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Easy Mexican Cauliflower Rice Recipe (15 Minutes)

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If you’re looking for a delicious way to add some extra vegetables to your diet, try this Mexican Cauliflower Rice recipe.

This easy side dish is not only simple to prepare, but it also packs a flavorful punch, making it a delicious way to sneak in some extra veggies for picky eaters.

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Not only is Mexican cauliflower rice versatile and customizable to your personal preferences, but it also has numerous health benefits.

This dish is gluten-free, paleo, vegetarian, and vegan. It makes a delicious addition to your meals, meal prep, or as a veggie base for burrito bowls.

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Mexican Cauliflower Rice

Why you’ll love this recipe

  • Mexican cauliflower rice is a healthy, low-carb alternative that’s perfect for sneaking in more veggies.
  • This dish is highly versatile and can be customized to fit a variety of dietary preferences.
  • Enjoy as a delicious and easy side dish for a nutritious, flavorful addition to any meal.

Mexican Cauliflower Rice Ingredients

Mexican cauliflower rice ingredients Pin

Olive oil: A great base for cooking, olive oil adds a rich flavor and helps your other ingredients sauté beautifully.

Red onion: For a splash of color and added crunch, red onion also provides a deep flavor that, when sauteed, turns sweeter.

Garlic: This is essential and feel free to measure this with your heart.

Cauliflower rice: The star of the show, cauliflower rice is a low-carb, healthy alternative to traditional rice that’s versatile and easy to make. You can use fresh or frozen.

Roma tomatoes: Packed with a tangy sweetness, Roma tomatoes add a touch of freshness to your dish.

Fresh cilantro: Adding an unmistakable aroma and flavor to your Mexican cauliflower rice, cilantro is a must-have ingredient. If you don’t like cilantro, just leave it out.

Smoked paprika: This warm, smoky spice enhances the flavors of your recipe, creating a rich and irresistible dish.

Canned kidney beans: A classic addition to Mexican cuisine, these beans add a hearty touch to your cauliflower rice.

Tomato paste: To intensify the tomato flavors and add some thickness to your dish, a small amount of tomato paste goes a long way. Store any leftovers in a resealable bag and freeze.

Vegetable broth cube: Enhancing the overall flavor profile, a vegetable broth cube adds depth to the taste while keeping your dish vegetarian.

Ingredient Substitutions

Swap olive oil for coconut oil or avocado oil.

If you don’t have red onion you can use whatever onion variety you have in your pantry.

To substitute garlic cloves in this recipe for garlic powder, use 1/2 teaspoon.

You can use regular paprika in place of smoked paprika, but go to the store and buy some for later. It packs a whole different flavor and it’s worth the cabinet space.

Don’t like raw tomatoes? Neither do i. Use roughly a 14.5 can of diced tomatoes (I prefer petite diced or fire-roasted canned tomatoes).

Swap kidney beans for whatever legume you prefer. I personally love black beans.

If you don’t have a veggie broth cube, you can use vegetable broth instead of water or chicken broth.

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Mexican Cauliflower Rice Variations

Creating your own version of this Mexican cauliflower rice recipe is all about finding the perfect combination of flavors and ingredients to suit your taste buds.

Have fun experimenting and enjoy this delicious and healthy meal!

Jalapeno. Add some heat to your dish by incorporating jalapeno. Dice jalapeno before adding it to the pan during the sautéing process. You can adjust the spiciness according to your taste.

Fresh lime juice. Give your Mexican cauliflower rice a tangy twist by squeezing a bit of lime juice over it. Lime juice not only adds flavor, but also helps to brighten the taste of the dish.

Corn. Add some color and sweet flavor with corn.

Sweet bell peppers. Green, yellow, orange or red peppers add a beautiful color and extra fiber with the vegetables.

Mexican Cauliflower Rice Toppings

Toppings can also make a huge difference in your Mexican cauliflower rice.

  • Avocado
  • Guacamole
  • Salsa
  • Sour cream or Greek yogurt for a higher protein option.
  • Chicken (you can add cooked chicken to make it a meal, remember to add some fats like avocado as well).
  • Shredded cheese
  • Mushrooms
  • Broccoli

Kitchen Tools Needed

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Is Mexican Cauliflower Rice Healthy?

Mexican cauliflower rice is a low-calorie, nutrient-dense dish that offers a delicious and healthy alternative to traditional rice.

Macros and Nutritional Information

One serving, about 1 1/3 cups, has approximately:

  • 186 calories
  • 24 grams of carbohydrates
  • 8 grams of protein
  • 8 grams of fat
  • 8 grams of fiber

To maximize the nutritional value of your Mexican cauliflower rice, consider adding a variety of colorful vegetables, such as bell peppers and tomatoes, for extra vitamins and minerals.

Make it a meal with cooked chicken or shrimp and don’t forget to add some taste avocado!

What to Serve Mexican Cauliflower Rice With

Remember, this recipe is a side dish or it can be used as a filling or base. So here are some side dish ideas:

  • Tacos. This makes a delicious veggie-loaded taco filling, you can use this slow cooker queso chicken as a chicken filling.
  • Enchiladas are another excellent pairing for Mexican cauliflower rice. Chicken enchiladas in particular work great. The texture of the cauliflower rice holds up well when baked in the enchilada sauce, and the combination of flavors is simply delightful. Be sure to cook the cauliflower rice up first so the tortillas do not get soggy.
  • Burritos. Stuff your burrito with your choice of protein, veggies, and add the cauliflower rice in place of regular rice. This nutritious swap adds some extra vegetables and extra flavor.
  • Seafood. If you’re a seafood lover, Mexican cauliflower rice makes a fantastic side dish for grilled or sautéed seafood.
  • Chicken. Such a tasty side dish for your chicken main entree. Serve it with this Mexican Grilled Chicken.

What to Do with Leftovers

Leftover Mexican cauliflower rice can be repurposed into several delicious meals, perfect for meal prep or quick dinners.

Turn it into a salad: Toss the leftover cauliflower rice with some chopped veggies, like bell peppers, red onions, and corn, and mix in a tangy lime dressing. Top it with some cooked chicken breast (or tofu or steak), and fresh cilantro for an extra burst of flavor.

Stuffed Peppers: Stuff halved bell peppers with the leftover Mexican cauliflower rice, and top with shredded cheese. Bake the stuffed peppers in the oven until the cheese is melted and bubbly, and the peppers are tender. Garnish with fresh cilantro for added flavor.

Add it to soups or wraps: A great way to make use of leftovers is to incorporate them into soups or wraps as a filler. Try adding the Mexican cauliflower rice to a chicken or vegetable soup for a hearty meal.

Use it for breakfast: Mix the leftover cauliflower rice into scrambled eggs or an omelet, accompanied by avocado, beans, or salsa for a Mexican-inspired breakfast dish. This is a tasty and healthy way to start your day.

Storing Leftovers

Remember, when storing leftover Mexican cauliflower rice, ensure that it is in an airtight container and kept in the refrigerator for up to 4-5 days.

Don’t forget: make sure your cauli rice cools before you put it in the fridge for food safety.

You can also freeze this recipe for up to a month.

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More Healthy Cauliflower Rice Recipes

If you’re looking for more ways to use up your frozen cauliflower rice (or you want to simply add more vegetables to your diet) try these:

You can also check out these 25+ Healthy Cauliflower Rice Recipes.

Mexican Cauliflower Rice

healthy Mexican cauliflower rice recipe being served from a skillet with a wooden spoon. Pin
Whip up quick and easy Mexican cauliflower rice in 10 mins using riced cauliflower. Perfect as a side or a meal prep main dish with chicken/beef.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
4 servings


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 small red onion minced
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 4 cups cauliflower rice 1 lb/453 g
  • 2 roma tomatoes finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 cup kidney beans 6.24 oz/177 g
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 crumbled vegetable cube chicken cube/broth also works


  • Heat oil in a non-stick skillet over medium heat. Saute onion and garlic until fragrant. Now add cauliflower rice and stir with a wooden spoon. Cook for 1 minute.
  • Push the rice in a corner then add tomato, smoked paprika, cilantro, kidney beans, tomato paste and crumble the vegetable cube. Cook for 1 minute then stir all together. Cook until the cauliflower rice is warm. It will take about 2 minutes. Not more or the cauliflower will be too soft.
  • Remove from the stove, garnish with more cilantro, lime and serve.


If you don’t have a veggie broth cube, you can use vegetable broth instead of water or chicken broth.
Topping Ideas
  • Avocado
  • Guacamole
  • Salsa
  • Sour cream or Greek yogurt for a higher protein option.
  • Chicken (you can add cooked chicken to make it a meal, remember to add some fats like avocado as well).
  • Shredded cheese


Serving: 1servingCalories: 186kcalCarbohydrates: 24gProtein: 8gFat: 8gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 5gSodium: 158mgPotassium: 870mgFiber: 8gSugar: 6gVitamin A: 641IUVitamin C: 86mgCalcium: 64mgIron: 3mg
AuthorRanda Derkson

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