Instant Pot Mexican Rice

The flavors in this healthy Instant Pot Mexican Rice make this the perfect side for dishes from Mexico and the Southwest.
Instant Pot Mexican Rice Recipe

By Mark Hinds | Updated August 18, 2022

Using an Instant Pot to make Mexican rice is a quick, easy way to make a healthy and delicious side dish that goes perfectly with tacos, burritos, and enchiladas.

A lot of recipes use the terms Mexican and Spanish rice interchangeably. The main difference between this Instant Pot Mexican Rice recipe and our stove-top Spanish Rice, besides cooking method, is that this recipe builds its flavor profile around the delicious Mexican flavors in the roasted green chilies, cilantro, and cumin.

One reason we make this so often is that we’ve always found the more flavorful a rice dish is, the more of it people will eat and eating more rice is a great way to eat a healthier and more sustainable diet.

Tips for Better Instant Pot Rice

One of the things Instant Pots  and other pressure cookers are exceptionally good at is cooking rice, especially dishes like this one that includes lots of additional ingredients that can get messy when you’re making it on the stove top.

One of the main advantages to cooking rice in an Instant Pot is how the pressure helps it absorb flavors while it’s cooking.  This is why we like to add aromatics, such as onion, garlic, and chilies to the pot at the beginning of the cooking process.  Other advantages to cooking rice in an Instant Pot include how fast it cooks and that it can be left alone once the top is on.

Instant Pot Mexican Rice Top
Mexican Rice is a great side dish for anything with Southwestern or Mexican flavors

In our testing, we’ve found the ideal ratio for cooking rice in an instant pot is 1-1/2 cups liquid to 1 cup rice. The sealed environment means you can use less liquid than you would on a stove top.

When you’re cooking rice in an Instant Pot it helps if you fluff the rice right after it’s done cooking, this helps it stays fluffier longer than when it’s left unfluffed for a long-time on the warm setting with a natural release.

If you’re looking for a recipe with more Asian inspired flavors, try our Ginger White Rice.  You can also find more Instant Pot recipes in our Slow Cooking section.

If you’re looking for a smart cooker, we recommend the Instant Pot Ultra, which is packed with extra settings that make it incredibly versatile.

What to Serve With Mexican Rice

Instant Pot Mexican Rice has become a staple around our house when we want something healthy and filling to go along with a main dish that has Southwestern or Mexican flavors.

It’s particularly good with Shredded Chicken Enchiladas and a Mezcal Margarita or Classic American Tacos.

Instant Pot Mexican Rice Recipe

Instant Pot Mexican Rice

5 from 4 votes
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Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Total Time: 17 minutes
Servings: 4 servings


  • 1 cup white rice
  • 4 green onions
  • 1 14 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1 3/4 cups chicken or vegetable stock
  • 1 4 oz can roasted green chilies, diced
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, minced
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper


  • Finely dice the green onions, separating the white and green parts of the onions.
  • Turn the Instant Pot on and turn it to the rice setting. Once it heats up sauté the green chilies and the white part of the green onions for a couple of minutes in a little olive oil. Drain the tomatoes and add them along with the stock, cilantro, green chilies, cumin, chili powder, salt, and pepper.
  • Add the rice, give everything a good stir. Set the Instant Pot’s rice setting to 12 minutes, secure the lid, and let the rice cook. When the rice has finished cooking release the pressure and give the rice a good stir to mix everything up.
  • Mix the tops of the green onions into the rice, saving a few to use as a garnish on top of the rice.

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Calories: 240kcal | Carbohydrates: 48g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 3mg | Sodium: 718mg | Potassium: 396mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 360IU | Vitamin C: 16.9mg | Calcium: 58mg | Iron: 2mg

The nutrition information shown is an estimate based on available ingredients and preparation.

Mark is an experienced food writer, recipe developer, and photographer who is also Umami’s publisher and CEO. A passionate cook who loves to cook for friends, he can often be found in the kitchen or by the grill testing new recipes.

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