Whether you find the tropes simply clichéd or straight up offensively stereotypical, it may seem impossible to enjoy the revelry of Cinco de Mayo, tequila, and Mexican food without them. However, we are here to tell you it is entirely possible to throw a respectful, unique, and (most importantly) fun Cinco de Mayo party without whistling the same ol’ tune.
To celebrate any holiday with respect, it’s important to know what the holiday really means, especially if you don’t have a background in the culture the holiday originally stems from. Almost everyone knows that Cinco de Mayo isn’t a big deal in Mexico, but few people know that it celebrates a tide-turning Mexican military victory over the French in 1861 in the city of Puebla.
We shouldn’t have to say it, but wearing ponchos, fake mustaches, and sombreros is culturally insensitive, to say the very least. Don’t be that person. Cinco de Mayo takes place during the peak of spring. Instead of donning a racist costume, dress in the colors of Mexico or your favorite spring styles.
Authentic tacos just use a few simple, delicious components and are built on top of small corn tortillas. These steak tacos have just five ingredients but are intensely flavorful.
Street food is a hugely important part of Mexican cuisine, including this cheesy, tangy grilled corn. Limes, Cotija cheese, mayonnaise, and chili powder make an addictive portable appetizer or side dish.
Rich dark chocolate is the perfect ending for any Mexican themed meal, and a spicy, creamy Mexican hot chocolate is so, so satisfying. Cinnamon and chili powder help to give this milky confection a bit of a bite and more Latin flavor.
Drinking tequila with lime and salt is more or less an American twist on this classic spirit. Instead, consider drinking your tequila with the more traditional sangrita, which dates back to the 1920s. This chaser features citrus juice, fruit juice, and a bit of pepper for a cleansing sip that perfectly complements the bite of tequila.