Meatless Monday: Mexican Rice Recipe

Spice up your rice this Meatless Monday and serve sabroso Mexican arroz.

As 63% of Latinos in the United States are of Mexican descent, a receta from Mexico is a perfect choice for Hispanic Heritage Month.

I love this flavorful rice dish from south-of-the-border enhanced with tomato sauce and fresh veggies. My husband taught me this delicioso recipe when we met, and it has been a staple in my kitchen ever since.

Whip up a pot and you won’t be able to get enough!


Roberto's Mexican Rice Recipe


  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cups rice
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups tomato sauce
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 3-4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 spicy jalepeño or habenaro pepper, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 bunch fresh cilantro


  1. Heat olive oil in pot, and saute ¼ of the onion for 5 minutes, until golden. Stir in rice until coated in olive oil.
  2. Stir in water and tomato sauce followed by all other ingredients.
  3. Bring to a boil then lower heat, cover and let sit until all liquid is absorbed.
  4. Fluff and serve. Garnish with cilantro.

This rice is good enough to enjoy alone, or makes a great side for Mexican favorites such as enchiladas or tamales, or Tex-Mex fajitas which I write about in Meatless Monday: Cinco de Mayo Eggplant and Mushroom Fajitas Recipe.

Don’t hesitate to serve seconds--Mexican arroz is packed with nutrients. Rice is a good source of carbohydrates which give your body long-lasting energy and vegetables provide important vitamins. Make this dish even healthier by choosing brown rice, which has more fiber and minerals than white rice. Experiment with this receta- I’ve also added squash and chopped tomatoes to the mix. ¡Qué rico!

As a vegetarian, I look for meatless dishes like this one that are filling and high in nutritional value.  Mexican rice is a perfect Meatless Monday option for Hispanic Heritage Month or any time of year!

¿Need Meatless Monday inspiration? Click here to read more of my recipes.

The Wise Latina Club's Natalie Wagner FierroA teacher by day, The Wise Latina Club’s Natalie Wagner Fierro is the co-founder of the Institute for Student Health. She equally loves food (cooking or dining in Washington’s restaurants) and burning calories by distance running, practicing yoga, and archery. Click here to read more about and connect with Natalie.

Edited by: Viviana Hurtado, Ph.D.

What is your favorite Mexican recipe?