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    If your kids are like mine, they loathe anything “spicy.” And to them? Spicy might just be a dash of pepper or a tiny dollop of picante sauce (something pretty akin to ketchup here in Texas).

    On days like Cinco de Mayo — when you’re looking to cook up a zesty, Mexican-inspired dish, it can be pretty frustrating.

    Tacos? Nope. Chips and salsa? Definitely not. Enchiladas? Probably not that either.

    Fortunately, these aren’t your only options for Cinco de Mayo recipes. Want to ring in Cinco with some authentic, yet kid-friendly dishes at home? Try these four recipes on for size.

    Cinco de Mayo recipes your kids will love

    1. Bean dip.

    The kiddos might not like salsa or chile con queso, but bean dip? That’s about a kid-friendly as you can get in the dip department.

    Here’s what you’ll need:

    • 16 oz. refried beans
    • 1 cup fire-roasted, diced tomatoes
    • 1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
    • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese (plus extra for toppings)
    • 3/4 cup sour cream 
    • 3 oz. softened cream cheese
    • 1/4 tsp ground cumin 
    • ¼ tsp. salt
    • tortilla chips


    1. Combine the ingredients (except for the tortilla chips) in a slow cooker or crockpot. 
    2. Cook on high, covered, for two hours. Stir occasionally.
    3. Scoop out and top with the extra cheese. Serve in individual bowls with a side of chips.

    2. Chicken pozole.

    Chicken pozole is a warm and hearty soup packed full of veggies and protein (though your kids will never know!) This Cinco de Mayo recipe can have a kick if you opt to add peppers, but it’s not necessary for a tasty meal by any means.

    Here’s what you’ll need:

    • 1 lb. chicken breast
    • 3 tbsp. Vegetable oil
    • 4 minced garlic cloves
    • 1/4 tsp. Oregano
    • 3 tsp. Coriander 
    • 1.5 tsp. Cumin
    • 7 oz. canned, chopped tomatoes
    • 30 oz. canned hominy (drained)
    • 28 oz. low-sodium chicken broth
    • 1 cup corn kernels
    • Garnishes (avocado, lime wedges, sour cream, cilantro leaves, etc.)


    1. Cook the chicken breast. You can either boil and shred the chicken, or grill it and chop it coarsely.
    2. With a deep pot or dutch oven, heat up the oil. Then, cook the onion until clear, and add the garlic. Cook another three minutes, and stir in the seasonings until the onions are fully coated.
    3. Add in the tomatoes, and cook until the mixture starts to boil. Then, add the hominy, broth, and corn, and return to a boil.
    4. At this point, add in your chopped chicken, turn the heat to a medium-low, and simmer (covered) another 20 to 25 minutes. 
    5. Season with salt and pepper, if desired, and top with your preferred garnishes.

    3. Elote.

    Elote — or grilled, Mexican street corn — is one of my favorite dishes of all time. It’s easy, it’s tasty, and it goes with just about any meal. 

    Here’s what you need for this Cinco de Mayo recipe:

    • 6 corn on the cob
    • 1/2 cup sour cream
    • 1/2 cup mayo
    • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro leaves
    • 1 minced garlic clove
    • 1/2 cup crumbled cotija cheese
    • 2 tsp lime zest
    • 2 tbsp. Lime juice


    1. Make sure your grill grates are clean and spray them down with cooking spray. Fire it up and heat to around 400 degrees.
    2. While waiting for the grill to get warm, mix your sour cream, mayo, garlic, lime zest/juice, and cilantro together in a bowl until well combined.
    3. Place the corn on the grill and cook for 3 to 5 minutes on each side. The kernels should look brown on all sides.
    4. Once you take the corn off the grill, lay it on a platter, and use a pastry brush to cover each ear in the sour cream mixture. (If you don’t have one, just spread the mixture out on the platter and roll each ear of corn in it instead.) 
    5. Sprinkle each covered ear with cotija cheese and serve with a lime wedge. A quick pro-tip here: If you’re not a fan of corn on the cob or the kiddos just aren’t big enough for it yet, you can just shave the kernels off each ear (after grilling) and serve with a tablespoon of the sour cream mixture in a bowl.

    4. Veggie nachos.

    Nachos don’t have to be spicy — or even bad for you. Want your kids to ring in the holiday without eating too much junk? Try this healthier nacho Cinco de Mayo recipe alternative.

    Here’s what you’ll need:

    • 1 bag Beanitos (or some other bean-based chip)
    • A small block of cheddar cheese
    • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
    • 1 can black beans (drained)
    • 1 large avocado
    • 1/4 cup sour cream
    • Iceberg lettuce, sliced very thin
    • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro


    1. Cover a baking sheet or cookie tray with your bean chips. Grate a thin layer of cheddar cheese on top, and sprinkle a layer of black beans over that. Add your cherry tomatoes and lettuce last.
    2. Cook under the broiler on low heat for about 10 minutes. The cheese should be fully melted and the chips slightly browned when it’s ready. (Depending on your oven, you may need a few minutes more). 
    3. Dole out individual servings, and top with chopped avocado, cilantro, and sour cream.

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