Toss everything into one pot, stir to combine, and let it go. Mexican One Pot Instant Rice is just that easy! It’s a fast side dish that’s perfect served hot or at room temperature!
Whenever I think of Mexican food, I think of two things – the first is summertime. And the second is this little restaurant in Toronto called Fernando’s Hideaway. That little restaurant has the best no-frills, inexpensive, Mexican food!
That’s where I was first introduced to Mexican rice. Well, fast forward almost 10 years later, and I find myself spending more and more time at our house which is located three hours outside Toronto. There’s no Mexican food to be found anywhere here! So, I have to make my own!
WHAT IS MEXICAN RICE?
I’m sure if you were to ask someone who was born and raised in Mexico the same question, you might get a different answer. But, to me, Mexican rice is robust, flavourful, a little spicy, and a rice that can be an entire meal.
Mexican rice is sometimes referred to as Spanish rice, but I tend to think of Spanish rice as one with saffron. Mexican rice, in contrast, would have the three c’s – cumin, coriander, and cilantro. Although, you will never find cilantro in any of my dishes. I always substitute cilantro with parsley. Although, I must admit, dried cilantro does not taste soapy like fresh cilantro. Don’t believe me? Try my Guacamole for Cilantro Haters!
My version has some authentic Mexican flavours, and is most certainly a side dish that you can eat as a meal. In fact, that’s pretty much what we did!
WHAT TO DO WITH MEXICAN RICE
If it were up to me, I’d say just leave this rice the way it is. Serve it as a side dish; make it an entire Mexican-inspired meal. Let’s see, I would suggest serving it with Mexican Chicken Skewers, and maybe a Mexican Corn and Black Bean Salad. Serve the chicken hot and the rest at room temperature.
But, I made this dish with another goal in mind. I wanted to make some burritos for dinner. When things are normal – meaning we are back in Toronto, back to work, and back to school, we have burritos maybe once a month. I always order them for delivery. But, that’s not an option at the house!
I prepared this rice just as you see it in the photographs. I piled it onto flour tortillas and added some cheese, burrito sauce, guacamole, etc. Then, I rolled them up and grilled them using my panini press. They were a great substitute for our regular Fat Bastard Burritos delivery order.
LET’S TALK INGREDIENTS
This dish is a perfect illustration of how instant rice and canned beans and veggies should always be present in your pantry. I cannot cook rice to save my life, so I always rely on the help of instant rice by Minute Rice or Uncle Ben’s. I’m not ashamed to admit it!
I will often use canned corn or canned black beans in rice, couscous, or salad dishes to add a little bit of flavour or texture. This rice dish is no exception. The same goes for canned tomatoes. I always have them on hand. All in all, I would say that the only ingredients in this entire dish that are fresh are the parsley, onions, garlic, and the jalapenos!
Now, let’s get to the recipe and I can tell you exactly how I made this dish. I’m sure you’re going to love it!
Mexican One Pot Instant Rie
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 large onion, finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon coriander
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 whole jalapeno, finely chopped, seeds removed and discarded
- 4.5 ounces canned chopped green chilies
- 1 cup canned corn, drained
- 1 cup canned black beans, drained
- 14 ounces canned fire roasted tomatoes, do not drain
- 2 cups low sodium vegetable stock, (can use water instead)
- 1/4 cup butter
- 4 cups instant white rice
- In a heavy bottomed pot, over medium heat, saute the onion in the olive oil for 3-4 minutes.
- Add the garlic and saute for 2 more minutes.
- Stir in the salt, ground black pepper, coriander, cumin, and smoked paprika.
- Next, add the jalapeno, chilies, corn, black beans, tomatoes, vegetable stock, and butter. Stir to combine and bring to a low boil.
- Add the rice and stir into the vegetable mixture. Cover the pot and reduce heat to low. Allow to cook for 10-12 minutes. Remove lid and fluff rice with a fork.
- Plate, garnish, and serve.