Cinco de Mayo

I love May.  The flowers are starting to bloom, the sunlight is back in town, and Cinco de Mayo happens.  I don't know if it always happens for you, but it should.  Who doesn't need a colorful lime infused tradition, right?


Cinco de Mayo is all about vibrant color, so the food, the tableware, even the atmosphere need to say fiesta!  Now is a good time to pull out that hot-pink shirt you never wear, and let loose.  If you have any doubts, double the limes and start over.  Some twinkle lights couldn't hurt either.


This menu is lime packed:  Think a whole bag- maybe 10 or so limes, and you'll also need some tri-tip steak and shrimp for a crowd pleaser that I guarantee people will be talking about next year... Mostly hinting that you should invite them again.

I even got the top 5 meals of all-time endorsement from my husband the other night when we shot these pics, so dust off the tiki torches and get out the fiesta ware.  This party is a no-fail.                                

Read on for the Menu and the Meal Planner for Cinco de Mayo

  Shrimp Tacos Taco Sauce Steak Tacos Salsa Guacamole  

  Cilantro Rice Black Beans
Fresh Fruit Brazillian

  Lemon Pudding
Lime Pie

Menu Planner
Step-by-step instuctions to make this meal

This meal makes shrimp and steak tacos, fresh salsa and gucamole, cilantro-lime dressing, limeade, and key lime pie or lemon pudding cakes
Add chopped lettuce for a salad option and a plate of fresh fruit!

Everything can be made the day of.  However, if there is something I can make ahead of time, I prefer to, especially for a party.

Day Before
Black Beans- make and refrigerate.  These hold well in the refrigerator and can also be frozen 3-6 months in advance.
Key Lime Pie- make and refrigerate.
Lettuce- chop, rinse, dry, and refrigerate
Shrimp Taco Sauce- make and refrigerate

Morning of
Steak and Shrimp- make marinades.
Salsa and Gucamole- chop vegeatables except for the avacados.
Cilantro Lime Rice- chop and measure ingredients for rice.
Lemon Pudding Cakes- make and garnish.  Cover and leave at room temperature for the day.
Cilantro Lime Dressing- make and refrigerate.

Set table and decorate!

2-3 Hours Before
Steak and Shrimp
- rinse and dry both.  Marinate in the refrigerator.
Salsa and Guacamole- make both, cover and refrigerate

1 Hour Before
Cilantro Lime Rice- make and keep warm.
Fruit- arrange fruit platter
Steak and Shrimp- grill, rest, slice or chop, and keep warm
Black Beans- heat and keep warm
Limeade- make and chill
Tortillas- cook or heat and keep warm
Salsa and Guacamole- bring to room temperature
Grocery List
Serves 8 adults (to serve more, make more meat, there should be enough guac, salsa, and sides for 12-15)

2 lbs uncooked shrimp
1 lb tri-tip steak
soy sauce
McCormick Steak Seasoning
sweetened condensed milk
mayonaise (3/4 c)
sour cream (1/4 c)
4 cans black beans (double the recipe posted)
2 c parboiled rice (double the recipe posted)
3-4 bunches cilantro
8 jalapenos
2 sweet onions
2 cans green chiles
1 red bell pepper
1 packet ranch dressing
6-8 roma tomatoes
5-6 avacados
15-20 limes
4 lemons
1 bulb garlic (6-8 cloves)
ground cumin
uncooked or good quality tortillas
fresh fruit
romaine lettuce
tortilla chips
Key lime pie- graham cracker pie crust, sweetened condensed milk, cream, powdered sugar
Lemon pudding cakes- plain yogurt, 4 lemons, 1 c frozen berries (optional berry syrup)

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