These Cinco de Mayo food ideas are our favorite Mexican recipes for any time of the year! Celebrate all day long with our ideas from breakfast to dinner, or party with our Mexican appetizers and desserts.
Cinco de Mayo Food Ideas
Mexican food is a big deal around our family! We grew up eating a lot of it because it is our Mom’s favorite kind of food, hands down. It’s no wonder why we have over 100 Mexican food dishes here on Favorite Family Recipes! We have everything from authentic Mexican food to more Tex-Mex style to Mexican food. We have gone through each and every one of these recipes to find the best Cinco de Mayo Food Ideas to help you celebrate with the people you love. And don’t miss our bonus recipe for Raspberry Fried Ice Cream Dessert below!
Cinco de Mayo Breakfast Recipes
- Breakfast Burritos – great way to start the day! Loaded with all the best breakfast foods.
- Breakfast Quesadillas – pan fried and filled with egg, cheese and your favorite breakfast meat.
- Chilaquiles – a traditional dish includes fried corn tortillas, green salsa, fried eggs, and delicious toppings.
- Chorizo Breakfast Hash – a breakfast classic. Perfect for a lazy weekend brunch. (source: Budget Bytes)
- Huevos Rancheros – a typical breakfast served at Mexican farms, featuring corn tortillas and fried eggs topped with plenty of warmed salsa. (source: Cookie and Kate)
- Easy Mexican Migas – made with fried corn tortillas, eggs, cheese, tomatoes, avocado, salsa, hot sauce, and crema. (source: A Simple Pantry)
Cinco de Mayo Appetizers
- 9 Layer Bean Dip – so much better than 7 layers. It is loaded with tasty Mexican toppings and sauces and served with crisp tortilla chips.
- Bacon Wrapped Jalapeño Poppers – jalapeño halves filled with melty cheese and wrapped in crispy bacon are so tasty on their own or dipped in ranch.
- BBQ Pulled Pork Nachos – tortilla chips serve as the base, topped with pulled pork, a simple homemade bbq sauce, black beans, melted cheddar cheese, and sour cream.
- Chicken Flautas – so easy to whip up for a quick dinner or even just an after-school snack. They also freeze great which makes them even EASIER to heat up when you are in a pinch for dinner!
- Chili Cheese Dip – one of the easiest dips to make. It only takes 5 minutes to prepare.
- Cowboy Caviar – a tasty and easy chip dip. It has guacamole feel, but with more textures and flavors. It is also great on other Mexican dishes.
- Easy Oven Nachos – perfect for a crowd. An easy appetizer for parties that everyone will love!
- Nacho Cheese Dip – comes together with just two simple ingredients! The perfect party dip.
- Queso Fundido – gooey, stringy cheese just waiting to be scooped up onto your tortilla! (source: Mexico in my Kitchen)
- Shredded Beef Taquitos – crisp on the outside, tender beef inside – a perfect way to use up leftover pot roast.
- Shrimp Taco Bites – the perfect appetizer because they work great for almost ANY type of gathering AND they are SO easy to make. These shrimp taco bites will quickly become one of your favorite appetizers!
- Strawberry Jalapeño Cheese Ball – sweet strawberry jam and spicy jalapeño, the perfect blend of sweet and heat.
- THE Best Guacamole EVER – the ONLY guacamole recipe you will ever need. A few fresh ingredients & you’ve got yourself the best guac in town. This perfectly complements any Mexican food you can possibly imagine.
Salsa and Sauce Recipes
- Canned Salsa – we make this salsa every summer with tomatoes from our garden!
- Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette Dressing (Cafe Rio Copycat) – this copycat salad dressing is spot on and so good!
- Cilantro Verde Sauce – we eat this sauce on every taco, burrito, tortilla chip, and more!
- Creamy Tomatillo Ranch Dressing (Cafe Rio Copycat) – our most famous copycat salad dressing for a reason!
- Cranberry Salsa – made with fresh ingredients and has an incredible sweet and tangy flavor.
- Fresh Corn Salsa – will add burst of fresh flavor to tortilla chips, fish tacos, and just about anything!
- Homemade Salsa – made with vine-ripened tomatoes, fresh cilantro, and lime, you can’t beat the natural flavors.
- Pico de Gallo – my go-to pico recipe. Diced tomatoes and onions with just the right amount of jalapeño.
- Savory Salsa Recipe for Canning – thick, chunky and slightly spicy. Fresh ingredients bottled to perfection.
- Tomatillo Salsa Verde – use it to make chili verde, enchiladas, salsa verde chicken, for chips and salsa, and more!
Cinco de Mayo Side Dishes
- Black Beans – a great addition to any Mexican-inspired meal! Serve them with rice as a side dish or inside of your favorite burritos and tacos.
- Cheater Restaurant Style Refried Beans – the perfect dip that goes so well with your favorite Mexican foods. This is our cheater recipe to make the canned stuff have that restaurant-like consistency and flavor – but better!
- Cilantro Lime Rice – bursting with cilantro and lime flavor that really brings your Mexican-inspired meal together.
- Easy Spanish Rice – an easy, delicious side dish or meal for any night of the week.
- Grilled Corn Salad – a delicious summer salad that you can whip up any day of the week! Juicy corn, fresh veggies, and a little spice.
- Grilled Mexican Street Corn – made with Cotija cheese, chili powder, and lime, topped on grilled corn on the cob. It’s simple to make and bursting with flavor.
- Homemade Flour Tortillas – with a few ingredients you can make fresh, warm tortillas for your favorite burritos, tacos, and enchiladas. They are so easy to make and they will kick your party up a notch!
- Homemade Tortilla Strips – fast and easy to make and are a perfect crispy topper to salads, burritos and more.
- Mexican Street Corn Cups at copycat from the Cozy Cones at Disney’s California Adventure! Such a great appetizer, snack or side dish. Mexican street corn, or elote, in a cup is an easy mess-free way to go when you are craving Mexican street corn.
- Restaurant-Style Mexican Rice – rivals anything you can get in a restaurant, has the perfect consistency and just the right amount of seasoning.
- Sweet Corn Tomalitos (Corn Cake) – a sweet yet savory side to any Mexican feast. Creamy, tasty, and easy to make!
Chicken, Beef, and Pork Tacos
- Chicken Taco Salad in a Tortilla Bowl – easily the best taco salad I’ve ever had. I am not a huge fan of ground beef in taco salad so the chicken is what really put it over the top for me.
- Chicken Tacos with Bacon – a delicious fusion of two of our favorite Summer dishes. The bacon crunch in each bite takes chicken tacos to a new level!
- Chipotle’s Crispy Tacos with Chicken – true to their namesake with a crispy shell, perfectly grilled and seasoned chicken, and corn salsa topped with cheese, sour cream and lettuce.
- Easy Chicken Tacos – a simple and flavorful way to get dinner on the table quickly! Tender chicken, taco spices and topped with garden fresh ingredients.
- Kalua Pork Tacos with Mango Salsa – loaded with juicy smokey flavored shredded pork and topped with fresh mango and avocado.
- Easy Taco Salad – made with seasoned ground beef, crisp romaine lettuce, and flavorful toppings. An easy, healthy weeknight dinner!
- Navajo Tacos with Homemade Fry Bread – pillowy fry bread piled with chili, cheese and all kinds of toppings.
- Steak Street Tacos – my go-to recipe when Mexican food cravings hit. Tender steak combined with simple ingredients wrapped in corn or flour tortillas. Taco Tuesday can’t come soon enough!
- Walking Tacos – also called Tacos in a Bag. Whatever you call them, they are the best thing ever for camping, reunions, and block parties.
Fish and Shrimp Tacos
- Fish Tacos – so yummy and simple to make. A staple when we have leftover fish.
- Grilled Mahi Mahi Tacos – a light and fresh summertime supper. Flaky fish, a perfect blend of spices and all your favorite toppings.
- Halibut Tacos – halibut fish on a corn tortilla topped with crunchy cabbage, cilantro dressing, and a squirt of lime.
- Fiesta Fish Taco Bowls – crispy fish, veggies, and sauce over a bed of cooked rice. It’s an entire meal in one bowl!
- Shrimp Tacos with Slaw – shrimp, homemade slaw and tangy cilantro dressing layered in warm corn tortillas.
- Spicy Shrimp Tacos – bite-size shrimp, crunchy cabbage and spicy sauce comes together in just minutes.
- Thai Fish Tacos with Spicy Peanut Sauce – jazz up your typical fish tacos and get your Thai fix all at once.
Veggie Tacos and Taco Seasoning
- Black Bean Tacos – an easy dinner that your whole family will love. They taste amazing dipped in salsa or guacamole.
- Homemade Taco Seasoning – making your own homemade taco seasoning is so simple and inexpensive! You likely already have most of the ingredients in your pantry.
- Sweet Potato Tacos – so easy to make. You will love the black bean filling and the fresh, flavorful toppings.
- Butternut Squash Pork Burritos – spicy, tender pork, creamy squash and unique fixings, this unexpected combo will change the way you think about regular burritos.
- Sweet Pork Burrito (Cafe Rio Copycat) – restaurant-style burrito with our Cafe Rio Sweet Pork Burrito Copycat Recipe. Smothered in enchilada sauce, it tastes just like the original.
- Family Style Baked Burritos – shredded sweet pork burritos served enchilada style in portions for family dinner.
- Taco Time Crisp Bean Burritos Copycat – a delicious snack or a quick lunch that’s packed with protein. Enjoy a bean burrito fried or baked.
- Easy Cheese Enchiladas – simple and delicious for dinner, these Easy Cheese Enchiladas are perfect. Simple, full of flavor, and cheese!
- Enchiladas with Red Enchilada Sauce – a creamy, cheese, spicy dish that takes center stage at any Mexican feast.
- Homemade Enchilada Sauce – you’ll never reach for canned enchilada sauce again!
- Honey Lime Chicken Enchiladas – loaded with juicy marinated chicken, smothered in creamy enchilada sauce and topped with lots of melted cheese.
- Sour Cream Chicken Enchiladas – these Chicken Enchiladas are really easy to throw together, especially when the chicken is prepared ahead of time.
- Spinach Enchiladas – loaded with spinach and cheese, and topped with a green enchilada sauce. They are a copycat of my favorite entrée at a local Mexican restaurant.
- Thai Chicken Enchiladas – this chicken and vegetable filling is fresh, sweet, spicy, and flavorful!
- Grilled Avocado Quesadillas – loaded with cheddar cheese, avocados, peppers, and fresh cilantro and lime juice. Then grilled on the barbecue to melty perfection.
- Grilled Steak Quesadillas – putting regular steak quesadillas on the grill adds so much flavor and authenticity to the meal.
- Veggie Quesadillas – you can’t go wrong with corn, zucchini, black beans, and cheese. Delicious as a meal or a snack.
- Quesadillas with Chicken – packed with juicy chicken, peppers, onions, garlic, and lots of melty cheese. (source: Gimme Delicious)
Cinco de Mayo Dinner Recipes
Mexican Chicken Dinners
- Cheesy Enchilada Casserole – a quick and easy meal with enchilada flavors, great with leftover chicken.
- Cheesy Grilled Mexican Chicken – a fiesta in every bite! Spicy flavors and bold color make this a feast fit for any night of the week.
- Crock Pot Salsa Verde Chicken – so easy to make and packed with a perfect blend of delicious Mexican flavors.
- Guacamole Chicken Torta Sandwiches – seasoned grilled chicken on Torta bread loaded with guacamole, lettuce, tomatoes, and chipotle ranch dressing.
- Mexican Chicken Casserole – layers of tender chicken, rice, and beans topped with two kinds of cheese.
- Sheet Pan Fajitas – seasoned chicken and vegetables cook to perfection in the oven, then add a few toppings and dinner is done!
- Spanish Chicken and Rice Skillet – the lime, cilantro and salsa balances out the chicken, rice, beans and corn.
Mexican Beef Dinners
- Chimichangas with Beef – a popular Southwestern dish that’s almost identical to a burrito, except it’s deep-fried. (source: Taste of Home)
- Grilled Carne Asada – one of my favorite Mexican dishes! I love it in burritos, tacos, breakfast burritos, enchiladas, quesadillas, and simply over rice.
- Homemade Chalupas – a crispy and soft taco shell filled with your favorite taco toppings such as ground beef, shredded chicken, cheddar cheese, lettuce, diced tomatoes, and sour cream. (source: Brown Sugar)
- Mexican Lasagna – a cross between lasagna and enchiladas. Tortillas, meat sauce, and cheese layered and topped with your favorite Mexican toppings.
- Shredded Beef – the go-to recipe for any beef Mexican dish. So good in burritos, tacos, enchiladas, quesadillas, salad, or just as is! It complements any kind of Mexican food you are serving.
- Steak Fajita Bowls – all the flavors of your favorite fajitas in a tasty rice bowl.
Mexican Pork Dinners
- Cafe Rio Sweet Pork Recipe – the pork is marinated and slow-cooked to perfection in some surprising ingredients! The most popular Cafe Rio Copycat recipe on the internet. Be sure to try ALL of our famous Cafe Rio recipes so you can create all your favorite Cafe Rio menu items at home!
- Cafe Rio Sweet Pork Salad Recipe – so easy to make this copycat at home, and it tastes exactly like the popular restaurant version.
- Shredded Pork Tostadas – tender pork is made in a slow-cooker and the tortillas are baked, not fried, making this a light, delicious meal.
- Tamales – a traditional Mexican dish made with a corn based dough mixture. Fill with meat or beans and cheese, then wrap and cook in corn husks. (source: Tastes Better from Scratch)
Mexican Veggie Dinners
- Hatch Chiles Rellenos – Hatch chiles are the best kind of chile to use for chiles rellenos! They have a bright flavor with a touch of sweetness.
- Black Bean Tamale Pie – black bean and zucchini chili topped with homemade cornbread and baked to perfection. (source: Delish Knowledge)
- Veggie Burrito Bowl with Mexican Rice – a fantastic make-ahead meal that travels well and heats up like a dream. (source: Healthy GF Family)
- Portobello Fajitas – these mushroom fajitas make a healthy and delicious plant-based weeknight meal! (source: Simple Veganista)
Mexican Soup and Chili Recipes
- Black Bean Soup – a creamy, hearty dish that can be dressed up a million different ways.
- Cafe Rio Chicken Tortilla Soup – tastes just like the Cafe Rio favorite, if not better! This is by far my most favorite chicken tortilla soup. It’s fresh, fragrant and full of chicken and spices.
- Cafe Zupas Chicken Enchilada Chili Copycat – loaded with seasoned chicken, beans, and corn in a creamy, slightly spicy, soup.
- Chicken Tortilla Soup – a healthy, nourishing soup topped with cheese, tortilla chips and avocado.
- Emily’s Southwest Taco Soup – a simple slow cooker recipe bursting with savory spicy taco flavors.
- Instant Pot Chicken Enchilada Soup – can be thrown together in a pinch and is ready to eat in about 30 minutes.
- Mexican Chili in a Tostada Bowl – easy to make and the clean-up is even easier! Low in fat, high in fiber, hearty and flavorful.
- Pork Chile Verde – authentic Mexican flavors with tender pork in a flavorful spicy green broth.
Cinco de Mayo Dessert and Drink Recipes
- Fried Ice Cream – a sweet crispy outer shell with smooth, cold ice cream in the center!
- Fried Ice Cream Cake (no fry) – an easy but decadent frozen dessert. You will love the sweet and crunchy topping!
- Fruit Salsa with Cinnamon and Sugar Chips – a fresh and fruity sweet salsa served with crispy cinnamon chips.
- Homemade Churros – cinnamon and sugar on a fried pastry stick. (source: Lil’ Luna)
- Mexican Baked Strawberry Empanadas – sweet, delicious and so easy to make, your whole family will love them!
- Mexican Hot Chocolate – creamy, foamy, chocolaty, and just a tiny bit spicy!
- Piña Colada Cake – bursting with coconut and pineapple. The topping on this cake is simple, yet so delicious.
- Piña Colada Smoothie – a tasty and healthy pineapple drink that tastes like a dessert.
- Sopapilla Cheesecake – layers of flaky pastry, cinnamon, sugar, and sweet cream cheese.
- Raspberry Fried Ice Cream Dessert – (see recipe below)
Raspberry Fried Ice Cream Dessert
I came up with this Raspberry Fried Ice Cream Dessert while trying to decide on a yummy dessert for Cinco De Mayo. I’ve done the “no fry” fried ice cream in the past but I wanted to try something unique with a twist on the original flavors. The raspberries gave this rich dessert a delicious tart and sweet bursts of flavor. Don’t be deceived by the color of the sauce, it’s not caramel, it is actually a white chocolate fudge sauce and it is so incredibly good!
75+ Cinco de Mayo Recipes – Raspberry Fried Ice Cream Dessert
- 9×13 inch pan
- 13 oz Cinnamon Frosted Flakes 1 box, crushed into small pieces (Or Frosted Flakes mixed with 1 tsp cinnamon)
- 1 cup lightly salted almonds roasted, chopped into little pieces
- 6 Tbsp butter melted
- 2 quarts ice cream (I did a white chocolate raspberry Tillamook Ice Cream, but vanilla will work too)
- 1 container fresh raspberries
- Place the ice cream in a large bowl at room temperature and stir it occasionally until the ice cream becomes soft, but not melted. Then gently stir in half of the raspberries, reserve the other half for later.
- In another large bowl, stir together the crushed cereal, chopped almonds, and melted butter until thoroughly mixed.
- Pour half of the cereal mixture into the bottom of a 9×13 metal or aluminum pan and gently press it down evenly along the bottom. Then spoon the ice cream/raspberry mix evenly over the top, and carefully spread it evenly. Then sprinkle on the remaining half of the cereal mixture and spread and lightly press it down over the ice cream.
- Cover your pan with aluminum foil and freeze for at least 3 hours before serving. (I made mine the night before and let it freeze until the next day.)
- When serving, cut into squares and put onto plates. Then drizzle on the white chocolate fudge sauce and sprinkle on leftover fresh raspberries.
For the White Chocolate Fudge Sauce:
- Combine first three ingredients in saucepan.
- Cook over medium heat until chocolate chips are melted and sauce thickens.
- Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Serve warm.