This tasty simple Tajín rice recipe requires just six ingredients (one which, of course, is the Tajín Clasico seasoning) and makes a mean side dish. It’s vegetarian or vegan depending on the butter used.
Why you’ll love it:
- It’s so simple to make with just a handful of ingredients and comes together in under thirty minutes.
- It’s an incredibly versatile side dish and goes well with any protein and vegetables, but we love it in tacos, burritos, taco salad, burrito bowls, quesadillas, and enchiladas.
- You can use it anywhere Mexican or Spanish rice are called for but it’s much easier to make.
- It’s super tasty, lush and buttery with a big kick of citrus and a very mild hint of chili pepper.
- You love Tajín seasoning (otherwise why would you be here) and are looking for even MORE Tajín goodness!
- If you follow my recipe exactly you’ll have perfect tender separated fluffy grains of rice – no mushy rice here.
Try it with my…
- Spicy peri peri tofu
- Easy vegan quesadilla recipe
- 15-minute vegan garlic bread
- Vegan chilli with Guinness
Ingredients and substitutions
With just six easy-to-find ingredients, your Tajín rice will come together in no time! I’ve included a labeled image of the ingredients below so there is no confusion, and beneath that, we’ll talk a little more about the ingredients and possible substitutions.
Long-grain rice: I use long-grain rice in this recipe and as we steam it, it’s a good idea to stick with this type as other types of rice can be a bit trickier with liquid to rice ratios. Having said that, basmati rice could be a good swap – either way, make sure it’s good-quality rice that hasn’t been in your pantry for the past five years. I don’t recommend swapping it out for brown rice (unless it’s been parboiled) as it normally requires a lot more liquid.
Garlic powder: If you don’t have any to hand you can swap for one small crushed clove of garlic. If you don’t like garlic, just leave it out.
Onion powder: If you don’t have it or don’t like the taste of it, you can omit it.
Vegetable stock: If you don’t have any stock to hand you can simply make some up with bouillon or vegetable stock cubes, simply check the packet to see what the ratio of bouillon/stock cube to water is. Then heat the water on the stove or in the microwave until hot and stir in the bouillon or crumbled stock cube until dissolved. Where possible I advise using a low-sodium bouillon or stock as Tajín seasoning has quite a bit of salt.
Butter: Use tasty grass-fed butter if possible, if vegan use high-quality vegan margarine or vegan butter. I don’t recommend using oil.
Tajín seasoning: Use either Tajín Clásico seasoning or low-sodium Tajín Clásico seasoning – you may need to add a little salt to taste if you use the low-sodium seasoning unless you are avoiding sodium for health reasons.
How to make it
Tajín rice is super-easy to make, just be exact with your measurements. I’ll be very specific in this part about instructions, accompanied by process photos to clear up any doubts you have or for less experienced cooks. For experienced cooks feel free to skip this section and scroll down to the concise recipe card.
First, rinse your rice. I know lots of rice recipes say to rinse it under running water until the water runs clear, but that’s not what I recommend as you really do need to get a lot of the starch off to have fluffy perfect rice.
I suggest adding the uncooked long-grain rice to a small or medium-sized saucepan and fill with water to an inch over the rice. Then massage the grains of rice with your hand until the water is super-cloudy. You can see the rice before adding water in image number one below, and after the first “massage” in water in image number two.
Drain off the water and repeat the process three more times until the water is fairly clear. Make sure the rice is especially well-drained after the last rinse (see image three below).
Then add the vegetable stock, the ground onion, the ground garlic, give it a quick stir (it should look like image number four below), and place the lid on and heat on high heat. Quick tip, if the lid of your pan has one of those holes for venting steam, I usually cover it with an egg cup or a piece of aluminum foil to stop the steam escaping and throwing off the moisture available for cooking the rice.
One and three-quarter cups of vegetable stock will give you slightly firm fluffy rice which is how I like it, but you can increase the stock to two or even two and a quarter cups if you like your rice very soft.
When the rice and stock have come to a lively bubbling simmer (lift the lid every now and then to check for when the stock has started bubbling), turn the heat down to the lowest setting and set a timer for ten minutes. Resist the urge to lift the lid as you’ll lose a lot of the steam and risk your rice being dry.
After the ten minutes are up, take the saucepan off the heat and set it aside for a further ten minutes. No peeking!
Take the lid off and add the butter (or vegan butter) as in image number five above, stir it through, and gently fluff up the hot rice with a fork until the rice is lightly coated with melted butter.
Now tip in the Tajín seasoning and stir until evenly distributed. Set aside for around three-five minutes – if you taste the rice after just adding the Tajín it will taste too strong, it needs a few minutes to mellow. After the time has passed, taste the rice and see if you’d like to add more Tajín.
Serve hot and enjoy!
Leftovers will keep tightly covered in the fridge for up to five days or can be frozen as well. To reheat from the refrigerator or from defrosted, add two-three tablespoons of water, heat on high for between three-five minutes (depending on how much rice there is), and let sit for five minutes before opening.
To make this Tajín rice ahead of time I would suggest stopping when the rice is cooked, adding it to a container with a lid, and letting it cool. When it’s cooled, you can store it in the fridge until needed. To finish it off, then reheat the rice in the microwave for three minutes until steaming hot, and then proceeding with the butter and Tajín seasoning.
Rice too hard?
This can happen if your lid wasn’t tightly fitting, had a very efficient steam vent, the heat wasn’t turned down in time and the pot boiled over, or if the rice was cooked on too high a heat. Never fear, you can fix this!
The best way to fix rice that’s a little undercooked is to actually transfer it to a microwave-safe container, add extra water – however much you think the rice needs if there’s excess you can just drain it off, try a half cup of water, and then go from there – and cover tightly with a lid or plastic wrap. You can always drain off any excess water.
Then heat on full power until the water has boiled and turned to steam – around five minutes. Set aside for five minutes to let the steam absorb. Fluff the rice and check it’s cooked through, if not you can repeat the process as needed. Then proceed to add the butter/vegan butter and Tajín.
If you don’t have a microwave, turn the heat to low, add one cup of nearly boiling water, cover the pot, leave for five minutes then take off the heat for five minutes. Uncover and stir, your rice should be done, otherwise, you can repeat the process. Drain off any excess liquid before adding the butter and Tajín seasoning.
No, no more than white rice is considered healthy, as it has extra fat from the butter and a good bit of sodium from the Tajín. It is very delicious though and is fine to consume in moderation!
Not really. Tajín Clásico is not a very spicy seasoning and the amount used (one tablespoon) is to season several cups of rice in this recipe. If you really tried, you could probably find a very mild hint of heat.
Tajín Clásico seasoning is a tasty dried and ground seasoning made out of red chili peppers, salt, and lime juice. It is made by the Mexican company Tajín. A taste test will first yield a strong burst of citrus with a very mild kick of heat at the end.
Tajín’s seasonings are great on fruit and vegetables, in marinades, as part of spice rubs, on popcorn, on anything really!
No, sorry, this rice is very flavorful and that flavor is Tajín Clásico, you would probably be better off with different flavored rice such as this vegan Mexican rice or this lemon coconut rice.
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Tajín Rice Recipe
This tasty perfectly fluffy buttered Tajín rice is next-world-level perfect as a side dish and a great way to level up plain white rice. Vegetarian or vegan depending on whether you use butter or vegan butter.
- 1 ½ cups white long-grain rice (300g)
- 1¾ cups low sodium vegetable stock (420ml)
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon ground onion
- 3 tablespoons butter or vegan butter
- 1 ½ tablespoons Tajín Clásico seasoning
- Place the rice in a small or medium saucepan, fill IP until one inch of water over the rice, massage and mix the rice with the water until the water is cloudy, then pour off the water. Repeat three more times until the water is more or less clear.
- Add the vegetable stock, garlic powder, and onion powder to the saucepan, and mix.
- Cover the pot with a tight-fitting lid, preferably one without a steam vent (or tape over the steam vent), and heat on high until bubbling/at a lively simmer. You can lift the lid at this point a few times to check if the stock is bubbling and nearly boiling.
- Turn the heat down to the lowest setting, and set a timer for ten minutes. Do not lift the lid to check on the rice.
- After the timer has gone off, take the pan off the heat and put it to one side for another ten minutes - don't lift the lid yet!
- Take the lid off and add the butter. Using a fork, fluff up the rice and mix the butter in.
- Add the Tajín Clásico seasoning and mix through the buttered rice until evenly distributed. Leave a few minutes (around three-five, the seasoning has to rehydrate and dissolve and mix in with the other flavors) then stir again, taste, adjust seasoning if necessary and serve.
Amount Per Serving Calories 196Total Fat 12gSaturated Fat 7gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 4gCholesterol 31mgSodium 1091mgCarbohydrates 20gFiber 2gSugar 1gProtein 2g