Celebrate Cinco de Mayo this weekend with a taco bar fiesta! Whip up a batch of frozen margaritas, mash some avocados for guacamole and prepare a variety of taco fillings to please everyone. Let guests assemble and garnish their own, then let the party begin — we’ll show you how.
No Cinco de Mayo party is complete without that Mexican staple, guacamole. Mix a big batch and set out plenty of chips for dipping, because this crowd-pleaser goes quickly (and you’ll want extra guac to top your tacos later on). For something different, offer another appetizer of pepita dip, a spread made with pumpkin seeds, tomatoes and chilis.
Now for the fun part: set up a build-your-own taco bar. You’ll need a stack of warm corn tortillas, plus your fillings: slow-cooked and shredded short ribs, grilled salmon, and satisfying black beans for a vegetarian option. Fill bowls with toppings for garnishing, such as a few different salsas, chopped cilantro, sliced radishes, avocado, cheese and lime wedges.
For dessert, keep it simple with scoops of coconut ice cream, topped with tropical fruit like mango or papaya. And don’t forget about the drinks! Margaritas are a must, and a pitcher of strawberry agua fresca makes a great nonalcoholic thirst-quencher for kids and adults.
- 1 to 2 days ahead: Make salsas. Prepare the short ribs, cool, cover and refrigerate. Make the ice cream and freeze. Sauté vegetables and prep beans for the tacos and refrigerate.
- Day of: Prep vegetables for appetizers and other ingredients for garnishes (except avocado; it will discolor and should be cut just before serving). Make the pepita dip. Mix the agua fresca and refrigerate.
- Just before serving: Reheat the short ribs and beans and grill the salmon. Warm the tortillas. Make the guacamole. Mix margaritas one at a time for the best, freshest flavor.
If you like, take your cocktails to the next level with a full margarita bar, including a blender, salt for rimming, and flavored mixes. Don’t forget some durable glasses if you’re entertaining outside. Also, check out our tequila guide to learn about all the different styles and tasting notes of the spirit.
Choose napkins and a table runner in a bold, colorful print to create a lively table. Condiment bowls in a natural weave are perfect for sharing the taco toppings. We love serving guacamole in a traditional molcajete for a special presentation.