This restaurant style Spanish rice recipe uses all simple ingredients and cooks to perfection in your Instant Pot pressure cooker. With all the flavors you know and love, it’s the perfect compliment to your next Mexican style dinner fiesta!
Most Mexican restaurants include a main dish, followed by 2 side dishes – refried beans and Spanish rice. Our Instant Pot Refried Beans has you covered for that recipe. And now we’re proud to offer a truly awesome and easy recipe for Instant Pot Spanish Rice.
What is Spanish (Mexican) Rice?
So basically, the names are interchangable. Some recipes call it Mexican rice, some call it Spanish rice. While there are recipes for a more traditional rice as is made in Spain, for all intents and purposes, in the United States the names are really interchangeable with the two. The recipe consists of a long-grain white rice that’s been toasted and seasoned with tomato and various latin spices, the most common of which is cumin. Occasionally it will also contain any combination of peas, carrots and corn. The Instant Pot is so perfect for rice recipes and Spanish rice is no exception.
What do I need to make this recipe?
Long-grain white rice such as Jasmine or Basmati rice. Of course a package of good old long-grain white rice is perfectly fine.
Seasonings include chili powder, cumin, smoked paprika, salt and pepper
Diced tomatoes with chiles, about ½ cup of canned is perfect. Or you can dice a couple of Roma or Campari tomatoes.
White onion provides a wonderful flavor base by sauteing first in 2 teaspoons of olive oil.
Chicken broth provides the liquid base.
Toasting Rice and Spices
After we sauté our onions, we’ll add in the rice and spices, which will get sauteed (toasted) for about 2 minutes. By toasting the rice and spices, we’re bringing a whole other level of flavor to the dish. Toasting white rice brings out a deeper, almost nutty flavor and this step also “blooms” the spices. It’s an important step that really adds that restaurant quality to the recipe. After we’ve toasted everything, pour about ¼ cup of broth into the pot and scrape the bottom with a wooden spoon. This is called deglazing and all those little bits we scrape are loaded with even more flavor. This also prevents us from getting a burn notice while pressure cooking, so make sure to scrape up those cooked on bits!
Pressure Cook and Natural Release
After we’ve secured the lid, we’ll pressure cook for 4 minutes, followed by a 10 minute natural release. It will take the Instant Pot a few minutes to come to pressure before the 4 minute countdown begins. After the 4 minutes are up, the timer will begin counting up. After 10 minutes, go ahead and release any remaining pressure.
Remove Lid and Fluff
Now that our rice has cooked to perfection, it’s time to remove the lid and give everything a stir with a wooden spoon or fork. The rice will smell amazing and become nice and fluffy and will be the perfect side dish for your dinner. If you want to add any peas, add some frozen peas at this point and simply stir them in.
Storage and Reheating
Most rice dishes are best enjoyed at the time they are cooked. That’s just the nature of rice. If you do have leftovers however, store them in an airtight container as soon as possible. When reheating in a microwave, adding a tablespoon of water can help rehydrate any dried parts. Store in refrigerator no more than a couple of days.
A restaurant quality Spanish rice recipe that cooks to perfection in your Instant Pot pressure cooker.
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- ½ cup white onion, diced
- ½ teaspoon course salt
- ½ teaspoon hot smoked paprika*
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 cup Jasmine or Basmati rice (long grain white rice)
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 2 teaspoon ground cumin
- ½ cup canned diced tomatoes with green chiles
- 1 cup chicken broth
- Place the rice in a medium colander, and rinse under cold water until the water runs clear. Set aside.
- Place olive oil in the instant pot and set to “sauté” function.
- When the pot is hot, add the diced onion and sauté for 2-3 minutes or until onions start to become translucent.
- Add the rice, chili powder, cumin, paprika, salt, pepper and diced tomatoes to the instant pot and stir for 1 minute.
- Turn the instant pot off. Pour in the broth, and scrape up any brown bits from the with a wooden spoon.
- Secure lid and make sure the valve is set to sealing. Pressure cook (manual on some appliances) on high pressure for 4 minutes. Let pressure naturally release for 10 minutes, then release any remaining pressure.
- Press cancel, carefully remove lid, and stir/fluff with a wooden spoon or fork.
*If you don’t have hot smoked paprika, use ½ teaspoon smoked paprika and ⅛ teaspoon cayenne.
- Category: Side dish
- Method: Instant Pot
- Cuisine: Mexican