Mexican Rice Casserole

I first came across this mouth watering side dish during an early morning episode of The Pioneer Woman. It looked so amazingly delicious that I immediately threw my tousled hair into a messy bun, wiped the caked on mascara from below my eyes and jumped in the car to go buy the ingredients I didn't have on hand. I may or may not have bothered to change out of my pajamas, but that's besides the point. All day I waited for dinner time, and around 4:30 I finally caved and declared that it would be an early-supper kinda night. I served this casserole as a side dish to my Sour Cream Enchiladas, and boy was it as mouth watering as it looked! This is my new go-to Mexican side dish. Original recipe here.

What you'll need:
1 tablespoon Canola oil
1 1/2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 small onion, chopped
2 cups long grain rice
1 can diced tomatoes, undrained (14.5 oz)
5 oz. diced tomatoes w/green chiles, such as Rotel
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt (I omitted this)
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/8 teaspoon tumeric
3-4 cups low sodium chicken broth (more if needed)
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
fresh cilantro for serving


Preheat the oven to 350°.
Rice Preparation*: Heat the oil in a large skillet and add the garlic and onions. Cook, 3 to 4 minutes. Reduce the heat to low and add the rice. Stir constantly, making sure the rice doesn't burn. Cook over low heat, about 3 minutes.
Next, add the whole tomatoes, diced tomatoes, cumin, salt, pepper, cayenne and turmeric. Stir to combine and let cook, about 2 minutes. Finally, add the chicken broth and stir the mixture together. Bring the mixture to a boil, and then reduce heat to low. Cover, and simmer until the rice is not quite done, 10 to 15 minutes.
Top with the cheese, and then bake with the lid off until the cheese is melted and the rice fully cooked, about 15 minutes. Serve with chopped cilantro.

*Short cut: You may use minute rice or success rice prepared with chicken broth in place of water and omit the rice preparation step. Simply prepare the rice. Once cooked, add garlic and onion before adding the rest of the ingredients.  


  1. This is my kind of meal. It sounds delicious!

  2. Looks yum! I'll have to give it a try this week.

  3. Looks yum! I'll have to give it a try this week. TFS.

  4. Just seeing the picture i was in love with it!
    I would love to have you share this or any other of your recipes at Wednesday Extravaganza - my Foodie Link Party! Here is the link:

    Can't wait to see you there!