason: they taste incredible! Super simple and supremely satisfying, churros are a must-have for Cinco de Mayo!


Posted by:
Liam Lindsay

cinco de mayo, Mexico, menu, authentic, cooking, holiday, May 5

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