Cilantro lime rice is the perfect accompaniment to a plant-based chili. Fragrant, fluffy and delicious, this rice is also super easy to make in just half an hour.
What's a chili without a delicious side of rice? This cilantro lime rice is the easiest way to make a fragrant side dish that pairs well with just about any kind of vegan chili.
It's also perfect with tacos, fajitas and as a base for a plant-based burrito bowl. Learn how to make this delicious cilantro lice rice at home, and you'll never buy the microwavable pouches ever again!
Why you'll love this cilantro lime rice recipe
- It's extra flavourful. Cilantro and lime are a match made in heaven, and the garlic and red chilli flakes only add to the flavour.
- It's super easy to make. This coriander and lime rice is ready in just over 30 minutes and requires very little hands-on time.
- You can use it for meal prep. Since this rice will keep well in the fridge for up to 5 days, you can use it for meal prep — it's great in burrito bowls!
Ingredients and substitutions
Oil — I used sunflower oil, but any neutral flavor oil works just as well — canola and avocado oil are both excellent options.
Rice — Choose a long-grain rice to make this recipe. It could be basmati or any other type — it's important to use long-grain rice because the grains won't stick together and the lime rice will be light and fluffy after cooking.
Garlic — I like lots of garlic in anything so I use about four cloves in this recipe. Feel free to adjust the amount of garlic to your taste.
Red chilli flakes — Adding red chilli flakes to this cilantro lime rice will give it just a bit of a kick. This is optional, and you can skip the chilli flakes if you want to keep things super mild.
Lime zest and juice — A small or medium lime is perfect here, and you can adjust the lime-ness of this recipe as you wish.
Cilantro (coriander) — Fresh cilantro (or coriander, as it's known in the UK) is the main flavour ingredient in this recipe, so make sure you add lots of it.
Scallions (spring onions) — Chop some spring onions and scatter them as a garnish right before serving the rice.
How to make cilantro lime rice?
Heat the oil in a large pan that has a tight-fitting lid. Add the rice and sauté it for 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Stir in the garlic, red chilli flakes and lime zest, then add the water and salt and stir to combine.
Bring to a simmer, then place the lid on the pan and cook on low heat for 15 minutes. Don't remove the lid to stir the rice during this time.
Once the 15 minutes have passed, remove the pan from the heat and allow it to sit, with the lid still on, for 10 minutes.
Remove the lid and stir in the lime juice and chopped cilantro.
Garnish with chopped spring onions and extra cilantro and serve with your favourite chili — mine is this Vegan Chickpea Chili!
Leftovers and storage
- Cilantro and lime rice will keep well in the fridge for up to five days. Store it in an airtight container and only reheat as much rice as you need.
- It's best to reheat this rice in the microwave until piping hot.
- The rice freezes well for up to 3 months in a freezer-safe container. Thaw it overnight when you're ready to serve it or microwave it from frozen until piping hot.
Recipe notes and tips
- You can use both the leaves and the stems when chopping cilantro — the stems add to the flavour a lot.
- This rice is perfect for Mexican dishes, but it also pairs well with Asian dishes too.
- You can use veggie stock instead of water for extra flavour. You may want to reduce the salt amount if you use stock.
If you liked this cilantro lime rice, you might also like some of my other easy vegan rice recipes:
- Vegan Spanish Chickpeas and Rice
- Easy Vegan Biryani
- Spanakorizo (Greek Spinach and Rice)
- Easy Jeera Rice (Cumin Rice)
- Easy Vegan Mexican Rice
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