Plan a Semi-Homemade Cinco De Mayo Party

With help from Sandra Lee

Related To:
  • Rule numero uno is to use bright, bold colors.

  • Start with the most summery, striped piece of cloth you can find at the fabric store. Don't worry about doing any hemming — this is a sewing-free idea. Just fit it on the table and top with a montage of plates in full-fiesta colors.

  • Get the party started with plates stacked in fruity flavors, like tangerine, melon, lemon and lime, with a plaid kitchen towel tucked in between as a napkin.

  • A sombrero centerpiece puts dessert on a pedestal. Wrap a cake stand in an extra dishtowel (to match the napkins) and rest a straw hat on top. Add a colorful plate of mini lime cheesecakes as the crowning touch.

  • Tequila shooters liven things up, especially when served in waves of sand. Pour colored play sand into wavy stripes in a shallow glass dish and nestle etched-glass shot glasses in the sand.

  • Toss some pillows on benches to bring in even more color — and entice guests to settle in and stay a while.

  • Spray paint terra cotta pots and plant a cactus inside for a fun party favor.

  • Turn extra votive candles into mood-enhancing place cards. Use a cookie cutter to cut colored paper into ovals. Write the guest's name on the front and punch holes on both sides. Thread a ribbon through the holes and around the votive, tying in the back.

  • There's always the limbo, but to get your guests dancing, play the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Gypsy Kings or Texas Tornados.
Keep Reading

Next Up

Plan Your Entire Cinco de Mayo Menu Around Tequila

Of course, you could just shake up a margarita. But we've got main dish and dessert options that boast tequila too.

Raise a Glass to Cinco de Mayo

Check out a few of Food Network's favorite easy-to-make cocktails ideal for celebrating Cinco de Mayo.

Cinco de Mayo Across the Country

Satisfy your Cinco de Mayo cravings at Food Network-approved Mexican eateries across the country.

Reinvented: Salsa 5 Ways for Cinco de Mayo

Sometimes a basic pico de gallo isn’t enough. Check out these four spins on the classic.

A Spicy, Low-Cal Cinco de Mayo Menu

The 5th of May holds special significance in our house - mostly because we just love Mexican food. Have a fiesta at your house and celebrate the bold and spicy flavors with this Mexican-inspired menu.

Katie's Healthy Bites: 3 Cinco de Mayo Salsas

These festive salsa recipes are packed with fiber, disease-fighting antioxidants and flavor galore. Pair with the grilled meat or fish or serve as a Cinco de Mayo appetizer with baked pita or tortilla chips.

Marcela Valladolid's Cinco de Mayo Must-Haves

Hear from Food Network's Marcela Valladolid to learn her top tips for the ultimate fiesta, featuring the best-ever guacamole, tacos and margaritas.