Cafe Rio Copycat Recipes – All the Best in One Place


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Our Cafe Rio Copycat Recipes has been a huge hit, so we thought we would compile them ALL in one post! Our salad, beans, rice, soup, burritos, and more!

Cafe Rio Copycat Recipes collage of several photos.
Featured with this post
  1. What is Cafe Rio
  2. Meat Choices
  3. Cafe Rio Burrito
  4. Cafe Rio Salad
  5. Enchiladas
  6. Tacos
  7. Cafe Rio Soup
  8. Cafe Rio Copycat Recipes

Here they are! All our Cafe Rio copycat recipe dishes all in one easy-to-find post! You will find quite a few Cafe Rio copycat recipes floating around out there, however, we are proud to be the home of the ORIGINAL Copycat Cafe Rio Recipes. Cooking them is simple with an instant pot, crock pot, or oven. All the Mexican flavor with quick and easy recipes!

We love Cafe Rio and it can be expensive going there often. When we start craving the sweet pork burrito or the tortilla soup we just get the recipe and create it right at home! Now we have several more options to choose from and make when we have that craving! Cafe Rio pork recipes have been one of our favorite family meals!

What is Cafe Rio

Cafe Rio is a quick-serve Mexican grill where you can create burritos, salads, enchiladas, and more. You start with the tortilla or lettuce, then choose your meats, and toppings. It is delicious and a great experience to individualize your meal while everyone enjoys the same eating place. It is similar to Chipotle or Costa Vida but served enchilada style not wrapped in foil and hand-held.

Cafe Rio shredded pork, beef, and chicken

Meat Choices

Most of the menu items at Cafe Rio or Costa Vida begin with some kind of meat. Your meat choices consist of sweet pork, shredded chicken, grilled chicken, shredded beef, or grilled steak. All the meats are flavorful, tender, and juicy!

  • Sweet pork – The most popular meat at Cafe Rio is shredded sweet pork. Take a pork shoulder, pork roast, or pork butt to make this sweet pork. This is made with enchilada sauce, brown sugar, and coke soda ingredients. We love this recipe in the slow cooker.
  • Beef – Our Mexican Shredded Beef is very similar to the shredded beef they serve at Cafe Rio. Any time we make Cafe Rio recipes using shredded beef we will use this recipe.
  • Shredded chicken – You can find our Cafe Rio Shredded Chicken recipe in our first cookbook but we will be adding it soon to the website! Keep an eye out for it!

Cafe Rio Burrito

Cafe Rio burritos are made with a giant homemade tortilla and served with lettuce and pico de gallo. They are filled with your favorite meat, cilantro lime rice, black bean or pinto beans, enchilada sauce, and Mexican blended shredded cheese. The enchilada sauce comes in red enchilada sauce, medium green, or mild green flavors.

Once your burrito is assembled, you can make it “enchilada style” by adding more enchilada sauce, topping it with more cheese, and heating it in the oven until the cheese is melted. Add shredded lettuce and pico de gallo to the side and you are ready to go!

Copycat Cafe Rio Sweet Pork Salad with chopped lettuce, shredded pork, cilantro rice, black beans, guacamole, pico de gallo, and tortilla strips served in an aluminum tin

Cafe Rio Salad

Cafe Rio Salads also start with a large tortilla on the bottom. This is a fun twist that I love. It is always nice to have a little more substance with the lettuce. As you are enjoying the salad you can pull some tortilla bites off to give more texture. It also is a blocker from the liquid of the meat seeping out. Add a little cheese to the tortilla and place in the oven until the cheese melts.

Start by adding your favorite meat, cilantro lime rice, black bean or pinto beans, chopped green or romaine lettuce, guacamole, pico de Gallo, tortilla strips, and cotija cheese. Garnish with cilantro and lime wedges. They have these three dressings tomatillo ranch, cilantro ranch dressing, or cilantro lime vinaigrette which is always hard to choose from. Blend them for a zesty, light, and tasty dressing over your salad!

Cilantro Lime Dressing being poured over a salad


If you are making enchiladas for your family, it is more practical to make enchiladas family-style. We just call them Family Style Burritos. You can assemble a bunch at once and then serve! This is our favorite way of making them.

If you are wanting to stay authentic to Cafe Rio, you can make them individually by assembling them with your favorite meat, enchilada sauce, and cheese wrapped in a flour enchilada-sized tortilla. The beans and rice are served on the side along with lettuce and pico de gallo.


The tacos are served with your favorite meat in a small flour tortilla and topped with lettuce, pico, and cheese. The rice and beans are served on the side. You can order or make these with softened corn tortillas as well.

Cafe Rio Soup

The tortilla soup at Cafe Rio is one of my very favorite soups EVER! It is so easy to make! You just get a bowl and add in chicken, pico de Gallo, guacamole, pinto beans, cheese, and chicken broth. Top with tortilla strips, cilantro, and lime for a garnish.

“Love these recipes!! So tasty & love to make these when we don’t feel like going out!”


Cafe Rio Copycat Recipes

Need more Cafe Rio recipes!? These delicious recipes are perfect for family dinners and staying in. Enjoy all the flavor and delicious taste that Cafe Rio has to offer all in your own home.

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About the author

Erica Walker

Erica lives in Boise, Idaho with her husband, Jared, an attorney, and her three beautiful girls. Beyond the world of recipes, she loves adventuring with everything from kayaking, to cruising, to snowboarding and taking the family along for the thrill ride.

More about Erica Walker

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  1. Just had the pollo asada at the new Cafe Rio in Meridian by Costco. OMGoodness, amazing! It’s my new favorite besides the sweet pork

    1. That is great to hear! I am so glad that you all loved it. Thanks for letting us know!

  2. 5 stars
    I gotta try this restaurant! These recipes are so delicious and easy! I gotta try this restaurant to see what else I’m missing! But LOVING on these delicious recipes!! Those enchiladas are SO good! And LOVE the soup!!

  3. We just made the sweet pork salad with the dressing and cilantro rice and it was so delicious! Thank you for sharing these recipes!

  4. I see the Cilantro lime vinaigarette recipe. Do you have one for their house dressing? It is more of a ranch type dressing?

  5. Oh my gosh! You guys saved me! I lived in Utah for a year, and I miss it so much! My favorite place to eat out was at Cafe Rio, but here in Denmark there is nothing that can compare! So I’m so happy, that now I can cook my favorite food here! Thanks a lot guys!

    1. Thanks Lisa! I think you will LOVE these recipes. They taste just like the food at Cafe Rio. They are some of the most popular recipes on our site. I’m glad you found us. Erica’s husband lived in Denmark for two years. He loves Danish food! Please share your Danish recipes with us! We have a few on our site, but would love more!

  6. I am not seeing a link in the top right hand corner of your website here to order your Café Rio cookbook. Can you please help me out?

    1. The Cafe Rio recipes are a part of our current cookbook. There isn’t a separate one for Cafe Rio recipes. Hope this helps!

  7. Hi, I was hoping to make both the sweet pork and the cilantro rice tonight; however, it says that the links are not working! Have you moved these pages?

    1. They should still be there.. if the links are broken try searching for them in the search box above. The recipes are for sure here on the site!

          1. Hey Amber! I got them all fixed tonight! They are definitely all working now, try refreshing the page and they should all work! Thanks for letting us know about the broken links.

    1. In the top right-hand side of our site you will see an image of our book. You can click on that and link you to Amazon where you can buy it! Thanks for your interest!

  8. I saw the guacamole recipe, you mentioned barbacoa. I love that place. Have you come up with their salsa verde and chips recipes?

  9. It was mentioned on your site that you can buy a cookbook with all the Cafe Rio recipes. How do I go about ordering one rather than print each recipe out? Thanks, Shelly

  10. I cannot access any of these recipes. I keep getting error messages. Thanks for any help getting them back on the web!

          1. It’s still not working 🙁 i’ve used these recipes a number of times and never had a problem, now I cant access them! These are the only cafe rio recipes that are actually good!

  11. Do you know about how much the beans, dressing, and pork this will feed? I am planning on cooking this for a group of about 25 people.

  12. There are three recipes I would love to see on here, since they are part of our favorite Cafe Rio dishes (perhaps I missed them though): Shredded Roast beef, green mild enchilada sauce, and the red hot sauce. Thanks for what is already here!