Instant Pot Basmati Rice

This Instant Pot basmati rice recipe is a fantastically tasty and super easy Indian side dish.

This recipe works great with loads of my Instant Pot food recipes like beef and broccoli, butter chicken, and other “heavier” main dishes that need something light for balance.

This recipe is oil and gluten-free and uses only 3 ingredients that you’re guaranteed to have in your pantry already. One even comes directly out of the tap!

This recipe is basically just rice and water!

Rice is such an accessible carb. I like to buy a large bag from Costco or Walmart. It’s very cheap and lasts me ages.

This white basmati rice in the Instant Pot is an easy decision!

The first time I tried this recipe, I couldn’t believe how fluffy and soft the rice was… I didn’t even have to do much!

… And it takes no time!

This is one of the easiest recipes you can make in your Instant Pot, and all of my recipes are pretty darn easy.

I cook perfect basmati rice in the Instant Pot, every time.

I recommend my Instant Pot recipes for beginners and those of you who like fast, last-minute-dinner-panic kinds of cooking.

Read on for my top rice cooking method and more tips for perfect basmati rice!

Why Is Cooking Basmati Rice So Much Better in a Pressure Cooker?

Basmati rice in your Instant Pot pressure cooker is so much less hassle. Just add your ingredients in, set the timer, and let the Instant Pot work its magic.

Aren’t those the most simple instructions?!

Don’t you just hate it when your stovetop rice goes gloopy, or when it sticks to the bottom of the pan?

I always seem to overcook or undercook my stovetop basmati rice.

Stovetop basmati rice is much more annoying and much more stressful than it needs to be.

It’s only rice!

If you pressure cook your basmati rice it takes away all that aggravation and makes perfect, fluffy cooked rice every single time.

Cooking this recipe in the Instant Pot is much the same as using a standard rice cooker. Instant Pot, however, is a much more versatile device that allows you to pressure cook many meals, not just basmati rice.

How to Make Basmati Rice

Gather your ingredients for the recipe.

rice in the pot and spoon

Rinse rice under cold water until the starch is removed. The water should not be milky. Place the rice in the Instant Pot and add water.

Rice in Instant Pot

The rice to water ratio should be 1:1.

  • If you like softer rice, 1 ¼ cups water is recommended.
  • If you prefer firm rice, 1 cup of water is what you should add.

Add salt and lock the lid into place.

Adding Salt

Cook the rice at the High-Pressure setting for 3 minutes.

Once the cooking cycle is done, leave the Instant Pot to release the pressure naturally. This should take about 10 to 15 minutes.

Alternatively, you can perform a quick release of steam pressure for 5 minutes or up to 10 minutes.

Once done, fluff the rice and serve.

instant pot recipes

I Want to Make 2 Cups of Basmati Rice. What Should I Do?

If you are using 2 cups of rice, then you will need to add 2 cups of water.

To make perfect Instant Pot basmati rice, I use water to rice ratio of 1:1. So that’s 1 cup of water for every 1 cup of rice.

The Instant Pot cooking time should be the same for any amount of basmati rice, even up to 5 cups.

The cook time can vary if you’re using different types of rice, such as brown rice or wild rice, but the water to rice ratio stays the same.

Keep reading to discover my method for cooking other types of Indian rice.

Should I Use the Instant Pot Smart Cooking Program?

Making this basmati rice recipe in your Instant Pot is so quick and easy, that you don’t really need to use the Smart Cooking function on your Instant Pot.

However, to activate this function on your Instant Pot, you simply press the “Rice” button. This pressure cooking program on your Instant Pot is mainly suitable for those times when you’re cooking parboiled rice or long-grain white rice.

I think basmati rice in Instant Pot comes out much better if you make it manually. Your food is going to taste better.

Should I Rinse the Rice Before Cooking?

I recommend that you rinse the rice before cooking this rice recipe in the Instant Pot.

Rice is covered in starch, which makes your rice water look milky and can cause the rice to stick inside the Instant Pot. Rinsing reduces the likelihood of this happening.

The best way to rinse your rice is to put it in a bowl or sieve and rinse it a few times with cold tap water until the rice water runs clear. I’d recommend rinsing for 5 minutes, or up to 10 minutes if you have time.

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Source: bonappetit.com

How Do I Release the Steam Once the Rice Is Cooked?

To release steam once you’ve cooked your basmati rice, simply leave your Instant Pot alone.

I advise you to always perform a natural pressure release after you’ve cooked your recipe. That means letting the Instant Pot do its thing and coming back to it up to 20 minutes after it’s finished cooking.

Letting your pressure cooker release steam naturally means that your basmati rice is less likely to stick to the sides of the inner pot.

If you are in a rush, you can perform a natural steam release for 5 minutes, or up to 10 minutes, then do a quick pressure release and open the lid.

To do this, turn the valve and the steam will whoosh out.

Important: Cover your hand with a tea towel or oven glove because the steam will be boiling!

I Want to Make a Different Type of Rice. What Should I Do?

As well as making this perfect Instant Pot basmati rice recipe, you can make any favorite Indian rice side dish in the pressure cooker. You can use the same 1:1 rice to water ratio as you would to cook basmati rice.

Rice Type
Cooking Time
Why I Love It!
Jasmine Rice10 – 15 minutesThe aroma of jasmine is so fragrant and authentic.
As a result, I always associate the smell of this rice with being on a busy street in Beijing eating a local favorite dish. You might not get the full Asian experience from your kitchen, but this Instant Pot jasmine rice recipe is spot on.
Persian Rice10 – 15 minutesPersian long-grain rice has an exotic looks and smells. Its yellow will improve any beef dish you make.
It has a fruity flavor as I’m using apricots and lemon for the recipe.
Brown Rice15 – 25 minutesBrown basmati rice is one of the more nutritious rice varieties because of its whole-grain make-up. That’s why it takes a little longer.
It is low carb and a healthier than white rice.
Wild Rice25 – 30 minutesWild rice is whole-grain and has many health benefits.
This side dish includes multiple varieties of rice in one and a special flavor.
Sushi RiceDifferent MethodSushi rice is brilliant because once you’ve got the right consistency, you can mold it into any shape. Making sushi rice is a fun activity to do with the kids. You can create rice animals, shapes, and even numbers to help the little ones with their math.

You can find all my Instant Pot rice recipes on my blog, Facebook, and Pinterest.

The Best Main Dishes to Go With Your Instant Pot Basmati Rice

Main Dish
What You’ll Need
How to Cook It
BBQ Sweet Meatballs Recipe
  • Frozen, Cooked Meatballs
  • BBQ Sauce
  • Grape Jelly
  • Water
  1. Steam your meatballs and put them aside once done.
  2. Add BBQ sauce and grape jelly to your Instant Pot and press “Saute”.
  3. Add the meatballs and coat sauce over them.
  4. Serve with Instant Pot basmati rice and enjoy.
Orange Chicken Recipe
  • Chicken Breast
  • Orange Juice
  • Tomato Sauce
  • Sugar
  • Soy Sauce
  • Ginger and Garlic
  • Cornstarch and Water
  1. Saute the chicken breast
  2. Add the rest of your ingredients, minus the cornstarch mix.
  3. Once cooked, add in your cornstarch mix to thicken.
  4. Serve with Instant Pot basmati rice and enjoy.
Beef and Broccoli Recipe
  • Chuck Roast or Flank Steak
  • Beef Broth
  • Soy Sauce
  • Broccoli
  • Brown Sugar
  • Sesame Oil
  • Cornstarch and water
  1. Saute your steak meat in batches.
  2. Add the rest of your ingredients minus the broccoli and cornstarch mix.
  3. Once cooked, add in the broccoli and cook for a further couple of minutes.
  4. Add in the cornstarch mix.
  5. Serve with Instant Pot basmati rice and enjoy.

Check out my blog to find the full recipes for each of these dishes. Alternatively, take a look at my other socials where there are loads more meal and recipe inspirations from other Instant Pot fanatics, that you can pair with your basmati rice!

instant pot for rice

Helpful Tips to Make Your Instant Pot Basmati Rice Taste Even Better

Add 1 tablespoon of butter to your cooked instant rice pot. I know, I sound crazy but hear me out… Sometimes don’t you just wanna indulge?

We all love the taste of butter and melting a stick of it into a steaming Instant Pot of freshly cooked rice sounds like the perfect comfort food. The recipe tastes like a warm hug. Perfect for duvet days and still so quick and simple to make.

Soak the rice overnight. This second tip is less controversial. A study by Queens University Belfast found that soaking rice overnight reduces “the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and cancer.” If that’s not a good enough reason to soak and rinse your basmati rice, I don’t know what is!

Instant Pot Basmati Rice
5 from 3 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: Plain Basmati Rice
Prep Time: 2 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 22 minutes
Servings: 2
Ingredients
  • 1 cup basmati rice rinsed
  • 1 cup water
  • salt to taste
Instructions
  • Add water, rice and salt and mix a little
  • Close the lid and cook for 3 minutes on high pressure .
  • Once done, let the pressure release naturally. It takes between 15-25 minutes.
  • Open the lid, fluff the rice and serve.
Notes
It's important to take out all the rice once it's done, or close the lid again, to prevent the rice from sticking to the bottom of the pot. 

This recipe is part of our 1001 Instant Pot recipes project, a huge collection of free, easy and delicious recipes.

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