23 Mexican Side Dishes That Are Quick, Easy and Cheesy
Tacos. Burritos. Enchiladas. They’re all fabulous choices for dinner, but let’s face it—it’s really all about the tasty side dishes. (Cilantro rice, frijoles negros and elote, we’re looking at you.) From super cheesy to keto-friendly, we’ve rounded up the very best easy Mexican dishes to impress your guests. Presenting 23 Mexican side dishes to try at your next fiesta.
1. Smoky Barbecued Corn
It’s everything you love about elote—cheese, chili powder, mayo, cilantro—but drizzled on a barbecued cob. Need we say more?
2. Quick Guacamole Quinoa Salad
We can't get enough of this recipe from Coterie member Gena Hamshaw’s cookbook Power Plates: 100 Nutritionally Balanced, One-Dish Vegan Meals. Why? It's pretty much a big bowl of guac masquerading as a salad.
4. Mexican Posole
Trade your old chili recipe for this savory, hearty Mexican dish. It consists of hominy (big corn kernels, which you can find in the canned-goods section of the grocery store), along with other yummy things like chicken and chiles.
5. Mexican Street Corn Deviled Eggs
Introducing Mexican street corn deviled eggs. They are the perfect backyard barbecue side dish, and you'll be pleased to find out that you can whip them up in under an hour.
6. Sun-Dried Tomato Guacamole
Take your guacamole up a notch with this fancy twist.
7. Tater Tot Nachos
Chips are a staple, but sometimes you just have to switch things up. And who doesn't love tater tots? Add your favorite salsa, sour cream, green onions and cilantro and you’ve got yourself an epic side dish.
8. Grilled Mango Salsa
This delicious salsa recipe calls for onions, tomatoes, jalapeños and mangoes to bring out some serious flavor. You can simply eat it with chips or add a dollop to a summery grilled fish dish.
9. Fish Taco Salad
Any side dish involving crispy tortillas, tender fish and crunchy toppings is sure to be a crowd-pleaser.
10. Slow-Cooker Chicken Enchilada Casserole
This slow-cooker dish will pair perfectly with any other Mexican dishes you're serving. Grab a scoop (or two) and enjoy with some tortilla chips.
11. Mini Nachos
Nachos can go one of two ways: You either grab the chip that drags a perfect ratio of toppings with it... or you get a completely bare one. Our recipe for mini nachos finally solves that struggle.
13. Chilaquiles Verdes
Add this savory dish to your brunch spread, and your guests will be begging for the recipe. Just line a cast-iron skillet with salsa-soaked chips. Then, when your concoction turns into a crispy Mexican bread pudding, top it off with a fried egg. Yum!
14. Mexican Street Corn Dip
Quick, your friends are coming over in half an hour. You have just enough time to transform tortilla chips and a few ears of corn into this delicious flavor explosion. (Just add cerveza.)
15. Vegetarian Calabacitas Quesadillas
OK, you don’t technically have to share, but it’s more fun if you do. This version from Coterie member Monique Volz puts a twist on the classic, with traditional ingredients like jalapeño and onion alongside vegan cheese and whole-wheat tortillas.
16. Queso Fundido
Family dinner? Friends in town? Hanging out at home on a random Saturday night? These are all fantastic reasons to whip up a batch of queso fundido, which will disappear in approximately 27 seconds.
17. Mexican Brown Rice
The secret to rice that’s bursting with flavor? Cook it with diced tomatoes, garlic, onion, jalapeño, vegetable broth, tomato paste and cilantro.
18. Mexican Caesar Salad
Since the Caesar salad was created in Tijuana, it’s technically Mexican. It’s now one of our favorite go-to side dishes along with a margarita.
19. Mexican Tortilla Chicken Soup
The best thing about tortilla chicken soup? You can top it any way you like. We love avocado, pico de gallo, cheese and, of course, crispy tortilla strips.
20. Instant Pot Refried Beans
Bye, canned beans. Grab a bag of dried pintos, veggie broth, jalapeño, spices and your trusty Instant Pot instead.
22. Homemade Chipotle Salsa
On our table, salsa is a side dish, not a condiment. If you’re like us, you’ll want to give this tasty homemade salsa by Gaby Dalkin a whirl.
23. ONE-PAN CAULIFLOWER NACHOS
Looking for a vegetable side dish for your Tex-Mex spread? This grilled veggie base is loaded with all the best flavors.
Additional reporting by Erin McDowell.