Mexican Fried Rice is going to be your new
This post was originally posted March 9, 2018 and was most recently updated March 19, 2019 to improve user experience.
Is picky eating hereditary?
I should admit something. Before I started dating my now husband, I was kind of a picky eater myself. I was open to trying new things, but I definitely stuck to a 4 years old’s diet of cheese and carbs because, you know, college.
I’m sure the face I made when Alex first suggested we get Indian was.. well.. interesting.
Thankfully, with a lot of pushing and experimenting, I’ve grown to love and try new things. I no longer cringe at the idea of trying different cuisines, which I consider a win.
Raising adventurous eaters
One of my food goals for them is to be adventurous eaters and willing to try new flavors.
But that can be difficult with little kids. It’s so easy to get caught in a safe zone. Next thing you know, you’re serving the same 5 dinners weekly and your kids will only eat quesadillas.
Not that that’s happened to me, of course.
Trying new flavors alongside new veggies
My favorite way to get kids to try new flavors is to take something familiar and transform it. One of my boys’ favorite foods is rice. F
This version is a family favorite dinner. This Mexican inspired recipe for kids is a perfect compromise. Most children like the flavors as is, so beefing up the nutrition is simple.
Tips for making Mexican Fried Rice
- You can easily substitute half of the rice for some cauliflower to add some extra veggies. My boys rarely notice when I do, and it’s
a simpleaddition. Add the cauliflower when you add your corn and cook through. It’s one of my favorite ways to turn a dish into a hidden veggie recipe.
- I used white rice here but I’ve used brown plenty of times. That being said, if you’re trying to introduce a new flavor profile, I suggest sticking to what they like.
- Use cooled rice when making for the best results.
- Top with kid friendly favorites like cheese, sour cream, and salsa to encourage them to dig in. Mom and dad can top with hot sauce and a squeeze of lime.
- Even better, make a topping bar of sorts! Encourage kids to try new flavor combos by giving them the power.
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I’m really, really, famously bad at making rice. If you’re like me, try a rice cooker! This one makes 20 cups if you want, so you could make a HUGE batch and use all week or freeze.
Mexican Fried Rice
Easy Mexican rice is the perfect weeknight meal for kids. It’s customizable to your family’s tastes and simple to add extra veggies into. You’re going to love this easy,
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Mexican Fried Rice
Mexican Fried Rice is going to be your new go to for a quick, healthy weeknight dinner. Using a kid favorite as the base, this kid friendly dinner is the perfect vehicle to introduce new flavors and encourage adventurous eating.
- .5 red onion diced
- 2-3 garlic cloves minced
- 1 diced chicken breast see notes
- 1 cup black beans
- 1 cup frozen corn
- 3 cups cooked and cooked rice
- 2-3 tbsp oil
- 1 tsp paprika
- .5 tsp cumin
- .5 tsp chili powder
- 1 lime
- 1 small tomato diced
- 2-3 tbs chopped cilantro optional
Heat 2 tablespoon of oil over the medium high heat. Add chicken and onion, and cook until chicken is cooked through and onion is translucent, stirring frequently, about 5 minutes.
Add garlic – cook until fragrant.
Stir in beans and corn. Cook until the corn defrosts and add seasonings. Continue stirring until everything is coated, and squeeze in half of the lime.
If the mixture is sticking a lot, add the extra oil before stirring in the rice.
Stir and cook until everything is combined and heated through.
Add tomato and cilantro and salt and pepper is desired. Enjoy!
-You can use any meat you’d like, or omit completely. Sometimes I make this with ground meat and call it ‘taco rice’ – just make sure to drain the oil before addind the beans and corn.
-Cilantro is optional, since it’s definitely a love it or hate it herb, but I believe cooking with herbs often helps introduce kids to more flavors and become more willing to try new things.
If you’re looking to add more veggies, try grabbing some rice cauliflower at the store. It’s sold at my local grocery store both frozen and fresh. Saute it up with the veggies before the wine, and cook about 2 minutes.
Want to get the kids involved making this easy Mexican rice?
Here are some ideas for getting kids in the kitchen when making this recipe.
- Use a food chopper to have your kids help
yourcut up the veggies.
- Let them stir in the cheese at the end (with close supervision if on the stove).
- Have kids pick the leaves off the stems of fresh herbs.
- Teach kids ratios by allowing them to measure out the rice and water.
Okay, so tell me – what your kid’s favorite meal? What flavors would you love them to try out? Let me know in the comments!
You may also enjoy….
- Egg Roll in a Bowl
- Italian Fried Rice with al fresco Chicken Sausage
- Pizza Chicken – a 4 ingredient,
Got a picky eater?
My kids eat their veggies every day without complaining. Want my secret?
Grab the Outsmart your Picky Eater cheat sheets to get the inside scoop on how to add veggies to food your kids already love.