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5 Cinco de Mayo family recipes


Photos Courtesy of The Pioneer Woman | Life in the Lofthouse | I Heart Nap Time

Starla Hester - published on 04/27/17

Throw a dinner fiesta! These quick dishes will delight kids and adults: from taco pizza to chicken enchiladas.

Every week we give ourselves an excuse to indulge in cheese dip, quesadillas, and margaritas and that day is – you guessed it – Taco Tuesday! So I’m always excited that when May rolls around, we are given an extra day to indulge in Mexican grub called Cinco de Mayo (the 5th of May), which happens to land on a Friday this year. Many Hispanics observe this day to commemorate the Mexican Army’s unlikely and incredible victory over French forces at the Battle of Puebla in 1862.

And the U.S. has welcomed the celebration with open arms. Every year Los Angeles throws the largest Cinco de Mayo celebration in the world, with cultural events, street fairs, cocktails, and great food. Bring some of the celebration into su casa with these five easy and flavorful Americanized Mexican recipes that are sure to turn your hacienda into a fiesta that even the kids will enjoy!

Ultimate Skillet Nachos

(Recipe courtesy of I Heart Naptime.) 

The perfect starter for your Cinco de Mayo celebration!

Photo Courtesy of I Heart Nap Time

Photo Courtesy of I Heart Nap Time


1 (16-ounce) can Old El Paso black bean refried beans

½ (10-ounce) can Old El Paso red enchilada sauce

3 cups freshly grated mozzarella, Monterey jack or fontina cheese

1 bag tortilla chips (thick ones work best)

Optional toppings: Guacamole, Pico de Gallo, fresh cilantro, jalapenos, sour cream


1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

2. Pour a thin layer of enchilada sauce across bottom of a large skillet. Spread the refried beans on top and add a pinch of salt and pepper. Sprinkle on a small amount of cheese.

3. Next, layer on tortilla chips with another layer of cheese (about ¾ cup). Repeat this step so that you have three layers of chips with the remaining cheese on top. Drizzle 2 to 3 tablespoons of the enchilada sauce on top. Bake 10 to 15 minutes, or until the cheese is nice and bubbly hot.

4. Top with your favorite toppings and serve immediately so you can all enjoy the melted warm goodness.

Note: To turn this delicious appetizer into a hearty meal, add a layer of taco-seasoned shredded chicken or ground beef.

Taco Pizza

(Recipe courtesy of Just a Pinch.)

No kid can resist this delicious dish!

Photo Courtesy of Just a Pinch

Photo Courtesy of Just a Pinch


1 pound ground beef

1 package taco seasoning mix

2 can(s) (8-ounce) Pillsbury crescent rolls

1 can(s) (16-ounce) refried beans (use the jalopeno kind to spice it up!)

2-3 cups cheddar cheese, shredded (or Mexican blend)

½ cup tomatoes, diced

¼ cup black olives, chopped (optional)

Add your favorite topping to this recipe to make it truly original!


1. Heat oven to 375 degrees.

2. Brown ground beef and drain. Add taco seasoning to the ground beef according to the package directions.

3. Unroll crescent rolls into rectangles. Place in ungreased 11 ½ inch X 16 ½ inch jelly roll pan or cookie sheet. Press dough over the bottom and ½ inch up sides to form crust.

4. Bake for 11 to 13 minutes or until golden brown.

5. Microwave beans in a microwave safe bowl for 1 minute. Carefully spread beans over warm crust creating a thin layer.

6. Top with cooked beef mixture, sprinkle with cheese followed by tomatoes, black olives and green onion.

7. Return to oven for 3-6 more minutes until cheese is melted. Serve immediately.

Chicken Enchiladas

(Recipe from Savour the Shoals Cookbook.)

A Mexican classic, this hearty meal is always filling and flavorful.

Photo Courtesy of The Pioneer Woman

Photo Courtesy of The Pioneer Woman


2 (10-ounce) cans diced tomatoes with green chiles, undrained, divided

2 cups chopped cooked chicken

1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened

5 green onions, chopped

1 (8-ounce) container sour cream

8 (12-inch) four tortillas

1 cup grated Monterey Jack cheese or Cheddar cheese


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. Stir together ¼ cup diced tomatoes with chiles, chicken, cream cheese, and green onions in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, mix remaining tomatoes with chilies and sour cream.

3. Microwave tortillas on high for 15 seconds or until warm. Spoon chicken mixture evenly down the center of tortillas. Roll up and place, seam-side down, in a greased 9-x 13 inch baking dish.

4. Bake, covered, for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and pour sour cream mixture over enchiladas. Top with grated cheese. Bake 10 minutes longer. Remove from oven and let stand 15 minutes before serving.

Taco Bake

(Recipe courtesy of Kraft Recipes.)

These yummy tacos are incredibly easy to make in the oven.

Photo Courtesy of Whitney Blair

Photo Courtesy of Whitney Blair


1 pound of ground beef

1 can of mexicorn (drained)

1 package of taco seasoning

1 box of Kraft Velveeta Shells & Cheese

1 jar (16 ounce) Pace Picante sauce

1 bag of shredded cheese


1. Heat oven to 350 degrees

2. Boil noodles and brown meat, add taco seasoning to meat as directed.

3. Mix taco meat, shells and cheese, cheese sauce and mexicorn in a bowl.

4. Spread half of the mixture out in a 8-inch baking pan, cover with picante sauce.

5. Add remaining mixture on top then cover with shredded cheese.

6. Cover the pan with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes.

7. Add crumbled tortilla chips on top if desired. Serve immediately.

Mexican ‘Fried’ Ice Cream 

(Recipe courtesy of Life in the Lofthouse.)

Don’t forget dessert! (And, don’t worry, no deep frying is actually required for this sweet treat.)

Photo Courtesy of Life in the Lofthouse

Photo Courtesy of Life in the Lofthouse


3 cups crushed Corn Flakes cereal

¾ cup sugar

½ cup (1 stick) butter

1 (1.75 quart) container Vanilla ice cream

1 (8 ounce) container Cool Whip

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

¼ cup honey

Chocolate syrup

Caramel sauce


1. Let the vanilla ice cream sit at room temperature for 30 minutes, to soften.

2. Melt butter in a medium skillet, over medium heat. Add the crushed corn flakes and sugar. Stir to combine the two. Fry mixture for 5 minutes, stirring constantly, until cereal is golden brown, being careful not to burn.

3. Take a 9×13 baking dish and spread 1/3 of the corn flakes mixture into the bottom of pan. Set aside.

4. In a large bowl, add the softened vanilla ice cream and cool whip. Sprinkle with cinnamon. Using a spatula, stir and mix well to combine. Spread ice cream mixture over top of the corn flake mixture in the bottom of the pan.

5. Spread the remaining corn flake mixture evenly over the ice cream. Drizzle the honey over the top. Cover pan, and place in freezer. Freeze ice cream for at least 5 hours, or overnight.

6. Cut into squares and serve with drizzles of chocolate syrup and caramel sauce! To create a festive flare, add whipped cream and a cherry on top.

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