5 from 6 votes
Overhead, landscape photo of Mexican Cauliflower Rice garnished with fresh cilantro and slices of avocado in a white bowl with a ramekin of lime wedges and a light tan napkin next to the bowl.
Mexican Cauliflower Rice recipe
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
15 mins
Total Time
25 mins

Make your own favorite Mexican restaurant red rice easily at home in 25 minutes or less! This Mexican cauliflower rice is a healthier option that will quickly become an all-time family favorite!

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Servings: 8
Calories: 61 kcal
  • 1 (2 pound) Head Cauliflower (SEE NOTES)
  • 2 TBS Olive Oil
  • 1 small Yellow Onion – small dice (about 1 ½ cups)
  • 2 Jalapeno or Serrano Chile Peppers – seeded and finely chopped (SEE NOTES)
  • 2 Cloves Garlic – peeled and minced
  • 1 ¼ tsp Cumin
  • ¾ tsp EACH: Smoked Paprika & Chili Powder (SEE NOTES)
  • 2 TBS Tomato Paste
  • 1 Cup Corn Kernels (SEE NOTES)
  • 2 Roma Tomatoes – seeded and diced (about ½ cup), plus more for garnish
  • 6 TBS Unsalted Chicken or Vegetable Stock
  • Kosher Salt & Ground Black Pepper
  • 1-3 TBS Fresh Cilantro – chopped, to taste
For Serving: Lime Wedges, Avocado Slices, Sour Cream, Hot Sauce and/or Scallions
  1. Prep cauliflower: On a clean work surface, cut the cauliflower into 1-inch florets. Working in batches, add the florets to a food processor or standing blender. Pulse until the cauliflower florets resemble rice, about 8-12 pulses. (DO NOT OVER PROCESS!) Transfer cauliflower ‘rice’ to a large bowl and continue to process remaining florets. Set the bowl of cauliflower rice to the side.

  2. Sauté the vegetables and seasonings: Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Once the oil is shimmering, add the onion and jalapeno (or serrano). Season to taste with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently until onions are soft, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic, cumin, paprika and chili powder. Stir and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds – 1 minute. Add in the tomato paste and cook, stirring frequently until tomato paste is caramelized and fragrant, about 1-2 minutes. Add the cauliflower, corn and tomatoes. Cook, stirring, for 2 minutes.

  3. Add the liquid and cook covered: Add the stock and season to taste with salt and pepper. Stir to combine. Cover the pan and reduce heat to medium-low. Cook, COVERED, for 4 minutes.

  4. Uncover and continue to cook: Uncover the pan and continue to cook, stirring occasionally until the cauliflower is tender and the liquid is absorbed, about 4-5 minutes.

  5. To serve: Remove pan from heat and stir in fresh cilantro. Taste and adjust for seasoning with salt and pepper. Serve with lime wedges and optional garnishes on side. Enjoy!

Recipe Video

Recipe Notes
  1. 1 large (2 pound) head of cauliflower is equivalent to 10 cups of cauliflower florets or 20 ounces or riced cauliflower.
  2. If you don’t like a lot of smoky spice in your food, omit jalapeno pepper and substitute red bell pepper.
  3. If you aren’t a fan of spicy foods, reduce chili powder to ¼ teaspoon.
  4. You can use frozen, defrosted corn, canned corn or leftover cooked fresh corn for this recipe. I like to use leftover grilled kernels of fresh corn in the summer. When corn isn’t in season I use canned fire-roasted corn. Make sure you defrost frozen corn or drain canned corn before proceeding with recipe.
  5. STORAGE: Cooked Mexican rice should be stored in an airtight container.  Properly stored, rice will last in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.  Alternatively,  the rice can be frozen for up to 3 months!

Recipe Yield: approximately 5 cups

Nutritional information is an approximation and based upon 8 servings.

Nutrition Facts
Mexican Cauliflower Rice recipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories 61 Calories from Fat 36
% Daily Value*
Fat 4g6%
Saturated Fat 1g6%
Sodium 117mg5%
Potassium 133mg4%
Carbohydrates 7g2%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 2g2%
Protein 1g2%
Vitamin A 261IU5%
Vitamin C 8mg10%
Calcium 9mg1%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.