This vegan Spanish rice is easy to make rice recipe, ready in 30 minutes, tastes absolutely delicious and a wonderful side dish in any meal. Tastes exactly like the ones from your favorite Mexican restaurants. Gluten free recipe.
Loaded with tomatoes, corn and with that wonderful spice kick from jalapeños this Spanish rice also known as red rice or arroz rojo is a real treat for all Mexican food lovers.
I am a big fan of Mexican cuisine. I can never say no to a Mexican spread and this Spanish rice tops the list as my favorite.
It is such a humble preparation yet so delicious, flavorful and absolutely satiating. For me it is like having tomato rice with a different flavor profile 🙂
I have prepared the whole recipe in Instant pot but you can easily use a pressure cooker or just a pan. It is a one pot recipe and ready in 30 minutes.
Serve as side dish in a Mexican spread or see my serving suggestions for more ideas. Follow my easy step by step photos with recipe and enjoy.
About This Recipe
Are you looking for quick everyday recipes that are also delicious and feels gourmet? Are you looking for some comfort food ideas?
Well then this rice is the perfect fit for you. I love Mexican food and often recreate my favorite restaurant recipes at home.
I tasted this Mexican rice in a buffet many years back and liked it a lot. Luckily the chef was kind enough to share the recipe and it has been a regular at our home ever since.
What I love about this recipe is how easy it to is to cook with very few ingredients. Next the recipe is super versatile and you can easily make it suit your taste.
One of the common issues with rice recipes is that they turn mushy. Please try this recipe and you will love how fluffy and tender this rice is with each grains separate.
Next using an instant pot or pressure cookers reduces cooking time even further. You can get the meals on table in less than 30 minutes.
The ingredients you need for making Spanish rice are pretty simple pantry staple ingredients. Apart from rice and vegetables, you need few basic spices and I have also given alternates for them.
Try this easy recipe and enjoy this delicious and flavorful rice.
This Spanish rice is
delicious and flavorful
perfect side dish in any meal
super easy to make
one pot recipe
vegan and gluten free.
Here is the list of simple ingredients you will need for making Mexican arroz rojo recipe.
Rice– you can use any variety of rice for this recipe. I have used basmati rice here. Jasmine rice or any long grain rice if you like. I have made this Mexican red rice many times with short grained rice and it turns out just yummy. Brown rice or even quinoa can be used.
Tomatoes– You can use fresh tomatoes as I did here or use canned tomatoes with their juices. Since I have a surplus supply of tomatoes from garden, I used them.
If using fresh tomatoes, mince them super fine using a food processor rather than chopping them. You can also use tomato puree.
Tomato paste– Along with canned tomatoes or tomato puree I like to add 2 tablespoons tomato paste. This will lend a intense tomato flavor and vibrant color to the rice. Instead of paste you can also add tomato sauce.
Vegetables– Vegetables are optional in this easy vegan Spanish rice. I have just added corn and red bell pepper this time. You can also add carrot, baby corn, green peas in this recipe. Mushrooms will also taste good in this rice. You can add any colored bell peppers.
Jalapeno– I have added jalapeno pepper to give that authentic Mexican flavor to this rice. It packs a wonderful spice and taste too. If jalapenos are not available just add variety of green chili to make this recipe.
Broth- I like to use a light vegetable broth for this recipe rather than water. For this quantity of rice you will need 2 cups vegetable broth. You can use any flavored ones like chicken broth or just water if it broth is unavailable.
Garlic– for flavor
Onions– you can use red or yellow onion as you like.
Seasoning– Roasted cumin, paprika and some dried oregano. You can also cayenne pepper for taste.
Oil– I always use olive oil to make Mexican rice. You can use any cooking oil like vegetable oil.
Herbs– fresh herbs like cilantro or parsley adds so much flavor and taste to this rice. I have used fresh parsley here.
Other than these ingredients you can also add pinto beans in . Use canned ones or just soak and drain dried beans for 8 hours and add along with rice.
How To Make Spanish Rice Recipe
Pick, rinse and soak rice for 20 minutes in a large bowl full of water. You can use brown rice instead of white rice if you like. Drain the rice in a colander and spread on a plate for 5 minutes. Check this post in how to cook basmati rice perfectly for detailed steps.
Next finely chop one large onion. You will need 1 cup of chopped onions. Next rinse 3 large tomatoes and either mince them in a food processor or puree them in a blender. You will need 2 cups tomato puree. You can also use canned tomatoes. Along with vegetables you can also add 1/2 cup diced tomatoes for more tomato flavor.
Slit the jalapeno pepper, red bell pepper. Mince the garlic cloves and set aside.
Making Vegan Spanish Rice
Place the insert inside the instant pot and switch it on. Press the saute mode.
Once it displays hot add light olive oil.
Add cumin seeds, slit jalapenos and 2 cloves garlic minced. Saute for 30 seconds. Add finely chopped onions and corn kernels and saute for few seconds.
Add the chopped bell peppers, minced tomatoes, tomato paste and mix. Also add diced tomatoes now if you are using.
Next add paprika or red chili powder, salt and crushed black pepper to taste. Mix to combine.
Add the rice and mix well.
Add 2 cups vegetable broth. Next add salt to taste. Make sure to add less salt if the broth already contains salt. You can also just add water.
Bring to a boil. Cancel saute mode and close the pot. Press pressure cook or manual mode and set timer to 5 minutes. Keep the pressure valve sealed. Once done, release the pressure gently and open then pot.
Add chopped parsley, lime juice and mix.
Fluff up the rice and serve vegan Spanish rice warm.
Soaking rice for 20 minutes helps in removing the starch. Do follow this step whether you are using brown rice or white rice.
Using brown rice– if you want to use brown rice in this recipe here is how you do it. The ratio of water to rice is 3:1. That is for 1 cup of rice you will need 3 cups water. Next the time to cook brown rice is 22 minutes. Instead of 5 minutes set the timer to 22 minutes. The other steps remain the same.
Vegetables– You can add vegetables like carrot, peas in this recipe. Add 1/2 cup each along with corn.
This is an excellent side dish in any Mexican spread. You can serve this with refried beans
This Spanish rice stays good for 2-3 days in refrigerator. Store in airtight containers. You can also freeze this rice for a month.
Thaw to room temperature, reheat and serve.
Vegan Spanish Rice
- 1.25 cups rice basmati or brown rice
- 2 tablespoons olive oil or vegetable oil
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1 jalapeno slit or chopped
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 cup onions finely chopped
- 1 cup corn kernels
- 2 cups tomatoes minced or pureed
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste or tomato sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper crushed
- salt to taste
- 2 tablespoons lime juice
- 1/4 cup parsley leaves chopped
- Place the insert inside the instant pot and switch it on. Press the saute mode. Once it displays hot add light olive oil. Add cumin seeds, slit jalapenos and 2 cloves garlic minced. Saute for 30 seconds. Add finely chopped onions and corn kernels and saute for few seconds.
- Add the chopped bell peppers and minced tomatoes, tomato paste and mix. Also add diced tomatoes now if you are using.
- Next add paprika or red chili powder, salt and crushed black pepper to taste. Mix to combine.
- Add the rice and mix well.
- Add 2 cups vegetable broth. Next add salt to taste. Make sure to add less salt if the broth already contains salt. You can also just add water.
- Bring to a boil. Cancel saute mode and close the pot. Press pressure cook or manual mode and set timer to 5 minutes. Keep the pressure valve sealed. Once done, release the pressure gently and open then pot.
- Add chopped parsley, lime juice and mix.
- Fluff up the rice and serve vegan Spanish rice warm.
- Nutritional values are estimates.