DIY Rice-A-Roni Mix Recipe

4.5 / 5 (2 reviews)

Make your own Rice-A-Roni from scratch!

I have fond memories of Rice-A-Roni from my childhood, but I haven’t bought it for quite a while. And now that I know this recipe, Rice-A-Roni probably won’t find its way into my shopping cart again. This homemade rice dish is easy to throw together, CHEAP, simple to prepare, and tastes great! Could even be a cute little mason jar gift for fellow rice-lovers.

DIY homemade rice-a-roni mix recipe

Having control over the ingredients is one of perks of making your own mix. You can make it gluten-free, healthier than the store-bought variety, or tweak the flavor to your liking.

rice-a-roni mix ingredients

I used jasmine rice and whole wheat thin spaghetti in this Rice-A-Roni mix. Breaking up all of those noodles took longer than any other part, but it wasn’t too bad really. 😉

rice-a-roni mix

Just mix together all of the ingredients! Now you’ve got a couple boxes worth of homemade Rice-A-Roni ready to go. Just make sure you shake the mix to recombine before you use it.

cooking homemade rice-a-roni

Cook just like you would a store-bought Rice-A-Roni mix. Melt a bit of butter (I bet coconut oil could work too!), and saute a cup of the rice mixture until the pasta starts to turn golden brown.

diy rice-a-roni side dish

Then add the water, bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer covered for 15 minutes. Easy. Turned out perfectly for me! A great little side dish that most of my family enjoys. Plus, I get to feel cool because it was made from scratch rather than the stuff most people buy at the store!

DIY Rice-A-Roni Mix Recipe

4.5 / 5 (2 reviews)
Prep Time: 10mins | Cook Time: 25mins
Yield: 3 cups dry mix | Serves: 12


  • 2 cups uncooked rice
  • 1 cup broken angel hair, vermicelli or thin spaghetti (1/2-inch pieces)
  • 1/4 cup dried parsley
  • 6 tablespoons chicken bouillon powder
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme


  1. Combine all ingredients and mix well. (Store in an airtight container.)
  2. Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a 12-inch skillet. Add 1 cup of rice mix and stir. Saute for about 1 minute, or until pasta starts to turn golden brown. Add 2 1/4 cup water and bring to a boil.
  3. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Serve.

Recipe Adapted From: Food Storage Made Easy

Ingredients: Bouillon, Garlic, Onion, Parsley, Pasta, Rice, Thyme
Meal Type: Seasonings and Mixes, Side Dish, Egg Free
Categories: Copycat, Stove Top

Comments & Reviews

  • Stephanie

    I love the rice pilaf versin of rice-a-roni. Have you made this, or have you tried the rice pilaf? Just curious on a flavor comparison. Love the homemade idea. I am beginning to ban chemicals and dyes and my rice-a-roni had to go:(

  • Stephanie

    Sorry I mean chicken rice-a-roni:)

  • Susanne

    Thank you for this! I used my food processor for the spaghetti…worked really well.

  • Joanne

    Is there a way to use brown rice?

    • Melanie

      I am not sure. I haven’t tried it out. I do know that brown rice takes longer to cook though, so I definitely wouldn’t sub it in without making changes to the recipe. Let me know if you find a way to make it work!

    • bellamy

      i use brown rice and i also use the whole wheat pasta, we absolutely love the version here and i switch it up with beef granules or vegetable for variety. Remember brown rice requires additional cooking time and i see it varies by company as a rule i increase the cooking by 10-15 minutes and i increase my water by 1/3 a cup
      since finding this recipe i haven’t bought rice a roni and honestly i like this version much better less salt more real flavor and NO preservatives, purely GOOD EATS tyvm for this melanie

  • chris

    Thats a lot of chicken bouillon could you use chicken stock instead?

    • Melanie

      You can certainly try substituting the chicken stock for the water when you cook the rice. You might still want to include a bit of bouillon though for the extra flavor. Let me know how it goes!

  • Kaitlyn

    I just wanted to let you know I absolutely LOVE LOVE LOVE this recipe. I’ve been using it for several weeks now, and as I prepare to go out of work on maternity leave & prepare meals for the upcoming weeks (both physically and financially), I wanted to let you know I have included THIS recipe on my top favorties list at Freshly Messy!

    Seriously, I adore this recipe and the fact I can make it in huge batches to use as much or little as I need for a huge dinner with friends or a single serving lunch time snack for myself!

  • Marti

    I think this is probably a good recipe, but I only had bouillon cubes, so used those instead of bouillon powder. (1 cube is 1 teaspoon.) However, it was way too salty. I should have compared the ingredients in bouillon powder and cubes first. Next time I’ll use half the number of bouillon cubes and see how it turns out. I like the food processor idea. I used Fideo Mediano but next time I want to use gluten free spaghetti. Thanks for the recipe!

  • Jill

    If you want to use brown rice try doing it all in a rice cooker. You don’t get the nice color but it tastes the same.

  • Evone

    Hi just a quick question as I am going to attempt this tonight:) How many does it feed? Is it the same amount as the box?

    • Melanie

      Good questions! I should have measured last time I made it, but the recipe makes at least 3 cups of the dry mix. When you go to cook the mix, the directions are for 1 cup of mix and I would say that this amount serves about 4 as a side dish.

  • Angie

    I was craving Rice-a-Roni, but I’m trying a gluten free diet right now. One of the first ingredients on the box is wheat flour. I hadn’t noticed before that there is a ton of other stuff that I didn’t know what it was or how to pronounce so I’m going to go with it isn’t good for us. This turned out great. I just used gluten free spaghetti noodles and cooked it a little less time. I might still back down the time a little next time and reduce the water slightly, but all in all this was a great way to satisfy my cravings and to know I wasn’t eating a bunch of chemicals. Thanks for posting the recipe!

    • Becky

      I’m so glad you loved it!! 😀 Those are awesome tips!

    • Davey

      Those mysterious ingredients in Rice-a-Roni are from the seasoning packet. In this recipe, you use chicken bullion. Take a look at the ingredient list on that and you will see many of the same ingredients. Also, bullion powder is loaded with sodium, and you’re using at least six teaspoons of it when making one cup of the dry mixture.

  • Libby

    Would this fit into a pint jar or would you need a quart size?

  • Jamie

    I haven’t made this exact recipe but I think orzo would work too. I made rice & orzo for the broccoli cheddar RiceARoni. It was awesome. So much better than freeze dried powder whatever. I’m definitely tying this one😊

  • S.K.

    So I kind of just guesstimated how to make this a while ago, and am only now afterwards looking at recipes to see if there are better approximations to the store-bought spice mix. I guess not, haha, basic through and through.

    One suggestion for the gluten free people: soba noodles. They’re made from kasha/buckwheat which is gluten free and come as really thin noodles, maybe somewhere between angel hair and vermicelli on thickness. They also aren’t as delicate as rice noodles, neither in terms of over-browning or crumbling to dust. They are pretty starchy though, and that normally unpleasant stodgyness ends up adding a creamy consistency to the final product, which I’m guessing was the purpose of the wheat flour in the packet.

    I used these with Arborio rice, and my seasonings were salt, pepper, onion and garlic powder, a small touch of smoked paprika, and a giant lump of Herbs de Provence (mine had Parsley, Basil, Fennel, Lavender, Rosemarie, Tarragon and Thyme). I also added a heaped spoon of vegetable base to my water before adding it.

    I would have added some shredded carrot, onion, and minced broccoli florets, but I was lazy.

    Sorry, didn’t do exact measurements, may try later.

  • Kristina

    I tried a similar recipe to this that didn’t make enough of a mix so I’ll use this one next time. Someone commented on bouillon cubes/powder being too salty, etc. I found a recipe for homemade bouillon using brewer’s yeast and that’s what I used. I was skeptical it would work but the flavor was just like chicken broth, and much healthier! You can control the salt and still get great flavor. I found brewer’s yeast at Trader Joe’s and you can get at most health food stores.


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