15 Mexican-Inspired Thanksgiving Ideas

Do Thanksgiving differently this year

For a Spiced-up Bird

Braised Turkey in Green Mole
Braised Turkey in Green Mole
Deconstructed turkey braised in a refreshing green mole provides a light and quick alternative to the standard Thanksgiving bird.Helen Rosner
Roasted Turkey with Achiote–Citrus Marinade
Roasted Turkey with Achiote–Citrus Marinade
Achiote paste gives the rub for this recipe a deep red hue, making for a visually striking roast holiday bird.Helen Rosner

A Little Something On the Side

Mexican Noodle Casserole (Sopa Seca)
Mexican Noodle Casserole (Sopa Seca)
This comforting casserole is dense with thin fideo noodles, bathed in chile sauce, and capped with salty cotija cheese.Penny de los Santos
Frida Kahlo's Zucchini Salad (Ensalada de Calabacín)
Frida Kahlo's Zucchini Salad (Ensalada de Calabacín)
The recipe for this simple Mexican salad of grilled zucchini, avocado, and salty, crumbled añjeo cheese was served at a dinner party attended by Mexican composer Carlos Chávez and Nelson Rockefeller.Farideh Sadeghin
Mango with Cilantro, Coconut, and Chile Powder
Mango with Cilantro, Coconut, and Chile Powder
Inspired by Mexican street vendors who artfully carve and serve mangos on sticks, this recipe ups the ante with cilantro leaves and shaved coconut. Get the recipe for Mango with Cilantro, Coconut, and Chile Powder »Laura Sant
Sweet Potatoes in Syrup with Guava
Sweet Potatoes in Syrup with Guava
Sweet and spicy with orange juice, cinnamon, and ginger, this stewed sweet potato dish makes a wonderful side dish or dessert.Landon Nordeman
Refried Black Beans
Refried Black Beans
This easy 4-ingredient side dish practically takes care of itself.Helen Rosner
Jalapeño Cornbread Dressing
Jalapeño Cornbread Stuffing
Bacon and jalapeños flavor this otherwise classic cornbread dressing from Mary Sue Milliken.Helen Rosner

Soups & Starters

Poblano Chile Soup (Sopa de Chile Poblano)
Poblano Chile Soup (Sopa de Chile Poblano)
Sweet roasted poblano chiles add smokey depth to this soup made with spinach and enriched with cream.James Oseland
Pumpkin Seed Salsa (Sikil P'ak)
Pumpkin Seed Salsa (Sikil P'ak)
This earthy toasted pumpkin seed salsa, a specialty of the Yucatan, is rich, thick, and satisfying. Serve it with tortilla chips for dipping.Todd Coleman
Ancho Chile Soup with Avocado & Crema (Sopa de Chile Ancho)
Ancho Chile Soup with Avocado & Crema (Sopa de Chile Ancho)
The heat of this deep-red ancho chile soup and its pasilla chile garnish is balanced by the addition of cooling crema and thinly sliced avocado.James Oseland

To Drink

Desert Snow Tequila Punch
Desert Snow Tequila Punch
A rich homemade almond-and-rice horchata, spiked with tequila and Velvet Falernum (a warmly-spiced citrus liqueur), and brightened with tangy lime, is an impressive alternative to typical holiday punch.Maxime Iattoni
Mezcalita de Piña
Mezcalita de Piña
Mezcal, grilled pineapple, jalapeño, and lime lend a festive kick to the classic margarita.Todd Coleman

For Dessert

Mexican Bread Pudding (Capirotada)
Mexican Bread Pudding (Capirotada)
This dessert, layered with cheese and soaked in a syrup made with piloncillo, a type of brown sugar used in Mexican cooking, is a traditional Lenten feast dish.Todd Coleman
Churros (Mexican Cinnamon Fritters)
Churros (Mexican Cinnamon Fritters)
These fluted, spiced doughnuts are a favorite snack, no matter the occasionTodd Coleman