Have you ever ordered a meal at a Mexican restaurant that came with a side of rice and beans and thought, This rice could use some more flavor? You're not alone. I have gone to countless home-style Mexican restaurants that served up sub-par Mexican rice that don't do the dish justice.
When Mexican rice is done right, it's bursting in flavor. Infused with tomatoes and a heaping of spices, this side can give the main course a run for its money. It's so good, that you'll want to make it the main course itself, and why not? You can turn it into a Tex Mex meal, spice up your chicken and rice routine, or lather it in a verde sauce. Celebrating this dish in all its rightfully deserved glory, we gathered up the best Mexican rice dishes for you to make at home tonight.
1. One Pot Mexican Chicken and Rice
If you're looking for a new way to elevate your chicken and rice dinner, this is it. Fajita seared chicken is serve on top a bed of Mexican rice that's doctored up with black beans, corn, jalapeño, fresh cilantro, and a twist of lime. Did I mention it's all cooked in one pot? Get the recipe here.
2. One Skillet Mexican Beef and Rice
Put a little Tex in your Mexican food with this one skillet recipe. By cooking in a single skillet, the long grain white rice is able to soak up the bounty of flavor from the beef and tomatoes while it simmers.
It's then topped with a huge heaping of shredded Colby jack cheese and your favorite taco toppings. Tortillas? Not necessary when you have a bed of rice this good. Get the recipe here.
3. Cheesy Mexican Rice Casserole
This recipe is comfort like mom made. Piling high in the casserole dish, brown rice is flavored with a 5-spice Mexican seasoning and layered with refried beans, Rotel tomatoes, and melted shredded cheese. Skip the lighter fare tonight, the comforts of home are calling you to the dinner table. Get the recipe here.
4. Mexican Chorizo and Rice
Chorizo is the spicy protein kick your Mexican rice has been waiting for. Eat it as a side with a quesadilla, stuff it into a burrito, or pile on the cheese and dip tortilla chips in this Mexican dish. And if you really want to add some heat, douse it with your favorite hot sauce. Get the recipe here.
5. Restaurant-Style Mexican Rice
While Mexican rice is the perfect dish to loaded up with spicy chicken or to transform into a cheesy casserole, you can't go wrong with a classic Mexican rice dish. It's simple to make and a wonderful side to add to any of your favorite Mexican or Spanish cuisine.
In one glorious pot, cook rice in chicken broth or vegetable broth and simmer it with all the glorious flavors of chili powder, cumin, garlic, onion, tomato sauce, and fresh tomatoes. Eat it as is or toss in some corn, peas, and diced carrots. This is not your bland restaurant-style rice, this Mexican rice done right. Get the recipe here.
Chef's Note: While this recipe uses basmati rice, you can use your rice of choice.
6. Cauliflower Mexican Rice
Anyone who is skeptical about cauliflower rice won't be after trying this recipe. Cauliflower is a mild vegetable that can take on a rice-like consistency making it the ideal substitution for this Mexican recipe.
In this refreshing, light recipe riced cauliflower is sauteed in ground cumin, paprika, tomatoes, jalapeños, garlic, onion, and diced bell pepper. It may not be traditional Mexican rice, but it's every bit as good. Get the recipe here.
7. Green Mexican Rice with Corn
Feeling a little adventurous? Try this green take. Rather than using canned tomatoes or tomato paste, this recipe freshens up the classic by using a cilantro, spinach, green chile pepper, and garlic paste to coat the rice. It's then topped with some fresh corn and plantain chips for dipping.
If you're looking to really turn this into a meal, add on some coconut crusted shrimp, seared tilapia, or spicy grilled chicken to this green sauce infused long grain rice. Get the recipe here.
8. 5-Ingredient Mexican Brown Rice
Make dinner hassle-free tonight with this easy Mexican rice recipe. Requiring only five ingredients - black beans, corn, minute rice, chili powder, and salsa - and one pan over medium heat, you can have a tasty Mexican meal ready in only 15 minutes worth of prep time and cook time. It doesn't get any better than that. Get the recipe here.
Chef's Note: If not using minute rice, cook rice in a rice cooker or pot according to directions. It should be noted that this will increasing cooking time.