10 Best Ofrenda Altar items to celebrate Day of the Dead

  1. SUGAR SKULLS - fancy & colorful. Represent a departed soul
  2. FLOWERS - either wild marigolds, called cempasuchil  (the aromatic flower of the dead) – or red cock’s comb
  3. CANDLES - from simple religious votives to elaborate
  4. COPAL INCENSE to direct the spirits to the ofrenda
  5. DRINKS - water for the tired, thirsty spirits returning from heaven or tequila /mezcal
  6. PAN DE MUERTO – “bread of the dead” - delicious decorated egg yolk bread flavored with anis, orange or nuts
  7. SILLY SKELETON FIGURINES - poke fun at death
  8. PERSONAL ITEMS THE SPIRIT ENJOYED IN LIFE-  jewelry, Playboy magazine, cigar, lipstick, playing cards
  9. FESTIVE FOODS – traditional tamales, MOLE - a favorite necessity in the state of Puebla and Oaxaca, chocolate or skulls made from amaranth or tamerind
  10. PHOTOS OF THE DECEASED - this is a recent tradition as photos were so expensive in the past