Homemade Spanish Rice Recipe

How to make Homemade Spanish Rice/Mexican Rice. whatever you call it, we’ve got the best and Easiest Spanish Rice Recipe you can find. It tastes like it came straight from the restaurant!

It’s our go-to side dish when serving Mexican food! Not only is it simple and takes under 10 minutes to prep, but it’s perfect served with our tacos and enchiladas!

Restaurant-Style Spanish Rice (aka Mexican Rice) on plate

Easy Mexican Rice

I LOVE Spanish Rice (aka MexicanRice)! As previously mentioned, I’m ½ Mexican. I love this family heritage so much, and am especially grateful that my family has taught me to make delicious Mexican food.

My mom has been making today’s Spanish Rice recipe for as long as I can remember and first showed me how to make it several years ago (along with empanadas, enchiladas and tacos). Now, we make it on a weekly basis because my kids are obsessed and it’s just so easy.

This recipe is actually the Spanish Rice recipe of a popular Mexican Restaurant in Mesa called Mango’s (down on Main). If you’ve ever been down there and liked their rice, then you’ll love this recipe. It really is simple, delicious and the perfect side to any Mexican dish!

How to Make Spanish Rice - browned rice

How to Make spanish Rice

One of the main reasons we love this recipe (other than the fact that it’s simple), is because we always have the ingredients on hand. Here are the Spanish rice ingredients you’ll need to make this delicious side dish:

  • long grain rice
  • oil
  • tomato sauce
  • minced garlic
  • chicken broth
  • cumin
  • garlic pepper + salt

Begin by browning the rice in the oil (we use about ⅛ but it depends on how much you like). Add the minced garlic and sauté for a minute before adding the tomato sauce, chicken broth (or water and bouillon cube) and spices.

Reduce heat to low and simmer for 30-40 minutes. Fluff up before serving.

FAQ + TIPS

How much rice per person? Plan on ¼ cup uncooked rice per person. Once the rice is cooked it will end up being about ¾ – 1 cup per person. If a recipe calls for 3 cups uncooked rice plan on it feeding about 12 people.

Which rice is best for Spanish Rice? We love to use long-grain white rice. It gets fluffy and does not get sticky like some of the short-grained rices.

Can Spanish rice be made with brown rice? Brown rice can definitely be used in place of white rice. Just add ⅓ c more water per cup of brown rice and let simmer longer- until the brown rice reaches your desired texture.

Can you use salsa instead of tomato sauce? Sure thing! Salsa can add more flavor and even a bit more spice to this mild rice recipe. It’s all about preference.

Which topping ingredients are best for this rice? You can add what you love most, but we often add chopped peppers, chopped cilantro, onions or even green onions.

Making Mexican Rice - rice, broth, tomato sauce and seasonings in a skilletOnce all your spices and tomato sauce are added, stir and let it simmer for at least 30 minutes.

REHEATING, FREEZING + MORE RECIPES

How to reheat Spanish Rice/mexican rice? Be sure to store it properly in an air-tight container. It can last in the fridge for up to 5-6 days. To reheat, just microwave or reheat on the stove for a few minutes.

Can spanish rice be frozen? Yes, it can be frozen to be used at a future time. Simply place about 3 cups of cooked rice into ziplock freezer bags, label and place in the freezer for 4-6 months.

When you’re ready to use you can thaw the rice in the fridge or cook straight from the freezer. Using a microwave safe bowl microwave the rice on high stirring every 2 minutes until rice reaches your desired temperature.

Recipes that use Spanish Rice

Yes, we use it as a side for any Mexican dish, but we also like to use it recipes too, including:

Mexican Rice Recipe on plate

And best of all, is that it’s the best side for any Mexican meal!! Below are video and printable instructions to make the Mexican rice. We hope you can enjoy it with any Mexican dish you try.

For more Mexican rice recipes, check out:

what to serve with Spanish Rice?

Spanish Rice Recipe

4.89 from 723 votes
Restaurant-Style Spanish Rice (aka Mexican Rice), that is easy to make and tastes like it came straight from the restaurant, and is the best side dish to any Mexican entree.
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Mexican
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 8
Calories 90 kcal
Author Lil' Luna

Ingredients

  • 2 cups long grain rice
  • 1/8 cup vegetable oil
  • 8 oz tomato sauce
  • 6 stems cilantro (optional)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 4 cups water (or 4 cups chicken lower sodium chicken broth - and no bouillon)
  • 1 cube chicken flavored bouillon
  • dash cumin
  • dash garlic pepper

Instructions
 

  • Heat oil in large frying pan on medium heat.
  • Add rice and cook until golden brown.
  • Add 1 chicken flavored bouillon cube to 4 cups water and microwave for 3 minutes.
  • When rice is brown, add water, tomato sauce, salt, garlic, cumin and garlic pepper to pan.
  • Stir and cover pan. Let simmer for 30-40 minutes or until all is cooked and there is no liquid left. Fluff before serving and ENJOY.

Video

Like this recipe?

Pin it now to remember it later! Share it with your Facebook friends (you know they’ll love it). Or tweet it to the world. Maybe even email it to your favorite cousin!

Related Posts

Summer Side Dishes

Summer is a time of BBQs, swim parties, and lazy days. I love to BBQ, try new recipes, and have plenty of gatherings. From healthy to easy, I have summer…

BBQ Side Dishes

Summertime means BBQs and outdoor parties, although really any time is a good time to BBQ here in Arizona. I have gathered my favorite and most delicious BBQ Side Dishes…

Pasta Salad Recipes

Cool and refreshing pasta salads can take on a variety of flavor profiles so there is sure to be something for everyone in this collection of our favorite pasta salad…

Cilantro Lime Rice

This recipe tastes just like Cafe Rio and Chipotle Cilantro Lime Rice! It’s a simple and delicious rice prefect for a salad, burrito, or taco. Now you can make this…

30 minutes

4.89 from 27 votes

About Kristyn

My name is Kristyn and I’m the mom of SIX stinkin’ cute kids and the wife to my smokin’ hot hubby, Lo. My mom’s maiden name is Luna, and I’m one of the many crafty “Lil’ Lunas” in the fam. On this site I like to share all things creative - from recipes to home decor to gifts and home decor ideas. Welcome!

Join the Conversation

Rate and Comment

Your email address will not be published.

Recipe Rating




Comments:

  1. Is the minced garlic supposed to be the dehydrated kind from the spice aisle or the wet stuff from a glass jar?

    1. I like to use the fresh stuff… you can either use the pre-minced garlic in the jar (that’s what I use) or you can mince yourself too.

  2. I will be making your recipe for a community lunch tomorrow. I figure I will brown the rice tonight. I am trying to figure out how much rice I need to brown for about 100 people. I’m looking forward to this monthly event… many of the guests are Hispanic and I will be seeing the younger guests on my school bus every day. I want to do this right.

    1. Hi Liz! I sure hope the rice turned out well for the lunch! We’d love to hear how it went. 🙂

    2. 5 stars
      So good 🙂 easy and perfect, thank you ❤️

      John 3:5 + Acts 2:38 = Titus 3:5 (KJV) 😊

  3. 5 stars
    I love the taste of this recipe but can we use cooked rice to save time? I have a rice cooker and thought about doing this. Has this ever been done? If so, do you have any recommendations? I tried this recipe when brown uncooked rice and the flavor was wonderful but the rice took forever to cook and was still hard even when extra water added to it. I plan on making this with white rice that’s uncooked tonight but wanted to see if one day I can do it with cooked rice.

    1. I have never tried it with cooked rice… I always use uncooked white rice. It should go a little faster than the brown rice did.

    2. Hi Irene, I would recommend soaking your brown rice the night before and then letting it drain well for a few hours. That will cut down the cook time significantly. It’s important to let the rice fully drain though so that it doesn’t react with the hot oil and burn you! Unfortunately, I don’t think this would work well with precooked rice. The rice won’t soak up the flavors right like it does when simmering.

  4. What other oil could we use? We have allergies in the family and unfortunately I can’t use vegetable oil. Thanks!

  5. Mine tastes like spaghetti. My family really enjoyed it
    just wondering if I did something wrong.

    1. Hmmm… I haven’t had it taste like spaghetti before. Perhaps the spices weren’t measured correctly or too much tomato sauce was used? I’m not sure!

  6. 5 stars
    Easy and delicious. I only had 1 cup long grain rice on hand so I used jasmine rice for the other cup. It likely added more flavor if anything. Will make again.

See More Comments