Saute Onions & Spices
Add diced onions, then saute for 3 minutes.
*Note: If youre using onion powder and garlic powder, saute them together with all the other spices for a minute instead.
Add in minced garlic cloves, 1 tsp smoked paprika, a pinch of dried basil, a pinch of dried oregano, and ½ tsp ground cumin, then saute for another minute.
*Note: Initially, we also saute the tomato paste in this step to give the dish some extra flavor. We didnt have a problem with the recipe, but in the end, we decided to skip the tomato paste sauteeing as it can cause some issues with sensitive Instant Pots. Developing tasty fail-proof recipes for everyone is our #1 goal!
Can Mexican Rice Be Reheated
Yes Mexican rice can be reheated in the microwave oven until warm or hot. Follow the directions below for best results!
Fridge: Sprinkle a few drops of water on top of the fridge cold rice and than pop it in the microwave oven to reheat. Those extra drops of water will keep the rice moist and prevent it from getting dry.
Freezer: Thaw the frozen Mexican rice overnight in the refrigerator. Than, follow the reheating directions shared above.
Making Instant Pot Mexican Rice
This recipe is very versatile and easy to customize. I kept my Instant Pot Mexican Rice recipe fairly simple, adding onions, tomatoes with chiles and spices, and topped it off with a squeeze of lime and fresh coriander, but you can make simple additions to make the recipe your own! You can add peas, or corn, or lots more chile peppers if you want the rice extra spicy.
One of the best things about the Instant Pot is that you can saute your vegetables and then pressure cook all in the same pot. For this recipe I use the Saute function to cook the onion and garlic in oil for five minutes and soften the onions.
Then I add the rice and stir it around for a minute or so to get it nicely coated with the oil.
That is pretty much the last step that takes effort after that I just add all the remaining ingredients tomatoes with chiles, cumin, chili powder, cayenne pepper, salt, tomato sauce, and broth to my Instant Pot.
After I stir it all together I put the lid on and set the Instant Pot in Rice mode, which cooks it under pressure for 8 minutes. If your pressure cooker doesnt have a Rice mode you can also use Manual mode for 8 minutes.
For rice based dished it is best to let the pressure release naturally for 5-10 minutes, so the grains have a chance to rest and finish absorbing the liquid.
After that you can release the remaining pressure manually or wait for it finish releasing naturally, depending on when the rest of your meal will be finished.
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Why Do You Saut Rice Before Cooking
- When you sauté rice before boiling or cooking, the rice can absorb flavors from whatever oil or fat your sautéing them with. For example, butter will give it more of a toasted, nutty flavor, sesame oil will give it a bit of Asian flavor, and olive oil will give it… well, an olive oil flavor.
- If you sauté rice with seasonings like spices or garlic, the rice gets infused with those seasonings. All the more reason to add more garlic!
- When you sauté rice or other grains, the rice gets a bit toasted on the outside . This slightly toasted exterior keeps the rice from becoming too mushy and the grains perfectly sticky!
Once you try this easy Instant Pot Mexican rice, you’ll never want to cook rice any other way!
Okay, maybe you’ll have to cook it on the stovetop if your Instant Pot is busy cooking that Cafe Rio sweet pork!
If you want more Instant Pot recipes, The Instant Pot Electric Pressure Cooker Cookbook: Easy Recipes for Fast & Healthy Meals looks like a good one and has great reviews!
Instant Pot Rice Recipe
I have said it so many times here that the easiest thing tocook in your instant pot pressure cooker is rice and that includes this instantpot Mexican rice. I havent made rice on the stove stop ever since I bought mypressure king pro and instant pot.
Cooking rice in a pressure cooker takes so many guesses out of all the 101 questions you may have about the gadget. Just press that one button and do your own thing for another 15 minutes or so.
I am slowly building my pressure cooker rice collection for the blog which I promise to share with all in due course.
This pressure cooker rice and chicken and instant pot coconut rice recipes are becoming popular and all for good reasons too. These recipes are foolproof, they have been tried and tested with other rice variations too from pure basmati rice to brown rice to long grain rice.
Now is the time to stop your instant pot pressure cooker from gathering dust and start cooking some delicious and easy recipes you and your family would love.
Guess what, electric pressure cookers are really easy and simple to use, and I have some super simple recipes to ease you in.
Now let’s get back to today’s post, instant pot Mexican rice. Let me show you how to make a restaurant-quality Mexican side dish in your pressure cooker. It is quick, simple and requires minimal prep.
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Tips To Make Perfect Spanish Rice
- Buter: You can substitute oil with butter for some extra goodness.
- Tomato: You can use salsa or Rotel instead of tomato sauce.
- Rice: Make sure your rice is properly washed or rinsed in cold water before cooking. To make the rice fluffy and tasty, you want to eliminate as much starch as possible.
- Spices: You may also eliminate the chili powder, cumin, and oregano and substitute 1 tablespoon taco seasoning instead.
- Instant Pot Tip: Whenever you add in the salsa or tomato sauce, do not stir the pot. To avoid the Instant Pot giving you a burn warning, keep the tomatoes away from the bottom of the pot.
- Garnishes: You can also garnish Spanish rice with cilantro, shredded lettuce, pico de gallo, sour cream, and sliced avocado.
How To Make Spanish Rice
- Rinse the rice in cold water until it is clear. Drain thoroughly.
- Set the Instant Pot to sauté mode and wait for it to warm up.
- Add the oil, onion, jalapeño, and garlic. Saute for 2 to 3 minutes. until onions are translucent and soften. We just need to soften the onions, not brown them.
- Now add rice, spices, broth, corn and mix them well.
- Add the tomato sauce. You can also use your favorite salsa. At this point, do not stir the pot. This is because the tomatoes can sometimes cause a burn when cooking under pressure.
- Close Instant pot lid after turning off the sauté mode. Cook on high pressure. Once the Instant pot beeps, do a 10 minute naturally release.
- Open the lid. Fluff rice with a fork and garnish with cilantro. You can also garnish Spanish rice with shredded lettuce, pico de gallo, sour cream, and sliced avocado.
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Why Make This In An Instant Pot
The Instant Pot cooks rice dishes quickly and easily. Rice comes out perfectly cooked nearly every time we use the Instant Pot. It is also fast. You can make fresh rice recipes just about any night of the week and have plenty of time for your busy schedule.
New to Instant Pot cooking and nervous about making this in the Instant Pot? Dont worry! We have you covered with our handy guide to Instant Pot cooking, Is the Instant Pot Worth It.
Saute Aromatics & Toast Rice
- Saute aromatics: Saute the onion & garlic with salt in instant pot on SAUTE function kept at HIGH heat.
- Rinse rice: Rinse the long grain white rice several times under running tap water until clear water runs through. This will wash out the surface starch from the rice grains and make the rice extremely fluffy. No more mushy or gummy rice ever & no more BURN errors! Drain the rinsed rice in a colander.
- Toast rinsed rice: Add the rinsed rice and toast for 1-2 mins. Youll find that the rice is turning opaque. Toasting the rice will add lots of depth of flavor to the dish and enhance the nuttiness in the rice.
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How To Make Easy Instant Pot Mexican Rice
Authentic Mexican rice requires that you toast/sauté the rice for a few minutes or until it starts to brown before adding the rest of the ingredients. Thanks to the sauté function or browning of an electric pressure cooker, it means you can make a restaurant tasting Spanish rice in the comfort of your home.
Step 1: Rinse rice under cool water until no longer cloudyand water runs clear. Drain in a sieve and set aside. Chop the onions andtomatoes and prep the rest of the ingredients
Step 2: turn on thesaute function of your instant pot, add vegetable oil and heat until hot. Addthe rinsed rice and stir continuously for another 3 minutes ensuring it doesntstick to the bottom of the pan until rice is slightly browned.
Step 3: add chopped jalapeno and tomatoes and stir tocombine, followed by the chicken stock, stir to combine and deglaze the pan atthe same time. Dont omit this step to avoid getting BURN notice during thepressure cooking process.
Step 4: Add tomato paste then cumin and chilli powder on topof the rice, do not stir.
Step 5: Lock the IP securely and turn the valve to thesealing position. Select manual or pressure cook button and cook on high pressurefor 8 minutes.
When the cooking cycle has completed, leave to naturallypressure release for 5 minutes and carefully quick release to depressurise thepressure cooker. Remove the lid
Step 5: Fluff ricewith a fork or stir to combine. Serve and enjoy!
Fluff Mexican Rice & Serve
- Fluff Mexican rice: Gently fluff the Pressure cooker Mexican rice with the help of a pair of fork. Once you are done fluffing the rice immediately remove the steel insert and keep it on the countertop or you may transfer the Mexican rice into a large serving bowl/plate. This will prevent the rice from getting over cooked and sticking to the bottom of the pot with the residual heat coming off from the base of the Instant Pot. The instant pot takes a while to cool down even after you turn it off!
- Serve: Serve the fluffy Mexican rice with you favorite Mexican dishes like this Instant Pot Shrimp Fajita. Enjoy!
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Instant Pot Spanish Rice
This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy.
Instant Pot Spanish Rice is the easy and flavor-packed restaurant-style side dish youll love to serve with all of your favorite Tex Mex meals. And by using your pressure cooker, you get perfect fluffy results every time! This Mexican rice recipe is also naturally gluten free with a simple vegan option.
This Instant Pot Mexican Rice Recipe
is easy, one-pot recipe
exactly like the one you get at restaurants
great as a side or inside tacos/burritos
vegan & gluten-free
I have used basmati rice in this recipe. I know it is not the traditional rice to make Mexican Rice but thats what I had at home and it worked out quite well for the recipe. If you change the rice, the water quantity might change too. So stick to basmati recipe for this recipe.
This recipe is relatively simple with garlic, onions, jalapeño, pepper and cilantro. You can even add corn here. A squeeze of lime juice at the end would be nice too! The recipe is easily customizable.
I make a big batch of this instant pot Mexican rice for summer parties and get togethers. First of all I dont need to turn off my stove in this heat so thats a huge plus!
And second, this rice can be pretty much used as a side or a main along with tacos/burritos. I love the versatility and ease of this dish!
Recommended Reading: What To Do If Your Instant Pot Says Burn
Do I Need To Use Natural Release On My Instant Pot When Cooking Rice
While it’s not mandatory to allow the Instant Pot to naturally release the pressure for your cooked rice, I highly suggest it.At least for 10 minutes for white rice and 20 minutes for brown rice. This allows the rice time to fully absorb the liquid and gives it that light and fluffy texture. Now if you’re in an absolute hurry, then using the quick release function will do, however the rice may have a slightly harder texture.
Pressure Cooker Mexican Rice
Heres a little trivia about me. I cant roll my Rs.
I know, I know, thats pretty personal, but what I can I say? Im an open book. Every so often, I get the urge to try again, in case my tongue has matured over the years and will suddenly just know what to do. But Im always disappointed. I wonder if theres some kind of instructional video on YouTube. I cant bring myself to google it. Anyway, if I somehow ever magically get the ability to roll my Rs at some point down the line, I am pretty sure that the first word I say will be Arroz, as in Arroz Rojo, or red rice. It just sounds, well, sexy. I have faith that one day, it will happen. But in the meantime, Ill just eat this rice and dream of the day I am inducted into the R-Rollers Club. Thats a thing, right?
So, weve already made Mexican Cauliflower Rice, and its pretty darn good, I have to say. But sometimes a girls just gotta have the real thing. And when that craving strikes, theres no better tool for the job than a pressure cooker. Why, you ask? Lets break it down.
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Spanish Rice Vs Mexican Rice
Spanish rice is a side dish that youll often see served at Mexican restaurants. It is similar to a rice pilaf in that it is lightly toasted in oil before adding the cooking liquid. In the case of Spanish rice, though, it is flavored with aromatics like onion, garlic, and cumin and cooked in a mixture of broth and tomato sauce or another tomato product.
So you may wonder why it is called Spanish rice when it should probably be called Mexican rice. In fact, rice isnt even usually made this way in Spain, and in Mexico, they just call it arroz or arroz rojo . The term is actually only used in the United States, but may be due to the fact that is was the Spanish who introduced rice to Mexico after traveling to Asia and then bringing it back to their new colonies.
Whatever you call it, there is no reason you have to visit Mexico or even your favorite Mexican restaurant to enjoy this simple side dish. Especially when you use your Instant Pot to make it fast, easy and perfectly fluffy and flavorful! Once you learn how, youll be making it every time you serve tacos, burritos, or even just alongside grilled steak or chicken!
Mexican Rice Instant Pot Ingredients
The ingredient list for this spicy rice side dish is fairly short, and chances are you have everything you need to make it already on hand. Just another reason why I love this recipe so much!
Obviously a good, basic white rice is essential, like basmati or jasmine. I typically buy the 20 or 25-lb. bags at Costco and then portion them into 8 cups per gallon size Ziploc bag. Yeah, its a lot of rice! But its way much more economical to purchase it in large quantities, and breaking it into smaller portions makes it manageable, even for smaller families.
butter real butter, please! Used to sauté the onions and jalapenos until the onions are translucent.
diced onion & jalapeño peppers remove the ribs and seeds from the jalapeños for less heat. Make dicing both super easy with my favorite veggie chopper!
chicken broth along with the butter, adds a delicious richness to this dish!
tomato sauce the recipe calls for an 8-oz. can, but if you have a larger can just measure out 1 cup and freeze the remainder for another use.
cumin, oregano, and chili powderMexican oregano provides the most authentic flavor, but regular oregano works just fine. Control how spicy the final dish is by reducing the amount of chili powder.
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Why Is An Instant Pot Great For Cooking Rice
I originally bought an Instant Pot planning to use it mostly as a rice cooker. My mom had a rice cooker when I was growing up, but I always just made it on the stove top. A few years ago I decided it would be very handy to have a rice cooker to simplify dinner prep and so that my rice would be perfect every time.
Once I started researching I realized an Instant Pot would give me a rice cooker and so much more, so I decided to go ahead and get it, even though it cost a bit more. As it turns out I use it all the time now for many things other than rice, because it is so much more versatile than a basic rice cooker!
But it still does work very well for cooking rice. First of all it is fast at making perfect rice. And, like a rice cooker, the rice can stay warming in the Instant Pot for quite a while without decreasing the quality of the meal.
So when I am making a meal with rice I can start it in the Instant Pot and know it will be ready when the rest of dinner is ready, saving me from having to plan out the timing so everything finishes all at once.
But the best thing about making rice in the Instant Pot is that it always comes out perfect, with fluffy rice that isnt soggy or hard around the edges.