Mexican Rice

Looking for the perfect side dish to serve with your favorite Mexican meal? This one pot Mexican rice rivals my favorite Mexican restaurant and is so easy to make right in your own kitchen. The rice is sautéed until golden brown then simmered in a chicken broth to perfection. It is a delicious and flavorful side dish to accompany any Mexican dish. Spice up your next taco night by making this mexican rice and you will have everyone at your dinner table shouting Ole! 😉

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Mexican Rice

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  • 2 ripe tomatoes (about 12 ounces), cored and quartered
  • 1 medium white onion, peeled, trimmed of root end, and quartered
  • 3 medium jalapeño chiles, divided
  • 2 cups long grain white rice
  • 1/3 cup canola oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced (about 4 teaspoons)
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 ½ teaspoons table salt
  • 1/2 cup minced fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1 lime, cut into wedges for serving


  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade, process tomatoes and onion until smooth and thoroughly pureed, about 15 seconds. Transfer mixture to liquid measuring cup; you should have 2 cups (if necessary, spoon off excess so that volume equals 2 cups).
  3. Remove ribs and seeds from 2 jalapeños and discard; mince flesh and set aside. Mince remaining jalapeño, including ribs and seeds; set aside.
  4. Place rice in large fine-mesh strainer and rinse under cold running water until water runs clear, about 1 1/2 minutes. Shake rice vigorously in strainer to remove all excess water.
  5. Heat oil in heavy-bottomed ovensafe 12-inch straight-sided Dutch oven with tight-fitting lid over medium-high heat, 1 to 2 minutes. Drop 3 or 4 grains rice in oil; if grains sizzle, oil is ready. Add rice and fry, stirring frequently, until rice is light golden and translucent, 6 to 8 minutes. Reduce heat to medium, add garlic and seeded minced jalapeños; cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 1 1/2 minutes. Stir in pureed tomatoes and onions, chicken broth, tomato paste, and salt; increase heat to medium-high and bring to boil. Cover pan and transfer to oven; bake until liquid is absorbed and rice is tender, 30 to 35 minutes, stirring well after 15 minutes.
  6. Stir in cilantro and reserved minced jalapeño with seeds to taste. Serve immediately, passing lime wedges separately.

Yields: 6 to 8 servings as a side dish
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes

Source: Cook’s Illustrated, September 2004

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16 Responses to Mexican Rice

  1. sugaredpecan says:

    Thanks for this post. I love mexican rice.

  2. Love this and it´s very similar to something we make here in Spain – except they call it Arroz a la Cubana, Cuban Rice!

  3. I know this sounds silly, but I haven’t made Mexican or saffron rice with tacos in so long. What’s wrong with me? Thanks for the great recipe and reminder.

  4. I love that you make so many recipes that are modeled after restaurant menu items. It’s so great to be able to enjoy restaurant quality food without having to go out or get take out!

  5. Sounds incredible, actually add some sautéed chicken to this I I would call this a one-pot meal 🙂

  6. yummy rice, easy and packed with flavor!!

  7. I love the bright colors and your bright and cheerful writing today! Ole!! I will be trying this recipe out for sure.

  8. ChgoJohn says:

    Why wait for taco night? I’d like to have this as a side any night. It’s a great recipe!

  9. I usually buy Mexican rice by the packet – not any more! Thanks for such a delicious and easy recipe!

  10. Pingback: Caramel Flan | Sweet Pea's Kitchen

  11. Christine says:

    Love this recipe. Thanks for sharing.

  12. Elisabeth says:

    This is so close to a recipe I found online a few years ago. I love it, the best Mexican rice I’ve ever had. I’ll add those extra ingredients you have in yours to mine next time! (well, next week)

  13. Pingback: Corn and Black Bean Taquitos | Sweet Pea's Kitchen

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