Instant Pot Mexican Rice

Looking for a flavorful and easy side dish to bring your next Mexican-inspired meal to life?

Say no more, because we have the perfect solution – Instant pot Mexican rice

In this blog post, we’ll be sharing our recipe for delicious and flavorful Mexican rice that can be made in under 30 minutes using this versatile pressure cooker. 

Whether you’re craving a quick weeknight dinner or hosting a fiesta with friends, this recipe is guaranteed to become a staple in your kitchen.

Say goodbye to bland rice dishes and hello to a fiesta for your taste buds!

Instant Pot Mexican Rice – A Simplified Cooking Revolution

The Instant Pot has redefined cooking by merging multiple kitchen devices into one, offering the functionalities of a pressure cooker, slow cooker, and more.

Its appeal lies in its ability to drastically reduce cooking time while preserving the flavors and nutritional value of the food. 

This is particularly true for Mexican rice, a vibrant and tasty staple in Mexican cuisine often avoided in home kitchens due to the meticulous attention it requires to avoid burning. 

The traditional challenges of cooking Mexican rice are easily overcome with the Instant Pot, making it possible to enjoy this exquisite side dish without the usual hassle. 

With an Instant Pot, achieving flawlessly flavorful Mexican rice becomes an effortless task, encouraging even the most hesitant cooks to try their hand at this classic recipe.

Ingredients Of Mexican Rice

For this tantalizing instant pot Mexican rice recipe, you’ll need a handful of simple, yet flavorful ingredients.

Here’s what you’ll need:

1. Long-Grain White Rice: The foundation of any good Mexican rice dish is long-grain white rice. It’s tender, fluffy, and absorbs flavors well.

2. Oil: We recommend using canola or vegetable oil for this recipe.

3. Onion: A staple ingredient in many dishes, onions add a savory and slightly sweet flavor to the rice.

4. Salt: Salt brings out the flavors in each ingredient and balances out any overwhelming flavors.

5. Tomato Sauce: A key ingredient in Mexican rice, tomato sauce adds a beautiful red color and tangy flavor to the dish.

6. Tomato Bouillon Cubes: This ingredient is optional but highly recommended. It adds a depth of flavor and richness to the rice.

7. Carrot: Another optional ingredient, carrots add a touch of sweetness and vibrant color to the dish.

8. Garlic: Garlic adds depth and richness to the dish. Freshly minced garlic is recommended but you can also use garlic powder if that’s what you have on hand.

9. Chicken Broth: For richer and more flavorful rice, we recommend using chicken broth as your cooking liquid. Vegetable broth or water can be used as substitutes.

10. Frozen Peas: These add a pop of color and vegetable goodness to the rice. You can also use frozen corn as a substitute.

Gather these ingredients and prepare to infuse your kitchen with the enticing aroma of Mexican cuisine. 

How To Make Instant Pot Mexican Rice?

Now we come to today’s main part!

How to cook Mexican rice in the instant pot?

Follow these step-by-step instructions to create a delicious meal:

Step 1: Rinse The Rice

Start by rinsing 2 cups of long-grain white rice under cold water until the water runs clear.

This step removes excess starch and prevents your rice from being too sticky.

Step 2: Saute The Onions

Turn your Instant Pot to the sauté setting.

Add 2 tablespoons of oil and 1 finely chopped onion to the pot.

Sauté until the onion becomes translucent, about 3 minutes.

Step 3: Toast The Rice

Add the rinsed rice to the pot and stir, allowing it to toast slightly with the onions for about 2 minutes.

This process enhances the rice’s flavor and texture.

Step 4: Add Topping and Seasonings

Add rice stir-fried with tomato sauce, tomato bouillon cubes, salt, diced carrots, and minced garlic cloves then stir well.

The combination of these ingredients will give your rice its famous rich, delicious flavor.

Step 5: Add Liquids

Pour in the chicken broth (or vegetable broth for vegetarians) and stir well to ensure the spices and sauce are dissolved.

Step 6: Cook

Seal the Instant Pot lid and set it to the Manual setting for 3 – 4 minutes on high pressure.

Make sure the steam valve is set to seal.

Step 7: Natural Release

After the cooking time is up, allow the Instant Pot to naturally release pressure for 10 minutes, then carefully release any remaining pressure manually before removing the lid.

Step 8: Add Peas

Stir the frozen peas into the hot rice.

The residual heat will perfectly cook the peas while retaining their vibrant color and texture.

Step 9: Fluff and Serve

Use a fork to fluff the rice, ensuring it’s not too compacted.

Taste and adjust the seasoning with additional salt if necessary.

And here we are, a delicious and flavorful pot of Mexican rice in under 30 minutes!

Serve it as a side dish or add protein and make it a complete meal.

What To Serve With Mexican Rice?

Mexican rice pairs wonderfully with a variety of dishes.

Here are some delicious options for you to consider:

1. Tacos: Fill your tacos with seasoned meat, beans, and cheese, and top it off with a generous serving of Mexican rice.

2. Enchiladas: This classic dish is even tastier when served alongside some tomato-y Mexican rice.

3. Fajitas: Chicken or steak fajitas with a side of Mexican rice and some guacamole, sour cream and salsa make for a delicious and satisfying meal.

4. Burrito Bowls: Create your Chipotle-style burrito bowls by adding Mexican rice as the base along with beans, meat, vegetables, and all your favorite toppings. 

5. Chili: Serve a bowl of chili with a scoop of Mexican rice on top for an added layer of flavor and texture.

The possibilities are endless when it comes to pairing Mexican rice with other dishes.

Get creative and enjoy this versatile dish!

FAQs About Instant Pot Mexican Rice Recipe

1. Can You Substitute Brown Rice?

Yes, you can substitute brown rice for white rice in this recipe.

However, the cooking time will need to be adjusted as brown rice takes longer to cook.

2. How Do You Store Leftover Instant Pot Mexican Rice?

Store leftover Mexican rice in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

Reheat in the microwave or on the stovetop with a splash of water or broth to keep it from drying out.

3. Can You Freeze Cooked Instant Pot Mexican Rice?

Yes, you can freeze cooked Mexican rice for up to 3 months.

Allow it to cool before transferring it into a freezer-safe container or bag.

Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.

4. What Is The Ratio Of Mexican Rice To Liquid In Instant Pot?

The general rule for cooking rice in the Instant Pot is a 1:1 ratio of rice to liquid.

However, for this recipe, we recommend using 2 cups of chicken broth or vegetable broth for added flavor.


There you have it, a simple and tasty recipe for instant pot Mexican rice.

Mexican rice prepared in the Instant Pot emerges as not just a mere side dish but a vibrant centerpiece able to elevate any Mexican-themed meal with its rich flavors and colorful presentation.

Perfect for busy weeknights or as a side dish for your next fiesta, this dish is sure to be a crowd-pleaser.

This guide not only simplifies the cooking process but also encourages culinary creativity, allowing for various additions and substitutions to suit diverse dietary preferences.

Experiment with different toppings and seasonings to make it your own.

instant pot mexican rice

Instant Pot Mexican Rice

Enjoy the feast of taste buds with this extremely simple Mexican rice recipe below!
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 14 minutes
Total Time 24 minutes
Servings 6


  • 1 1/2 cups of long-grain white rice
  • 1/4 cup of oil
  • 1 medium and finely chopped onion
  • 1 small and diced carrot
  • 1 tsp of cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup of tomato sauce
  • 2 tomato bouillon cubes
  • 1/4 tsp of salt (to taste)
  • 1 1/2 cups of chicken or vegetable broth or water
  • 1/3 frozen peas (optional)


  • Rinse the rice under cold water until it runs clear and set aside.
  • Turn on the sauté setting on your instant pot and add oil and onion. Sauté for 3 minutes until translucent.
  • Add in the rice, stirring to toast with the onions for about 2 minutes.
  • Add tomato sauce, tomato bouillon cubes, salt, diced carrots, and minced garlic cloves to the pot. Stir well.
  • Pour in the chicken broth or vegetable broth and stir until everything is dissolved.
  • Close the lid of the Instant Pot, making sure the steam valve is set to seal.
  • Select Manual mode and set it for 3 - 4 minutes on high pressure.
  • Once the cooking time is over, allow for a 10-minute natural release before manually releasing any remaining pressure.
  • Stir in frozen peas and let them cook with the residual heat.
  • Fluff the rice with a fork and adjust the seasoning if necessary. Serve and enjoy!
Keyword instant pot mexican rice

Chef Chip Roman is one of the most exciting and talented chefs in Philadelphia. He has his own catering business, Charles Roman Catering, as well as Roman Restaurant Group which includes Blackfish, Mica, and Ela. He graduated from Drexel University in 2002 with a degree in business and culinary arts. Chip Roman is a classically trained chef who has worked in some of the most prestigious kitchens and chefs in Philadelphia, including Le Bec Fin’s George Perrier and Marc Vetri’s Vetri.

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