Cheesy Mexican Rice

Cheesy chicken and rice for the win!

Hearty, cheesy, delicious, and “somewhat Mexican style” are the words I would use to describe this dish. Don’t be at all surprised if I use the term, “somewhat Mexican style” again at some point in the future. It’s most likely an attempt by me to sidestep the fact that I’m not very good at cooking “real Mexican” food.

While not actually my original vision, I think I am happier that it ended up being more of a main course than the soup I had in mind to begin with. With that being said however, I think it could easily be thinned out and made into a soup. It would require less rice and perhaps more water and chicken broth. But for now, I am going to share this recipe because it ended up tasting so good to me.

I even had the daycare children eating it, and you know how picky children can be! I’m pretty sure it had to do with the cheese. I would say that’s a safe bet, because I think most kids (correct me if I’m wrong) like cheese. And I’ll admit it, I kept coming back for spoonful after spoonful until I had to forcibly stop myself so I wouldn’t ruin my dinner. And one could argue that I am an adult kid myself. Fortunately, I sent most of it home with one of the children, therefore eliminating any chance of me going on a food bender.

Mexican White Rice Spices

So this probably wouldn’t be considered a stew because there is no flour used as a thickener. However, the rice absorbs a nice amount of the liquid and ends up thickening the dish in its own way. As you can see, since this dish isn’t a soup – nor is it a stew – I had a bit of trouble coming up with a good name for it. And it still doesn’t have a good name. That gives me an idea though. Maybe I should actually give this dish a proper name. But I think I’ll have to think on that for a while. I think…

It’s kind of weird in a way. This recipe started popping in my head, much the same way as this one: Creamy Jalapeno and Bacon Soup. Unfortunately, I wish this would happen more often, because whenever I’m lucky enough to receive whatever transmissions are being sent, good things happen. More often than not though, my ideas are worse than a dyslexic version of Scrabble.

In truth, I had the inspiration to create something like a chili relleno soup, (which I still intend to make) when that idea suddenly had to take a backseat to some newly arriving information. I jotted down some ingredients that I thought would work, and low and behold, a new creation began to unfold. I’m guessing most people will have the ingredients for this dish on hand, apart from the Mexican oregano and possibly the bay leaves. And speaking of bay leaves, I read some interesting facts about dried herbs in general. The article states that many herbs are basically useless after they have been dried. Bay leaves and oregano are some of the exceptions however. And that makes me happy because I learned something new; and as an added bonus those were the two herbs I had selected prior to reading that article.

Mexican White Rice Ingredients

This…this is a nice picture.

If you want to add some color to this dish, you can substitute some of the green peppers with red or orange peppers. The same goes for the onions. This recipe calls for white onions, but if that’s too boring for your taste, definitely feel free to liven it up with some red onions – or purple onions – or whatever it is they call those onions now days. I don’t know the proper names of most things, so in retrospect, just add whatever you want.

Alrighty then, now that we have the veggies out of the way with, let’s talk about the cheese. I use 1 cup of Monterey Jack cheese, and 1/2 a cup of Pepper Jack cheese. These I would consider base line amounts though, meaning you should alter the amount and/or ratio of cheese to whatever is best for you. Most likely, you will want to add more cheese. For me however, I find it to be the perfect amount, without being overly cheesy. I think having a hint of Pepper Jack cheese works, because it’s subtle and doesn’t become the primary flavor of the dish.

I hope you enjoy the recipe, and even if you don’t, we still want to hear from you in the comment section below. Or even better, if you have an idea that will improve this dish then please let us know. And some of you who just read that last sentence might be thinking – Uhm…adding anything to this dish will make it better… Well, we still want to hear from you too.

And with that I will bring this post to a close, so I can devote some serious time to coming up with a catchy name for this recipe.

Mexican White Rice

Cheesy Mexican white rice with bell peppers and chicken

By: Semiserious Chefs
Serves: 6 – 8


  • 1 cup green pepper (diced)
  • 1 cup white onion (diced)
  • 1 lb fresh chicken (skinned and diced)
  • 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/8 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/8 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup milk (2% is fine)
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup white rice
  • 1/2 tablespoon Mexican oregano
  • 2 – 3 large bay leaves (dried)
  • 1 cup Monterey Jack cheese (shredded)
  • 1/2 cup Pepper Jack cheese (shredded)


  1. Dice green pepper and white onion and set aside.
  2. Blend garlic powder, cumin, chili powder, paprika and cayenne pepper together in a small dish and set aside.
  3. Cube the chicken and remove any excess skin that’s hanging around.
  4. In a large saucepan, add vegetable oil and turn heat to medium-high.
  5. Add the cubed chicken to the hot oil and give it a good stir with a spatula. Heat the chicken for roughly 2 – 3 minutes, stirring frequently with a spatula.
  6. Sprinkle in the seasoning mix of garlic powder, cumin, chili powder, paprika and cayenne pepper, coating the chicken with the mixture.
  7. Add the diced green pepper and white onion and stir. Cook for another 2 – 3 minutes stirring frequently.
  8. Add water, milk, chicken broth, and white rice.
  9. Drop in the bay leaves and Mexican oregano. Make sure to give everything a good stir to ensure the rice has spread out evenly.
  10. When the liquid has come to a boil, reduce heat to low and cover with a lid.
  11. Let simmer for 20 minutes, without stirring.
  12. Remove lid, add Monterey Jack and Pepper Jack cheese and mix everything one last time.
  13. Dive in and enjoy.


Post a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *