The Exceptionally Ordinary Life

Best rice recipes

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Best Rice Recipes That Your Whole Family Will Love

Not everyone is a big fan of rice. I get it. I think.

See, I am Puerto Rican, and our cuisine has a vast variety of options to make rice much more interesting, and delicious than plain white rice. Not like our plain white rice isn’t delicious as well though 😉

But I know many people struggle to fit rice into their menu planning. For some it is a diet/health issue. I mean, I know that rice isn’t necessarily the healthiest of sides. But a well cooked side of rice can be delicious, and exactly what you need.

My family and myself (loosely) follow the Dave Ramsey’s Baby Steps method to get out of debt. If you have no clue what I’m talking about, then I suggest you take a peek at his website. Or better yet, listen to his radio show, or get his books. They are truly life changing!

Anyway, I mention Dave because one of his biggest recommendations for getting out of debt is to lower your expenses as much as possible, and make sacrifices now, so you can live the life you want later. Rice and beans is what he recommends you eat, while getting out of debt.

He doesn’t mean “rice & beans”specifically; he means to be frugal and not eat expensive, luxurious meals. The point is to emphasize that in order to save money, you need to make sacrifices.

Some take him as literal to his word as they can, and dread the rice & beans diet. And the reason they struggle is because, they are probably thinking that plain white rice, and microwaved beans are their only “cheap” options.

Who can eat like that and not go insane?

Well, there is a way to pull this off by simply cooking your rice in different ways. Adding other ingredients will make it not only taste amazing, but also look, and smell wonderful!

I have compiled a few of my favorite rice recipes to inspire you. Some are from my country, some are not. I have made 99% of the ones I am sharing, so I know for a fact that they are delicious. The ones I am recommending but haven’t tried yet, are on my Have-to-make-this-soon list.  Click on the links shared below, and check them out. You will not regret it, I promise.

Best Rice Recipes That Your Whole Family Will Love

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Rice with green pigeon peas from My Love for Cooking

I have never been a fan of peas. Not sure if it’s the texture or just the flavor, but I just try to avoid them as much as I can. However, green pigeon peas (or gandules, in Spanish), are very different. In my country (Puerto Rico), rice with green pigeon peas is part of our traditional sides during the Christmas & Thanksgiving holidays. I have tried many recipes, including my own (not very successful) and I can say this one is the best. My whole family loves it!

Rice with corn from Great Food 360

Although not of high nutritional value, we can all agree that corn is probably one of the most popular vegetables. One thing I can say about corn is that is very filling. That, and the fact that it is popular and tastes good, are a plus. When we make this recipe we serve it with either chicken or pork. Whatever way you decide to serve it, I can promise you it tastes really good.

Rice with mixed vegetables from Beardtastic Recipes

I have to admit my family is not very fond of vegetables. Yes, I know they are good for you. Yes, I know you are supposed to eat at least some vegetables every day. Nevertheless, we constantly struggle with this.

One way I have found to incorporate veggies into our meals is by mixing them with rice. Not gonna lie and tell you this is a family favorite, because it’s not. My girls especially grunt a little when I make it. But then again, they grunt because of the veggies, not because there’s something wrong with the rice. In fact, they eat it anyway, and like it. Even if they would never admit it.

Rice with crab meat from El Colmadito

When I was a little girl, my Mom used to make this rice. While I was never a big fan of crab (or any seafood really), this one I loved. Still do. Sadly, my husband is allergic to shellfish, and so I cannot make this at home. I wish I could though. This recipe is simple, and quite good.

Rice & chicken from Que Rica Vida

What can be better than a dish that combines chicken, rice & delicious spices? This recipe is easy to make. the only thing I’d say is that you should add a bit more water when you cook it. It will help cook the rice faster, and better. Don’t drown the rice though. Mushy rice is not a good idea, at least not for this recipe.

Homemade Chinese rice (Puerto Rican style) from Cocina a lo Boricua

This Chinese rice recipe is simply amazing. When we make it, we make enough to make it a 2-day meal, and needless to say, there is just enough to feed us twice. My family just loves it. They love it so much, they don’t even complain about the veggies (not for this recipe anyway).

The original recipe is in Spanish though. However, I plan on posting it here soon, with a few alterations, to show you how to simplify it even more, without compromising taste. I will update as soon as the post is up!

Mexican chorizo recipe from Spicy Southern Kitchen

This is one recipe I have not tried yet. However, I have an insane amount of chorizo in my freezer that I got for a steal, and while searching for ideas, I stumbled upon this one. It looks amazing, and I am confident we’ll love it.

I am dying to try it, but life has been a bit busy, what with all the end of school year stuff. And so it will have to wait a bit, but I will update this post with the results.

Rice & beans from Simply Rice and Beans

I’d be the first one to admit I am not very fond of beans. Nevertheless, I have found that, when cooked right, they are delicious. One such case is this recipe.


In Puerto Rico, we don’t just open a can of beans and warm them up. We cook them. Either in sauce that we then pour over white rice, or in the rice. Even though I am sure any kind of beans would do, I strongly recommend you use pink beans, or pinto beans, if pink beans are not available.

Rice with Vienna sausages from Sazón Boricua

The original recipe can be found here. However, I approached the amazing blogger and asked her if it was OK to translate, and share with my readers, and she gave me the go ahead. You can find the English version (with minor alterations) here.

I make this recipe often, and is one of my go-to when I forget to pull meat out to thaw on time. It’s ready in about 20-25 minutes, so for busy families who are on the go constantly, it can be a life saver. Plus, it’s delicious.

Bacon & onion rice  from The Exceptionally Ordinary Life

This one is by far #1 in my family’s heart. One of my very best friends gave me this recipe over a decade ago, and I have been making it regularly ever since.

This recipe is not only super simple to make, but it has bacon. It really can’t get any better than that. One of the best things about this recipe is that, even if you have no leftover meat, you can still eat the rice by itself for lunch the next day. It’s that good! Even better, if you are out of bacon, you can still make it. I try not to, just because bacon, but I’ve made it without and it rocks.

I truly hope you find this round up helpful. Now tell me, do you have any rice recipes you absolutely love? If so, share with us in the comments. Even better: if you make any one of these recipes, please share how it goes with us in the comment section below.

Best Rice Recipes That Your Whole Family Will Love

Best rice recipes

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