Cilantro lime rice is my go-to side dish when I’m in a rush. It’s incredibly flavorful and so good in burritos, tacos and grilled, stir fried or slow cooked meats.

What We Love About This Cilantro Lime Rice 

  • Fluffy and fragrant: This cilantro lime rice has the perfect fluffy texture, plus the smell of the cilantro and bay leaf together is *chef’s kiss*.
  • Goes with anything: Whether you’re serving tacos or grilled chicken breast for dinner, this flavorful side pairs well with any cuisine, be it Mexican, Asian, or even American.
  • So simple and easy: All you need are a few simple ingredients that you likely already have in your pantry, making it one of the most convenient dishes around.
Cilantro Lime Rice

Cilantro Lime Rice Ingredients

  • Basmati Rice – Basmati rice has long grains and is quite aromatic on its own, so it’s great for this dish. Basmati rice also tends to be a little on the dry side, which helps it absorb all of the flavors of the cilantro and lime. 
  • Herbs – Cilantro and bay leaf combined add the fragrant notes in this dish. Cilantro has a bright, somewhat citrusy flavor, while the bay leaf adds fragrance to the rice while it cooks. 
  • Olive Oil – Olive oil helps prevent the basmati rice from clumping. 
  • Lime Juice and Lemon Juice – Both lime juice and lemon juice add acidity and a citrus flavor to the rice. 
Cilantro Lime Rice Ingredients

How to Make Cilantro Lime Rice

  1. Combine the ingredients. Put the rice, bay leaf, olive oil and water in the pot. 
  2. Simmer. Use medium to high heat. 
    Cilantro Lime Rice
  3. Lower the heat. Cook for another 12 minutes or until the liquid is fully absorbed. 
    Cilantro Lime Rice
  4. Remove from the heat and let it rest for another 10 minutes. Remove the lid and the bay leaf. 
    Cilantro Lime Rice
  5. Using a fork, fluff the rice. Check to make sure the bottom is not burned.
  6. Stir in the cilantro, lime juice, and lemon juice. Season with salt. 
    Cilantro Lime Rice

Make Ahead, Storing, Reheating and Freezing Instructions: 

  • To reheat: Add a splash of water and stir into the rice. Gently reheat the rice in a pan on the stovetop over low to medium heat.
  • To freeze: Store in a freezer-safe container. Freeze for up to 2 to 3 months.

Cilantro Lime Rice (Chipotle Copycat)

This easy cilantro lime rice Chipotle copycat recipe is just how you remember it, and goes perfectly in homemade burritos, tacos and bowls.
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 18 minutes
Total Time: 23 minutes
Servings: 8


  • 2 cups basmati rice, washed and drained
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp fresh cilantro minced
  • 2 tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • salt to taste


  • Add the rice, bay leaf, olive oil and 3 cups of tap water to a pot and stir to combine.
  • Bring to a simmer over medium high heat.
  • Cover with a lid.
  • Lower the heat to medium low and cook for 12 minutes or until liquid is all absorbed by the rice.
  • Remove from the heat and allow to rest for 10 minutes.
  • Remove the lid.
  • Discard the bay leaf.
  • Fluff the rice with fork.
  • Add the cilantro, lime juice and lemon juice and stir to combine.
  • Season with salt to taste and serve.


Calories: 175kcalCarbohydrates: 38gProtein: 3gFat: 1gSaturated Fat: 0.2gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.1gMonounsaturated Fat: 0.5gSodium: 2mgPotassium: 62mgFiber: 1gSugar: 0.2gVitamin A: 3IUVitamin C: 3mgCalcium: 14mgIron: 0.4mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Like this recipe?Leave a comment and review below!

Emma Kelly

Lover of smoosh faced dogs, cooking (of all kinds), spending as much time as I can in the garden (especially with homegrown veg and cut flowers), and diy’ing everything! Make sure to follow me on Pinterest for more easy meals, (mostly) healthy desserts and crave-worthy snacks. Learn more about me here.

This post contains affiliate links (I love sharing my favorite ingredients and cooking equipment with you all!)

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