We knew we had to try it when we saw Mexican Style Chicken Cheese and Rice recipe featured on TikTok! Since then, its become my favorite go-to weekend dinner. Chicken and rice is filling, it’s adaptable, and it always seems to hit the spot. And once you had that cheesy Queso sauce layer, it became divine.
And as far as dinner recipes go, it’s also effortless to make!
I CANNOT get enough of this flavorful chicken and cheese–it is just SOOO tasty! What is it about Mexican-inspired food that is so darn good? Maybe it’s the blend of cumin, onion, garlic, and cilantro.
Or maybe it’s the melty, gooey cheese that I still crave after my second helping.
Whatever it is, this TikTok recipe got two thumbs up from my youngest, my husband, AND my teenager, which means it’s a winner!
Before we get started, let’s talk about the TikTok user we were first introduced to this recipe by. User @tierraldiggins and the original video about Mexican Style Chicken, Cheese, and Rice.
She notes in the comments that this isn’t what she is claiming to be authentic Mexican food; however, it is a Mexican Inspired recipe based on her local restaurant menus.
Mexican Style Chicken, Cheese, and Rice
- Long Grain Rice – Long grain rice is usually rice like Jasmine, Basmati, and Thai rice and have longer rice grains than brown rice
- Tomato Sauce
- Seasonings: Garlic Powder, Onion Powder, Cumin, Cilantro, Salt, Pepper
- Chicken Breasts
- Queso Blanco Velveeta – The original tiktok recipe uses Queso Blanco Velveeta but any Velveeta cheese you love will do in a pinch.
Homemade Mexican Rice
I was craving Mexican rice for so long but couldn’t recreate it at home. The fluffy, golden pollo con queso simmered with tomatoes that I would always order wouldn’t be the right texture outside of a restaurant.
Then I learned a trick that TOTALLY changed the way I prepare it. Here’s the secret to making the BEST Mexican rice: rinse the grains before cooking them.
So simple, right?
By rinsing the rice, you remove the extra starch that makes your rice stick together and sometimes leave it mushy. I rinse mine in a strainer several times until the water coming off the rice runs clear.
Only then do I toast the grains on the stovetop to achieve the perfect consistency in my finished dish.
Make this Mexican-inspired Chicken Cheese and Rice for your next potluck, or even for your next dinner party!
What are some good toppings to try on Mexican Style Chicken Cheese and Rice?
I’m a sour cream fanatic, so I always top any Mexican-inspired meal with a healthy dollop.
But, if sour cream isn’t your thing, there are plenty of other toppings that are PERFECT for this dish.
- Chopped green onions
- Salsa, diced tomatoes or (better yet) fresh Pico de Gallo
- Guacamole or sliced avocados
- Canned green chilies or diced fresh jalapeno
- Enchilada sauce
Can I make Chicken Cheese and Rice using a rice cooker?
You can make this dish using a rice cooker. I recommend rinsing the rice grains before adding them to the cooker.
After rinsing, combine rice, canned tomato, spices, chicken bouillon, and water and cook per manufacturer’s instructions.
However, the texture still might not be restaurant quality because the rice won’t be toasted before going into the cooker.
What other spices can be used in TikTok Chicken Cheese and Rice?
Mexican-inspired meals like this Chicken Cheese and Rice can be made with all sorts of spices. Whenever I’m making a south-of-the-border dish, I always start with onion powder, garlic (powder or fresh), and cumin.
If you are looking for a one-stop spice blend, taco mix is undoubtedly a good option.
Here are some other spices you can try next time you make this:
- Chili powder
- Paprika/Smoked Paprika
- Cayenne pepper (adds heat)
- Mexican Oregano
- Cinnamon and Cloves
What other variations can I make to Chicken Cheese and Rice?
If you’re like me and cook Mexican Chicken Cheese and Rice ALL the time, it’s nice to vary it up. Here are some easy ways to change up this amazingly versatile meal:
- Add beans: black, pinto, or flor de mayo beans are exceptional in this dish, and can replace the chicken for a vegetarian meal (remember to also replace the chicken bouillon with vegetable bouillon if making this vegetarian). Of course, if you only have another variety of beans such as red or garbanzo, you can use these too; your Chicken Cheese and Rice will be just as delicious but perhaps a bit less authentic.
- Add vegetables: canned corn, canned green chilies, and sautéed onions and peppers are a delicious and easy adaptation that not only bulks this meal up but makes it healthier, too.
- Use brown rice for a healthier meal: Prepare the brown rice the same way you would the white rice (rinse and toast). Brown rice takes longer to cook than white (about 40 minutes compared to 20) but will taste just as good!
- Change up your cheese: most non-aged cheeses will taste great in Chicken Cheese and Rice. Queso is my preferred cheese, and jarred Queso is a fine choice, but if you don’t have Queso on hand, here are some other good choices (although not all are Mexican type cheeses and may change the flavor of the dish)
- Monterey jack
- Pepper jack
- Mild feta
Can Chicken Cheese and Rice be prepared beforehand?
Yes! Make this dish ahead of time, cover it with plastic wrap or aluminum foil, and place it in the fridge. To rewarm, bake it at 350 degrees F for 35 minutes until the cheese is melted and the contents reheated throughout.
How should I deal with leftovers of Chicken, Cheese and Rice?
If you have leftovers, chicken, cheese, and rice can be stored in the fridge for up to 3 days. If you need to store it for longer, it can be wrapped in plastic wrap, aluminum foil, and frozen.
Thaw overnight in the fridge and then reheat it in the oven at 350 degrees F for about 35 minutes.
TikTok Dinner Recipes
- TikTok Cheesy Baked Ziti with Ricotta Recipe
- TikTok Ramen Recipe
- TikTok Honey Buttered Fried Chicken Recipe
- TikTok Feta Pasta Recipe
- TikTok Broccoli Cheese Soup Recipe
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