Lime Crema


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Lime crema is a zesty, tangy cream that will add a punch of flavor to your meal. Just whisk together 4 simple ingredients until it’s smooth and creamy. Then drizzle or dollop over tacos, soups, enchiladas, and so much more. You’re gonna love it!

Lime crema in a serving bowl.

What Is Crema?

Between sour cream, crème fraîche, and crema – there’s so many variations of a simple cream. But crema is a thick cream that’s rich, tangy, and a staple in Mexican cuisine. You’ll typically find it drizzled over tacos, enchiladas, chicken, or anything you want to add a hint of richness to.

For the most part, traditional Mexican crema is most similar to sour cream. But you can easily use crème fraîche or even yogurt in this recipe.

Lime Crema Ingredients

While traditional crema uses heavy cream and buttermilk, I’m using it’s close relative: sour cream. Here’s a few other ingredients you’ll need to complete this recipe.

  • Sour Cream: 8 ounces
  • Lime: 1 lime zested and juiced
  • Garlic: 1 garlic clove, minced
  • Salt: 1/4 teaspoon

Lime crema ingredients in a mixing bowl.

How To Make Lime Crema

First, you’ll want to zest the lime and squeeze the juice into a small bowl. Then add the sour cream, garlic, and salt. Whisk everything together until it’s combined and creamy.

You can use this sauce immediately or store it in the fridge for about one week. Just make sure to store it covered or in an airtight container.

Tip: If you’d like a slightly thicker consistency, let it sit in the fridge overnight. And by the time you’re ready to serve, it’ll be beautifully thick and creamy.

Lime crema in a bowl with lime zest.

Ways To Use Lime Crema

My favorite way to use this lime crema is to drizzle it over my shrimp tacos. But, your options don’t end there. You can drizzle over enchiladas, dollop onto grilled chicken, swirl it into soups, or use it as a salad dressing. Here’s a few recipes to try.

A spoonful of lime crema.

More Easy Sauces

It goes to show that sauces can make all the difference when it comes to adding richness and layers of flavor. So spruce up your meals with a few of these sauces. Trust me, they’ll work wonders.

Lime crema in a bowl.

Easy Lime Crema Recipe

5 from 14 votes
Prep: 5 minutes
Total: 5 minutes
Servings: 8 servings
Author: Lisa Bryan


Lime crema is rich and tangy cream that will add a punch of flavor to your meal. Just whisk together 4 simple ingredients and drizzle over tacos, soups, and more!


  • 8 oz sour cream
  • 1 lime, juiced and zested
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt


  • Zest the lime and squeeze the lime juice into a small bowl.
  • Add the sour cream, garlic and salt to the bowl and stir everything together until it's combined and creamy.
  • Use immediately or store in the fridge until ready to serve.

Lisa's Tips

  • Each serving is about 2 tablespoons.
  • To easily squeeze the lime crema in tacos or on salads, I transfer it to these plastic squeeze bottles.


Calories: 58kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 15mg | Sodium: 96mg | Potassium: 49mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 177IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 34mg | Iron: 1mg
Course: dressing, sauce
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: Lime Crema, Lime Crema Sauce, Taco Sauce
Did you make this recipe?Mention @downshiftology or tag #downshiftology!

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About the author

Lisa Bryan

Lisa is a bestselling cookbook author, recipe developer, and YouTuber (with over 2.5 million subscribers) living in sunny Southern California. She started Downshiftology in 2014, and is passionate about making healthy food with fresh, simple and seasonal ingredients.

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Recipe Rating


  1. OMG… made this with some homemade sour cream and it was DIVINE! I may or may not have hid the bit that was left over so that I could enjoy it all by myself the following day with some salmon! So incredibly simple but took our meal to the next level!5 stars

    1. Yes, leftovers would be great on salmon. I would have hidden those leftovers myself as well. ;)

  2. How do you feel about adding roasted green chiles to this recipe? We’re having a taco bar for 4th of July and I’m bringing crema, thought I might spice it up. Food processor or just whip in?

  3. Great receipe! Thank you. Perfect balance of zesty lime and garlic. Made it with burritos, salad and guacamole.
    I had a little left over and kept it for a leftover burrito for lunch the following day.
    WOW!!! The flavours had infused and more intense the next day. I would definitely recommend make this in advance as it is so wonderful the day!

  4. So much flavour with so few ingredients. I made it wth Greek yogurt and put it over my grilled chicken and black bean quesadilla. Delish!5 stars

  5. All I have to say about this dressing is YES, YES, YES!!. Very simple to make, but tonsss of flavour!! That lime zest makes all the difference.5 stars

  6. This one took me by surprise – such a simple but potent recipe! Very refreshing and perfect on tacos, burrito bowls. A real stand out for my Cinco De Mayo spread!5 stars

    1. So glad you loved this lime crema! It really is the cherry on top for so many recipes :)

  7. One dollup and I was addicted. I added chopped jalapeños to my second batch. Then I added Mayo Sirachi to a third batch. The family agrees it is now a necessary addition to all our Mexican meals. Try it atop hot tortilla soup!5 stars

    1. Hi Verena- It’s the best to use over tacos, burritos, or a plate! Glad you enjoyed this sauce.

  8. This sounds like such a thick, zesty and delicious cream! Certainly going to be making this.5 stars