The Ultimate At-Home Día de los Muertos

Looking for a fun way to celebrate the Day of the Dead closer to home this year? Our At-Home Día de los Muertos guide.

Two ceramic sugar stalls in an ofrenda

Día de los Muertos is a Mexican holiday celebrated the first two days in November that commemorates lost loved ones with colorful ofrendas (altars), calacas (skeletons), calaveras (skulls), spoken word performances, food and more.

But, like other holidays this year, your Day of the Dead celebrations might look a little different in 2020 than in year’s past.

Instead of congregating in groups at your loved ones’ resting place, you may be looking for ideas a little closer to home — or at least in a place that makes social distancing easier.

That’s why we’ve rounded up some cool celebration ideas in this handy at-home Día de los Muertos Guide. From printable masks to color to unique recipes and decorating inspiration, we’ve got you covered with COVID-friendly ideas.

The décor

Traditional Day of the Dead celebrations include blue, pink, red, yellow, orange and other brightly colored sugar skulls, skeletons, flowers (particularly marigolds), an array of garlands and more.

You can purchase Day of the Dead decorations in most big box stores or on Etsy, but you can also make your own traditional décor.

Pinterest is full of great ideas. Some of our favorites include:

You can also build your own Día de Mueros Ofrenda with this step-by-step guide from Tejas Made.

The food

Like many Mexican families, your family probably has recipes for traditional pan de muerto, tamales and other signature Day of the Dead dishes, but if you’re looking to mix things up this year, Food and Wine, Growing Up Bilingual, Delish and other blogs offer some delish Day of the Dead ideas.

Some standouts include Candied Pumpkin and Oaxacan Hot Chocolate, Guatamalan Molletes, Day of the Dead Cookies and Margarita Punch.

The activities

During Día de los Muertos, families traditionally fill the day with dancing and meetings at their loved ones’ grave sites, but there are plenty of local groups that host events to commemorate the day, too.

You can celebrate in 2020 at The Southwest Detroit Business Association’s annual Run of the Dead, which is virtual and spans from Oct. 31-Nov. 7, 2020.

You can also see traditional altars or memorials from Oct. 31-Nov. 18, 2020 at Cullen Plaza in Detroit(volunteers are available to answer questions Oct. 31-Nov. 2) or through Nov. 8, 2020 at the DIA’s annual Ofrendas exhibit.

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