Easy Vegan Mexican Rice Recipe 🌶 An easy & delicious plant-based dish made with rice, vibrant veggies, peppers & zesty bright flavor! GF and oil-free option.
🥕This recipe was updated and renamed 12/29/20.
This easy vegan rice recipe is the ideal, inexpensive dish to accompany most any Mexican or Spanish themed meal. No more making Mexican or Spanish rice from a box! With just a few basic ingredients – rice, onions, peppers, corn, tomatoes, salsa & spices – you can have a batch of this perfectly prepared rice ready in as little as 30 minutes.
I love this recipe. It’s one of those simple go-to’s you can count on whenever you need a quick & tasty side dish. It’s the perfect partner with vegan enchiladas, tacos or a burrito bowl. I like to prepare a batch of vegan Mexican rice to serve with a salad, beans and fresh tortillas. You can also easily turn it into an entree by adding pinto or black beans or vegan burger crumbles.
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How to make easy vegan Mexican rice
Don’t have all the right ingredients on hand? No worries! The beauty of this easy vegan Mexican rice recipe is you can add/substitute or delete ingredients & end up with an absolutely delicious dish. Don’t be afraid to mix it up a bit if needed.
Here are ingredients I used in this recipe with suggested substitutions:
- Brown rice – substitute with long grain white rice
- Vegetable broth – substitute with water or water with vegan bouillon
- Yellow onion – substitute with red or white onion or scallions
- Red bell pepper – substitute with any variety bell pepper or use jalapeño
- Corn – fresh, frozen or canned
- Crushed tomatoes – substitute with canned whole tomatoes pulsed in blender
- Chunky salsa – any variety
- Cumin – substitute with coriander or a tiny amount of saffron for a Spanish flavor
- Chili powder – substitute with paprika
- Olive oil – use avocado oil, vegetable oil, or no oil (replace with water)
- Salt & pepper
🥕NOTE: If you prepare rice often, a rice cooker will be your best friend in the kitchen. It’s so convenient. Press the button and voila! Minutes later you’ll have a perfectly steamed pot of rice. No fuss no muss! I’ve had several rice cookers over the years and this stainless steel rice cooker by Aroma is my absolute favorite.
See the full recipe below for complete instructions
🥕NOTE: I like to add a small amount of maple syrup or sugar to tomato-based sauces. The sweetness helps cut the acidic taste of the tomatoes and makes the sauce even richer in flavor.
Once everything is done cooking, simply combine the sauce with the rice and it’s ready to serve. Just as easy as that! Store leftovers (if there are any) in the fridge in an airtight container up to 3 days & in the freezer for a month.
Did you enjoy this recipe? If so, you’ll love these easy & delish dishes!
- Easy Garden Fresh Gazpacho
- Fresh & Easy Watermelon Pico de Gallo
- Easy Vegan Potato Enchilada Casserole
- Southwestern Quinoa Salad
- Easy Cheesy Vegan Pepper Poppers
very vegan 🌱 very good
Easy Vegan Mexican Rice Recipe
- Rice cooker or 4 qt (or larger) covered sauce pan
- large skillet
- Mesh strainer
- 1 cup brown rice long grain – uncooked
- 2 cups vegetable broth or water
- 2 tbsp olive oil see notes below for oil-free option
- 1 medium yellow onion diced
- 1/4 tsp cumin powder
- 1/4 tsp chili powder
- 1 medium red bell pepper seeded & diced
- 1/2 cup corn kernels fresh, frozen or canned (drained)
- 3 tbsp salsa chunky
- 15 oz tomatoes canned crushed tomatoes
- 2 tbsp maple syrup
- Prepare rice according to package ingredients. Use broth for liquid.
- While rice is steaming, prepare sauce.
- Pour 2 tbsp olive oil in skillet. Place on stove over medium heat.
- Add diced onions to skillet. Stir occasionally to prevent burning.
- Add cumin & chili powder to onions.
- Add diced peppers, corn and salsa. Stir to combine and allow to sauté until just tender.
- Add crushed tomatoes and maple syrup. Stir. Reduce heat to low and allow to thicken while rice is steaming. Stir frequently, don't let it burn.
- Add salt & pepper to taste.
- Remove from heat.
- Once rice is ready, add rice to sauce in skillet or transfer all to a large mixing bowl. Stir rice and sauce until thoroughly combined.
- Enjoy while hot or allow to cool and transfer to an airtight container until ready to serve. Rice may be reheated in a microwave-safe dish in microwave or in a saucepan on a stove top over medium-low heat. Be sure to stir frequently so it doesn't burn on the bottom of pan.
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