This taco rice recipe has everything that you love about tacos, but with rice instead of tortillas. It’s packed with juicy meat, melty cheese, and all your favorite Mexican seasonings.
If you’re anything like me, then you can’t get enough Mexican food. Whether it’s burritos, tacos, or fajitas, there’s simply no such thing as too much. This taco rice recipe has quickly become one of my favorite foods to make when I’m craving Mexican food. Who needs a tortilla when you’ve got all of your favorite taco ingredients cooked up with tender rice?
The star of this recipe is the beef, which is juicy, tender, and loaded with flavor. Tomato sauce and melty cheese make the taco rice super rich, and it’s perfect for topping with your favorite condiments and garnishes. You’ve got to try making this recipe!
Why You’ll Love This Beefy, Cheesy Rice
I make this recipe all the time, and I’m confident that you’ll love it just as much as I do. Here are some of the best things about it.
- Fast and easy. This is a go-to weeknight meal for me because it’s so quick. It doesn’t take much time or effort to make this meaty rice dish. If you’re tired after a long day of work, this is a great way to have a hearty, comforting meal that won’t wear you out.
- Healthy. Taco rice tastes indulgent, but it’s pretty healthy. It’s loaded with rice, beef, and tomato sauce, and you can top it with lots of healthy garnishes like avocado and tomatoes. It’s a good reminder that a lot of the best foods can be good for you!
- Customizable. You can easily adapt this recipe to make it perfect for you. You can swap out certain ingredients, add new flavors, or get creative with the toppings.
This recipe uses a lot of ingredients that you probably already have in the fridge or pantry. Check out the recipe card at the bottom of the page to see the exact amounts of every ingredient.
- Onion – I use a white onion for this recipe, but red or yellow onions will work fine.
- Ground beef – Make sure to use lean beef.
- Taco seasoning
- White rice – You’ll need to use uncooked rice for this recipe. Long grain rice works best.
- Chicken broth – Try to use low-sodium chicken broth.
- Tomato sauce
- Cheddar cheese – For best results, shred your own cheddar cheese. However, pre-shredded will work fine, too.
How to Make Taco Rice
This recipe only takes about 35 minutes to make, and it’s so straightforward.
- Cook the beef. Brown the beef in a large skillet, and use a spoon or spatula to break it up.
- Add the onions. Put the onions in the skillet with the beef, and cook until the onions are soft and the beef is cooked through. Then drain the excess grease from the pan.
- Sauté the garlic. Add the garlic to the skillet, and cook until you can smell it. This should take about 1 minute.
- Season. Add the taco seasoning and stir until the meat is well coated.
- Add the rice and liquid. Put the rice, tomato sauce, and chicken broth into the skillet, and stir to combine.
- Cook. Bring the liquid to a boil, then cover the skillet. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook, stirring occasionally, until the rice is tender. This should take about 20 minutes.
- Add the cheese. When the rice is finished cooking, add the cheese and stir until it is melted and well combined.
- Serve. Garnish with your favorite toppings, and serve the rice.
Tips and Variations
Here are a few different ways that you can make this recipe perfect, or adjust it to make it your own.
- Brown the meat. When cooking the beef, make sure to really brown it. Browning ground beef is how you get flavor in the meat. The more you brown the beef, the more flavorful it will be. So don’t be afraid to get some color on it.
- Sub turkey. If you want to use a healthier meat, or just prefer the flavor, you can replace the ground beef with ground turkey. It will still taste absolutely fantastic.
- Make your own taco seasoning. One fun way to make this recipe even better is to use homemade taco seasoning instead of buying some from the store. My taco seasoning recipe is so easy to make!
- Have fun with the toppings. I treat taco rice kind of like nachos and load it up with my favorite toppings. That means ingredients like lettuce, tomatoes, sour cream, cilantro, jalapeños, and avocados. But you can add any kind of toppings you want, including salsa, hot sauce, guacamole, lime juice, or cotija cheese.
This beefy taco rice can be a meal all by itself. But I love to serve it with some of my favorite Mexican side dishes. Here’s what I’d serve this recipe with.
How to Store and Reheat Leftover Taco Rice
This rice is just as good, if not better, as a leftover. Keep it in an airtight container and it will last in the fridge for up to 4 days. Reheat in a covered dish for 15 minutes in a 375F oven. You can also reheat over medium heat on the stove, but add a splash of water or chicken broth so the rice doesn’t dry out. If you want to use a microwave, cook on 80% power in 30-second increments.
Can This Recipe Be Frozen?
Definitely! Store the leftover cheesy rice in an airtight container and it will last in the freezer for 3 months. Thaw overnight or defrost fully before reheating.
More Easy Mexican Recipes
Like I said, there’s no such thing as too much Mexican food. So make sure to try some of these other great recipes.
- Mexican Pizza
- Barbecue Chicken Nachos
- Mexican Skillet Potatoes
- Baked Mexican Cheese Dip
- Mexican Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Sopapilla Cheesecake Bars
- Sour Cream Enchiladas
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- 3 tablespoons taco seasoning (1 packet)
- 1 cup uncooked long grain white rice
- 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 8 ounces tomato sauce
- 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- Sour Cream
- Tortilla Chips
- Brown the ground beef in a large skillet, breaking it apart as you cook.
- Add the onions and cook until they're soft, and the beef is no longer pnik in the middle. Drain away the grease from the pan.
- Add in the garlic and cook for about 1 minute, until you can smell it.
- Stir in the taco seasoning until the meat is evenly coated.
- Pour in the rice, tomato sauce, and chicken broth. Stir until well blended.
- Bring the liquid to a boil, then cover the skillet and reduce the heat to medium-low. Cook for about 20 minutes, until the rice is tender, while occasionally stirring.
- Once the rice is cooked, stir in the cheese.
- Serve with the toppings of your choice.
- For best results, use my recipe for homemade taco seasoning.
- If you want to make this recipe healthier, you can use ground turkey instead of ground beef.
- Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for 4 days, or in the freezer for 3 months.
- Reheat in a covered baking dish for 15 minutes in a 375F oven.
Amount Per Serving Calories 472Total Fat 26gSaturated Fat 10gTrans Fat 1gUnsaturated Fat 13gCholesterol 105mgSodium 867mgCarbohydrates 24gFiber 5gSugar 4gProtein 36g
Nutrition Disclaimer: All information presented on this site is intended for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and any nutritional information shared on dinnersdishesanddesserts.com should only be used as a general guideline.
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