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Easy Authentic Mexican Rice Recipe, a Delicious and Versatile Side Dish

Updated on May 18, 2013
Cooking delicious authentic mexican rice is easy with this simple recipe!
Cooking delicious authentic mexican rice is easy with this simple recipe! | Source
4.7 stars from 6 ratings of Easy Authentic Mexican Rice

How to Cook Mexican Rice

Authentic Mexican Rice is an important staple to have in your recipe arsenal. It is such an easy and flavorful side dish, and versatile enough to go with anything from fish tacos to Sour Cream Chicken Enchiladas.

Don't miss the notes and serving ideas at the bottom of the page, where you'll find tips on making perfect moist and fluffy Mexican Rice and tasty ways to customize your recipe and use up leftovers!

Cook Time

Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 25 min
Ready in: 35 min
Yields: Serves 4

Colorful Plates for serving your Mexican Dishes!


  • 1 cup long grain white rice, uncooked
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups cold water
  • 1 roma tomato, cut into eighths
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and sliced lengthwise
  • 1/4 cup tomato sauce
  • 1 tablespoon chicken boullion (caldo de pollo)
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, ground
  • 1/4 cup cilantro (optional), chopped


  1. Heat the olive oil in a medium saucepan on medium-high heat. Add the uncooked rice and stir to brown in the olive oil.
  2. When the rice is lightly browned, add the garlic and let the heat from the rice activate the aroma of the garlic while you stir for a few seconds.
  3. Add the water, then the chopped onions, tomato, jalapeño, chicken boullion, tomato sauce, cumin, and ground black pepper. Stir well and then cover the saucepan, leaving the lid cocked to the side for a small opening to let out steam.
  4. Turn the heat down to medium low and leave the rice for 20 minutes without removing the lid. After 20 minutes, check the rice and stir. If needed, cover and cook another 5-10 minutes.
  5. If desired, mix in chopped cilantro just before serving or sprinkle on top after serving.
Delicious with my Mexican Rice!
Delicious with my Mexican Rice! | Source
Wow! | Source

Serving Ideas

This authentic Mexican rice recipe is the perfect accompaniment to tacos, fajitas, tortilla soup, or enchiladas (see my favorite enchiladas recipe to the right!). It also goes great with non-Mexican dishes, like grilled chicken, steak, or seafood.

I love to sprinkle my Mexican Rice with chopped cilantro and crumbled up Queso Fresco, a wonderfully mild Mexican cheese.

Sometime I add about 1/4 cup of canned peas or corn to the rice, or even peas and carrots. I like to mix it up depending on which main dish it's being served with. Adding vegetables also helps to extend the portions to go a little further and makes it that much healthier too!

Try mixing in some smoked sausage near the end of the rice's cooking time. This makes a hearty, stand-alone dinner!

If I have leftovers, sometimes I like to sautée some cubed zucchini and stir in the rest of the rice to warm it up. It goes great with grilled fish.

Leftover Mexican Rice also makes a great filling for stuffed peppers!


Toasting the rice in the pan before adding the water gives the dish a nice flavor and seems to also help it fluff up. After learning this trick with this recipe, I now start by browning my rice for all my rice dishes!

However, the main secret to fluffy, perfect Mexican rice is to leave the lid on during cooking! Every time you take the lid off, you let too much steam escape. You just want to have the tiniest opening so that the rice doesn't boil over while cooking. The steam is important because it keeps the rice moist; you don't want to have dry crusty Mexican rice!

Thanks for reading! I hope you're ready to try this delicious and easy recipe for Authentic Mexican Rice. I'd love to hear what you think in the comments section below!


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    • Vacation Trip profile image

      Susan 4 years ago from India

      Wow. This looks simply mouth watering. This recipe is completely new to me and I would love to give it a try soon. Thank you for sharing.

    • alocsin profile image

      alocsin 4 years ago from Orange County, CA

      This sounds wonderful. It's just the thing to add spice to a relatively non-spicy meal. Voting this Up and Useful.

    • SweetiePie profile image

      SweetiePie 4 years ago from Southern California, USA

      I love Mexican rice, and I need to make some rice again with all of it hanging out in my cabinet. Thanks, again for telling me about my hub that was copied.

    • Life and Luxury profile image

      Life and Luxury 5 years ago from South Beach, FL

      I always use chili powder instead of the raw chile because of the throat and nose irritation it gives me when I cut it. But this looks better. I am surprised to see cilantro and especially cumin.

    • Brett.Tesol profile image

      Brett Caulton 5 years ago from Thailand

      Looks delicious, far more interesting in plain old fried rice. Think I'd make it with a kick, as I like things spicy ;-).

      Shared, up and useful.

    • rjsadowski profile image

      rjsadowski 5 years ago

      Looks like a simple but tasty recipe.

    • jezebellamina profile image

      Jessica 5 years ago from Dallas, TX

      Thanks Anamika! This is one of my favorite side dishes and it's really quite simple. I appreciate your comment, and thanks for the vote and the pin too!

    • Anamika S profile image

      Anamika S 5 years ago from Mumbai - Maharashtra, India

      Mexican Rice sounds great! Hub voted up and pinned!