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Emma Valdiserri

Impress Your Guests: 5 of The Best Mexican Food Appetizers

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Whether it’s game day or taco Tuesday, there’s nothing better than spicing up an occasion with some of the best Mexican food appetizers. While Mexico is a great place to visit, you don’t have to travel to enjoy great Mexican food from home.

From chips to dips, we’ve got you covered with a list of the best Mexican food appetizers for your occasion.

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Easy Mexican Appetizers for Every Appetite

Are you hosting a small gathering? A big party? It can be stressful to whip up dishes that accommodate all of your guests’ taste preferences. Luckily, there are plenty of easy Mexican appetizers like easy homemade salsa you can prepare to please your invitees.

While you can serve store-bought salsas, dips, and chips, you’ll find pride in preparing the food yourself. With fresh ingredients, the right kitchen utensils, and a few dashes of salt and pepper, you’re ready to go!

To make things easier for you, we’ve narrowed down a list of the five best Mexican food appetizers to make from scratch.

After you’ve finished making the appetizers, consider crafting one of the most popular cocktails in the U.S. You can try different types of tequila to make any of your favorite summer cocktails, fall cocktails, winter cocktails, or spring cocktails. From choosing the best tequila for margaritas to the best sipping tequila, the options are endless.

Once your guests arrive and all you hear is the sound of munching and crunching, you know you’ve done something right.

While Mexican appetizers are fitting for any occasion, it never hurts to get inspiration from our list of the 17 best restaurant appetizers

If you’re curious about the Mexican appetizers, check out the recipes below!

Top 5 Mexican Food Appetizers

From homemade salsa to homemade tortilla chips, put on your chef hat to make a few light bites (fitting the a la carte meaning) to mingle with your margarita.

  1. Salsa Verde

Keep your event fresh with some salsa verde. In just 15 minutes, you can whip together a delicious salsa verde as a healthy appetizer. Got leftovers? Salsa verde is a great topping for other traditional Mexican foods like enchiladas or flank steak tacos.

Need to make a list for the grocery store? Here are the key ingredients you’ll need:

  • Tomatillos (or green tomatoes)
  • White onion
  • Jalapeños
  • Cilantro leaves
  • Vegetable oil
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • Lime juice
  • Kosher salt
  • Black pepper

Once you’ve got your ingredients together, learn how to make salsa verde. Both refreshing and delicious, salsa verde is a great go-to Mexican food appetizer.

2. Nachos Supreme

Did somebody say cheese? Whether you’re sharing or wanting them all for yourself, you can't go wrong with a big batch of nachos supreme. Once you start munching, it’s hard to stop.

Better yet, you can make nachos supreme to your own liking. We’ve included a nachos supreme ingredient list below, but feel free to make your own and add enough cheese to please.

Not sure where to start? Here’s what you need to pick up:

  • Tortilla chips (check out how to make homemade chips below)
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • Garlic cloves (minced)
  • Ground beef
  • Shredded chicken
  • Taco seasoning
  • Cheese (cheddar or monterey are superb)
  • Pickled jalapeños
  • Refried beans
  • Black beans

Want to give your nachos that extra “wow” factor? Consider adding these toppings for an extra burst of flavor:

  • Diced tomato
  • Diced avocado
  • Thinly sliced green onions
  • Cilantro leaves
  • Sour cream
  • Hot sauce

Toss in anything you want to make the dish to your liking. When you’ve got everything you need, it’s time to learn how to make nachos supreme.

3. Jalapeño Popper Dip

Are you a fan of spice? This might be the Mexican food appetizer for you! Whether you want to add extra jalapeño, bacon, or pickled peppers, you can create the ultimate jalapeño popper dip to hit every taste bud.

Here’s a list of ingredients to get you started:

  • Cream cheese
  • Mayonnaise
  • Sour cream
  • Garlic powder
  • Jalapeños
  • Cheese (we recommend cheddar and monterey)
  • Kosher salt
  • Pepper

Now that you know what you’ll need, it’s time to learn how to make jalapeños popper dip. Once you’ve mixed the ingredients together, pop a chip in your jalapeño popper dip and give it a taste.

4. Guacamole

When it comes to preparing your appetizers, you can’t go wrong with a hefty side of guacamole. Guacamole is a great appetizer and can be an even better topping on some steak, chicken, or seafood tacos. Just like your nachos supreme, you can make guacamole with your own choice of ingredients.

Depending on your spice tolerance, take charge of how hot to make your guacamole. If you like mild guacamole, skip the jalapeños. If you’re turning on the heat, toss them in (and maybe add some cayenne pepper). For texture, you can also control how creamy or chunky you want your guacamole to be.

Looking to keep your recipe simple? Here are the basics you’ll need to get your guacamole started:

  • Avocado
  • Lime
  • Onion
  • Garlic
  • Tomato
  • Cilantro
  • Salt

But there’s no need to stop there. Whether you want to make your guacamole sweet or savory–or both–consider adding the following fun ingredients:

  • Fruit (pineapple, peach, mango, pomegranate)
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Jalapeños
  • Cumin
  • Sun-dried tomatoes
  • Sour cream
  • Cheese
  • Fire-roasted corn

The options are endless for making guacamole. And if you can’t settle on one flavor, why not make two or three? Just like you can have a flight of margaritas, you can make a flight of guacamole.

This lets you experiment with what you have in the kitchen and provides you and your guests with a variety of flavors. To top off your bowl of guacamole, stick a tortilla chip on top for some added decor.

5. Homemade Tortilla Chips

Now that you’ve got plenty of dips to choose from, why not enhance them with a side of homemade tortilla chips? In less than 20 minutes and with only three simple ingredients, you’ll have a batch of crispy chips.

  • 10 corn tortillas (yields about 40 chips)
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 cup olive oil, peanut oil, or vegetable oil (for frying)

Once you’ve got your trio, it’s time to fry your tortillas. We’ve provided the steps on how to make homemade tortilla chips below:

  1. Dry and cut the tortillas: Leave your tortillas out overnight or microwave them to dry them out a little. This helps make them extra crispy once they're sizzling in the pan. Next, cut each tortilla into four even triangle slices.
  2. Heat the oil: Pour your oil of choice into a medium-sized pan. Turn the stove on medium heat and put a tortilla slice in the pan to test the heat. If it browns too quickly, the heat is too high. Remove the skillet from the heat for a bit to let the oil cool.
  3. Time to fry: Prepare a large plate with a paper towel on top. Once you have the right heat, place a few tortilla slices into the oil. Separate them with tongs, a wooden spoon, or a metal spoon. Fry the slices for two minutes until they are light brown and firm.
  4. Move the chips to the plate: Use your tongs or spoon to move the chips from the pan and onto your paper-towel-lined plate. Sprinkle your chips with salt and voilà!
  5. Repeat: Once you’ve got your first batch of chips, toss another handful of tortilla slices into the pan. Repeat the steps above until you’ve made enough chips for you and your guests.
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Making the Most of Your Mexican Food Appetizers

Regardless of the occasion, you can always rely on the yummy flavors of these Mexican food appetizers. They’re fresh, colorful, easy to make, and delicious! You may even see them as common Cinco de Mayo restaurant specials. And if you're making margaritas, be sure to pick from the best tequila brands for smooth sipping.

Make the most out of your appetizers by using them as sides for tacos or other traditional Mexican dishes. And don’t forget to pat yourself on the back (or take another sip of your margarita) for preparing them yourself.

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