Even those who don’t have a drop of Mexican blood in their body love to partake of Mexican food and drinks each year on Cinco de Mayo, the fifth of May. The day commemorates the Mexican army’s victory over France at the Battle of Peubla in 1862. In the United States, it’s a day a celebration of a rich heritage of culture and food.

All of these recipes are Mexican inspired — healthy, somewhat Americanized, versions of Mexican dishes.


  • Fresh Salsa – A basic salsa recipe using all the traditional ingredients — fresh tomatoes, jalapeno peppers, onion and cilantro. You’ll want to double this one because it will go fast.
  • Asparagus Guacamole – Definitely not a traditional guacamole, but asparagus is in season right now, and it makes a delicious substitute. It’s also lower in fat that guacamole made with avocado.
  • Stuffed Jalepeno Chiles – These stuffed peppers are baked, not fried, so they are lower in fat, but still satisfying.
Main courses
  • Slow Cooker Shredded Beef for Tacos – The perfect choice if you can’t dedicate several hours to cooking up a Mexican feast. Let your slow cooker do work for you. All you have to do is shred the beef when it’s done cooking and add the toppings.
  • Grilled King Salmon with Roasted Tomatillo Sauce – Salmon is not what you would normally think of when you think Mexican, but this Mexican-inspired dish uses a traditional sauce that complements the salmon or other varieties of fish very well.
  • Fish with Ancho Chile Paste and Cream – Another fish dish with a Mexican-style sauce that uses halibut, fancy rockfish, white seabass or salmon.
Celebratory drinks
  • Ave Maria – Tomato and lime juices, vodka, chili paste, Tobasco and a pickled jalapeno pepper. Quite the spicy Mexican drink!
  • Casa Noble Organic Margarita – Casa Noble’s organic tequila makes this an earth-friendly version of the popular drink used to celebrate Cinqo de Mayo. 

Robin Shreeves ( @rshreeves ) focuses on food from a family perspective from her home base in New Jersey.

Healthy recipes to celebrate Cinco de Mayo
Look no further than MNN's recipe collection for delicious Mexican and Mexican-inspired recipes for your Cinco de Mayo party or family dinner.