How to Cook Brown Basmati Rice in an Instant Pot: Tips, Serving Ideas, and Storage Hacks

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Written By Haryana’s Restaurant

Authentic Indian Food – Classic Indian Cuisine in Terrace BC

Craving a nutritious and flavorful side dish that’s ready in no time? Brown basmati rice cooked in an Instant Pot is your go-to solution. This aromatic, long-grain rice hails from the Indian subcontinent and boasts a nutty flavor and chewy texture that pairs perfectly with a variety of dishes.


  • 1 cup brown basmati rice: Rinse thoroughly under cold water to remove excess starch.
  • 1 ¼ cups water: Use filtered or tap water as preferred.
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil: This helps prevent the rice from sticking and adds a subtle flavor.
  • ½ teaspoon salt: Enhances the natural flavors of the rice. Adjust according to your taste.

Ensure you have all the ingredients measured and ready before starting the cooking process for a smooth experience.

Equipment Needed

To prepare brown basmati rice in your Instant Pot, gather the following equipment:

  • Instant Pot: Ensure your Instant Pot is clean and functioning properly. This will be essential for the even cooking of the rice.
  • Measuring Cups: Use these to precisely measure out your brown basmati rice and water. Accurate measurements are crucial for achieving perfect texture.
  • Fine-Mesh Strainer: Rinse the rice thoroughly using a fine-mesh strainer to remove excess starch and any impurities.
  • Mixing Bowl: A medium-sized mixing bowl can be handy for holding rinsed rice before transferring it to the Instant Pot.
  • Wooden Spoon or Spatula: Use this to stir ingredients gently without scratching the inner pot of your Instant Pot.

Having all these tools ready at hand ensures a smooth cooking process from start to finish.


Preparing brown basmati rice in an Instant Pot is a straightforward process that yields delicious results. Follow these steps to ensure your rice turns out perfectly every time.

Rinsing the Rice

  1. Place 1 cup of brown basmati rice in a fine-mesh strainer.
  2. Rinse the rice under cold running water for about 2-3 minutes.
  3. Gently swirl the rice with your fingers to remove excess starch and impurities.
  4. Continue rinsing until the water runs clear.
  5. Let the rice drain well in the strainer for a few minutes before cooking.

Preparing the Ingredients

  1. Measure 1 cup of rinsed brown basmati rice and transfer it to a mixing bowl or directly into the Instant Pot inner pot.
  2. Add 1¼ cups of water to ensure proper hydration during cooking.
  3. Pour 1 tablespoon of olive oil over the rice and water mixture to enhance flavor and prevent sticking.
  4. Sprinkle in ½ teaspoon of salt, adjusting according to taste preferences if necessary.

Carefully following these steps, you’ll set yourself up for success when cooking brown basmati rice in your Instant Pot, ensuring each grain is cooked to perfection with minimal effort required on your part.

Cooking Instructions

Follow these steps to perfectly cook brown basmati rice in your Instant Pot. Each step is designed for ease and precision.

Setting Up the Instant Pot

  1. Rinse the Rice: Rinse 1 cup of brown basmati rice under cold water until the water runs clear.
  2. Add Ingredients: Transfer the rinsed rice to the Instant Pot. Add 1.25 cups of water or broth, and a pinch of salt if desired.
  3. Secure the Lid: Place the lid on your Instant Pot and set it to sealing position.

Cooking the Rice

  1. Select Pressure Cook Mode: Press the ‘Pressure Cook’ or ‘Manual’ button on your Instant Pot.
  2. Set Cooking Time: Adjust the time to 22 minutes at high pressure using the ‘+’ and ‘-‘ buttons.
  3. Start Cooking: Ensure all settings are correct, then press ‘Start’ if necessary, depending on your model.

Allow for Natural Pressure Release

  1. Wait for Pressure Release: After cooking completes, let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes.
  2. Quick Release Remaining Pressure: Carefully turn the valve to venting position to release any remaining pressure manually.
  3. Fluff and Serve: Open the lid, fluff your perfectly cooked brown basmati rice with a fork, and serve hot.

Serving Suggestions

Brown basmati rice cooked in the Instant Pot is a versatile dish that complements various meals. Here are some serving suggestions to elevate your dining experience:

Pair with Curries

Pair your fluffy brown basmati rice with rich and flavorful curries. The nutty taste of the rice balances well with spicy chicken curry, creamy paneer tikka masala, or savory vegetable korma.

Create a Rice Bowl

Craft a wholesome rice bowl by layering your brown basmati rice with fresh vegetables, proteins, and toppings. Consider ingredients like grilled chicken, sautéed tofu, roasted vegetables, avocado slices, and a drizzle of tahini or soy sauce for added flavor.

Serve as a Side Dish

Use your brown basmati rice as an elegant side dish to accompany main courses such as baked salmon, grilled steak, or roasted lamb. Its subtle flavor won’t overpower the main dish but will provide a satisfying base.

Make Fried Rice

Transform leftover brown basmati rice into a delicious fried rice dish. Sauté garlic and ginger in oil before adding the cooked rice along with chopped vegetables like bell peppers, peas, carrots, and scrambled eggs. Season with soy sauce and garnish with green onions for an easy meal.

Accompany Stews and Soups

Enhance hearty stews and soups by serving them over or alongside brown basmati rice. It pairs excellently with beef stew, lentil soup, or chicken noodle soup to soak up the flavors while adding texture to each bite.

These serving suggestions will help you make the most out of your perfectly cooked brown basmati rice from the Instant Pot.

Make-ahead and Storage Tips

Make-ahead Tips

Preparing brown basmati rice in advance can save you a lot of time during busy weekdays. Here’s how you can do it effectively:

  1. Cook in Batches: Prepare a large batch of brown basmati rice in your Instant Pot over the weekend. This ensures you have enough for various meals throughout the week.
  2. Cool Quickly: After cooking, spread the rice on a baking sheet to cool quickly. This prevents overcooking and keeps the grains separate.
  3. Portion Control: Divide the cooled rice into individual portions using airtight containers or ziplock bags.

Storage Tips

Proper storage is essential to maintain the texture and flavor of your cooked brown basmati rice. Follow these tips for optimal storage:

  1. Refrigeration:
  • Store portioned rice in airtight containers or resealable plastic bags.
  • Label each container with the date to keep track of freshness.
  • Refrigerate for up to 5 days.
  1. Freezing:
  • Place portioned, cooled rice in freezer-safe bags or containers.
  • Lay bags flat in the freezer to save space and ensure even freezing.
  • Freeze for up to 3 months.

Reheating Instructions

When you’re ready to enjoy your pre-cooked brown basmati rice, follow these steps for perfect reheating:

  1. Microwave Method:
  • Transfer desired amount of rice into a microwave-safe bowl.
  • Add a splash of water or broth (about 1 tablespoon per cup).
  • Cover with a damp paper towel and heat on high for 1-2 minutes until hot.
  1. Stovetop Method:
  • Add rice to a saucepan with a small amount of water or broth (about 2 tablespoons per cup).
  • Cover and reheat over low heat, stirring occasionally, until heated through.


Mastering brown basmati rice in an Instant Pot can revolutionize your meal prep routine. With the right techniques, you’ll enjoy perfectly cooked rice every time. Remember the value of rinsing and following the precise cooking steps to achieve that ideal texture.

Incorporating these tips for serving, storing, and reheating ensures you’ll always have delicious and convenient meals ready to go. Whether you’re batch cooking for a week or simply making dinner easier, these strategies keep your brown basmati rice fresh and flavorful.

Embrace this easy method and elevate your culinary creations effortlessly. Your Instant Pot is a powerful tool – make the most of it!

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