While not all of the below dishes are what you’d call authentic, they are all delicious, and meant to capture the experience of an evening stroll through a town in Mexico, where the smell of meat cooking over charcoal is one of the primary sensory pleasures. So, yes, we have carne asada, but a couple vegetarian options too—and even a sangría made with grilled fruit. Buen provecho!
Looking for other ways to celebrate? We’ve got a few suggestions:
- Make These Mexican Slow Cooker Recipes
- Throw a Mexican Street Food Celebration for Cinco de Mayo
- Mix Up One of These 11 Tequila Drinks That Aren’t Margaritas
- Take Some Tips From Mexican Chefs for Your Cinco de Mayo Menu
- Start Using Bug Salt with Your Mezcal
- Celebrate Spring Produce and Cinco de Mayo with Vegetarian Mexican Recipes
Or, just get to the grilling!
Grilled shrimp are a lighter alternative to meat for tacos. Toss them quickly in spicy chipotle powder, cumin, and lime juice, then grill to develop a flavorful char. Stuff into warm corn tortillas and top with fresh avocado-corn salsa. Get our Grilled Shrimp Tacos recipe.
A recipe inspired by Mexico’s pollo al carbon, chickens marinated and cooked on huge charcoal grills, this is easier to pull off on your Weber. The marinade contains achiote paste, chopped cilantro, jalapeños, garlic, lime, and orange juice. Get our Mexican BBQ Chicken recipe.
El Yucateco Achiote Paste, $3.99 on Amazon
Annatto seeds lend flavor and vibrant orange color to this seasoning paste.
Salmon fillets marinate quickly in chili powder, garlic, lime, and olive oil. After grilling, the salmon is served with a sauce of Mexican crema or sour cream, lime, cilantro, and green onions. Get our Grilled Chile Salmon with Lime Crema recipe.
4. Carne Asada
Turkey burgers can be dry and tasteless, but not these. Dark-meat turkey lends juiciness and flavor, while additions of chili powder, lime zest, and cilantro lend character. A topping of tangy guacamole finishes things off in vivid style. Get our Guacamole Turkey Burgers recipe.
For this healthy Mexican grilled flank steak recipe, medium-rare slices of beer-marinated beef mingle with romaine lettuce, canned black beans, cherry tomatoes, avocado, queso fresco, and cilantro in an avocado-yogurt dressing. Get our Mexican Grilled Steak Salad recipe.
Grill marinated tofu, then top it with smashed black beans, salty crumbles of cotija cheese, pickled jalapeños, creamy avocado, and shredded lettuce, all inside a soft bun. Get our Grilled Tofu Torta recipe.
Sangria is technically Spanish (its Mexican cousin is clerico), but it’s perfect with Mexican food. Adding grilled fruit gives it a bit of smoky flavor that complements the red wine and brandy, but also mellows out the booziness. Get our Grilled Sangría recipe.
Steaks on the grill are the iconic summertime meal. We top ours with a Mexican-style compound butter spiked with chiles, black pepper, lime juice, and tequila. Get our Grilled Rib-Eyes with Chile-Lime-Tequila Butter recipe.
Top these burgers of ground pork and spicy Mexican chorizo with grilled chiles and a grilled avocado mash (clearly paving the way for grilled guac on the side!), and wash it all down with a refreshing beer cocktail (or a straight-up bottle of cerveza). Get our Pork and Chorizo Chile Burger recipe.
Grilled corn is a beautiful thing, but even better when dressed Mexican-street-food-style, slathered in cayenne-spiked mayo, rolled in cotija cheese, and spritzed with lime juice. Add a sprinkle of cilantro and/or a few cracks of black pepper if you like. It also has a built-in handle since you grill it in the husk—pure perfection. Get our Grilled Corn with Cayenne, Lime, and Cotija recipe.
See more at our Cinco de Mayo headquarters. And check out the best Mexican cookbooks for celebrating Mexican food year-round.
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