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Cilantro-Lime Rice

Fresh cilantro, lime zest and lime juice flavor this bright, herb-studded rice, which upgrades all of your favorite Mexican-inspired meals (and more).


cilantro lime rice in a bowl with a spoon

You Love Chipotle’s Cilantro Rice, Right? Guess What?!

That super-delicious, fluffy white rice with a hint of lime juice that fills Chipotle burritos and burrito bowls is really easy to replicate at home! If you can make rice (and even if you think you can’t) you can make this simple, flavorful cilantro-lime rice. And doing so will take all of your Mexican-inspired meals up a few levels. You don’t even need a rice cooker—just five ingredients and about twenty minutes. Plus, it’s easy to make a big batch of this cilantro-lime rice recipe and keep it on hand as the base for meals all week long.

Ingredients for cilantro lime rice, oil, salt, lime zest and juice

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This Cilantro Lime Rice Is A Great Side Dish

A fresh pot of cilantro lime rice might be tempting to eat directly out of the pot with a spoon, lol, as a main dish. However, if you can wait, it’s a great side dish for any Mexican meal. You’ll just need five super common ingredients to make a copycat version of Chipotle’s delicious cilantro rice. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • What rice does Chipotle use? Long grain white rice is our preferred rice for this recipe, and jasmine or basmati will work.

  • How do I make rice taste less bland? Limes! This little green citrus packs a punch when you use the lime zest and the juice to flavor this homemade cilantro-lime rice.

  • Cilantro, fresh cilantro is best but if you don’t love cilantro (we see you!), you can also substitute chopped parsley. We pick the leaves from the cilantro stems, because we don’t love the texture. The tender stems that are closer to the leaf are generally tolerable in most recipes, including this rice. It’s a little extra time, but a big return on flavor investment.

  • Vegetable oil

  • Salt

long grain white rice in a fine mesh sieve
rice, water and oil in a pot
rice, cilantro, lime zest and lime juice in a pot
cilantro lime rice in a pot

How To Make Cilantro-Lime Rice At Home

This approachable recipe will have you feeling like a master chef in no time! If you have a rice cooker, this is a breeze. But if you’re just working with a stove top (and that’s how we cook rice!) you’ll be just fine. Just be sure you have a pot with a lid that fits well, follow these instructions, and you’ll be ready to make this cilantro-lime rice recipe!

  1. Rinse your rice, and don’t skip this step! It feels like something that should be skippable, but it’s not. Rinsing the rice removes the starch from the grains, which is the secret to fluffy, non-clumpy rice.

  2. Combine the rinsed and drained rice with water—we’re working with a ratio that’s nearly 1:1 water:rice—and a bit of oil for richness and salt.

  3. Pour it into a medium saucepan and pop the lid on!

  4. Simmer time! Simmer—and don’t fuss with that lid—for a full 20 minutes.

  5. Lift the cover and fluff the rice with a fork.

  6. Add the lime zest, juice and cilantro and stir until it is herby and delicious.

  7. Dig in!

cilantro lime rice in a bowl with a spoon

What Do You Eat Cilantro Lime Rice With?

Pretty much everything. If you’ve got a batch of cilantro-lime rice cooked and ready in your fridge, you’ve got the foundation for so many meals. Just store it in an airtight container (no dry rice here, please!) in the refrigerator until you’re ready to serve it. We’ll take a cue from Chipotle and serve this with our favorite chicken, beef, and pork dishes. Cilantro-lime rice goes great with our Vegetarian Burrito Bowl with Avocado Crema, on the side of Carne Asada Tacos or Slow Cooker Crispy Carnitas. If you’re in the mood for chicken, you can serve it with Cilantro Lime Chicken Thighs or our Chicken Fajita Burrito Bowl. And don’t forget that cilantro-lime rice goes with shrimp too! We recommend making cilantro-lime rice with Shrimp Tacos or Shrimp Ceviche on the side.

Looking For More Chipotle Style Recipe Ideas?

We know when the craving hits, there’s little else that will do. Here’s some more of our favorite recipes to add to your next make-at-home meal:

Tools You’ll Need:

cilantro lime rice in a bowl with a serving spoon

Chipotle At Home Has Never Been Easier!

Why eat out when you could eat in? Clearly, that’s our philosophy. Of course there’s room in our lives for take out, but we’re homebodies and it’s so nice to be able to replicate some of our faves at home! We hope that you’re as thrilled with this cilantro-lime rice recipe as we are. If you try it out, let us know! Snap a photo and tag us on Instagram using @themodernproper and #themodernproper. Happy eating!

Cilantro-Lime Rice

  • Serves: 6
  • Prep Time:  5 min
  • Cook Time:  20 min
  • Calories: 110


  • 2 cups long-grain white or jasmine rice, rinsed
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon lime zest
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice (from 1 lime)
  • ⅓ cup finely chopped fresh cilantro


  1. In a medium saucepan, combine the rice, 2½ cups water, the vegetable oil, and the salt. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook until the liquid has been absorbed, about 20 minutes.

  2. Remove the lid and fluff the rice using a fork. Stir in the lime zest, lime juice, and cilantro. Turn off the heat and let the rice sit on the hot stove for another 2 to 3 minutes before serving.

Nutrition Info

  • Per Serving
  • Amount
  • Calories110
  • Protein1 g
  • Carbohydrates15 g
  • Total Fat5 g
  • Dietary Fiber0 g
  • Cholesterol0 mg
  • sodium395 mg
  • Total Sugars0 g

Cilantro-Lime Rice

Questions & Reviews

Join the discussion below.

  • Flora

    How do you rewarm the rice if you put it in the refrigerator

    Cover it with a damp paper towel in the microwave to keep it from drying out while reheating.

  • adrinna

    Do I have to add the cilantro.?

    Hi Adriana, you can leave it out.

  • Laura Howard

    I started using coconut oil instead for this recipe and holy moly let me tell ya... There's a party in my mouth.

    Oh fun! I will have to try this next time!