A Mexican-Themed Dinner for Four

Celebrate Cinco de Mayo with a traditional Mexican meal at home


Now that the warmer weather is here and restaurants and bars are opening up their outdoor seating for one of the best ways to end the work day — outside, with a cold margarita in hand. On Cinco de Mayo, many people in will do just that.

But in true honor of the holiday (which honors the Mexican army’s victory over French forces at the Battle of Puebla, and is only celebrated in the Mexican state of Puebla and in the U.S.), why not prepare an authentic Mexican meal to share at home with family or friends? Chef Guillermo Tellez of Philadelphia's Square 1682 restaurant (originally from central Mexico himself) has put together a menu of some of his favorites (and yes, fresh margaritas are included). 

When Setting the Table

For the evening, take inspiration from the Mexican flag. Set the table outside, and opt for table linens in green, red, or white. Scatter white votives around the table, and serve the meal on white dinner plates. Be sure to put out a couple of bowls of red and green salsas to serve with chips (and to snack on). Then put on some mariachi music to set the mood (a piñata is optional).

Start with a Drink

Pair your chips and salsa with an ice-cold margarita, of course! You can mix the lime juice, tequila, and agave together in advance, if you’d like — or put one of your guests in charge of squeezing the limes.

The Menu

Once each guest has a cocktail, give everyone a task. Working together to serve the meal often helps make conversation flow easily and it doesn’t leave one lone sole stranded in the kitchen (every host's or hostess' nightmare). Put two people in charge of frying the tortillas and assembling the tostadas, while the remaining people make and stuff the peppers. Just remember to begin soaking the walnuts the night before the meal!

A Mexican-Themed Dinner for Four

Nectar Margarita

Tuna Tostadas

Chiles en Nogada