This Mexican Rice and Beans recipe is super quick and simple to make. In fact, you can whip this meal up in almost no time at all. You’ll have dinner for tonight while enjoying leftovers all week! In other words, this will become your favorite dish!
Why I Love Spanish Rice and Beans
The first job I ever had was working in the kitchen of a Mexican restaurant and tequila bar. It was a great first job mainly because of all the great food that I got to sample.
First of all, there were just so many new things to try! Therefore, I never got tired of Mexican food in general while working there.
Consequently, the best dish that I ever had was the most basic. Hence, classic beans and rice was my go to dish because of its simplicity.
It never, ever let me down and I never got bored of it.
I have very fond memories of working late nights and sneak eating Mexican rice and beans in between serving tables. Thankfully, my boss never caught me!
Therefore, I have been trying to replicate this delicious meal ever since. Finally, I think I finally found something very close to that authentic mexican rice and beans from years ago with this recipe.
Mixing the Rice and Beans
So the first thing that I always use to do with my rice and beans was stir them together rather than keep them separate. The spices and tomato flavor of the rice are meant to be combined with the creamy, dense beans.
While creating this recipe, there was no way I was keeping those two apart! The beans are cooked in the salsa and seasonings and then mixed with the rice to create exactly what I was looking for in a very simple way. In addition, this also makes cooking the dish even easier because everything can go together in one pan.
Above all, anything that makes cooking easier is always a win in my book!
What Type of Rice Tastes Best?
So let’s talk about the rice for a little bit.
For instance, I usually stick to regular white rice because it is going to absorb a lot of the spices and other flavors from the dish. There really is no need to go too crazy with expensive or other hard to cook rice. Brown rice also works really well in this recipe and is considered to be healthier (which is always a nice little bonus).
But maybe you love basmati rice or wild rice is your favorite. Most importantly, whatever type of rice you really like (or maybe just whatever you have in your house!), just go for it!
Finally, don’t overthink it! You really can’t go wrong with most types of rice so don’t shy away from plain old white rice, it will do this recipe good.
Easy Mexican Rice and Beans Recipe
We have the rice, now on to the beans!
Furthermore, I tried to keep it simple with this recipe. Complicated is almost never an option for me.
For example, canned beans are probably the best way to go when making this dish.
First off, there is no soaking beans or extra cooking involved so you really save time.
Secondly, you just reach for your can opener, drain the juice, give the beans a quick rinse and you are ready to go.
Pinto beans are by far my personal favorite. Most noteworthy, these beans have been shown to have a strong link to lowering cholesterol levels. Also, the dietary fiber found in these beans helps prevent your blood sugar levels from rising too quickly after you eat a meal.
So not only does this Mexican rice and beans recipe taste good but it is healthy for you too.
While pinto beans are my personal preference, you can also try cannelloni beans or even black beans. Either one will work well in this recipe. In other words, don’t be afraid to experiment!
While black beans can be found in many Mexican dishes and you may think of them first, they will probably make your whole dish a slightly grayish color so just keep that in mind.
Mexican Beans and Rice with Salsa
Next comes the salsa and there lies the main ingredient that gives this recipe such a kick. Using premade tomato based salsa, whether it is out of a jar or made by you, is the key to making this recipe taste so great.
First of all, it’s super simple. Second of all, the tomatoes, peppers and delicious juices are already in there which means less work for you.
While using salsa as the base for the rice and beans recipe, you can also choose how spicy you would like your food. For instance, most jars state right on the front of the label if they are mild, medium or maybe even extra spicy.
Therefore, you can totally customize this beans and rice recipe to your preference. While I’m a big fan of spicy because it brings back those restaurant memories, I know many people are not. So choose the spice level that works best for your palate!
How to Make Mexican Rice and Beans
So now that we have covered the most important ingredients in this recipe… let’s start cooking!
1.) Add a little bit of olive oil and some fresh salsa to a medium-hot skillet.
2.) Start to sauté the salsa in the pan and cook until it is a little bit thick.
3.) Add in a few different spices from your spice organizer such as:
- chili powder
4.) Stir the spices around really well. Add beans into the paste and reduce heat to low. Cook for 15 minutes.
.5.) Add the cooked rice last and mix everything together until evenly combined.
Voila! Dinner is ready to be served.
By now, your house should smell like fragrant spices while your belly will be grumbling to eat!
While at the beginning of this recipe, I’m sure you were probably thinking….what’s so special about rice and beans?
I get it. It certainly doesn’t sound fancy or creative but sometimes the staples are what you really need. Mexican rice and beans has been a staple for me since working in that restaurant soooo many years ago. However, it still feels like yesterday.
This recipe has just stuck with me and it will stick with you too. It is easy, filling and tastes truly authentic while still being healthy and nutritious at the same time.
As a result, I don’t think I will ever grow tired of this recipe. So give this Mexican Rice and Beans recipe a try because I know you and your family will love it! My guess is you’ll probably end up making this dish all the time.
Mexican Rice and Beans Recipe Requirements
More Simple Mexican Recipes
- Crockpot Shredded Mexican Chicken
- Slow Cooker Mexican Hashbrown Casserole
- Healthy Mexican Rice Bowl
Love this recipe? Let us know in the comment below. We’d love to hear from you!
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*This recipe was previously published on Simple Green Moms. We’ve updated and expanded the post on 11/24/18 to make it even better for our readers!
Hope you enjoy! 🙂
Mexican Rice and Beans Recipe Requirements
Made this tonight for dinner. All of the kids enjoyed it. Thanks for sharing!
That’s so great to hear! Thanks for letting us know
I just made this and it was great! I used Jasmine Brown Rice and Cowboy Cavier salsa from Trader Joe’s. Super easy and flavorful.
Awesome that’s great to hear!
Yummy, quick, and easy to make! I cut back on some things being I was making it for my young kiddos. I used 1 can of beans and I cut the olive oil, paprika, and chili powder in half. Threw a little Daiya shredded cheese on top, and it became the perfect lunch. Family approved. Thank you for sharing!! 🙂
It is always awesome to hear that someone liked a recipe I suggested…thank you so much for sharing 🙂
My husband and I just finished eating our first bowls of this – we’re going in for seconds and skipping dessert!
Glad I doubled the recipe, as we can have leftovers for lunch tomorrow. I’m thinking this would taste AWESOME in a flour tortilla with some sour cream, shredded cheese, and guacamole!
Really, really yummy! Thank you so much for sharing the recipe!
Sounds great, so glad you liked it 🙂
Love ,love ,love this recipe, it’s quick and easy to make, and EVERYONE in the house loved it, it was all gone! Thank you for sharing!
Is it 1 teaspoon of minced garlic or powdered?
I’ve always used powdered garlic.
Being a rice FANATIC I saw this and thought “that looked delicious and different from our usual! Sooo good and easy! ?? Loved it!
Loved this! So simple to make too!
Lydia Rose says
Being Hispanic I have made tons of Mexican rice so was skeptical about this recipe. But decided to give it a try. It was amazing. Will definitely make it again
Thanks for sharing.
Just found you and your site and it looks awesome.
Will definitely be trying several of your recipes.
This recipe was quick and delicious! The family loved it and will make it part of our dinner rotation.
Thanks for sharing!!?
I cannot begin to tell you how many times I’ve made this recipe! I love how easy it is! I always have everything on hand, and when I don’t, it’s so easy to customize. I typically make it with brown rice, and mix up the beans depending on what I have. Every time it’s delicious and I have leftovers for a few meals after (or I put them in burritos – yum!). Thanks for such a great recipe. It’s a keeper!
I’m so happy to hear that Jenn! Glad you loved it.
Medison From CookwareStuffs says
Fabulous…am big fan of mexican recipes..and this rice beans looks sooo yummy & delicious as well…Thanks for sharing…keep shared your new amazing recipes..!
So glad you enjoyed it!! We’ll keep sharing!
This recipe was great exactly as written. I used all the ingredients mentioned including Carolina Rice, Pace Salsa, and garlic powder.
But what was the green garnish shown in the photo, cilantro or parsley? That dresses it up nicely
So glad you enjoyed it! The garnish is parsley.
That’s great to hear, Heathe!
I can’t remember the last time I’ve ever rated/comments on a recipe !! BUT I had to for this one ! Super easy! And delicious! thanks for sharing!! with four kids and a husband to feed, this is the perfect side dish I needed with my quesadillas!! thank you!
Awesome!! Thanks so much for the compliment! So glad you and your family loved it!!
Tastes OK. Next time will use medium heat. Med. high is too hot. Almost burned salsa.
Well seasoned, easy and delicious! The best mexican bean and rice recipe I’ve found. Was searching for something with ingredients I always have on hand. This is it! I used black beans instead. Will use this recipe everytime. Thank you!
That’s great to hear, Gabby! So glad you enjoyed the recipe!!!
Jennifer Dumas says
Fabulous… I love avocado! Those toast really do looks sooo yummy & delicious. Thanks for sharing!!
Louise George says
Thank you for sharing this! I love it!
So happy to hear that!! Glad you loved it.
Making this tonight for the second time. My hubby and son both raved over it. We served it rolled in a flour tortilla, and also as a dip with corn chips. Mix and match. We love it. Thanks so much. Will have to check out your other recipies.
That’s awesome!! So happy to hear that.
Anne Ivey says
Can I cook this ahead of time? I am thinking of bringing it to a friends house.
Marie White says
Does this freeze well if you have leftovers?
No, it doesn’t. You can keep it in the refrigerator to re-heat the next day but it tastes best when served immediately.
Never thought of heating salsa. Very clever. Will be making this weekend.
Mexican Rice Beans recipe is great! I made it according to your recipe and the taste is great! Everyone in the family likes it, it makes me happy. thank you
I’m so happy to hear that! Thanks for sharing.
I recently chose to adopt a vegetarian lifestyle. My 11 year old has been skeptical. He has enjoyed the some of the meals I’ve loved. This one exceeded even my expectations. When he put the first bite in his mouth he moaned “Uh huh!” As if to say, “Do this one again!” It was spicy for our liking so I garnished with a dollop of sour cream and served it with pan fried tortilla strips.
So glad to hear this!
Made this tonight and it was really good. I did question the garlic in the recipe. Wasn’t sure if you meant garlic powder or fresh garlic? I used fresh thinking if you meant powder…. You would have written that.
Thank you for this recipe😀
So glad you like it Debbie! It was fresh garlic. Thank you.