After years of cooking this up, I think I got it just right. This rice is quick and doesn’t require chopping onions or garlic. If you want fresh ingredients, go right ahead, just put in a little less of the garlic and onion powder. If adding tomato, corn, or peas to this rice, you do not have to change the recipe, just add them after you add the spices. If you are going to use chicken stock instead of the bouillon, add a little more of the spices.
Serves 8 as a hearty side dish
2.5 scant cups of white rice (don’t fill all the way to the top)
2 Tablespoons of vegetable oil
8 oz. of Red Gold tomato sauce
5 cups of water
2 large cubes of Knorr bouillon
1 teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon of dried diced onion (If using onion powder, use a very scant 1/4 teaspoon)
1/4 scant teaspoon of garlic powder.
1/8 scant teaspoon of black pepper
1/8 teaspoon dashes of paprika
- Pour in the vegetable oil and saute uncooked rice until you begin to smell the nuttiness of the rice. Make sure your heat is on medium. You do not want the rice to burn. This is an important step because this does add taste to your rice and allows the rice to keep its texture better. This takes about 7 to 9 minutes. You will notice the rice turn from white to a cream color. Some grains of rice may turn brown, that’s okay
- After sauteing, turn down your heat to low and then pour in your tomato sauce. The tomato sauce will sizzle for a little while. Constantly stir for about 2 minutes allowing all the grains of rice to be cooked in the tomato sauce.
- Pour in your water one cup at a time and mixing in a little in between. Make sure you use the same measuring cup for the water that you used for measuring out your rice. Also make sure the water isn’t scant, but filled to the actual cup line.
- Break up your bouillon into smaller pieces and mix in.
- Add all the spices and mix.
- Bring your heat up to medium and heat rice to a low boil, cover and then lower the heat to low. Cook for about 20-25 minutes. Do not ever cook rice without a lid. Don’t constantly peek. The time may be different based on how hot your stove gets on these settings.
- After 20 minutes peek under the lid and when you see little vent holes around your rice, and the rice looks set, your rice is done. Uncover your rice and let it rest for a couple of minutes and then fluff with a fork.
Troubleshooting: If your rice is mushy, your rice measurings were too scant, just add a little more rice next time. If your rice is too hard, just add a little more water (about 2 Tablespoons at a time) and mix it in and cover again. Bring heat to low and cook for another 3 to 5 minutes.
Adjust spices according to your taste.
Some people add a couple of dashes of cumin to their rice, I don’t like it too much.
Mexican rice is flavorful and sometimes is just eaten on its own. If you have left over ground beef or chicken you can mix it in. I love to eat my rice with leafy greens and a little bit of ranch on top. And just like beans, Mexican rice tastes better the next day.