Cilantro Lime Crema

By Ann Fulton

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Cool and creamy with a hint of tang, this speedy sauce elevates chicken, fish, vegetables, virtually anything Tex-Mex, and so much more. 

 

Five ingredients and countless ways to enjoy. That’s this recipe in a nutshell.  

It’s like a little magic wand that can be waved to perk up plain chicken, fish, a simple baked potato, and so much more. And who couldn’t use a little dinnertime magic? 

I first made this sublime sauce years ago as a dipping sauce for baked potato wedges and quickly found that it complements so much more. Consider it a go-to condiment for anything Tex-Mex.

And that’s just for starters.

Use it as a dip for almost any vegetable or shrimp. Make it the “special sauce” for fish or regular ground beef tacos and DIY burrito bowls.

Making fajitas? A drizzle of the crema over top is a certain value add.

Or use it instead of mayo in your sandwich or as the dressing for a quick slaw. An easy side dish, that slaw will also taste great in a burrito bowl, burger, or sloppy Joe! 

Similarly, the sauce will elevate simply prepared fish (salmon and white fish) and chicken. To effortlessly create a restaurant-worthy dish, start with a seasoned chicken – specifically this Chili Lime Chicken or Smoky Skillet Chicken – and serve the crema alongside. 

The best part, the crema takes mere minutes to stir together and will keep for over a week in the fridge, making it a readily available meal game changer whenever needed. 

Cool and creamy with a hint of tang, this speedy sauce elevates chicken, fish, vegetables, virtually anything Tex-Mex, and so much more. 

In addition to Smoky Skillet Chicken (pictured below), this sauce also pairs well with roasted potato wedges (regular or sweet), a variety of seafood (from basic broiled flat fishes to a dip from shrimp), fish and beef tacos, grilled chicken, burrito bowls, and many south-of-the-border recipes…even mashed into a simple baked potato. More serving ideas mentioned above. 

Simple spices deliver memorable flavor in this easy-to-make chicken recipe.

Cool and creamy with a hint of tang, a dollop of Cilantro Lime Crema adds new layers of flavor when dolloped over Smoky Skillet Chicken. Grilling? Pair the crema with Chili Lime Chicken. To easily round out the meal, serve with a standout salad. This Classic Caesar Dressing can be enjoyed with romaine, kale, or shredded Brussels sprouts and is a stellar match for both of these chicken recipes. 

Cilantro Lime Crema
The flavor will improve as the sauce rests. If possible, prepare it several hours or a day ahead.

Yield: ¾ cup
Ingredients
  • ½ cup (104g) mayonnaise
  • ¼ cup (60g) plain Greek yogurt (I use 2% or whole)
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) fresh lime juice plus the zest from 1 lime
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt (I measure slightly scant)
Instructions
  1. In a small bowl, stir together the mayonnaise, Greek yogurt, cilantro, lime juice, zest, and salt.
  2. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
  3. Storage: The crema will keep for at least 1 week.
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