Cinco de Mayo 2023: Restaurant freebies and deals you can redeem this weekend
Cinco de Mayo is a national Mexican holiday that’s widely celebrated and observed in the U.S. as companies highlight Mexican American history and culture, and restaurants do their part in serving Mexican-inspired cuisine.
The holiday, which marks the day the Mexican army defeated French troops in the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862, serves as a symbol of Mexico’s pride and self-sufficiency.
The first Cinco de Mayo celebration on record in the U.S. happened in 1863 in Southern California, according to the Indiana Historical Society.
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Cinco de Mayo became a commercialized holiday in the 1980s with alcohol companies promoting the day as a time to drink, according to a report published by Cabrini University, a private Roman Catholic school in Radnor Township, Pennsylvania.
Restaurants large and small have since joined in on the commercial success of Cinco de Mayo.
Here are 10 Cinco de Mayo restaurant promotions where you can get free or discounted food, drinks or merchandise to commemorate the holiday.
Applebee’s Neighborhood Grill + Bar
Applebee's $6 Cerveza & Sips deal includes two margaritas and one draft beer. (Applebee’s Neighborhood Grill + Bar / Fox News)
Applebee’s is offering a $6 Cerveza & Sips deal for Cinco de Mayo and the rest of spring.
Customers can choose from two margaritas – which includes a Strawberry Daq-a-Rita, a frozen margarita-daiquiri mixed with tequila, rum and strawberries; and a Tipsy Shark margarita, a cocktail mixed with tequila blue Curaçao syrup, passion fruit, pineapple, cherry, lime and a gummi shark garnish – or a cold Modelo Especial draft beer.
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Chipotle Mexican Grill
Chipotle is celebrating Cinco de Mayo with a $0 delivery fee offer through May 5. The brand is helping new guests navigate its customizable menu by featuring the "First Timer Bowl." (Chipotle Mexican Grill)
Chipotle is offering free delivery on food orders made on the Chipotle app or website. Customers can enter the promo code CINCO23 to get the "$0 delivery" deal from participating locations.
The offer is not valid on catering or Burritos by the Box orders.
Jack in the Box
Jack in the Box restaurant building and sign. (Don & Melinda Crawford/Education Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)
Jack in the Box’s Cinco de Mayo deal will run from Thursday, May 4, to Sunday, May 7, and it includes breakfast burritos for $3.50, an order of tiny tacos for $3 tiny tacos and two tacos for $0.99.
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The deal is reserved for Jack Pack members, the Jack in the Box rewards program.
Moe’s Southwest Grill
Moe's Southwest Grill is giving away free Cinco de Mayo t-shirts to the first 50 customers who stop by on May 5. (Moe's Southwest Grill / Fox News)
Moe’s Southwest Grill is giving away free t-shirts to the first 50 guests who visit a Moe’s location on May 5.
Moe Rewards Members will get double reward points on purchases made that day at participating locations. Bonus points will be awarded to Moe Rewards Members within 24 and 48 hours, according to the Tex-Mex chain.
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O'Charley's Restaurant & Bar
O’Charley’s is offering a $5 Chicken Tender Nachos and $5 MargO’ritas on Cinco de Mayo along with a Kids Eat Free promotion. (O’Charley’s Restaurant + Bar / Fox News)
O’Charley’s is celebrating Cinco de Mayo with a "Big 5-O’ event" that’s offering $5 Chicken Tender Nachos and $5 MargO’ritas at all of its 131 locations in the Southeast and Midwest.
The chain will also offer a Kids Eat Free promotion through Sunday, May 7, as O’Charley’s celebrates its 50th anniversary this month.
On The Border Mexican Grill & Cantina
On The Border's new seasonal Gran Papi entrées include five popular Mexican food options. The Tex-Mex chain is offering Gran Papi dishes for $15.99 on Cinco de Mayo. (On The Border Mexican Grill & Cantina / Fox News)
On The Border is offering $6 Cinco ‘Ritas and $15.99 Gran Papi entrées on May 5 at participating locations. The Gran Papi entrées customers can choose from include a cheese quesadilla, a chicken tinga enchilada, a seasoned ground beef taco, a chicken flauta or a beef empanada – all served with Mexican rice and queso. The Tex-Mex fast-casual chain has more than 120 restaurants in the U.S.
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This year, the chain has also partnered with Mark Wahlberg to debut Flecha Azul Tequila, a new tequila brand, which will be mixed into a premium margarita the chain is calling "Marky Marg."
On The Border will debut a new premium margarita called ‘Marky Marg,’ featuring Mark Wahlberg's Flecha Azul Tequila, just in time for Cinco de Mayo. (On The Border Mexican Grill & Cantina / Fox News)
Wahlberg will be hosting a virtual live toast on Cinco de Mayo.
Taco Bell is offering an exclusive discount on Grilled Cheese Burrito (steak) orders over Cinco de Mayo weekend for rewards members who make purchases on the Taco Bell app. (Taco Bell / Fox News)
Taco Bell is offering a 10% discount on Steak Grilled Cheese Burritos that are ordered from Friday, May 5, to Sunday, May 7, on the Taco Bell app.
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The deal can only be redeemed by Taco Bell rewards members while supplies last at participating locations. The 10% off discount is capped at $10 and can only be redeemed once.
Taco Cabana is offering a Double Crunch Pizza and margarita bundle over Cinco de Mayo weekend. (Taco Cabana / Fox News)
Taco Cabana is celebrating Cinco de Mayo with a limited-time Double Crunch Pizza and margarita bundle for $6.99. The three-day offer will run from Thursday, May 4, to Sunday, May 7.
The bundle offer excludes Taco Cabana’s new Ghost Pepper Ground Beef Double Crunch Pizza. Customers have 12 margarita flavors to choose from.
A sign advertising jobs stands outside of Taco John's International Inc. restaurant in Williston, North Dakota, U.S., on Thursday, Oct. 13, 2011. (Matthew Staver/Bloomberg via Getty Images / Getty Images)
Taco John’s is offering its Bigger Bolder Rewards members a free beef and potato burrito with any purchase made on Cinco de Mayo.
Only reward members can redeem the offer at participating locations. The Mexican-inspired American fast food chain has about 380 locations across 22 states.
Tijuana Flats is hosting a Cinco Mania event from Friday, May 5, to Sunday, May 7, which offers a $5 Cinco Menu that has multiple menu items.
The $5 Cinco Menu lets customers choose from a margarita, two Mexican bottled beers, two Mexican sodas, Tijuana Trio, Dueling Queso, Chips & Queso and Chips & Guac. Tijuana Flats’ Cinco de Mayo weekend offer is valid while supplies last at participating locations.