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Cilantro Lime Crema

Drizzling this delicious Cilantro Lime Crema adds bursting fresh flavor to so many dishes and only takes 5 minutes to whip up. Made with fresh cilantro, zesty lime juice, garlic and just a pinch of salt makes this crema a flavor booster you simply can’t live without!

Why You’ll Love This Cilantro Lime Crema Recipe

Looking for the perfect topping for tacos, crispy vegetables or fried avocados? Look no further! Zesty Cilantro Lime Crema is loaded with flavor and is the perfect condiment to keep in the refrigerator. Here’s why you’ll love it:

  • So Easy: NO cooking is required and only one bowl is needed – that translates to easy cleanup! Just blend these 6 simple ingredients together- sour cream, mayonnaise, lime juice, cilantro, garlic and salt to make a tangy, zesty sauce.
  • All That Flavor: While you can likely find plenty of store-bought versions of this sauce, none of them can hold a candle to the real deal. Usually, store-bought sauces and dressing are chock full of preservatives and artificial flavors, while this homemade crema is fresh through and through. And trust us, you can really taste the fresh ingredients like lime juice and cilantro in every last drop!
  • Goes With Everything: Cilantro lime crema goes with just about anything… Tacos, veggies, meats, salads, you name it!
Ingredients to make Cilantro Lime Crema.

What You’ll Need

You only need these six simple, inexpensive ingredients to create one unbelievably fresh and creamy sauce. Scroll down to the recipe card for exact amounts.

  • Sour Cream: This ingredient adds both a tart flavor and creamy texture to the sauce. You can use regular sour cream or low fat sour cream if you are cutting calories.
  • Mayonnaise: Along with the sour cream, mayo helps to create the silky texture of the crema. And don’t worry, if you’re a mayo-hater like me, you can’t taste it as it blends with the other ingredients!
  • Cilantro: Make sure and rinse the cilantro so your crema isn’t gritty. Also, to save time, there is no need to pre-chop!
  • Lime Juice: Use fresh lime juice right from the citrus itself! For the best flavor, do NOT use the bottled stuff that has preservatives.
  • Garlic: If you want an extra garlicky flavor, you can toss an extra clove into the mix.
  • Salt: Just a pinch should do the trick.

How to Make Crema

This crema is super simple to make and takes less than 5 minutes! You can use an immersion blender, food processor, or a regular blender to create the creamy sauce. There is no need to chop the cilantro or garlic when using one of the methods below. Check out the recipe card for detailed instructions.

  • Combine: In a mixing bowl or bowl of a food processor or blender, add the sour cream, mayonnaise, cilantro, lime, garlic and salt.
  • Immersion Blender: Using an immersion blender, blend the ingredients until smooth and creamy. OR
  • Food Processor: Place all ingredients in the food processor and pulse until everything is the perfect consistency. OR
  • Blender: Add all of the ingredients and blend until it’s silky.

Tips and Tricks

Here are a few tips and tricks to keep this lime crema recipe super easy.

  • Make Ahead: If possible, make your crema 30 minutes to 24 hours before and store in the refrigerator. A little time in the refrigerator really brings out the flavors.
  • Do Not Over Blend: Over blending can cause air bubbles and for the crema to be too thin.
  • Store in an Airtight Container: In the refrigerator for up to 5 to 7 days before serving.
  • Rinse the Cilantro: And be sure to pat it dry with paper towels. Cilantro can sometimes be gritty, so rinse and drain it well before using. Also, use the freshest cilantro available!
  • Fresh Squeezed Lime Juice: This helps the tangy flavors pop and has no preservatives.
  • Turn Up the Heat: Add jalapeño peppers or adobe peppers!
Cilantro Lime Crema in a green bowl with lime wedges and fresh cilantro

How to Use Cilantro Lime Crema

There are so many ways that we use this cilantro lime crema! It’s an extra flavorful sauce that can be used in so many different ways. Here are a few of our favorites:

  • Tacos: it is wonderful on fish tacos or air fried avocado tacos!
  • Vegetables: it makes a great sauce/dip for crispy vegetables or air fryer fried avocado.
  • Meat: we love it on everything from fish to chicken. Fried or grilled, it adds great flavor, even on shrimp! We use it all the time as a dip for our favorite grilled chicken. I also whip it up to use with a rotisserie chicken sometimes to add flavor like you would a pesto!
  • Salads: It’s truly amazing on a taco salad!

This is a fun sauce to play around with and discover the dishes you like it paired best with! With that being said… Drizzling this crema on our avocado tacos is an experience in freshness that everyone should have.

Cilantro Lime Crema in a green bowl with a spoon and cilantro and lime as garnish

How to Store and Reheat Leftovers

Serve immediately or refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 5 to 7 days. You may need to give it a good stir, shake, or quick blend if things start to separate. Enjoy!

More Easy Dip Recipes

Green bowl filled with cilantro lime crema and fresh cilantro and lime on the side
4.7 from 52 votes
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Yield: 1 cup crema

Cilantro Lime Crema

Drizzling this delicious Cilantro Lime Crema adds bursting fresh flavor to so many dishes and only takes 5 minutes to whip up. Made with fresh cilantro, zesty lime juice, garlic and just a pinch of salt makes this crema a flavor booster you simply can't live without!
Prep Time5 minutes
Total Time5 minutes


  • ½ cup sour cream
  • ½ cup mayo
  • ¼ cup packed fresh cilantro
  • 2 cloves fresh garlic
  • juice from 1 lime
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt


  • Puree all ingredients together until smooth using a food processor, immersion blender or traditional blender.
  • Serve immediately or refrigerate in an air tight container for up to 5 to 7 days.


Serving: 1, Calories: 63kcal, Carbohydrates: 1g, Fat: 7g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g, Cholesterol: 7mg, Sodium: 86mg

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Recipe Rating

7 comments on “Cilantro Lime Crema”

  1. 5 stars
    Do you think I could make a big batch and freeze it? I have a lot of cilantro in the garden. This is a perfect use for it!

    1. Hi Barbara! You can freeze it, but sour cream and mayo also both have a chance of changing texturally once thawed. They can separate. If that happens, you can try whipping it back together to re-emulsify it, but know that can happen!

  2. 5 stars
    I could drink this sauce, its so good! But seriously I’ve been making tacos everyday for lunch just to have it. 10/10.

  3. 5 stars
    My husband is obsessed with this sauce! He puts it on EVERYTHING! I have to a double batch at least once a week.

  4. 5 stars
    This recipe is the BOMB! I always make a double batch and double the garlic (we love garlic). My wife absolutely loves it and uses it on everything she can think of. I actually mix some with packaged coleslaw for street tacos.

  5. Barbara Steinberg

    This is the Bomb. I have it non stop in my fridge, and is any left before the due date. Love ,love love it. When I have guests, there is always a request for the recipe. thank you!

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