This Instant Pot Mexican Rice recipe is my favorite side-dish for any Mexican food we eat! I perfected this recipe while living in Mexico– it’s completely authentic– and I’ve adapted it to cook perfectly in the Instant Pot! The end result is Mexican rice that is so perfect, easy and delicious I may never go back to the stove-top version!

Cooked Mexican rice with peas and carrots, inside an instant pot, served with a wooden spoon.

If you’re a follower of TBFS you may already know that I’m a crazy huge fan of Mexican food. I have soooo many delicious Mexican recipes on my site–probably more than any other type of cuisine–because I LOVE it!

My husband and I lived in Puebla, Mexico for a few months when we were first married. I learned to make several authentic recipes while we lived there, but this Authentic Mexican rice is the one I use the very most. (You can check out some photos from our time there, and the story, here).

I’ve adapted my recipe to make Instant Pot Mexican Rice, and it turns out PERFECT. I love the way the instant pot cooks rice. You don’t have to worry about mushy or gloopy rice. It’s fluffy and tender, and exactly how rice should be!

Mexican rice is made of long-grain white rice, tomato, onion and garlic. In Mexico it is also often cooked with diced peas and carrots.

The chef who taught me to make Mexican rice used Tomato bullion cubes for extra great flavor, and to get that perfect orange color that you’re looking for. They should be easy to find at your local grocery store, in the Mexican food aisle.

You could even buy the granules instead of cubes (use 2 teaspoons). I buy tomato boullion at Walmart, in the Mexican food aisle or you can find them on Amazon.

How to make Mexican Rice in the Instant Pot:

Rinse the rice under water until the water runs clear. Drain well.

Turn instant pot to the saute setting. Add oil and rice and stir often, until the rice starts to get slightly golden.

Add tomato sauce, minced garlic, onion, tomato boullion and diced carrots.

Process photos for making authentic mexican rice in the instant pot, including add the rice and toasting it and then adding tomato sauce, tomato bullion cubes, onion, garlic and carrots.

Stir well. Add water and stir, making sure the boullion cubes are dissolved.

Turn instant pot off. Secure lid and turn valve to sealed position.

Turn on to Manual or High Pressure, and cook for 3-4 minutes (3 minutes for tender to the bite, or 4 minutes for softer rice).

Ingredients for Mexican rice inside an instant pot with a wooden spoon, and another photo of an instant pot with the cooked rice and frozen peas added on top.

When timer beeps, allow pressure to naturally release for 10 minutes.

Remove lid and add peas. Gently fluff the rice with a fork (don’t stir it).

Place IP lid over the bowl and allow rice to rest for a few more minutes before serving.

Instant Pot Mexican Rice in a clear mixing bowl with a serving spoon and a green cloth on the side.

Can I substitute brown rice?

Yes! To substitute brown rice, add ¼ cup additional water and cook on high pressure for 22-24 minutes (22 for low elevations, 24 for higher). Once the timer beeps allow the pressure to naturally release for 10 minutes before removing the lid and fluffing with a fork.

Don’t own an Instant Pot? No Problem!

If you don’t own an instant pot yet, you can make Authentic Mexican Rice on the stovetop with this recipe.

 

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Recipe

Cooked Mexican rice inside an instant pot, served with a wooden spoon.
Prep 10 mins
Cook 13 mins
Total 23 mins
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Ingredients
  

  • 1 1/2 cups long grain white rice
  • 1/4 cup oil (vegetable or canola oil)
  • 1 teaspoon garlic , minced
  • 1/4 medium onion , finely diced
  • 1/4 cup tomato sauce , or 2 pureed tomatoes
  • 2 tomato bouillon cubes ,finely chopped*, or 2 teaspoons granulated
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 carrot , diced
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1/3 cup frozen peas

Instructions
 

  • Rinse the rice until the water runs clear. Drain well.
  • Turn Instant Pot to saute. Once hot, add oil to the bottom of the pot.
  • Add rice and saute, stirring often, until lightly golden, about 5 minutes.
  • Add garlic, onion, tomato sauce, salt, tomato bullion and carrots and stir to combine.
  • Add water and stir well, making sure the bullion cubes are dissolved.
  • Turn instant pot off. Secure lid and turn valve to sealed position.
  • Turn on to Manual or High Pressure, and cook for 3-4 minutes (3 minutes for tender to the bite, or 4 minutes for softer rice).
  • When timer beeps, allow pressure to naturally release for 10 minutes.
  • Remove lid and add peas. Gently fluff the rice with a fork (don't stir it).
  • Place IP lid over the bowl and allow rice to rest for a few more minutes before serving.

Notes

*Tomato bouillon cubes or granules can be found in the Mexican food at your local grocery store. You could substitute chicken broth, but the rice wont have the same rich color.
Don't own an Instant Pot? No Problem!
If you don’t own an instant pot yet, you can make Authentic Mexican Rice on the stovetop with this recipe.
 
Find my tips (and step-by-step photos) for cooking perfect mexican rice, above in the post.

Nutrition

Calories: 323kcalCarbohydrates: 50gProtein: 5gFat: 10gSodium: 371mgPotassium: 159mgFiber: 1gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 1805IUVitamin C: 5.1mgCalcium: 24mgIron: 0.7mg

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Have you tried this recipe?!
RATE this recipe and COMMENT below! I would love to hear your experience.

 

This post contains affiliate links. I love sharing my favorite products and cooking tools with you all!

 

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About The Author

Lauren Allen

Welcome! I’m Lauren, a mom of four and lover of good food. Here you’ll find easy recipes and weeknight meal ideas made with real ingredients, with step-by-step photos and videos.

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  1. 4 stars
    I did the entire 4 min for soft rice and 10 min natural release. The rice was still chewy. 🙁 The dish itself lacked flavor. I would try again and perhaps add more tomato sauce and some other spices? to add flavor. I would also add another minute or two to the cook time, too.

    1. 5 stars
      I tried it again tonight but added 1 tsp cumin, 1 tsp chili powder, 1/2 tsp oregano, and an additional tsp of minced garlic. I omitted the peas and at the very end just before serving I mixed in about 1/4 cup fresh chopped cilantro. I cooked for 5 min then 10 min NR. It was a hit with the whole family! Flavor was there and the texture of the rice was spot on and fluffy! Will make this over and over with these few additions!

  2. This rice is delicious when prepared as written for granulated bullion, but if you are using the product that the affiliate link directs you can use (bouillon cubes) you should only use one, not two.

  3. 5 stars
    This was really good and tasted authentic. I pressure cooked for 5 minutes. Followed recipe except I threw in a bit of mixed veges before cooking since I did not have carrots.

  4. 5 stars
    I LOVE this recipe, I’ve made it at least 5 times or more now. I don’t think it’s very Mexican tasting, so I serve it alongside grilled chicken, ribs, steak, you name it! Add a little cilantro and lime juice if you’re serving it as a Mexican side dish (drop the peas and carrots) and it tastes even more amazing, which I didn’t think was possible! I follow the x2 recipe and it turns out perfect every single time. My husband is super picky about the texture of his rice and since making this recipe he always asks me to make it again and again! I’ve literally made it for friends and family purposefully on nights they’re coming for dinner and I send them home with leftovers and the recipe! Thank you so much for sharing, I’m very grateful for this recipe since I’m not the greatest chef.

  5. 5 stars
    I made the recipe as written, except that I did not have carrots and I used avocado oil instead of vegetable oil. It tastes exactly like the restaurants, maybe even a little better.

    I don’t know why people are getting a burn notice in their instapots. I’ve always cooked white and brown rice with 1 to 1 ratio and have never had that happen, even when I owned an off brand version. If this is your first attempt, do not double the water or you’ll have mushy rice (a sin!). Possibly the issue is that people don’t turn off the saute function when you add the wet ingredients and you burn off the water?? I cooked mine 4 minutes on high, natural released for 10, then added frozen peas and closed lid for 5 minutes while unplugged. It was absolutely perfect! Thank you for the delicious recipe!

  6. 1 star
    Unfortunately it was going great until burn notice in instant pot… definitely needs more water for recipe. I had to finish on the stovetop with another cup of water.

  7. 5 stars
    I love this recipe and I am wondering if it freezes well? I am preparing for several days of hosting and trying to minimize time in the kitchen away from guests.

  8. 5 stars
    I’ve spent many years looking for a great Mexican rice recipe and I have finally found it! Comes out perfectly in the IP every time.

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