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Rice & Grains

Rice Cooked in Tomato Sauce



If you have extra sauce from a tomato-based stew, don’t throw it away. Remove large solids and keep the sauce in the fridge. For what? Use it as pasta sauce or cook rice in it. This rice cooked in tomato sauce was made with leftover sauce from pork and beans.

Rice cooked in tomato sauce topped with chorizo

It’s almost like the Italian riso al pomodoro and the Mexican arroz rojo except that you don’t have to start from scratch to make the tomato sauce. No chopping. No sauteeing.

But isn’t it just plain tomato sauce unless you saute onion and garlic, add oregano and bay leaf and so on, and so forth? This is leftover sauce from a tomato-based stew! You’ve done all the work before when you cooked your stew from which the sauce was saved. There is no need to repeat the process.

Rice, tomato sauce and chorizo in the rice cooker

All you need to do is rinse and drain your rice, dump it in the rice cooker, add the sauce (which came straight from the fridge, in my case) and some water or broth if the sauce is too thick. The chorizo is just a little extra. I had to plan ahead and decide how to plate the rice cooked in tomato sauce. By itself, it would look too plain. And, you know, food blogging isn’t just about good recipes. It’s as much about visuals.

Of course, I could have opted not to blog about it this rice dish at all. But I so love sharing tips about cooking with leftovers because leftovers are part of the reality of home cooking and it’s too important a subject to gloss over.

Rice cooked in tomato sauce with sliced chorizo

Knowing how to deal with leftovers solves multiple problems: You don’t waste money by throwing away food that’s still good, you don’t clutter your fridge with leftovers that will be forgotten in a few weeks… Plus, it saves you a lot of work because you already have something that’s super tasty and all you need to do is get creative with it.

So, there. If you know how to use a rice cooker, you can make rice cooked in tomato sauce.

Rice cooked in tomato sauce is delicious!

Rice Cooked in Tomato Sauce

Print Pin
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Italian, Mexican
Keyword: Cooking With Leftovers, rice
Prep Time: 1 minute
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 21 minutes
Servings: 6 servings
Author: Connie Veneracion


  • 2 cups rice
  • 1 and 1/2 cups tomato sauce (diluted with water or broth if too thick)
  • chopped parsley to garnish
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  • Rinse the rice several times until the water runs clear. Drain well.
  • Dump the rice into the rice cooker. 
  • Add the tomato sauce (and water or broth if it needs to be diluted).
  • Turn the rice cooker on and let it do its work.
  • Tip: Because the tomato sauce is liquid plus mushy solids, one cup of tomato sauce is not equal to one cup water in the context of water to rice ratio. You may need to add more water or broth toward the end of cooking time to make sure that the rice gets cooked through.
  • Fluff up the rice when done.
  • Serve the rice cooked in tomato sauce topped with chopped parsley.
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Rice cooked in tomato sauce