Crema de cilantro is an easy-to-make topping for all of your favorite Mexican dishes. It’s so incredibly easy, too!

Made with just three ingredients, this cilantro and lime crema comes together quickly and easily and is a great way to add a fresh flavor to any fiesta-inspired foods.

Bonus? It doubles as a vegetarian, gluten-free and low carb dip.

A white bowl of crema de cilantro on a white countertop, garnished with cilantro.
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Mexican food is all about the toppings for me! Whenever we make tacos, burritos or enchiladas I like to go all out on the topping additions and sides.

This crema de cilantro is perfect to serve alongside your Tex Mex favorites, and it’s so easy to make.

We love sharing our favorite dips and toppings with you – don’t skip our Zesty GuacamoleChipotle Corn Salsa and Creamy Jalapeño Dip.

Tex Mex foods can be really rich and a little spicy, so a fresh creamy topping helps to break down the richness and balance out each bite.

The lime in the crema cuts through the fats and the creamy sour cream can help to cool down those spices. The cilantro adds a fresh layer of flavor that just cannot be replicated with any other herb.

It’s such an easy three ingredient topping that really makes a difference!

A white bowl of crema de cilantro on a white countertop, garnished with cilantro, lime to the side.

Why You’ll Love this Crema de Cilantro

  • Just Three Ingredients
  • Vegetarian
  • Topping OR a Dip
  • Great on Tacos, Burritos, Salads and Bowls!
Ingredients for lime crema de cilantro laid out on a marble countertop.

Ingredients and Substitutions

You just need three ingredients to make this wonderful fresh and zingy sauce.

  • Sour Cream: Sour cream is the base for this crema and it adds a cooling creaminess to your spicy dishes. I prefer to use a full fat sour cream as it’s much richer, but you can use low fat if you prefer.
  • Cilantro: Use fresh cilantro for this Mexican condiment for the best flavor. De-stem the cilantro before finely chopping it.
  • Lime Juice: Use fresh lime juice for the brightest and best flavors. If you are in a pinch, you can use bottled lime juice but I much prefer it freshly squeezed.

How to Make Crema de Cilantro

It takes less than five minutes to whip up a batch of this delicious lime crema for all your topping needs!

  1. Combine – combine all ingredients in a food processor.White kitchen with a food processor filled with lime cilantro crema mixture.
  2. Pulse – pulse until smooth.White kitchen with a food processor filled with lime crema mixture.

Psst… if you love this flavorful sauce, don’t skip this amazing Sriracha Mayo! It’s the perfect spicy flavor to use on everything.

Tips

  • If you don’t have a food processor, you can make this crema de cilantro by hand. Be sure to chop the cilantro as finely as you can so you don’t have any chunks (or too many stems) and then combine everything very well in a bowl with a spoon or whisk.
  • So much of the flavor comes from the lime and cilantro, so use the freshest you can.
  • To make this lime crema vegan, simply swap the sour cream for a dairy-free variety.
  • You’ll often see crema de cilantro drizzled over dishes at restaurants. To ensure that it’s thin enough to use as this type of flourish, add a little half and half or milk. Add it to a squeeze bottle, and create a zig zag pattern over any of your favorite entrees. It’s such a dramatic finish that tastes amazing, too!
A white bowl of crema de cilantro on a white countertop, garnished with cilantro, limes to the side.

Serving Suggestions

Where to use this cilantro de crema? Let me count the ways! There are so many wonderful options for serving.

Get my complete guide to the best Taco Toppings here.

A white bowl of crema de cilantro on a white countertop, garnished with cilantro.

Dietary Considerations

  • Vegetarian (for a vegan topping, use a dairy free sour cream)
  • Nut Free
  • Gluten Free

How to Store

  • Room Temperature – This crema de cilantro can sit out at room temperature for up to two hours while serving.
  • Refrigerator – Transfer it to an airtight container or to a bowl and cover it with plastic wrap and store it in the fridge for up to a week.
  • Freezer – Don’t freeze this crema de cilantro. Freezing sour cream results in texture changes that are just not worth the effort!
A white bowl of crema de cilantro on a white countertop, garnished with cilantro.

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More Tex Mex Inspiration

A white bowl of crema de cilantro on a white countertop, garnished with cilantro.
5 from 2 votes

Crema de Cilantro

This deliciously thick crema de cilantro is the perfect topping for burritos, tacos, enchiladas and soups. Easy to make and vegetarian and gluten free.
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 0 minutes
Total: 5 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
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Ingredients  

  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons cilantro de stemmed
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice (or juice of 4 limes)

Instructions 

  • Combine all of the ingredients in a food processor.
  • Pulse until smooth and use to top your favorite Mexican dishes.

Julie’s Tips

  • If you don’t have a food processor, you can make this crema by hand. Be sure to chop the cilantro as finely as you can so you don’t have any chunks and then really well combine everything in a bowl with a spoon or whisk.
  • So much of the flavor comes from the lime and cilantro, so use the freshest you can. 
  • To make this crema vegan, swap the sour cream for a dairy-free variety.
  • To make your crema de cilantro a little thinner (for garnishing as a drizzle), add a little half and half or milk. Add it to a squeeze bottle, and create a zig zag pattern over any of your favorite entrees.
Calories: 113kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 30mg | Sodium: 46mg | Potassium: 81mg | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 372IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 63mg | Iron: 1mg

Estimated nutrition information is provided as a courtesy and is not guaranteed.

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2 Comments

  1. Crema looks so beautiful Julie, and its presentation are so pretty, green color of cilantro on the top is really amazing and the recipe is to easy, can’t wait for try this. Thanks for sharing dear.