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A shot of cilantro lime rice in a white bowl.

Chipotle Cilantro Lime Rice

Learn the secrets to making Chipotle Cilantro Lime Rice in the comfort of your own kitchen. This copycat recipe starts with getting the right type of rice and cooking it in a non-traditional way. This rice is soft and fluffy with just the right amount of chew and no stickiness.

Course Side Dish
Cuisine Mexican
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 12 servings
Calories 117 kcal

Ingredients

  • 2 cups basmati rice unrinsed, or long-grain white rice, rinsed (see notes)
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons salt, divided
  • 1 bay leaf
  • teaspoon olive oil or rice bran oil, optional
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
US Customary - Metric

Instructions

To cook basmati rice on the stove top:

  1. Bring 8 cups water to a boil in a large pot. Add rice, 2 teaspoons salt, and the bay leaf. Stir and return to a boil. Boil uncovered for 12 minutes.

  2. Remove bay leaf. Using a fine mesh strainer, drain rice and rinse with hot water. Pour into a large bowl. 

  3. Stir in cilantro, lime juice, and lemon juice. Add remaining ¼ tsp. salt or additional salt to taste. Serve hot or at room temperature.

To cook long-grain rice on the stove top:

  1. Bring 4 cups water to a boil in a large pot. Add rice, 2 teaspoons salt, bay leaf, and oil if using. Reduce heat to low, cover, and cook for 15 minutes.

  2. Remove bay leaf. Stir in cilantro, lime juice, and lemon juice. Add remaining ¼ tsp. salt or additional salt to taste. Serve hot or at room temperature.

To cook long-grain rice in a rice-cooker:

  1. Add rinsed rice (see notes), water (according to manufacturer's instructions, see notes), salt (reduce to 1 teaspoon), bay leaf, and oil if using. Close rice cooker, plug in, and turn on. Cook according to manufacturer's instructions.

  2. When the rice is finished, remove bay leaf. Stir in cilantro, lime juice, and lemon juice. Add more salt to taste (I like 1/4 teaspoon). Serve hot or at room temperature.

To cook brown rice:

  1. Follow the instructions above using the following times: 40 minutes for Basmati on the stove top, 45 minutes for long-grain on the stove top, and 60 - 70 minutes for a rice cooker (or according to manufacturer's instructions). 2 cups brown rice makes 16 servings, 1/2 cup each (higher yield than white rice).

Recipe Notes

  1. If using long-grain rice, I recommend rinsing it before cooking it to remove excess starch. To rinse the rice, place it in a fine-mesh sieve under cool water and rinse until the water runs clear. Drain well before adding the rice to the pot or rice cooker. Alternatively, you could soak the rice in a large bowl of water for up to 30 minutes to help remove starch while conserving water.
  2. When using a rice cooker, it is important to follow the manufacturer's instructions for rice and water portions. Many rice cookers come with a specific "measuring cup" that may not be equivalent to a standard 8-ounce cup. They will also specify exactly how much water to use in relation to their measuring cup for best results. Those instructions supersede my quantities of rice and water here, but the other ingredients should remain the same (subject to your own taste preference, of course).