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Instant Pot Spanish Rice

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Making Spanish Rice (also known as Mexican Rice or Arroz Rojo (red rice)) on the stove top can be challenging. The Instant Pot makes it incredibly easy to make flavorful Spanish rice that comes out perfect every single time.

Every time we make Mexican food, I make this Instant Pot Spanish Rice recipe to go along with it. It’s a great side dish for most Mexican food meals.

Better than most Mexican restaurants, this easy recipe uses simple ingredients for a delicious rice dish.

Spanish rice garnished with cilantro in a red ceramic bowl.

Instant Pot Spanish Rice Recipe

Learn how to make delicious Spanish Rice in your Instant Pot in this easy side dish recipe.
5 from 10 votes
Print Recipe
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 4 minutes
Pressurizing Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 39 minutes
Recipe Servings: 6


  • 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil - or your favorite cooking oil
  • 2 green onions - sliced
  • 1 teaspoon garlic - minced
  • 1 cup tomatoes - chopped
  • ¼ cup fresh cilantro - packed; plus more for garnish
  • ½ jalapeno - or serrano pepper, minced (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 2 teaspoons taco seasoning
  • 2 cups jasmine rice - well rinsed of excess starch
  • 2 cups chicken stock - or filtered water


  • Knife
  • Cutting Board
  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Fine mesh strainer
  • Instant Pot
  • Mixing spoon


  • Turn your Instant Pot onto the Saute setting, and heat the pan up, then add the olive oil to the pan. Saute the green onions, tomatoes, cilantro and garlic in the oil in the Instant Pot using the Saute function for 1-2 minutes.
    Tomatoes, cilantro, green onions and garlic being sauteed in the Instant Pot inner pan.
  • Add the rinsed jasmine rice to the pot and stir to combine. Saute for 2-3 minutes, then turn off the heat.
    Rinsed jasmine rice being stirred into the lightly sauteed tomatoes, green onions, cilantro and garlic in the Instant Pot.
  • Add the chicken stock, tomato paste, taco seasoning and salt to the pot and stir to combine. Use a flat edged spatula to make sure nothing is stuck to the bottom of the pot or you could get a burn notice.
    Chicken stock and spices added to the rice and vegetables in the Instant Pot.
  • Put the lid on your Instant Pot, make sure the valve is in the sealing position and set it on the High Pressure setting for 4 minutes. Allow a natural pressure release for 15 minutes, then use Quick Release to release the remaining pressure. Open the lid.
    Spanish rice cooked in the Instant Pot right before being stirred.
  • Gently fluff the Spanish Rice, then transfer it to a serving bowl topped with extra chopped cilantro, if desired.
    Bowl of homemade Spanish rice that was cooked in a pressure cooker then garnished with fresh cilantro.


See Tips Below!!!

Nutrition Information Per Serving

Calories: 271kcal | Carbohydrates: 55g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 2g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 2mg | Sodium: 940mg | Potassium: 287mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 391IU | Vitamin C: 7mg | Calcium: 29mg | Iron: 1mg

Tips for Making Instant Pot Spanish Rice

1. Do I have to saute everything first?

No. While Spanish Rice tastes best when you saute the tomatoes, green onions, cilantro and garlic first, you can just toss everything in the Instant Pot and cook it if you’re in a hurry. It still turns out great that way.

2. What to do with extra tomato paste?

I used to cringe when I saw a recipe used tomato paste because they only use 1-2 tablespoons each, and the rest of the can would end up wasted. Now I freeze my tomato paste so I never have waste. See how to freeze tomato paste here.

3. Can I use a different type of rice?

I make this recipe with jasmine rice because I like the texture and consistency. This recipe should work with standard long grain rice as well.

If you want to use Basmati rice, be aware that it absorbs more liquid than jasmine rice so you may have to increase the amount of liquid you use.

See my post on making rice in the Instant Pot for more tips and tricks for making rice in an electric pressure cooker.

4. Do I have to use chicken stock?

I find that using chicken broth instead of water is key to flavorful Spanish Rice. You can use filtered water instead, but you’ll lose one layer of flavor.

Get my chicken stock recipe here (includes directions for the Instant Pot, slow cooker and stove top).

5. Can I use canned tomatoes instead of fresh?

Yes, you can use diced or stewed tomatoes in place of the fresh tomatoes. I’ve also used salsa in a pinch! If you use stewed tomatoes, you may want to decrease the chicken stock or water amount by 1-2 tablespoons to account for the extra liquid.

6. Can I double the recipe?

Yes, you should be able to safely double this recipe in your Instant Pot. The most I typically make in a 6-quart pot is 4 cups of dry rice. If you make more than that, it doesn’t always turn out as well.

7. Best way to store leftover Spanish Rice?

If you have leftover Spanish rice, be sure to store it in the fridge in an airtight container. To reheat the next day, warm a little oil in a pan, then lightly re-fry the rice.

8. What can I serve Spanish Rice with?

Spanish Rice is the perfect side dish to serve with Mexican food. Recreate a meal from your favorite Mexican restaurant with these easy recipes.

9 .Where to buy groceries online?

We buy a lot of groceries online and keep the freezer and pantry stocked. Learn where I buy produce online and order meat online for extra convenience.

Pin this post to your Instant Pot or Mexican Food board

Bowl of Spanish Rice garnished with chopped fresh cilantro with label that reads, "Best Instant Pot Spanish Rice."

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