Give your meal a zesty twist with this cilantro lime chicken recipe. You’ll love the lively aroma of the fresh limes and the savory taste of tenderly baked chicken breasts. The Pico de Gallo adds a refreshing, colorful touch, while the hot white rice makes it more filling.
Is This Chicken Healthy?
Yes, ours is a healthy recipe. Here are some reasons why:
First, it is high in protein, with one serving containing an impressive 37 grams. The reason we go with skinless boneless chicken breasts is that the breast contains more protein and also fewer fats and calories than the other cuts, such as thighs or drumsticks.
Then, with the addition of lime, including its juice and zest, our dish is enriched with vitamin C and other antioxidants. This green citrus fruit can bring amazing health benefits, such as boosting your immune system, promoting skin health, and reducing inflammation.
On top of the two main ingredients, we also add tomatoes, corn kernels, and red onions for an extra boost of vitamins and minerals.
With only simple everyday ingredients, you can whip up this light and wonderful dish in no time. Let’s take a look.
Our recipe calls for skinless boneless chicken breasts for a light and lean taste.
We recommend using fresh chicken breasts over frozen ones since chicken breasts are low in fat, which will cause them to dry out easily if stored in a freezer for a long time.
To give our chicken a nice boost of flavor, we toss them in a marinade made of salt, pepper, garlic, cilantro, honey, olive oil, lime zest, and lime juice.
The result is tender chicken breast with a slightly tart and peppery flavor, plus a lively, citrusy aroma from fresh limes.
Pico de Gallo
Bright, fresh, and fun, this Mexican-style salsa makes a wonderful addition to our cilantro lime chicken. Simply toss diced tomatoes, red onions, and corn kernels with minced garlic, chopped cilantro, salt, and lime juice for colorful bits full of flavor and textures.
We serve our chicken with hot white rice for a well-rounded meal. It’s best that you buy or cook a new batch of rice for the freshest taste.
How to Store the Leftovers
Since our chicken recipe uses lime, which has acidic properties, it’s best to keep the leftovers in the fridge and consume them within 24 hours for the freshest experience.
What to Serve With
Here are some recommended sides to serve with our cilantro lime chicken:
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Using simple everyday ingredients, this cilantro lime chicken recipe combines fresh limes and tenderly baked chicken breasts for a filling and flavorful meal, served over hot white rice and Pico de Gallo.
Butterfly the chicken breast: Place the chicken breast on a cutting board. From the long side of the chicken breast, slice the meat in half using a sawing motion, but leave about 1/4" so that the two pieces are still intact. Set it aside and repeat with the remaining pieces.
Cook the rice: Rinse the rice with clean water. Gently massage to remove any debris or excess starch. Change the water a few times until it becomes clear, then drain it out. After that, cook the rice using a rice cooker or an instant pot.
Dice the red onion: Half the onion lengthwise and peel the skin. Make vertical slices 1/8" apart from each other towards the root, but leave about 1/8" so they're still intact. Turn the half 90 degrees, and grip the root. From the bottom, make horizontal cuts 1/8" apart from each other into the onion, also leaving 1/8" to keep everything intact. Slice the onion to have even cubes.
Dice the tomato: Half the tomato lengthwise, slice to remove the stem, and scoop the seeds out. Cut each half into 1/4" strips, then each strip into small cubes.
Finely chop the cilantro.
Make the chicken marinade: In a large icing bowl, add 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp ground black pepper, 1 tbsp garlic, 1/4 cup cilantro, 1 tbsp honey, 1.5 tbsp olive oil, 1 tsp lime zest, and 1 tbsp lime juice. Stir to combine.
Marinate the chicken: Add 20 oz skinless boneless chicken breasts and toss to coat evenly. Let sit for 5 minutes.
Make the salad: In a large mixing bowl, add 6 oz tomato, 3 oz corn kernels, 1/4 tsp salt, 1 tbsp garlic, 1/4 cup cilantro, 1 tbsp lime juice, and 1 oz red onion. Mix well.
Pan-sear the chicken: In a skillet over medium heat, add 1.5 tbsp olive oil. When the oil is hot and ready, add the marinated chicken breasts and pan-sear both sides for a total of 5 minutes.
Bake the chicken: Place the skillet with chicken in a preheated oven and bake at 375 °F for 10 minutes.
Garnish and serve: Garnish with lime slices and chopped cilantro on top. Serve with rice and Pico de Gallo.
How to Make Cilantro Lime Chicken
Amount Per Serving (1 serving)
Calories 499Calories from Fat 134
% Daily Value*
Saturated Fat 2.5g
Trans Fat 1g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 9g
Vitamin A 584IU
Vitamin C 16mg
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Tuyet Pham is an award-winning Saigonese chef who believes that joy is the secret ingredient to delicious food. At Healthy Recipes 101, Tuyet personally tests and simplifies every recipe, ensuring maximum flavor with minimal effort. With a background at prestigious French restaurants P’TI Saigon and Le Corto, Tuyet knows how to make every dish exceptional.
Luna Regina is an accomplished writer and author who dedicates her career to empowering home cooks and making cooking effortless for everyone. She is the founder of HealthyKitchen101.com and HealthyRecipes101.com, where she works with her team to develop easy, nutritious recipes and help aspiring cooks choose the right kitchen appliances.
Emily Rogers is a California-based Registered Dietitian Nutritionist who specializes in Public Health Dietetics. She has had an eclectic career working as a health educator, nutrition counselor, recipe developer, clinical dietitian and outpatient dietitian. Emily is currently a full-time Public Health Nutritionist with the County of Orange where she teaches Nutrition Education and Community Nutrition courses.
A flavorful and healthy recipe that is perfect for a summer BBQ.