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The Most Terrific Keto Mexican Caulifower Rice Recipe Ever

Rice is one of the things people miss most on the keto diet, including me. You can't have a burrito bowl without Mexican rice.

Sure, there's cauliflower rice for keto eaters, but let's face it: most cauliflower rice tastes like cauliflower with some spices on it.

That's why we've created the most terrific keto Mexican cauliflower rice recipe you'll ever try. It tastes like Mexican rice and not like cauliflower. Yum!

keto Mexican cauliflower rice in bowl

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You might have seen “Mexican cauliflower rice” recipes before. I've seen them on Pinterest, too, and they make my blood boil!

Putting a bunch of chopped jalapeños and bell peppers in some cauliflower does not make cauliflower rice “Mexican”.  No Mexican I know puts all that stuff in their rice! Ew.

Authentic Mexican rice, also called “arroz rojo”, is made with a tomato base. The flavor comes from spices and a secret ingredient my family uses every time we make rice, cauliflower or real rice.

It's Knorr Selects Chicken granulated bouillon, the amazing chicken stock-based bouillon that makes any “rice” more flavorful. I'll share more below about why I choose Knorr to make my favorite recipes more flavorful on a budget.

Want another flavorful Mexican food recipe? Check out our easy Shrimp Pozole recipe!

First, let's talk about this thing called cauliflower rice.

What is Cauliflower Rice?

Is “cauliflower rice” actually rice?

No.

Cauliflower “rice” is cauliflower.

It's not rice. It's not a grain at all.

Who Invented Cauliflower Rice?

Chef Benjamin Ford invented cauliflower couscous back in 1998 at Chadwick, a now-closed restaurant in Beverly Hills. This “couscous” was the first time anyone shredded cauliflower and used it as a grain.

You can now find “cauliflower rice” in the frozen foods section of most supermarkets. While Ford's intention was for cauliflower couscous to taste like cauliflower, keto and paleo dieters want cauliflower rice to taste more like rice and less like cauliflower. Luckily cauliflower rice is a blank canvas that is easy to flavor any way you like.

bowl of keto Mexican cauliflower rice

Why is Cauliflower Rice So Popular?

With the rise of the keto and paleo diets, eaters are looking for more ways to enjoy traditional foods without all the carbs.

Cauliflower has about 5 grams of carbs in one cup.

In contrast, a cup of white rice has about 45 grams of carbohydrates.

When keto eaters aim for less than 50 grams of carbs per day, traditional rice is off the menu.

Cauliflower rice is a low-calorie, low-carb alternative to long-grain rice. Now, if we could just make it taste good. One way is with our keto Mexican Rice recipe below.

The first step is to make cauliflower rice.

How to Make Cauliflower Rice

You can get cauliflower rice in the frozen vegetables section of your local grocery store. While frozen cauliflower rice is convenient, it tends to have a mushy and sometimes soggy texture. You'll need to drain frozen cauliflower rice after cooking because it releases excess water while cooking.

Fresh cauliflower rice, made from a whole head of cauliflower, has a texture that more closely resembles grains of rice. And, there's no excess water to drain off when cooking fresh cauliflower rice.

How to Prepare Fresh Cauliflower Rice

Choose a large head of fresh cauliflower. Make sure the cauliflower has no black marks or bruising on it, or cut these parts away before preparing as cauliflower rice.

I like to choose organic cauliflower to make fresh cauliflower rice. Organic costs slightly more and has a slightly yellower texture than the non-organic variety. In my opinion, organic cauliflower tastes better and is a healthier choice because of organic farming standards.

If you're gonna go through all this trouble to eat healthier, you might as well REALLY eat healthier, shouldn't you?!

caulfilower florets in red colander

Remove all of the leaves from the head of cauliflower. Cut the head into florets, cutting the stems to yield 2″ to 3″ wide pieces of cauliflower.

Wash the cauliflower in cool water and allow to drain in a colander. Pat the cauliflower dry with a towel to speed the drying process.

The cauliflower needs to be dry before chopping and cooking.

There are Several Ways to Prepare Cauliflower Rice:

  • shredding
  • chopping
  • food processor

Chopping cauliflower to make cauliflower rice yields cauliflower pieces of all shapes and sizes, no matter how much you chop. And shredding cauliflower with a box shredder to make rice is time consuming.

I prefer the food processor method because it is faster and yields uniformly sized pieces of cauliflower.

keto cauliflower rice in bowl

What is the Best Cauliflower Food Processor?

As a wanna-be minimalist, I like smaller tools that can do many things. Like Alton Brown says, no uni-taskers in the kitchen!

A food processor is a genius invention. But most food processors are big and clunky. When our blender and small onion chopper died in the same week, we found the ultimate food processor online: a blender with a food processor attachment.

Imagine if your food processor was just the size of a blender?! Whoever invented this Frankenstein piece of kitchen gadgetry, you're my favorite!

They no longer make this particular food processor/blender we use, but I did find this one that's even better. If you eat fresh cauliflower rice more than once a month, you'll definitely want to use a food processor like this to make it.

How to Cook Cauliflower Rice

There are three main ways to make cauliflower rice:

  • steaming cauliflower rice
  • microwaving cauliflower rice
  • sauteeing cauliflower rice
keto mexican cauliflower rice cooking in saute pan

I prefer sauteed cauliflower rice because this process tends to dry out the cauliflower and crisp its edges, giving it a texture that's more like rice. Starting with fresh cauliflower rice will give the best results when sauteed.

Steaming and microwaving cauliflower rice will produce “rice” that has a mushy texture. For the best results, pat the cauliflower dry with a towel before sauteing or moving on to the next step in your recipe. If you start with frozen cauliflower rice, it's best to microwave it, pat it dry, and then use it for your recipe. Never put frozen cauliflower rice into a frying pan while still frozen, as it will end up a soupy mess.

A few weeks back, one of my friends called me in distress about my cauliflower fried rice recipe … “it's all watery!”.  I asked her to tell me how she made the recipe.

“Then I dumped the bag of frozen cauliflower rice into the pan.”

And there's your problem.

No frozen cauliflower rice in the pan. Ever.

Keto Mexican Cauliflower Rice Recipe

This Mexican cauliflower rice recipe is a favorite in our household. Our recipe was inspired by my traditional Mexican Rice Recipe passed down from my family.

ingredients for keto Mexican cauliflower rice

The secret to this cauliflower rice's authentic Mexican rice flavor is the chicken bouillon. I chose Knorr Selects Chicken Granulated Bouillon. New Knorr Selects® Granulated Chicken Flavor Bouillon (14.1oz) is made with natural chicken stock and contains zero artificial flavors, colors, preservatives or added MSG. You can find this all-natural bouillon in the soup or spice section of your local grocery store.

Get the printable recipe for your family's next favorite cauliflower rice below.

Print

The Most Terrific Keto Mexican Caulifower Rice Recipe Ever

The most delicious and authentic-tasting Mexican Cauliflower Rice Recipe. Keto-friendly and made with all-natural ingredients, like Knorr Selects Bouillon.

  • Author: Jennifer Priest

Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 Large Head of Cauliflower

     
  • 1 Tbsp Butter or Oil

     
  • 1 Tbsp Knorr Selects Chicken Flavor Bouillon

     
  • ¼ tsp Black Pepper

     
  • 1 tsp Cumin

     
  • ½ tsp Paprika

     
  • ½ tsp garlic powder

     
  • ¼ tsp chili powder

Instructions

  1. Rinse and pat cauliflower dry, cut into small pieces.
  2. Grate cauliflower using either a box grater or food processor with the grater blade into small coarse pieces the size of rice grains.
  3. Melt the butter in a saute pan.
  4. Add cauliflower and saute for 5-6 minutes and cover for 2 minutes to steam.
  5. Stir in bouillon and spices.
  6. Serve warm.

Notes

This cauliflower rice recipe makes a great base for burrito bowls or a side dish for Mexican food meals.

Did you make this recipe?

Share a photo and tag us — we can't wait to see what you've made!

The Most Terrific Keto Mexican Cauliflower Rice Recipe Ever

Recipe by Jennifer PriestCourse: SidesCuisine: Mexican, Keto, LCHF, Low CarbDifficulty: Easy
Servings

4

servings
Prep time

20

minutes
Cooking time

10

minutes
Calories

35

kcal
Total time

30

minutes

The most delicious and authentic-tasting Mexican Cauliflower Rice Recipe. Keto-friendly and made with all-natural ingredients, like Knorr Selects Bouillon.

Ingredients

  • 1 Large Head of Cauliflower

  • 1 Tbsp Butter or Oil

  • 1 Tbsp Knorr Selects Chicken Flavor Bouillon

  • ¼ tsp Black Pepper

  • 1 tsp Cumin

  • ½ tsp Paprika

  • ½ tsp garlic powder

  • ¼ tsp chili powder

Directions

  • Rinse and pat cauliflower dry, cut into small pieces.
  • Grate cauliflower using either a box grater or food processor with the grater blade into small coarse pieces the size of rice grains.
  • Melt the butter in a saute pan.
  • Add cauliflower and saute for 5-6 minutes and cover for 2 minutes to steam.
  • Stir in bouillon and spices.
  • Serve warm.

Notes

  • This cauliflower rice recipe makes a great base for burrito bowls or a side dish for Mexican food meals.

What Questions Do You Have About Mexican Cauliflower Rice?

Drop your questions in the comments. Or let's continue this conversation over on our Facebook Page!

Save this recipe for later on Pinterest! (Let's get some more authentic “Mexican rice” out there!)

long ping graphic for keto Mexican cauiflower rice recipe

About the Author

Author Profile

Jennifer Priest is a 20+ year designer in the arts & crafts industry and home DIYer with a passion for creativity. An Army veteran raised on a ranch, from her experience, she shares smart DIY projects that save money and fun craft ideas that anyone can make. Besides blogging, Jennifer is a Master Practitioner and Trainer of NLP, Hypnosis, and MER, and coaches other online entrepreneurs on money mindset, business, and living an intentional life. When not blogging, Jennifer is having adventures in the wilderness, on road trips, playing with her cats, and making paleo food.

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