This easy Mexican Rice is flavored with fresh tomato, white onion, garlic, and jalapeno. It’s a perfect side dish for Carne AsadaCarnitasSlow Cooker Mexican Shredded Beef, or shredded chicken.

Rice as a side dish is pretty underrated. There’s SO much flavor in this rice, and the texture is amazing!

Mexican Rice - In a Bowl with Spoon on Wooden Board

What I love about going the “meat, rice, and beans” route instead of the taco route is the rice makes for great leftovers.

You can make a big batch and have this meal all over again, just as good as the first time.

It’s so easy to add complimentary dishes like Guacamole or black bean side dishes as well.

For flavor, the rice is cooked in a fresh tomato and onion puree, chicken stock, jalapenos, and garlic, and the rice is also toasted to give it more of a pilaf-type texture.

It’s an easy process overall.

Mexican Rice Recipe - In a Bowl with Spoon on Wooden Board

How to Make Mexican Rice:

To start, place some tomatoes and white onion into a food processor:

Onions and Tomatoes in Food Processor Bowl

Puree until only a little bit chunky, and set aside:

Pureed Tomato and Onion in Food Processor bowl

Next rinse long grain rice with cold water for 1-2 minutes, until the water runs clear:

Rinsing Rice in running Water

This will rid the outside of excess starch, and give us more separate grains in the final dish.

In a pan, add oil, jalapenos, and garlic:

Sauteeing Jalapenos and Garlic in Skillet

Cook for 3 minutes until slightly softened:

Softened Jalapenos and Garlic in Oil

Add the rinsed rice to the pan:

Mexican White Rice - Added to Pot of Jalapenos

Toast the rice for 5 minutes, then add the tomato onion puree:

Tomato Onion Mixture Added to Rice in Pot

Then add chicken stock (or vegetable stock):

Rice Simmering In Liquid and Vegetables

Cook covered for 15 minutes, then let sit for another 5 before fluffing with a fork.

Authentic Mexican Rice Recipe - Fluffy and Served in a Pot

This goes great as a side to dishes like Pulled Pork spiced with Sazon Seasoning, but sometimes I also like throwing it into salads like this Steak Salad or soups like Chicken Tortilla Soup to bulk it up. Enjoy!

Can Mexican Rice be frozen? Yes, it freezes very well! Store for up to 2 months.

Can Mexican Rice be made ahead? Yes, definitely. Leftovers keep really well in the fridge for 5-7 days.

How to Reheat Mexican Rice: As with any rice dish, the key to reheating is making sure you retain the moisture so the rice doesn’t dry out. Either re-warm it in a saucepan on the stove with a lid on it, or in the microwave with a lid or some kind of cover.

Is Mexican Rice gluten free? Yes, you can also make it vegan by using vegetable stock.

Mexican Rice In a Bowl with Spoon on Wooden Board

Mexican Rice

This easy Mexican Rice is flavored with fresh tomato, white onion, garlic, and jalapeno. It’s a perfect side dish for Slow Cooker Mexican Shredded Beef, carnitas, or shredded chicken.

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  • 2 tomatoes
  • 1/2 white onion
  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 3 jalapenos seeded and ribs removed, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves minced
  • 2 cups long grain white rice rinsed until water is clear
  • 2 cups chicken stock or broth
  • Salt


  • In a food processor, puree the tomatoes and onion until it looks like a slightly chunky salsa.
  • Heat a pot over medium heat and add the oil. Add the jalapenos and garlic, and season with a pinch of salt. Cook for 3 minutes, until softened slightly.
  • Add the rice to the pan, along with one teaspoon of salt. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring often, then add the onion tomato puree and the chicken broth.
  • Bring the liquid to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium low and cover. Simmer for 15 minutes.
  • Turn off the heat and let the rice sit for 5 minutes, then fluff with a fork and serve with Carnitas, Pulled Pork, or whatever you'd like. Enjoy!


Calories: 359kcal, Carbohydrates: 58g, Protein: 7g, Fat: 11g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 2mg, Sodium: 498mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 3g

Nutrition is estimated using a food database and is only intended to be used as a guideline for informational purposes.

Posted updated in October 2018. Originally published December 2016.