Cilantro-Lime Cauliflower Rice

I must confess that I went off track a little bit over the holidays and had myself a Burrito Bowl from Chipotle’s Mexican Grill. Holy moly that is so good!! So good, in fact, that I needed to find a way to make sure I can have something like that from this point on.  Grated cauliflower is a very popular (and INGENIOUS) rice substitution.  It was the clear option for mimicking that delicious seasoned rice base in those burrito bowls.

Here’s what you need:

  • 1/2 of a large head of cauliflower or a full one if it’s on the small side
  • 1/2 yellow or white onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
  • zest of one large lime
  • juice from half a lime
  • 2 TBSP coconut oil
  • S&P, to taste

Grate the cauliflower or use a food processor to pulse into the right texture.  Heads up–if you use the food processor, work in batches.  If the processor is overloaded, the cauliflower won’t chop up evenly.

Heat a large pan to medium-high and add the coconut oil. When the oil is melted, add the onions and garlic. Cook until just translucent, then add the riced cauliflower. This is one time when overcrowding a pan and creating steam works to your advantage.  For this recipe, we don’t want browned cauliflower–just gently cooked through. Give it a couple minutes… and by a couple, I mean about 5-7.  Then add in the lime zest and fresh cilantro. You may also want to add a bit of salt and pepper too; season to your preference.  Mix together in the pan (enjoy the smell!) and transfer to a serving dish.  Squeeze the fresh lime juice over the rice and serve.

Hopefully you are making this to accompany Crock Pot Carnitas! Layer a scoop (or two) of this cauliflower rice, a hefty serving of carnitas, shredded lettuce or cabbage, tomatoes, scallions, cilantro and avocados for an amazing and completely Paleo version of Chipotle’s yummy Burrito Bowl!

And by the way, cilantro and lime isn’t just for meals with a Mexican flare — try it with Thai food! Cilantro is also called “Chinese parsley” and is very common in Asian food.  Cilantro and lime together are classic Thai flavors. Enjoy!

* * * * *

A few tools make ricing cauliflower go quickly and a food processor is at the top of the list. Good ol’ fashioned chef’s knife always works, as does a basic cheese grater. However, for speed and uniformity, I favor the processor. Here are some options to take a look at, plus an example of a microplane for zesting if you’re not familiar with that tool:


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  1. Kristi says

    Holy schamolie!!! This recipe is A-MAZE-ing. I rarely get that excited about recipes and or feel like they deserve to be made over and over- but this one rocks it and will be making a regular showing at our house. Love the ginger idea too- will have to try that next time. Thank you so much for sharing this wonderful treat!

  2. says

    OMG, just made this…It is AMAZING! Thank you! The hubby and I devoured the entire thing (alongside a slow-cooked pork roast) and were still craving more. YUM!

  3. Kristen says

    I just devoured a bowl of cauliflower rice with ground beef, tomatoes and avocado — fantastic! Thanks for sharing the recipe! :)

  4. Kim says

    This was fabulous! Even my daughter loved it… and she never knew it wasn’t rice. It doesn’t taste like cauliflower at all… but it was wonderful. I will definitely be making this again.

  5. Tina says

    Just made this tonight, first time I ever riced cauliflower. This was excellent, although maybe just a bit too much coconut oil. I used a whole head of cauliflower, so I double the recipe. Other than that, this is fabulous and will definitely make it again. Thank you so much for sharing the recipe.

  6. Veronica says

    Made this for the first time tonight… What an excellent way to make cauliflower rice! Completely delicious! We’ll be having this again soon!

  7. jane says

    in Australia it is called coriander, and is one one the yummiest things in this world, will be trying this asap!


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