7 Cafe Rio Cilantro Lime Rice Copycat

Cafe Rio has a rice that pairs well in a loaded burrito smothered with enchilada sauce or in their Mexican salads.  I usually have it on the side along with my Pork Barbacoa taco.
I could never figure out what the green woody things were, but after reading the recipe from Favorite Family Recipes, it must be cilantro.  I like this recipe better than the one at Cafe Rio, which tastes a little too lime-y to me. 
Uncooked long grain rice is combined with butter, garlic and lime juice.

Look my post for my secret to fluffy rice.  I did this simple step in addition to the recipe.

This recipe calls for 1 teaspoon + 1 Tablespoon of freshly squeezed lime juice, which is perfect for me.  Now who has 1 Tablespoon of fresh lime juice on hand?

Fortunately, I found a bunch of limes on sale last year, squeezed them and put them in ice cube trays.  Another great tip!

While the lime juice was thawing out, I prepared my chicken broth.  I love the chicken base from McCormicks that you can keep in your fridge for a long, long time.  Costco has now begun selling another brand that is lower in sodium, which I haven't tried yet.  The recipe calls for 15 oz. canned broth and I made 2 c. with the chicken base.

I added 1 teaspoon of lime juice to the rice mixture and brought it up to a boil.  I love these glass lids that let me know when it's boiling!      Reduce the temp to low and cook for 20-25 minutes (rather than the 15-20 as the recipe states).

I put 1 teaspoon of lime juice into the rice mixture.

I had 1 T. of lime juice left, to which I added 2 t. of sugar.

O.k. Now the recipe needs 3 T. of fresh cilantro.  Did you know you can freeze it too?  Just wash well and spin dry (or towel dry) in a salad spinner and freeze in a freezer bag.  Another tip for ya!

The leaves are chopped and added to the lime/sugar juice.  Very fragrant....
The rice is done and the lime juice mixture is added.  So good!
      Thank you, Family Favorite Recipes!
Cafe Rio Cilantro Lime Rice Copycat   
adapted from Family Favorite Recipes


  1. Looks perfect recipe! I was looking forward for such good rice recipe and I got it from here. Thanks for this recipe.
    I will keep visiting this site very often for new more recipes.
    Keep posting!

  2. I've got to try this too, along side my pork barbacoa burrito!! Thanks for sharing!

  3. I'm totally going to make this! I love their rice too and happy to see your copycat.

    Shelly, Nibbles of Tidbits

  4. excited to try it! thanks.


  5. You're welcome! I made this for a group of Japanese high school students and it got gobbled up quickly!

  6. Does the 2 tsp of Sugar, make the rice taste sweet? I cook rice everyday and I'm looking for new recipies, but I have never heard of sugar in your rice other than in rice pudding.

    1. No, it doesn't make it taste sweet; it compliments the tartness of the lime, making it a perfect balance.



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