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Mexican Rice Recipe

  • Author: Mirna Pena
  • Prep Time: 5 Minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 Hour
  • Total Time: 1 Hour 5 Minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings (1/2 cup cooked) 1x
  • Category: Sides
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Mexican


Sometimes called Spanish Rice, or Arroz Mexicano made with fresh tomatoes, onion, garlic, and toasted rice. You’ll find this dish is full of flavor.


  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 cup of uncooked dry rice
  • 2 cup water + 2 tablespoons
  • 24 Roma tomatoes (note: 23 if they are large or 34 if they are medium to small) you need to end up with about 1.5 cups of tomato liquid for every cup of dry rice.
  • of a large onion (Note: if you have a smaller onion use ¼)
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 teaspoons salt or to taste


  1. Add your Tomatoes, onion, and garlic to a blender. Blend all of the ingredients with no water. 
  2. You should end up with about 1.5 cups of liquid.
  3. Set the mixture aside.
  4. To a pot on low to medium-low heat, add one tablespoon of oil and one cup of uncooked rice.
  5. Toast for about 10 to 15 minutes or until you see that it has started to change in color and it is a tan or toasty brown in color, but not too dark because it could become bitter in taste.
  6. Turn the heat down to low.
  7. Add the tomato mix from your blender and pour that into your pot with the rice. BUT BE CAREFUL! The mixture could bubble too hard and/or the steam could burn you!
  8. Stir and let it simmer on low for about 10 minutes moving around occasionally until the liquid has completely evaporated and you’re left with a tomato concentrate.
  9. After that add 2 cups of water to the pot.
  10. To that add 2 teaspoons of salt. Taste the liquid, check for salt. Increasing the salt about ½ teaspoon at a time to adjust to taste.
  11. Add the 2 tablespoons of water to your pot.
  12. Cover and simmer on low for about 20 minutes or until when you stick a spoon in the center, all the way to the bottom of the pan you see no more liquid.
  13. Taste a few grains of rice from the center and check for doneness. If it feels grainy add another tablespoon of water, cover, and continue to simmer for another 2-3 minutes or until the liquid has evaporated.
  14. If the rice tastes soft, turn off the heat, uncover, and set aside for about 5-10 minutes.
  15. Fluff with a fork and serve.


Important: the 2 tablespoons of added liquid should NOT be doubled, if doubling or tripling this recipe. That should always stay the same.

You can add vegetables to make your rice more filling or flavorful.

Popular choices are carrots cubed into small pieces, corn and peas. You would add those at the time you add the 2 cups of water so that it all simmers and softens together.

You could also add a whole serrano or jalapeno and/or cilantro sprig at the same time as the carrots and peas. You would pull them out once it has finished cooking.

Some also like to add boil eggs and eat them with the rice or add them to the top of the rice as part of the presentation when serving it buffet style.

Some of the tomato concentrate will settle at the top, no worries, that gets mixed in during the fluffing process.

Store in an airtight container for about 1 week.


  • Serving Size: 1/2 cup cooked
  • Calories: 150
  • Sugar: 2.4g
  • Sodium: 590mg
  • Fat: 2.7g
  • Saturated Fat: .4g
  • Unsaturated Fat: 0g
  • Trans Fat: 0g
  • Carbohydrates: 28.4g
  • Fiber: 1.5g
  • Protein: 3g
  • Cholesterol: 0mg

Keywords: Rice