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Easy Cilantro Lime Rice
4.82 from 38 votes

Easy Cilantro Lime Rice

This Cilantro Lime Rice Recipe is fast and easy and made with a handful of simple ingredients like rice, fresh lime juice, lime zest, and cilantro.
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time25 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 270kcal


  • 1 1/2 cups uncooked white rice (basmati or jasmine recommended)
  • 1 1/4 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon salt plus more to taste
  • 2 limes zested divided
  • 1/2 cup fresh lime juice
  • 1 small bunch cilantro chopped


  • Add rice to a fine mesh strainer and thoroughly rinse with water. Set aside.
  • In a medium stockpot over high heat bring the water and salt to a low boil. Add the rice, zest of one lime, and lime juice to the pot and stir well to combine. Return to a low boil, reduce heat to low, and cover with a tight lid. 
  • Cook rice for approximately 20 minutes, or until water is absorbed and rice is tender. Remove from heat and allow the pot to rest for 5 minutes before fluffing with a fork.
  • Allow rice to cool for approximately 5 minutes before adding additional lime zest (if desired) and fresh chopped cilantro. Season to taste.


updated August 3, 2019
I have received a few emails regarding this recipe and the liquid amounts. There seemed to be some conflicting information about the total liquid amounts as I had it written. My apologies. To set things straight, my husband and I side-by-side, yet individually, made this recipe as written in the recipe card below and with the conflicting amount (yes, we made 4 total cilantro lime rice recipes at the same time).
  1. 1.5 cups rice + 1.75 cups total liquid (1.25 cups water + 0.5 cups lime juice)
  2. 1.5 cups rice + 2.75 cups total liquid (2.25 cups water + 0.5 cups lime juice)
We both preferred the rice with less total liquid added (option 1).
Was the rice cooked? YES. Was the rice crunchy? NO. Was the rice al dente? YES.
I know, I know the package and most of the internet says to use a 1 to 2 ratio, but I firmly feel that is too much water. And I refuse to list this as the amount because it has never resulted in good rice for me (so I would feel that I am lying to you).
Option #2 was also good, but slightly clumpier and just a little mushier.
Additional tips + tricks include,
  • When you are simmering your rice be sure to turn the heat down to low. Not medium-low, but as low as it goes.
  • Long-grain white rice is best. This includes Jasmine and basmati varieties.
  • Use fresh lime juice and fresh lime zest. There is no good substitute.
  • As soon as the water comes to a boil, add the rice. If too much time passes before you add the rice, some of the liquid will evaporate from the pot which will lead to rice without enough water.
  • Make sure that the lid to your pot is tight and that it doesn't have any holes. Any steam released is water.


Calories: 270kcal | Carbohydrates: 61g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 0g | Saturated Fat: 0g | Cholesterol: 0mg | Sodium: 590mg | Potassium: 149mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 50IU | Vitamin C: 18.8mg | Calcium: 35mg | Iron: 0.8mg
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