Easy to make and full of flavor, this gluten free Mexican rice recipe is the perfect side dish for all of your favorite Mexican meals. Whip it up in less than 30 minutes with very simple ingredients. It’s so much better than the box!
This rice tastes just like the kind you get at your favorite Mexican restaurant. I love serving it on the side of chicken fajitas, enchiladas and tacos.
Mexican food is a big thing in our house, especially in the warmer months. It’s one of the friendlier cuisines for people following a gluten-free diet. This easy recipe is in our regular rotation!
What’s in this Mexican Rice recipe
Here’s what you’ll need to make this naturally gluten free side dish:
- Long grain white rice. You can substitute long grain brown rice, but you’ll need 1/4 cup more liquid and 3-4 more minutes of cooking time.
- Diced tomatoes with green chiles. Yep, just grab a can of Ro-tel and you’re good to go.
- Chicken broth. Substitute chicken stock for broth if desired. For a vegetarian option, substitute vegetable broth or vegetable stock.
- Tomato Paste. Many recipes call for tomato sauce, but I really like the bold flavor that tomato paste offers.
- Chili Powder
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil
How to make delicious Mexican Rice
If you’ve followed me for any length of time, you know I love me some sticky rice. But this Mexican Rice shouldn’t be sticky.
So the first thing we’ll do is rinse it. We want to get the starches off of the grains before we cook them, so that they’re less likely to stick together. Use a wire mesh strainer to do this.
Then, toast the rice in a little bit of olive oil. Make sure you stir the rice constantly so that the oil coats the grains and they don’t stick to the saucepan.
The rest is easy – add all of your ingredients and let the rice cook. Twenty minutes later, boom! Mexican rice.
How to serve Mexican Rice
There are so many ways to enjoy this easy side dish! Here are some of my favorite ways to serve Mexican rice:
- Serve it as a side dish on taco night along with sour cream, salsa and your favorite homemade guacamole
- Serve it alongside enchiladas with refried beans or black beans
- Use it as the base for burrito bowls and chicken fajita bowls with a side of homemade tortilla chips
Tips for the best Mexican Rice
Here’s my best advice for getting delicious flavor and the fluffiest texture out of this recipe:
1. Use long grain rice or even extra long grain rice. Long-grain rice has less starch and is less likely to stick together. If you’re using long grain brown rice, increase the amount of liquid by 1/4 cup and add 3-4 minutes of cook time to what’s on the recipe card.
2. Rinse the rice. This helps to get some of the starch off of the grains before you cook them. Using a mesh strainer, rinse the rice until the water runs clear.
3. Toast the rice in oil. For grains that won’t get clumpy, it helps to toast the rice for a few minutes before you add the rest of the ingredients. Let the oil coat the grains. Once the grains start to turn color, add the remaining ingredients.
4. Let the rice sit for 10 minutes off heat. Fluff it with a fork – don’t stir it!
Mexican Rice vs. Spanish Rice – what’s the difference?
The terms Mexican rice and Spanish rice are used interchangeably these days, and there is not much difference between the two.
I’m definitely guilty of using both terms, depending on what main dish I’m serving it with.
How to store left over Mexican rice
Keep any left over Mexican rice in an airtight container in the refrigerator. It will last up to a week (not that I recommend waiting a week, but I can’t say I haven’t done it). Reheat your rice in the microwave.
Try this easy gluten free Mexican rice recipe on the next Taco Tuesday! And when you do, I’d love to hear about it. Drop a rating or leave a comment below. Enjoy!
For more Mexican recipes, try these:
For more gluten free side dish recipes, try these:
Easy and Delicious Mexican Rice Recipe (Gluten Free)
- 1 1/2 cups long grain white rice
- 1 yellow onion diced
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 1 10 oz. can diced tomatoes with green chiles
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 2 Tbsp tomato paste
- 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 Tbsp chili powder
- 1/2 Tbsp cumin
- 1/2 tsp salt
- Rinse the rice with water until the water runs clear.
- Heat the oil in a saucepan over medium-low heat. Toast the rice in the oil until it is coated and begins to turn a golden color.
- Stir in the garlic, onions and tomato paste. Cook 1-2 minutes.
- Pour in the diced tomatoes. cumin, chili powder, salt and broth. Bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat. Cover and simmer 20 minutes. Off heat, allow rice to rest for 10 minutes before serving.
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