Mexican Rice Recipe

What is a Mexican meal without a heaping side of rice? When it comes to pretty much any main course like tacos, fajitas, quesadillas, or enchiladas — Mexican rice is the perfect accompaniment. Not to mention, it makes a great addition to a burrito or an excellent base for a burrito bowl. So when you're in the mood for Mexican food, you can add this simple Mexican rice recipe to pretty much anything. Another great part about this recipe is that it only takes about 30 minutes to make. Whether you're a beginner in the kitchen or a seasoned veteran, this is an easy option for anyone who just wants some good, old-fashioned, Mexican rice. 

Recipe developer Miriam Hahn came up with this delicious recipe that will likely be one that you will want to bookmark so you can make it over and over again. "My favorite thing about this recipe is how savory and delicious it is without much effort at all," she says. "It dresses up any meal and is also so nice to have leftover to pair with beans for a quick meal or with a sandwich!" 

Gather the ingredients for this Mexican rice

This recipe only requires a few items, and you may have many of them in your kitchen already. You'll need oil, long-grain white rice, broth, white onion, garlic, canned tomato sauce, cumin, garlic granules, salt, and chili powder. There is also one optional ingredient — cayenne pepper, if you like your rice spicy. 

Once you have those items, you can make this Mexican rice.

Add oil to a pot and toast the rice

Grab a medium-sized pot and drizzle in the oil. Place the pot on the stove and turn the heat up to medium-high, allowing it to get nice and hot. 

Next, toss in the rice and toast it for 2 minutes, stirring frequently. "In this recipe there is a secret method and that is toasting the rice," Hahn shares. "Toasting the rice before cooking it gives it a nice nutty flavor that enhances the final dish."

If you want to use another type of rice, you may, but Hahn notes that "there may be a little adjustment on cook time. But it is easy to just keep your eye on it to make sure it is done."

Add the remaining ingredients to the pan

Once the rice is toasted, add the onion, garlic, broth, tomato sauce, cumin, garlic granules, salt, chili powder, and cayenne (if you opt to use it) to the pot. Stir everything well to combine.

Cook the rice

Bring the rice to a boil, then turn the heat down to low. Pop the lid on the pot and cook the rice for about 30 minutes. Please note that the cooking time may vary depending on the brand of rice you use, so be sure to take a peek at it around the 25-minute mark.

Once it's finished cooking, let the rice stand for 5 minutes and use a fork to fluff it up. 

Serve and enjoy

This rice is wonderful with just about any Mexican meal, and Hahn provides a few of her favorite serving suggestions. "This Mexican rice goes well with burritos, tacos, and flautas," Hahn shares. She also suggests serving it with vegan taco salad or portobello fajitas.

We don't think you'll have much left over, but if you do, don't sweat it. "It stores nicely for up to a week. You can reheat in the microwave or the stove," Hahn shares. "Sometimes rice absorbs all the liquid. If it dries, you can just add a couple of teaspoons of water before reheating!"

Mexican Rice Recipe
5 from 94 ratings
This Mexican rice recipe is the perfect accompaniment for fajita night. Plus, the secret method (toasting the rice) gives it an extra special flavor.
Prep Time
Cook Time
mexican rice in a bowl
Total time: 30 minutes
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1 cup long-grain white rice
  • ½ cup white onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups broth
  • 1 8-ounce can tomato sauce
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon garlic granules
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
Optional Ingredients
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne
  1. Put the oil in a medium pot and turn the heat to medium-high.
  2. Add the rice and stir frequently for 2 minutes to toast the rice.
  3. Add the onion, garlic, broth, tomato sauce, cumin, garlic granules, salt, chili powder, and cayenne (if using). Stir well to combine.
  4. Bring to a boil, then turn the heat down to low, cover, and cook for 30 minutes. Cook time may vary based on the rice, so check it at 25 minutes to see how it's doing. Let it stand for 5 minutes before serving. Fluff with a fork.
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