Mexican fried rice is a fun twist on fried rice and a delicious all-in-one dinner with ground turkey, onions and peppers, black beans and corn, salsa and rice.
Hello from the mountains! We are finishing up a long winter weekend getaway with the kids and it has been so fabulous.
We got them some ski lessons and they rocked it! I remembered how to ski myself and had fun trying out various slopes. It was gorgeous weather, too.
We also did some gem mining, explored a cute little nearby town, had some hot tub and hot cocoa fun and some warm, crackling fires in our cozy cabin.
I don't want to go home today! But since I must, let's move along to today's recipe.
Have you heard of Mexican fried rice?
It’s a fun twist on what we normally think of as fried rice, skipping the soy sauce and Asian ingredients in favor of some southwestern spices and flair.
We’ve got ground turkey (or beef), onions and peppers, black beans and corn, salsa and of course rice to bring this dish together.
It’s colorful, flavorful and sure to be a family favorite!
Today’s recipe is also similar to my turkey taco rice skillet, which is another great all-in-one dish that makes for an easy weeknight dinner.
Can you tell we love these flavors?!
These are the ingredients I keep stocked in my kitchen, so these are the meals I often throw together. Because despite the somewhat lengthy ingredient list, this is all really familiar, on-hand things you need.
Also, to be clear, I don’t think this is in any way an authentic Mexican dish. Nor is it traditional fried rice. It’s a mash-up creation that’s it’s very own thing.
And it’s such a delicious and fun dish!
Now, I’ve got some notes, tips and substitutions coming up below on how to make Mexican fried rice. Just tryin’ to be helpful.
If you want to jump on down to the recipe, simply scroll right on through the rest of the text. The recipe card is near the bottom of the page, above the comments section.
Notes on Mexican fried rice:
- The rice for this recipe needs to be cooked. Please plan accordingly.
- White or brown rice both work for this recipe. You can also use cauliflower rice if you want a lower-carb dish.
- Be sure to use a large, deep skillet for this recipe. It makes a lot and you’ll have a hard time keeping it in the pan if it’s not big enough.
- You can substitute lean ground beef for the turkey if you prefer. Just drain off any excess grease.
- Or you could use ground chicken or ground pork if you’d like.
Like it spicy?
Feel free to add an extra jalapeño (and/or leave in some of the membrane and seeds for the heat) or use ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper along with the other spices.
You can also opt for a hot salsa and some Pepper Jack cheese on top to give it more of a kick.
I usually make it as is and then just serve it with hot sauce for my husband and I, so it’s not spicy for the kids.
And finally, a note about the eggs.
I love eggs in my fried rice so I wanted to include them in this dish. You can certainly skip them if you’d rather.
If you do want to use them, you can either cook them in a separate, small skillet, and then mix them into the fried rice. Or you can clear some space in your large skillet and scramble them right in. Whatever is easier for you.
And of course, we’ve got to talk about how to top this off.
Topping ideas for Mexican fried rice:
- Shredded cheddar or Monterey Jack cheese
- Chopped fresh cilantro
- Sliced avocado or a dollop of guacamole
- Extra salsa
- Greek yogurt or sour cream
- Chopped green onions
- Sriracha or hot sauce
As I mentioned, this makes a lot! The good news is, it saves and reheats great.
Leftover Mexican fried rice:
- You can store leftovers in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
- Reheat in a microwave-safe container in the microwave for 1 minute, then stir and add additional time as needed until it’s hot. Add your toppings and dig in!
- You can technically freeze this as well but it does lose some flavor. Everything sorta blends together and it doesn't have the same distinct texture and flavors as it does when it's fresh.
And honestly, it makes such a delicious, flavorful lunch you should probably just eat it all the same week. 😉
I hope you give this a try and love it as much as we do.
P.S. Check out these other yummy fried rice recipes:
- 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 small onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
- 1 small jalapeño, seeds and membranes removed, finely chopped
- 1 small green pepper, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 lb. lean ground turkey (see notes)
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- ½ teaspoon ground oregano
- 1 (14.5 oz.) can black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 cup corn (frozen, thawed, or fresh or from a can, drained)
- 1 cup salsa
- 2 cups leftover cooked brown (or white) rice
- 1 teaspoon hot sauce (optional)
- 2 large eggs, lightly whisked (optional, see notes)
- Juice of 1 lime
- Heat a large, deep sauté pan over medium heat and add olive oil.
- Add the onion, jalapeño and green pepper and sauté for 4-5 minutes, until slightly softened.
- Add the garlic and ground turkey and continue to cook, breaking up the turkey with a spoon or spatula, until the turkey is cooked through.
- Next, add the chili powder, cumin, salt, pepper and oregano and mix well to combine.
- Add the black beans, corn, salsa and cooked rice and stir well to combine.
- Let the fried rice cook over medium heat for 3-4 minutes, until warmed through.
- Meanwhile, heat a separate small skillet over medium heat. Add the eggs and cook, stirring occasionally, until the eggs are scrambled and cooked through. Add them to the fried rice and stir to combine. (Alternatively, you can cook the eggs in the same skillet as the fried rice by clearing a small area in which to scramble the eggs.)
- Squeeze the lime juice over the entire skillet and stir.
- Serve hot with desired toppings and enjoy!
The rice for this recipe needs to be cooked. Please plan accordingly.
Be sure to use a large, deep skillet for this recipe. It makes a lot and you’ll have a hard time keeping it in the pan if it’s not big enough.
I use and recommend 93% lean ground turkey. You could substitute lean ground beef if you prefer. Just drain off any excess grease. Or you could use ground chicken or ground pork if you’d like.
White or brown rice both work for this recipe. You can also use cauliflower rice if you want a lower-carb dish.
Like it spicy? Feel free to add an extra jalapeño (and/or leave in some of the membrane and seeds for the heat) or to use ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper along with the other spices. You can also opt for a hot salsa and some Pepper Jack cheese on top to give it more of a kick.
A note about the eggs: I love eggs in my fried rice so I wanted to include them in this dish. You can certainly skip them if you’d rather.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 293Total Fat: 13gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 141mgSodium: 814mgCarbohydrates: 19gFiber: 5gSugar: 4gProtein: 27g