Mexican Rice Recipe (Arroz Rojo)
Learn the secret to making Mexican Rice at home that tastes even better than a restaurant! And it's always perfect: Tender, delicious, never sticky. Whether you are making dinner for the family or feeding 100, this recipe works every time and it tastes exactly the way you want it to! Great with brown rice too!
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 8 servings
- 2 medium vine-ripened tomatoes or 4 Roma tomatoes cored and quartered
- 1 onion peeled and quartered
- 1/3 cup vegetable oil
- 2 cups long-grain or basmati white rice
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 1 to 2 jalapeno peppers stemmed, seeded, and minced (optional)
- 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth (see notes)
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- ½ cup fresh cilantro or parsley minced
- Lime or lemon wedges for serving
Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and preheat oven to 350°F.
In a food processor or blender, puree the tomatoes and onions until smooth. Measure 2 cups of puree, pouring off and discarding any excess.
Heat the oil in a large Dutch oven or a 3-quart saucepan until shimmering (see notes). Add the rice and sauté, stirring frequently, until light golden in color, about 10 to 15 minutes.
Add garlic and jalapeños (if using) and stir until fragrant, about 15 seconds. Stir in tomato mixture, broth, tomato paste, and 1 ½ tsp. salt. Bring to a boil.
Cover and bake until the rice is tender and the liquid is absorbed, about 30 minutes. Stir halfway through baking time.
Fluff rice with a fork. Fold in cilantro or parsley and season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve with lime or lemon wedges.
Adapted from The America's Test Kitchen Family Cookbook (Mexican Rice recipe).
- Long-grain white rice is the traditional choice for this recipe, but I've also tested it with basmati and it works perfectly.
- To make this recipe vegetarian, substitute vegetable broth for the chicken broth.
- If toasting the rice in a 3-quart saucepan, you'll want to transfer it to a 4-quart or larger oven-proof baking dish for baking.
- To make the Mexican Rice in a rice cooker, follow the recipe through Step 4. After bringing the rice to a boil, transfer it to your rice cooker (coated with nonstick spray), close, and cook according to manufacturer instructions. Mine takes 33 minutes on the "White Rice" setting.
- To make Mexican Rice for 25 adults, use an 8-quart stock pot, triple the ingredients, and add 10 minutes to the baking time (40 minutes total).