Make this dreamy Coconut Lime Rice with with jasmine rice, coconut water, coconut cream, lime and cilantro. The perfect side dish!

Cilantro Lime and Coconut Water Rice

Friends, this recipe is inspired by Andrea Nguyen’s use of coconut water, instead of coconut milk, to make coconut rice. This dish pairs perfectly with any Mexican meal, but you can also serve it with a tropical meal. It’s a great Thai side dish served with fish or chicken tacos.

This is a better version of your everyday, regular white rice. It has a nice flavor to it. We use jasmine rice, and if you follow the directions, the outcome is a delicious rice that you can fluff with a fork right before serving.

Coconut Lime Rice

The result is SO fresh and light, and with the touch of lime and cilantro! You can serve this recipe with our Taco Taco Taco board.

While testing this recipe, we ended up with a layer of brown, crispy rice at the bottom of the pan, and it is delicious. The rice crisps in the coconut.

2 hands holding bowl of Cilantro Lime Coconut Water Rice

Why we love this recipe

It only takes minutes to make (on stovetop)

The flavor is so fresh and bright – it pairs well with tacos and enchiladas.

Guests ask, “what’s in this rice?” The coconut water really adds to the flavor!

Ingredients for Coconut Lime Rice with cilantro

Gather these simple ingredients:

  • Jasmine rice
  • Coconut oil
  • Coconut water
  • Kosher salt
  • Limes
  • Coconut cream
  • Fresh cilantro and mint

white rice with lime and cilantro

How do you make the rice?

  1. Rinse the rice.
  2. Replace tap water with the same amount of coconut water to cook rice.
  3. Add the coconut oil and melt, then add the drained rice, coconut water, and salt.
  4. Stir and cook and simmer.
  5. Allow to rest, and fluff the rice with a fork.
  6. Add lime zest, coconut cream, and cilantro.
  7. Garnish with more cilantro and mint and serve!

Cilantro Lime and Coconut Water Rice

Ratio of rice to coconut water

Add coconut water to replace regular water. Buy a brand that is normally something you’d drink. The brands vary in flavor, so you might want to taste them first. Some brands are sweeter than other brands, that are very mild in flavor.

Cooking rice in coconut water is simple. Replace the plain water in your recipe with the same ratio of coconut water and cook as usual.

And then, of course, you add coconut milk and a few other ingredients.

wood bowl of Cilantro Lime Coconut Water Rice

Does coconut rice taste like coconut?

Yes! Rice cooked in coconut water, and then with coconut cream added, is slightly sticky, and creamy in texture with a very mild coconut flavor. Just add salt and a few other ingredients for a savory, sweet rice.

Coconut Water Rice

Tips and substitutions:

If you want to add more coconut flavor, add a handful of toasted unsweetened coconut flakes and stir.

Store the leftovers in the fridge for up to 3-5 days. 

Leftovers are great in soup, stews, wraps, eggs, or add more ingredients to make a “fried rice.”

an epic steak taco board

Finally, serve this rice on a BIG BOARD for a big taco feast. :)

It’s super easy to make, it has a delicious and rich, natural coconut flavor and it complements so many flavors. Plus kids and adults alike love it!

ENJOY!

More Mexican side dishes to enjoy:

Mexican Charro Beans

Instant Pot Mexican Rice

Stovetop Cuban Style Black Beans

Homemade Refried Beans

Cilantro Lime and Coconut Water Rice
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Get the Recipe:

Cilantro Lime Coconut Water Rice

This recipe is inspired by Andrea Nguyen’s use of coconut water, instead of coconut milk, to make coconut rice—the result is SO fresh and light. While testing this recipe, I ended up with a layer of brown, crispy rice at the bottom, and it is delicious. The rice crisps in the coconut.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
resting: 15 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
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Ingredients
 

  • 1 ½ cup jasmine rice
  • 2 Tbsp. coconut oil
  • 1 ¾ cup coconut water
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 5 small limes, zested and cut into wedges, divided
  • 3 Tbsp. coconut cream, melted
  • cup finely chopped fresh cilantro, divided
  • Fresh mint

Instructions
 

  • Rinse rice 2-3 times until water is almost clear and no longer opaque. Use a strainer to insure all the water is out before boiling.
  • In a medium pot, add the coconut oil and melt over high heat. Once melted, tilt pan to coat the bottom, then carefully add the drained rice, coconut water, and salt. Stir as you bring the water to a boil, then lower the heat to medium and cook for 2-3 more minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Bring heat to low, cover the pot with a tight fitting lid, and allow to sit undisturbed for 10 minutes. Remove from the heat completely and rest for 10 minutes more.
  • Using a fork, gently mix in the lime zest, coconut cream, and ¼ cup cilantro—fluff the rice upwards so as not to smush the grains. Cover and let sit for 5-8 minutes. To serve, add a generous squeeze of lime and sprinkle of cilantro or mint.
Cuisine: American
Course: Side Dish
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Coconut Water Rice with lime and cilantro