Quick and Easy 3 Ingredient Spanish Rice


Hooray for a quick and easy 3 ingredient spanish rice that still tastes like your local Mexican restaurant! ohsweetbasil.com


I love trying new recipes (bet you had no idea, right?) and I especially love recipes that take a little more time and effort and end up amazing. It just makes me feel so accomplished and proud of myself plus I love to devour the food. But, I’m also realistic and I know that I would be totally burned out if every single recipe was a large list of totally from scratch ingredients. So, one day we were chatting about what to have for dinner and I mentioned that burritos and Spanish rice sounded good since we rarely have those (this recipe is so delicious but definitely takes more time), but that I had like zero desire to cook and Cade was headed off to a bunch of meetings so we needed something quick. I looked in the pantry and BAM!


I saw the Old El Paso sauce packet and I crossed my fingers then proceeded to try out a quick and easy 3 ingredient spanish rice. And dudes, it totally worked.


Hooray for a quick and easy 3 ingredient spanish rice that still tastes like your local Mexican restaurant! ohsweetbasil.com


We had a really yummy dinner and then once the girls were in bed I enjoyed a little Austenland while editing photos. Oh. My. Gosh. Have you seen that movie? I died laughing!! It actually ends up kinda cute, but I was totally cracking up throughout the whole movie. Oh man, “In the evenings I stick my face in the fire” ” People who hang themselves, they feel different in the morning.  And then it’s too late.  So feel better!” Oh golly, it’s strangely ridiculous and wonderful all wrapped into one.


Hooray for a quick and easy 3 ingredient spanish rice that still tastes like your local Mexican restaurant! ohsweetbasil.com


Don’t go rent the movie expecting Pride and Prejudice. At times I was embarrassed for the characters, but it was totally worth it. Right?! I feel like I’m talking to space which I guess I am in a way, but tell me that someone else has seen this and for some strange reason kind of liked it!!


What Is Spanish Rice?

Spanish Rice is a Mexican side dish.

It is made from white rice, tomatoes, garlic, onions, and other spices.

The ingredients are then sautéd in a skillet with oil or fat until it is colored golden brown.

What Kind of Rice Is Healthiest?

Varieties of brown rice are the healthiest.

Brown rice still contains germ and bran layers, which provide a range of important nutrients including B vitamins, bone-building phosphorus, and magnesium.


What Could You Substitute For Rice?

Quinoa is the go-to substitute for rice.

Quinoa is gluten-free, high in protein, and contains nine essential amino acids, vitamins B and E, and many other nutrients including potassium and calcium.



Quick and Easy 3 Ingredient Spanish Rice

quick and easy spanish rice ohsweetbasil.com
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Quick and Easy 3 Ingredient Spanish Rice

Prep Time1 min
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time21 mins
Course: Everyone's Favorite Mexican Recipes
Keyword: enchilada sauce, mexican, rice, side, spanish rice
Servings: 4 servings
Author: Sweet Basil


  • 1 Old El Paso Sauce Packet We like chiptole
  • 1 1/2 cup of rice
  • 2 1/4 cups of water
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar leave out if you use any flavor other than chipotle


  • Stir together the water, sauce packet and brown sugar.
  • Add the rice to a sauce pan or rice cooker.
  • Add the sauce mixture and heat to a boil then turn down to a simmer and cover with a lid.
  • Allow to cook for 20 minutes, fluff then serve, or use the instructions on the rice cooker.
Tried this recipe?Mention @OhSweetBasil or tag #OhSweetBasil!

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Carrian Cheney

Lover of all things beautiful, good and delicious. Wife, mother, friend, foodie.

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39 comments on “Quick and Easy 3 Ingredient Spanish Rice”

  1. Forget the pop ups and blather just give us a how to vid or recipe

  2. Omg I am obsessed with Austenland! It’s hilarious LOL and I never meet anyone who’s watched it! 

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  5. I can’t find this sauce. Did they quit making it? I couldn’t even find it on El Paso website.

  6. Have you ever made this for a large crowd? Just wondering how it would work. I am cooking for a large crowd (100 people) and would like to use this recipe.

  7. Enjoyed reading your recipe. I wanted to try something new with white rice myself and decided to get a sauce (fajita flavored) to put in my rice for some zesty flavor. I served the rice with chopped up chicken breast with parsley on top. DELICIOUS MEAL

  8. What sauce is it you use? The only packet I found was an 8oz liquid pouch. It seems like too much liquid for the amount of rice.

    • Hi Jason, I just added a photo for you. You can do any flavor you like but this is what the packet looks like. The sauce is thick and for 1 1/2 cups of rice you would normally want 3 cups of water so the amount is right. 🙂 You can always cut the sauce down if you want.

  9. Does the fact that you add brown sugar give this any sort of a sweet taste? Could it be done without brown sugar?

    • It doesn’t, but it helps to break up the flavor of the sauce which is slightly too harsh without the brown sugar. At least for my family, but you could always see what you think.

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  11. Thanks for the recipe and I just watched Austenland a few weeks ago. LOVED IT!!! So unexpected and funny. The song at the piano?!…….had me dying!!! I am quoting it all the time!

  12. Love the recipe! I found it on Pinterest. I do have a couple questions though. Is this white or brown rice and can I use the minute rice. You say let the rice sit for 20 minutes and idk if that would work for a minute rice.

    Thank you!

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  14. This looks delicious! My mom used to make spanish rice all the time. She would put cut up hot dogs in it – which I wasn’t the biggest fan of haha. Need to try this one now. Pinning!

  15. Love simple fixes like this!

  16. This sounds amazing!!We eat way too much Mexican food!Would this work if I make my own taco mix?

  17. This looks so easy and delish! I totally thought the same thing about austenland, my sister was rolling her eyes and thought it was so dumb (she’s 16) but I loved the quirky cute storyline! Plus anything Austen is amazing so I was bound to like it!

  18. Yummy! Sure love recipes that isn’t time-consuming anymore:):)

  19. I love spanish rice. This looks yummy!

  20. Always love three ingredient meals! Now I need to check out Austenland too.

  21. I am sold on 3 ingredients! This looks amazing.

  22. I always loved spanish rice as a kid but haven’t had it in years! No time like the present to change that. I love this!