Fresh, homemade dressings are the best and this zesty, tangy Cilantro Lime Dressing recipe is no exception. It takes just a handful of ingredients to make this creamy dressing.
It will liven up even the simplest salad with its bright, citrusy, fresh flavor and bright green color.
An herb-infused yogurt-based treat that makes everything taste instantly better. Drizzle it over your favorite summer salads, tacos, meats, or grilled vegetables.
This Creamy Cilantro Lime Dressing recipe is to die for. Nothing beats a quick and easy homemade dressing that screams with flavor from fresh cilantro, lime zest, and tangy yogurt.
Cilantro is a versatile herb that is a staple in Mexican food, as well as Middle Eastern, Indian, European, and other Asian cuisines. It is fragrant and exudes a fresh yet strong flavor that works well with other ingredients without overpowering them.
It's flavorful yet calls for only a few fresh ingredients. It's a light, creamy, and well-balanced dressing that adds a touch of sophistication to any salad. It is so dang so good that my family can put it on just about everything!
Why We Love This Easy Dressing Recipe
The best part about making different types of salad is that you can essentially put whatever takes your fancy in a bowl.
Homemade - A delicious homemade dressing can make all the difference! You can make it in many different ways such as creamy, tangy, oil-based, herby, sweet, or spicy.
Quick and Easy - You can make your own salad dressing in less time than the time it’ll take to go to Costco or your favorite grocery store to buy one. And this easy cilantro lime dressing is one of the best dressing recipes to get started with.
Limited Ingredients - All you need is a handful of ingredients and a blender or food processor season.
Check the recipe card below for a detailed, printable ingredient checklist.
Cilantro - gives the dressing its stunning green color and a fresh citrusy and bright flavor!
Garlic - It's a must-have in practically all of my dressing recipes. Use fresh garlic for best results. Garlic powder may be used in a pinch.
Limes - This dressing has just the right amount of acidity thanks to the fresh lime juice! For the finest flavor, use freshly squeezed lime juice rather than bottled one.
Yogurt - For this recipe, we use plain, whole milk yogurt. It gives that tangy flavor and adds creaminess to the dressing.
Olive oil - It provides richness and ties everything together. If you like, you could also use avocado oil instead of extra-virgin olive oil.
Sugar - Adding this balances the flavor palette of the dressing. It won't make it sweet, so don't worry!
Variations and Additions
Plain Greek yogurt instead of plain yogurt can also be used. The components on both are the same, but the nutrients are different. Greek yogurt has more protein, less sugar, and a thicker consistency than conventional yogurt, which has fewer calories and more calcium. In taste, the plain one is slightly sour but generally sweeter.
Sour Cream - if you're looking for a richer and maybe even a little creamier version, substitute the yogurt
Maple syrup or honey can also be a good sugar substitute. It also helps bind the mixture together.
Spice - You may add jalapeño to your dressing to give it a bit of heat. It not only adds a spicy undertone to the dressing but will also boost its health benefits.
Avocado - How do you like the idea of turning this into a creamy avocado cilantro lime dressing? You can easily do that with a ripe avocado in the blender. This will result in a thicker consistency. And it'll be a perfect dip for burrito bowls or tacos.
Garlic - We use fresh garlic cloves in this dish, which is just enough and not overpowering. Roasted garlic, on the other hand, has a mellower flavor if you want to keep it subtle.
How To Make The Best Cilantro Lime Dressing
Making homemade salad dressing is easier than you might think.
- Place all the ingredients in a food processor or blender.
- Blend until the consistency becomes smooth and you have a creamy dressing. It should look like a well-blended bright green puree. Taste and make adjustments as you please. You may also season with salt and pepper depending on your preference.
Recipe Success Tips
- Make sure to properly dry the cilantro after washing it. Otherwise, the remaining water will thin out the dressing and make it less tasty.
- Keep the limes at room temperature rather than refrigerate them, as the fridge will degrade their flavor and will make it more difficult to squeeze the juice out.
- The dressing is runnier right after blending than it is after it has been refrigerated. If it becomes too thick after a couple of days in the fridge, add an extra tablespoon of lime juice or olive oil to thin it down.
- Because the cilantro lime dressing is homemade and does not contain any preservatives like packaged dressings, its shelf life may be limited. The freshness of your cilantro will determine how long your dressing lasts. In an airtight container or mason jar in the refrigerator, it can last up to 7-10 days.
- If you don't have a blender you can also add all of the ingredients to a bowl and use an immersion blender.
- This isn't just a salad dressing; it's also a marinade for cilantro lime chicken, shrimp, or fish. Simply combine the dressing and your choice protein in a Ziploc bag and massage until the meat is well covered.
- Aside from serving it with your favorite salad, this can be a nice dip for your appetizers.
Recipes You Should Try With This Dressing
- Taco Salad - I made this dressing with this salad in mind! The freshness of the dressing will be absolutely divine with this Tex-Mex classic!
- Shrimp Salad Recipe - this amazing shrimp salad recipe uses a mayonnaise-mustard dressing, but you can easily substitute it with this one for a fresher finish.
- Chicken Salad Recipe - A classic chicken salad but with a little twist. This recipe used fruits instead of vegetables.
- Buffalo Chicken Salad - Who'd have guessed that buffalo chicken could be served in a bowl with avocado, tomatoes, black beans, and corn? This is unquestionably game-changing. Try it.
Cilantro Lime Dressing
- Combine cilantro, yogurt, garlic, lime zest, lime juice, olive oil, and sugar in a blender or food processor.
- Blend until smooth and creamy. If desired, season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve and enjoy.