Arroz Verde (Mexican Green Rice)

5 from 2 votes

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.

My Arroz Verde, or Mexican green rice recipe, gets its earthy color and flavor thanks to the addition of spicy poblano chiles and fresh chopped cilantro! It’s the perfect side for enchiladas and carnitas. Plus, you can make it entirely from scratch in under an hour!

Arroz Verde (Mexican Green Rice) on a spoon

There are so many ways to prepare rice, and I love trying my hand at different types of recipes! This side dish is just so versatile. Some of my favorite variations include Arroz Amarillo (yellow rice), cilantro lime, and Arroz Rojo (Mexican red rice). Any of the above work wonderfully as a simple side dish for your Mexican-inspired meals. You can even use them as a filling in a burrito. The possibilities are endless!

Today I wanted to share my Arroz Verde recipe. It’s prepared with a puree made of poblano chiles, chopped cilantro, a touch of garlic, and chicken stock. It’s super easy to throw together, and the fresh flavors of the chiles and cilantro really bring this Mexican green rice recipe to the next level. And don’t get me started on all of the delicious aromas that will fill your kitchen as it cooks.

If you want to get ahead on your meals for the week, make a big batch to keep on hand. When you see how easy it is to make this side dish at home, you won’t be able to resist it!

skillet with Arroz Verde (Mexican Green Rice)


  • Long Grain White Rice – Always opt for long-grain rice. Short grain varieties contain much more starch, which can cause your dish to clump together.
  • Poblano Chiles – To bring the heat! If you don’t like spicy foods you can replace the poblanos with Anaheim chiles.
  • Jalapeños – These are optional, but if you like spice you should include them. I personally love their flavor! 
  • Garlic – The garlic will add even more to the flavor profile of your Arroz Verde. 
  • Onion – Feel free to use yellow, white, or red — your choice.
  • Chicken Stock – You can easily make this recipe vegetarian and vegan-friendly if you use vegetable stock instead.
  • Vegetable Oil – To toast your rice before serving. You can also substitute any type of flavor-neutral oil.
  • Cilantro – My favorite fresh herb for seasoning! If you don’t like it, you can replace it with flat-leaf parsley.
ingredients to make Arroz Verde (Mexican Green Rice)


1. Soak the Rice. Place your rice in a medium-sized bowl and cover it with boiling water. Let it soak for about 15 minutes. Then, drain and rinse the rice with cold water, being sure to shake off any excess. Set aside.

2. Make the Puree. In a dry, hot skillet, roast the poblanos, jalapeños, and onion until they start to blister and char. Place them in a blender or food processor with your garlic, salt, and chicken or vegetable stock and puree until the mixture is smooth.

3. Toast the Rice. Add vegetable oil to a skillet and toast the rice over medium heat for about 2 minutes, making sure to coat the rice in the oil. Once it has become golden in color, add the chile puree. Let everything come to a boil and then allow it to simmer for 20 minutes. 

4. Fluff and Serve. Remove the skillet from heat and add the cilantro. Fluff your rice with a fork before covering again. Let your dish rest for at least 10 minutes before eating. You can add some extra jalapeños, chopped cilantro, and sliced limes on top for serving!

finished Arroz Verde (Mexican Green Rice) in a pan

What Goes With Arroz Verde?

Now that you know how to prepare your own Arroz Verde at home, you may be wondering about the best dishes to serve along with it! You can also use it to bulk up a taco salad or breakfast burritos, or serve alongside some of my favorites:

What Is In Green Mexican Rice?

This Mexican-inspired recipe gets its color and flavor from the specially made chile puree. The puree is made with poblano chiles, jalapeño peppers, onion, garlic, and fresh cilantro. It boasts an earthy and spicy taste, and you have the freedom to really play around with how much spice you put in it. Chicken or vegetable broth is also used as it adds so much more flavor than just plain old water!

What Is Poblano Green Rice?

This dish goes by many names! It’s also called Mexican green rice, poblano green rice, and even poblano cilantro rice. Rest assured — these are all the same recipe! It’s sometimes called poblano green rice because these chiles are the star of the show. Along with the cilantro, they lend so much to the dish. Make sure to dry toast them in a skillet before pureeing them to achieve the best chile flavor possible.

close up view of Arroz Verde (Mexican Green Rice)

Still Hungry?

Subscribe to my Newsletter, follow me on Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram and YouTube for all my latest recipes and videos.

This recipe post, originally published on Kevin Is Cooking April, 2020, has been updated with new content, photos and/or video in June, 2022.

Arroz Verde (Mexican Green Rice) + Video

5 from 2 votes
My recipe for Arroz Verde, otherwise known as Mexican green rice, is bursting with flavor thanks to green chiles and cilantro!
Servings: 4
Prep: 20 minutes
Cook: 25 minutes
Total: 45 minutes



  • In a medium sized bowl add the rice and cover with boiling water. Allow to soak for 15 minutes. Drain, rinse with cold water, shake off excess water and set aide.
  • Dry roast the poblanos, jalapeño and onion in a hot skillet until they start to blister and char slightly. Add to a blender along with the garlic, salt and chicken stock. Puree until smooth.
  • Add the oil to a skillet or Dutch oven over medium heat and cook the rice for 2 minutes or so, stirring to coat, until golden in color. Add the chile puree. Bring to a boil, cover and reduce to simmer for 20 minutes.
  • Remove from heat, add cilantro and fluff with fork. Cover again and let rest 10 minutes. Season to taste before serving.



Recipe adapted from MEXICO, by Margarita Carrillo Arronte.


Calories: 326kcal | Carbohydrates: 47g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 4mg | Sodium: 468mg | Potassium: 323mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 325IU | Vitamin C: 55mg | Calcium: 32mg | Iron: 1mg

The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

Course: side dishes
Cuisine: Mexican
Have You Made This Recipe? Let Me Know on InstagramTag @keviniscooking or tag me #keviniscooking!
side view of Arroz Verde (Mexican Green Rice) with a wooden spoon


Whether in the kitchen or on the grill, you’ll find me cooking American favorites with a love for BBQ, Mexican and Tex Mex. I’m passionate about making tasty food because life’s too short to be bland!

Free Bonus
5 Secrets to True Tex Mex
Essential recipes & tips for delicious Tex Mex cooking!

email image

Explore More

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


  1. 5 stars
    This rice is tasty flavor wise, but there is a problem with the water levels. When I poured boiling water on my rice, it pretty much swelled up and was impossible to brown, and was soggy. I think maybe just using hot water would work better, or not presoak at all.

  2. Hi Kevin. Boy oh boy have I made a lot of your great recipes. Thank you for sharing. This rice is delicious and I will definitely be making this again. However, my rice came out sticky even though I followed your directions exactly. Any thoughts as to why? It’s just fine for me but just curious. Thanks

    1. So glad you enjoy them Jody. Rice can sometimes be tricky. I learned recently when I moved, and my house runs on propane and is hotter, so I had to adjust the temp on many recipes. For this one I might lessen the liquid a bit. Did you drain the rice after soaking?

      1. Thank you for taking the time to reply, Kevin. Yes, I drained it after the soak. Maybe I should try to reduce the liquid then. Cooking is a never ending learning and experimentation process isn’t it? Thanks again!

  3. This recipe sounds wonderful but I have a question. Why do you boil the rice before adding the other ingredients, then cook for an additional 20 minutes. I usually rinse my rice first, sauté whatever I am adding then cook for 15-20mins.

    1. Joann, I simply let it sit in the boiling water while prepping the chile puree. This recipe is an adaption from MEXICO the Cookbook by Margarita Carrillo Arronte and it was the first step she suggested. I typically would do the same that you mentioned. This is one amazing dish though!

      1. 5 stars
        I made this rice dish and it was, without a doubt one of the best rice dishes we have ever had. Followed exactly, even the soaking rice step. I guess an old cook can learn a few new tricks! Thanks

  4. Hi Kevin,
    This recipe looks AMAZING! Can I use frozen charred poblanos for the puree? I have a stockpile from last season.