Cilantro Lime Rice

Update 1/11: Over the years of making this rice, I’ve updated the recipe a bit, reducing the amount of butter and fleshing out some of the recipe details (i.e. what kind of rice works best). It continues to be an oft-served side dish in our house and goes wonderfully well with ribs or Mexican-type fare. The rice boils up tender and plump with the perfect hint of lime and cilantro. Delicious!

Cilantro Lime Rice

Cilantro Lime Rice


  • 1 tablespoons butter
  • 1 1/4 cups rice (long grain white rice works best)
  • 2 1/4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • juice and zest of 1 large lime
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin


  1. In a skillet or medium saucepan, melt the butter and add the rice. stir, letting the rice and butter cook for 1-2 minutes. Add remaining ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and cook for 15-16 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand, covered, for 10 minutes. Fluff with fork and serve.

Recipe Source: from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe

20 Responses to Cilantro Lime Rice

  1. Bonnie says:

    We tried this tonight and really like it!! I did add about twice as much cilantro and a little bit more cumin. Thanks so much for the great recipes…

  2. Deb says:

    I had to try this because it reminded me of the rice they serve at Chipotle :) It had great flavor but it was a little dry – I used brown rice to try to up the nutrition factor but I’m thinking that’s what made it dry. I should have just listened to you when you said you already figured out which rice was best :) I’ll definitely make this again because of the the flavor, but actually following the recipe this time!

  3. Mandy says:

    I started making your Balsamic Glazed Pork Loin in the slower cooker but my husband requested carnitas for dinner instead. Good thing it was a huge roast so I can make the balsamic glaze for the leftovers (or I could just make the glaze and drink it). I took the some of pork and whipped up a Cuban-inspired sauce and decided to make this recipe as a side. I used farro instead of rice and it was amazing! My 9 month old has a dairy allergy so I didn’t want to saute in butter first but I read somewhere that roasting ancient grains, like farro, brings out the flavor. I tried it and, while I’m sure that I would’ve preferred butter (who doesn’t?), the farro had a nice nutty flavor. Thank you so much for all your great recipes. My husband and I decided that I’ve really gotten my dinner groove back since finding your site!

  4. Mathea says:

    I am in love with cilantro and will give this one a try to see if I want to add it to my list of sides.

  5. Melissa says:

    How should I adjust cook time if I double the recipe? Thanks!

  6. Mel says:

    Melissa – I’ve doubled this before and only increased the time by 1-2 minutes.

  7. Karin says:

    This is SOOOOOOO good. I’ve made it about 5 times now and everyone LOVES it. I made little “freezer kits” so it comes together very quickly. In a ziplock bag I mixed 1/4 cup water with the salt, pepper, lime juice and zest, cilantro, cumin, and added 2 tsp. chicken bouillon granules. Then when my husband asks for the rice, I only have to melt the butter, cook the rice, then throw in 2 cups of water and the contents of the bag. Thanks for the super yummy side dish!!

  8. Kerri says:

    Karin, you are so smart! I am so going to try that! This is a great side dish for roast chicken or pork. Thanks for another yummy and healthy(?) dish.

  9. Kerri says:

    I seriously crave this:). Made (again) tonight!!!!!

  10. Victoria says:

    This rice is so delicious!! My boyfriend and I both ate his twice today topped with a spicy shrimp dish I made. Definitely becoming a staple dish here! :)

  11. Stacie A. says:

    Made this tonight (tripled it for a party) and it was so yummy!

  12. ALICIA says:

    Hi Mel,

    I’m from australia and can never find Cilantro at the supermarket. Alot of your recipes call for it & I like to follow the recipe as much as possible, especially the first time making it. Can you recommend any substitutes for it? Thanks!

  13. Julie says:

    Could this be made using a rice cooker??

  14. Sheri says:

    I cannot have dairy. Have you tried it with coconut oil or coconut butter instead of butter?

  15. Marta says:

    It’s super delicious, I made it two days in a row and I’m considering making it tomorrow. My fiance agrees wholeheartedly :)

  16. Kirstin says:

    I made this tonight and loved it! I am going to take dinner in to a neighbor who just had a baby and am their family prefers brown rice. Any suggestions for altering measurements to ensure success? Thanks!

    • Mel says:

      Kirstin – I haven’t made this with brown rice so you’ll have to experiment but I suppose if you added more broth (following the ratio of liquid to rice for brown rice) and cooked it much longer it would probably work out. Good luck!

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