Oct 19, 2010

Mexican rice

This recipe is the closest replica to Mexican rice served at real Mexican restaurants.  It is definitely not just rice and dried seasonings mixed together (no more .99 cent high-sodium mexican rice in a box for me!).    I love that it is finished in the oven, and I can just slide my pan from the stove to the oven – you just have to remember not to grab the handle when you bring it back out!  ;) 
The addition of the fresh cilantro and squeeze of lime juice at the end – just bring this dish over the top!  


  • 1 large ripe tomato, cored and quartered
  • 1/2 medium onion, peeled and trimmed
  • 1 cup long, grain white rice
  • 2 Tbsp. canola oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and minced (optional)
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 tsp. tomato paste
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 minced fresh cilantro
  • lime wedges, for serving


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

2. Process tomatoes and onions in the food processor until smooth and thoroughly pureed, about 15 seconds, scraping down the bowl if necessary.

3. Transfer the mixture a liquid measuring cup; you should have 1 cup (if necessary, spoon off excess or add water so that the volume equals 1 cups).  

4. Place the rice in a large fine mesh strainer and rinse under cold running water until the water runs clear, about 1 1/2 minutes.  Shake rice vigorously in strainer to remove all excess water.

5. Heat the oil in a heavy-bottomed oven-safe straight-sided sauté pan with a tight-fitting lid over medium-high heat, 1 to 2 minutes. 

6. Add the rice and fry, stirring frequently, until it is golden and translucent, 6 to 8 minutes. 

7. Reduce the heat to medium; add the garlic and minced jalapenos; cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 1 1/2 minutes. 

8. Stir in pureed tomatoes and onions, chicken broth, tomato paste and salt; increase heat to medium-high and bring to a boil. 

9. Cover the pan an transfer to the oven; bake until the liquid is absorbed and rice is tender, 30 to 35 minutes, stirring well after 15 minutes.

10. Stir in cilantro and serve with lime wedges. 

Source: Annie’s Eats, originally from Cook’s Illustrated

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  1. I should have made this last night with our chicken enchiladas! Your comment about remembering the pan is hot made me laugh. The first time I put a pan in the oven I wasn't thinking and scorched my fingers. Ouch!

  2. I didn't know they put jalapenos in Mexican rice. Duh! Lime wedges are a must. Thanks for sharing!