A Step-by-Step Guide to Making Rice in Your Instant Pot

Michelle Chahine Sinno
Michelle Chahine Sinno

A friend sent me an Instant Pot in the mail a few months ago, with a note that read, "These are all the rage now." I hadn't heard of them until then, but now, all of a sudden, I've noticed that Instant Pot recipes are everywhere! With all the different options and settings, there's great room for creativity and, especially, for saving time. But it isn't just about casseroles, elaborate meals, or even desserts. Surprisingly, this handy kitchen device can be used to make basics — in about half the time and with a lot less cleanup — like hard-boiled eggs. And rice.

Here's a simple recipe for cooking rice in the Instant Pot. You can extrapolate it, adding oil, butter, chicken stock, or even some tomato paste and onions for a Spanish twist. Or you can just make a bunch of plain rice to have ready throughout the week and serve with other delicious meals you make.

Rinse two cups of rice carefully. I used to skip this step, but trust me — once you see the color of the water that comes from rinsing, you won't go back.

Soak the rice in water for around 15 minutes. This especially helps when using a pressure cooker. Then drain the water well.

Add the rice to the Instant Pot with two cups of water. Make sure there aren't any stray grains above the water line, as they'll burn.

Note: This 1:1 rice and water ratio is for white rice. If you're using brown rice, you'll need two and a half cups of water for two cups of rice.

Select the "Pressure Cook" setting (or "Manual," if you don't have it) and set the time to five minutes.

A reminder for beginners: it does take a few minutes for the pot to heat up. The display will say "On" while it is warming to the right temperature, and then the countdown will begin once it's actually cooking. Also, make sure the steam-release valve is set to "Sealing."

Once the five minutes are done, if you don't have the automatic setting, select "Keep Warm" and set the time to 10 minutes.

Here, the time will count up from zero. At eight minutes, carefully switch the steam-release valve to "Venting" (using a pot holder or kitchen towel). Give it a minute or two before opening the pot.

Fluff your rice, and enjoy!