Traditional Mexican Day of the Dead recipes

Fancy trying the bread of the dead? Or spicy hot chocolate like the Aztecs used to make? Try these authentic Mexican Day of the Dead recipes and give your spirits a jolt.

Aside from apple bobbing and collecting sugary treats on trick or treating missions, Halloween in Britain does not inspire a lot of traditional food ideas. But Mexico's Day of the Dead festival, which takes place every year on the 1st and 2nd of November, has food at its very heart.

Bread of the dead

Altars are set up in the home with a picture of a deceased friend or relation and some of their favourite foods and drinks to encourage their spirit to come back to the land of the living and celebrate on these two days. Bread of the dead (pan de muertos), a soft fruited loaf, is traditionally baked for the celebrations and decorated with dough 'bones'.

Candied pumpkin

The festival falls at the end of the harvest season so autumnal foods like squash and pumpkins are key ingredients in Day of the Dead dishes. These can be savoury or sweet, like this Candied pumpkin (dulce de calabasa) recipe.

Spiced hot chocolate

Although tequila plays a big part in the festivities, 1st November is specifically devoted to the spirits of dead children, and a non alcoholic spiced chocolate or fruit drink called atole is popular.


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