This easy cilantro lime rice recipe is a perfect side dish to serve with any Mexican meal! The flavorful cilantro lime rice mixed with the hotness of Mexican food is just the perfect combination of tastes!
You’ll want to try this cilantro-lime rice recipe in place of Spanish rice the next time you serve Mexican food.
If you’ve ever had Chipotle cilantro lime rice, you’ll find this flavorful cilantro lime rice to be very similar.
And the best part about this delicious rice is that it’s an easy side dish that literally takes only minutes to make!
Also, for the cilantro haters out there this tangy herb can be substituted for parsley or just left out all-together. Then it’ll just be called parsley lime rice or just plain old lime rice, lol!!
Simple Ingredients for the Cilantro Rice
The best rice for this simple recipe is best made with long-grain white rice like Jasmine rice.
What’s the Difference between Different Kinds of Rice?
There are lots of different types of dry rice, who knew? The main difference is the amount of starch in the grains, and the color.
Short grain rice, like the kind of white rice used to make sushi, contains lots of starch. This plump, shorter type of rice grains stick together nicely because of the amount of starch in the composition. Short grain rice is also nice to use when making creamy rice pudding!
Long grain rice, like jasmine rice, is a type of white rice that doesn’t have much excess starch so it doesn’t clump together nearly as much. This gives you an end result of fluffy rice to use when mixing up rice side dishes.
Brown rice is just white rice with the outer hull not yet removed. This type of rice has a nutty and chewy flavor and also makes a tasty side dish for many meals.
With all the different types of rice there are to choose from, stick to jasmine rice or basmati rice for making this flavorful rice recipe!
Other ingredients in this great recipe include butter, fresh limes, fresh cilantro (or parsley), chicken broth (or chicken broth seasoning), and kosher salt. That’s it! Super duper simple, right??
Making this Flavorful Rice Recipe
I don’t have a rice cooker so I use a medium saucepan with a cover to make my cooked rice.
Mix up the Chicken Broth
The first thing I do when making this recipe is mixing up my chicken broth. You can use store-bought chicken broth if you prefer, but I like to mix mine using chicken broth powdered seasoning. This handy seasoning is so nice to have anytime you want to add a little more flavor to dishes!
Measure 1 3/4 cups of water. Add 2 teaspoons of the chicken broth seasoning and whisk it all together.
Set the 1 3/4 cups of chicken broth it aside near your stove. You’ll add it to the rice in just a little bit!
How to Brown the Rice
Place the medium sauce pan over medium heat on your stove top.
Add the butter to the pan and allow it to melt.
Then measure a cup of rice (remember to use long-grain white rice!) and pour it over the bottom of the pan.
I love to always have a bag of rice on hand in my pantry. Once I open it I store the leftover rice in an airtight container so it stays nice and fresh without absorbing moisture from my kitchen.
Use a spatula to continually stir the rice until it just starts to brown. This browning in butter adds a tasty loveliness to this flavorful rice! But be careful, it can burn easily if not stirred!!
Here is a quick little video showing how to cook the rice!
Add Chicken Broth to the Browned Rice
Once the rice begins to brown reduce the stove temperature to low heat and carefully pour the chicken broth all over it. Be careful of the steam as you do this, it’s easy to get burned! I pour slowly and a little at a time.
Then place the cover on the pan and let the rice simmer for the amount of cooking time according to the package instructions.
While the rice cooks you can prepare the other ingredients to add into it!
Preparing the Ingredients to Add to the Cilantro Lime Rice
You’ll have about 15 minutes of time while you’re waiting for the rice to cook. This is plenty of time to prepare all of the other ingredients for the cilantro-lime rice recipe!
Wash your lime to remove any residue. Then, using a fine grater rub the lime on it to remove just the green outer layer. If this is your first time using a grater watch out not to scrape your knuckles!!
This recipe calls for about 1/2 teaspoon of grated lime zest. I don’t really measure it, you can just eyeball the amount. More is better in my opinion and the green flecks make this rice so pretty!
Then cut the lime in half and juice it. You’ll need about 2 tablespoons of fresh lime juice to add the delicious lime flavor to this rice!
Next, rinse the cilantro in a fine mesh sieve under cold water. Carefully pat it dry with a paper towel to remove any excess water. Chop the cilantro coarsely, just a little bit so the leaves are still fairly big pieces. You’ll want about 1/4 cup. I like to save some of the cilantro leaves to garnish the rice when I serve it.
The cilantro will add so much flavor to this delicious recipe!!
Mix it all Together!
When the rice is finished cooking, fluff it with a fork!
Place the cooked rice in a medium bowl. Add a little more butter, kosher salt, the lime zest and juice, and the chopped cilantro. Stir it all together until the butter melts. Top with rice with a few more sprigs of cilantro to make it even more pretty!
Here is a quick little video showing me mixing all the ingredients into the cooked rice!
You’ve now got a great filling to add to any meal!
What to Serve with Cilantro Lime Rice
But you could also serve this perfect rice with burrito bowls or on taco night! Whatever your family is hungry for the next time they ask for a main dish Mexican meal! Add some black beans on the side and a few crunchy tortilla chips and fresh pico de gallo and you’re all set for a fiesta meal!
Easy Cilantro Lime Rice
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- 4 tbsp butter
- 1 cup Jasmine rice or basmati rice
- 1 3/4 cup chicken broth
- 1/2 tsp lime zest
- 2 tbsp fresh lime juice
- 1/4 cup cilantro coarsely chopped
- 1/4 tsp kosher salt
- Measure the chicken broth and set aside.
- Over medium heat melt 2 tbsp butter in medium saucepan. Add rice to melted butter and saute, stirring constantly, until rice begins to brown. Reduce heat to low.
- Slowly add chicken broth to browned rice. Cover and cook according to directions on the package (usually about 15 minutes on low). Fluff with fork when done.
- Transfer cooked rice to a medium bowl. Add lime zest, lime juice, chopped cilantro, and another 2 tbsp of butter. Season with kosher salt. Stir well and serve with springs of cilantro on top of dish.