Need a super easy recipe for dinner tonight? My beef and rice skillet has you covered: One skillet, simple ingredients, 15 minutes of prep time… A keeper for sure!
I don’t know about you, but I need easy dinner ideas pretty much every day of the week. And easy to me means little prep time, uncomplicated ingredients, not a lot of dishes to cook it.
My Mexican inspired beef and rice skillet? Definitely ticks all of those boxes. Let’s make it!
Ingredients you’ll need
Here is an overview of the ingredients in the skillet (great to use as a visual grocery list at the store!). Scroll down to the recipe for quantities.
- Taco seasoning: I always make my own to control the spiciness (my kids can’t handle anything remotely spicy), click here for my taco seasoning recipe.
- Black beans: I always cook my own in my instant pot – it’s super easy and SO much cheaper! Click here for my tutorial. Can also use kidney beans instead of black.
- Rice: I have made this with both white and brown parboiled rice (brown in the photo); both work – the brown needs longer to cook though. For the recipe to cook in the time stated, you’ll need to use a parboiled white rice that cooks in 10-15 minutes.
- Salsa: A mild, chunky salsa works best for us. Feel free to use hot salsa if your kids can handle it.
Step by step photos
This is a really, really easy meal to cook. All you have to do is brown the beef with onion and garlic, stir in the diced peppers and seasoning… Then stir in the remaining ingredients and simmer with the lid on.
Tips & tricks
- Do not pre-cook the rice: That’s right, the rice can go in uncooked! If you pre-cook it, the entire dish will turn into soup. So, don’t 😉
- Don’t skip the browning step: I know it can be tempting to skip this step to save time, but you’ll miss out on a lot of flavor if you don’t brown the meat and onions.
- Spiciness: This is how I make the dish for my 2 and 4 year old kids. If you’re not making this for kids (or have older kids), you can add some zing and heat by using chili powder along with the taco seasoning, and stirring through some lime juice after cooking.
Side dish ideas
We also enjoy some shredded cheese and lime wedges, plus obviously corn chips – we are not allowed to serve anything Mexican inspired without corn chips in our home. Order of our 4 and 6 year olds 😉
If you need a new idea for ground beef – try this one for a change. It has so many great reviews from readers who already made it. A true favorite!
More ground beef recipes
Mexican Beef and Rice Skillet
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 large onion chopped
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 red pepper diced
- 1 yellow pepper diced
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon taco seasoning
- salt & pepper to taste
- 1 cup rice (parboiled preferred; see notes)
- 1.5 cups broth or more if it seems dry
- 1 jar (16-oz) chunky salsa
- 1 can (15-oz) black beans
- 1 cup sweet corn canned OR frozen
- Shredded cheese, lime wedges, sour cream, chopped tomatoes, cilantro, avocado, tortilla chips…. optional, to serve
- Brown meat:Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook for 2 minutes. Add the garlic and beef and cook until browned. Stir in the diced peppers and cook for 1 more minute.
- Add remaining ingredients:Stir in the tomato paste, taco seasoning, salt and pepper. Cook for 1 minute. Add the rice, broth, salsa, black beans and corn and stir well.
- Cook:Bring to a simmer, cover the skillet with a lid, reduce the heat and gently cook for around 15 minutes, or until cooked through. Add more broth if necessary.
- Serve:Top with shredded cheese and cover for another 2 minutes, if you like. Serve with your favorite toppings.
More recipe information
More easy and delicious rice recipes you’ll love:
I originally published this recipe on March 13, 2019. I updated it on May 20, 2020 to make it better for you.