Round up the amigos for a Mexican Fiesta! The suggested menu plan below is a great low-effort one with wow factor. Plenty for making ahead and the Carnitas freeze perfectly! See recipes linked to each dish, or where not linked, directions are below. Cook time includes slow cooking time for Carnitas.
Keyword: Mexican fiesta, Mexican food, Mexican menu
Choose one or two proteins, then sides of choice. See linked recipes for directions (except tortilla chips and grilled corn, see below).
Main Taco Filling Selection: The most convenient big batch protein is Pork Carnitas because it freezes great and only requires a quick pan fry to freshen up, and stays good for several hours (tips are in Carnitas recipe notes). The Shredded Chicken and Beef are almost as good (pork is slightly juicier) and stored similarly. The next simplest is Fish Tacos because it's very quick to cook, then just put them in a serving dish and break into chunks with fork. If you want to use one of the chicken recipes to make ahead, use boneless thigh fillets, cook, then keep whole, cover and cool, reserve every drop of leached juice. Before serving, chop/slice, cover and microwave reheat.
Taco Fixings: I like to have at least one fresh thing to stuff in tacos (pickled cabbage is my choice in this Fiesta), + a sauce (the Restaurant Style Salsa,) + avocado in some form (guac or slices or in Pico de Gallo) + coriander/cilantro. Chopped white onion is very common in Mexico, and Tex Mex fans such as myself will almost always have sour cream and shredded cheese too!
Other Sides: Tortillas + things to stuff in tortillas usually makes for a satisfying meal in itself, but to round things out I usually provide a salad or vegetables of some form. Plain grilled corn is very on theme!
Directions (for items listed above without recipe link):
Homemade Tortillas Chips: Chop corn tortillas to desired shape, fry in oil until crisp and light golden. Transfer for paper towel, sprinkle with salt while hot.
Grilled Corn: Grill corn on BBQ over high heat until nicely charred. Brush with melted salted butter and sprinkle with chipotle powder (or chilli or cayenne, to taste)
1. Pickled Red Cabbage is in the Fish Tacos recipe. Scale up the recipe to make plenty using the servings slider (click on the Servings and slide)!2. White onions are not as sharp as brown onions. Very commonly used as a taco garnish in Mexico.3. I dress up canned refried beans. You'll be amazed what a difference it makes! It's in this Carnitas Tacos recipe.