Delicious Arroz Con Queso Recipe To Satisfy Your Cravings

Folks, get ready to add some sabor to your dinner table with a recipe that will take your taste buds on a trip south of the border – Arroz con Queso, or as you might know it “Rice with Cheese.” This dish is the perfect accompaniment for any Mexican-inspired feast or even a quick weeknight meal.

The combination of the sharp cheddar cheese, monterey jack cheese, and parmesan cheese blends in perfectly with the rice’s starchy texture, making each bite ooze with cheesy goodness. Plus, don’t forget about the ricotta cheese and flavorful chilies that bring an added depth to this delectable side dish.

Are you looking for something to accompany your Taco Tuesday? Or perhaps something different for your next potluck party? Look no further! Our Arroz con Queso recipe is sure to be a hit at any gathering. So let’s grab some fresh ingredients and get cookin’!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Arroz con Queso (Rice with Cheese)
Arroz con Queso (Rice with Cheese)

Folks, let me tell you a little somethin’ about this arroz con queso recipe right here. It’s not your ordinary rice dish, I can tell ya that much. This meal is a fusion of Bolivian and Mexican cuisines, and boy, does it bring the heat!

First off, what’s not to love about cheese? We’re talkin’ three different kinds of cheese melted together into gooey goodness: sharp cheddar, monterey jack, and parmesan. Plus, we throw in some ricotta cheese for good measure. And don’t forget the queso fresco crumbled on top like snow on a winter’s day.

Secondly, this recipe is so versatile – you can make it as a side dish or as the main course. It pairs well with chicken (may I suggest serving it with pollo loco?) or just eat it straight up. Want some extra protein? Toss in some black-eyed peas or black olives for added flavor.

But the real kicker of this dish is the spice. We’ve got chilies and chipotle queso mixed throughout to give it a kick of heat that’ll tantalize your taste buds. And if you’re feelin’ really adventurous, add some taco seasoning to turn up the heat.

So listen up y’all – if you want a cheese-tastic, spicy rice dish that’ll knock your socks off, give this arroz con queso recipe a try. You won’t regret it!

Ingredient List

 A cheesy and comforting dish that is perfect for any occasion
A cheesy and comforting dish that is perfect for any occasion

Here are the ingredients you’ll need to make this tasty Arroz con Queso recipe:

For the Rice:

  • 2 cups of cooked white rice
  • 1/2 cup of black-eyed peas
  • 1/2 cup of chopped onion
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tablespoon of oil
  • salt to taste

For the Cheese Mixture:

  • 2 cups of shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup of ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup of shredded Monterey Jack cheese

For the Toppings:

  • sliced black olives
  • grated Parmesan cheese

For the Sauce:

  • 1 can of diced tomatoes and green chilies (10 oz)
  • 1 can of pinto beans, drained and rinsed (15 oz)
  • 1 tablespoon of taco seasoning

Note: You can substitute any cheese with your favorite melting cheese, like queso fresco, or a mix of different cheeses.

The Recipe How-To

 The ooey-gooey texture will have your taste buds dancing with joy
The ooey-gooey texture will have your taste buds dancing with joy

Now that you have all your ingredients handy, it’s time to put them into action! This recipe is super simple and easy to follow, so you will have delicious “Arroz con Queso” on your table in no time.

Step 1: Cook the Rice

The first thing you need to do is to cook the rice. In a two-quart saucepan, combine 1 1/2 cups of short-grain white rice and 3 cups of water. Bring it to a boil, and then cover it with a lid and reduce the heat to low. Let it simmer for about 20 minutes or until the rice is tender and all the water has been absorbed.

Step 2: Prep the Other Ingredients

While the rice is cooking, you can get started on prepping the other ingredients. Dice 1 onion, mince 3 garlic cloves, and chop 1 can of black olives (6 oz) and set them aside in individual bowls. Grate 2 cups of Monterey Jack cheese, 1 cup of sharp cheddar cheese, and 1/2 cup of Parmesan cheese separately.

Step 3: Sauté Onions and Garlic

In a large skillet over medium heat, add about 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Once heated, add diced onions and minced garlic into the skillet until they are lightly browned.

Step 4: Add Other Ingredients

Now it’s time to add everything else to the skillet. Add cooked rice to the skillet with the sautéd onions and garlic. Then mix in chopped black olives, an entire can of drained black-eyed peas (15 oz), and one can of diced tomatoes (14 oz). For an extra kick of flavor, mix in an envelope of taco seasoning into the skillet.

Step 5: Mix Cheese into Skillet

After adding the other ingredients to the skillet, now it’s time to mix in all the grated cheese. First, mix in Monterey Jack cheese and sharp cheddar cheese alternately until is melted and everything is well combined. Then, mix in Parmesan cheese.

Step 6: Bake in Oven

After mixing in all the cheese, prepare a baking dish with cooking spray. Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C). Carefully transfer the skillet contents into the baking dish and top it with an additional layer of shredded cheese on top of everything. Bake for 25 minutes or until the cheese is completely melted and bubbly.

That’s it! Your “Arroz con Queso” is ready to enjoy.

But remember that this recipe can be adjusted based on what you have in your pantry or preference, so feel free to make changes to make it yours.

Substitutions and Variations

 This dish is quick and easy to prepare for busy weeknight dinners
This dish is quick and easy to prepare for busy weeknight dinners

Folks, sometimes we don’t have all the ingredients for a recipe. It just happens. So, if you don’t have one or two of the cheese types listed in this recipe, don’t sweat it. I’ve got some substitutions and variations that can make your dish just as cheesy delicious.

First off, if you’ve never had Ricotta Cheese (you must be living under a rock), it’s a great substitute for Monterey Jack Cheese. The creamy texture and mild flavor make it an excellent option when Monterey is unavailable.

Next is Parmesan Cheese. It’s a versatile cheese with a nutty flavor that adds depth to many dishes. If Sharp Cheddar isn’t accessible, Parmesan is a decent substitute option.

Black-eyed peas, Black olives or Chilies work alone or combined as simple variations to add some zing your a dish. They bring different dimensions of flavor that will take your rice and cheese to another level.

Now listen, if you’re feeling adventurous, try replacing the Tex-mex variation by adding some Pollo (Chicken) to this Bolivian side dish. Try it in ‘Con Pollo Loco’ style- tangy with taste buds tantalizing flavors!

Hey! Hey! Hold onto your hats now because I’m giving you another spin on this classic recipe – Queso Dip! Go ahead and prepare the same way but use two cups of cheese sauce instead of 2 cups of shredded cheese.

So just remember folks- A recipe is only a suggestion. With or without having access to every ingredient or following every direction, we can still make something pretty darn tasty!

Serving and Pairing

 The combination of rice and cheese is a timeless classic that never disappoints
The combination of rice and cheese is a timeless classic that never disappoints

So, you’ve got your mouth-watering Arroz con Queso ready to go – now what? It’s time to serve and pair this cheesy delight with some equally delicious dishes. This side dish is great all on its own, but can also be enjoyed as a filling main dish.

One of my favorite ways to serve Arroz con Queso is alongside a hearty helping of black-eyed peas. The creamy, cheesy goodness pairs perfectly with the earthy flavor of the peas.

Another classic pairing for this dish is a fresh, crisp salad. Mix in some black olives and your favorite veggies for added texture and flavor. And if you’re feeling spicy, add some chopped chilies to your greens.

For a heartier meal, consider serving your Arroz con Queso with some grilled chicken or steak. The tangy cheese sauce will complement these meats nicely.

If you’re looking for more traditional Bolivian pairings, try serving with a side of pollo (chicken) or another Bolivian dish like Pique Macho or Silpancho. These dishes will take your taste buds on a journey through Bolivia.

No matter how you choose to serve your Arroz con Queso, I recommend finishing it off with a sprinkle of fresh cilantro or parsley. It will add a pop of color and flavor that simply cannot be beat!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 The dish is versatile and can be customized with your favorite spices and ingredients
The dish is versatile and can be customized with your favorite spices and ingredients

Folks, it’s always a good idea to make your life easier by preparing your dishes ahead of time. You’ll love the convenience this option offers. Lucky for you, our arroz con queso dish is no exception! You can make it a day ahead, store it securely and reheat it flawlessly for your next meal.

To make ahead, prepare the rice and cheese mixture separately. After combining them together, transfer the arroz con queso into a baking dish and refrigerate. When you’re ready to serve, bring it to room temperature before baking.

Storing leftovers is simple. Allow the dish to cool completely before transferring any leftovers into an airtight container. Seal tightly and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Reheating is easy too! Preheat your oven to 350°F (180°C) and place your arroz con queso in the oven. Cover with foil to prevent excessive drying or browning. Heat it up for approximately 30 minutes until hot all the way through.

You can also reheat individual portions in the microwave for 2-3 minutes on high power. Just be sure to place a damp paper towel over the top of each portion to keep them moist.

Whether you need a delicious meal today or something you can save for tomorrow, our arroz con queso dish is an excellent option!

Tips for Perfect Results

 The golden brown cheese topping adds a delicious crispy texture to every bite
The golden brown cheese topping adds a delicious crispy texture to every bite

Now, it’s time to share with you some of my favorite tips to help you achieve perfect results every time you make arroz con queso.

– Experiment with different cheeses: Don’t be shy about trying your own cheese combinations. While I’ve listed Monterey Jack, sharp cheddar, parmesan, and ricotta in the recipe, you can switch things up and get creative with different cheeses. Queso fresco is a great option for a more traditional Bolivian side dish.

– Rinse the rice before cooking: This step may seem small, but rinsing the rice before cooking can make a significant difference in its taste and texture. By rinsing the rice, you remove excess starch and prevent it from becoming too sticky.

– Use short-grain rice: To achieve the perfect consistency, always use short-grain rice. Long-grain or basmati rice will not work in this dish and can lead to a dry texture.

– Add spices for extra flavor: While the recipe calls for chili peppers, adding other spices like cumin or paprika can take this dish to another level. Taco seasoning is also a tasty addition!

– Bake it just right: When it comes time to bake your arroz con queso, don’t overdo it. The perfect baking time is around 30 minutes until slightly golden on top. If you bake it too long or at too high of a temperature, it can become dry and tough.

– Serve hot: For optimal taste, serve the arroz con queso hot and fresh out of the oven. Letting it cool down too much can ruin the texture and overall taste of the dish.

By following these simple tips, you’ll be well on your way to making perfect arroz con queso every time. So go ahead and experiment with cheese combinations and try adding in some extra spices for even more flavor explosion!

Bottom Line

In conclusion, Arroz con Queso is a delicious and easy-to-make dish that makes any meal feel like a traditional Bolivian feast. You’ll love the combination of savory cheeses, spicy chilies, and hearty black-eyed peas mixed with warm white rice. This side dish is perfect for any occasion.

Whether you’re cooking for your family, hosting a dinner party or craving some comfort food for yourself – this recipe is guaranteed to satisfy your taste buds. Plus, with so many options for substitutions and variations, you can easily customize it to suit your preferences.

So why not give Arroz con Queso a try? It’s a dish made with love and tradition, sure to become a staple in your recipe collection. From cooked rice and black olives to sharp cheddar cheese and ripe tomatoes – this recipe has everything you need to create a classic Latin American flavor in your own kitchen.

So put on your apron and get cooking! Your taste buds will thank you. With these simple instructions, tips, and recommendations in mind, you’ll be well on your way to creating the perfect Arroz con Queso dish, one that will have everyone coming back for seconds (and maybe even thirds!).

Arroz con Queso (Rice with Cheese)

Arroz con Queso (Rice with Cheese) Recipe

My friend Jolene gave me this one. I think she got it from "Diet for a Small Planet". It's one of those "keep all of the ingredients on hand for emergencies" recipes. When you burn something, quietly get of it and make this. No one will know. Prep. time doesn't include cooking the rice.
No ratings yet
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 50 mins
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Latin American
Calories 609.6 kcal


  • 3 cups cooked rice (white or Brown Basmatti works great)
  • 2 (15 ounce) cans black-eyed peas (I've used other types of beans succsessfully)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 (8 ounce) can ortega chilies, diced
  • 1/2 lb ricotta cheese, thinned with milk 'til spreadable
  • 3/4 lb sharp cheddar cheese, grated
  • 3/4 lb monterey jack cheese, grated
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese, freshly grated
  • 1 (2 1/4 ounce) can sliced black olives


  • Preheat oven to 350 F.
  • Mix Cheddar and Jack together.
  • Mix Rice, Beans, Garlic, Onion, and Chilies together.
  • In a large casserole dish spread 1/3 of the rice/bean mixture.
  • Top that with 1/2 of the cheese mixture.
  • top that with 1/2 of the Ricotta.
  • Then the next 1/3 of the rice/bean mixture.
  • Followed by the last half of the cheese.
  • Followed by the last half of the Ricotta.
  • Then the last 1/3 of the rice/bean mixture.
  • Bake 40 min.
  • Remove from the oven, top with Black Olives.
  • Sprinkle evenly with Parmesan.
  • Bake 10 min. more.
  • Remove from oven and let rest 20 min.
  • Serve.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 352gCalories: 609.6kcalCarbohydrates: 41.9gProtein: 34.2gFat: 34.1gSaturated Fat: 20.9gCholesterol: 102.6mgSodium: 1002.4mgFiber: 4.7gSugar: 2.8g
Keyword < 4 Hours, Beans, High In..., Mexican, Oven, Weeknight
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Dora is a chef well-versed in Brazilian and American cuisine. After a hard day's work in the kitchen of her restaurant, she finds the time to jot down recipes for her food blog. Her recipes are sure to delight foodies everywhere, as she strives to make each one unique and enjoyable to read.