How to Cook Kerala Matta Rice in an Instant Pot: Quick and Easy Guide

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Written By Haryana’s Restaurant

Authentic Indian Food – Classic Indian Cuisine in Terrace BC

Dive into the rich culinary traditions of Kerala with the nutty and flavorful Kerala Matta Rice. Known for its distinct reddish-brown hue and robust texture, this rice variety holds a special place in South Indian cuisine. Cooking it in an Instant Pot not only saves time but also locks in its unique taste and nutrients, making it a perfect addition to your meal repertoire.

Whether you’re pairing it with a spicy curry or enjoying it with a simple dal, Kerala Matta Rice offers a delightful change from your usual white or basmati rice. With this easy Instant Pot method, you’ll master the art of cooking this traditional grain effortlessly, bringing a touch of Kerala’s heritage to your kitchen.


To prepare Kerala Matta Rice in an Instant Pot, gather the following ingredients:

Main Ingredients

  • Kerala Matta Rice – 1 cup (rinsed and drained)
  • Water – 2 ½ cups
  • Salt – 1 teaspoon (optional)

Additional Items

  • Ghee or Oil – 1 tablespoon (for enhanced flavor, optional)
  • Bay Leaf – 1 (optional, for added aroma)
  • Instant Pot – for cooking
  • Measuring Cups and Spoons – to ensure accurate measurements
  • Rinse Bowl – to rinse the rice

The ingredients listed above ensure you have everything you need to create a delicious and perfectly cooked batch of Kerala Matta Rice using your Instant Pot.

Equipment Needed

To prepare Kerala Matta Rice in an Instant Pot, you will need a few essential pieces of kitchen equipment to ensure everything goes smoothly.

Instant Pot Specifics

  • Instant Pot: A 6-quart Instant Pot is perfect for this recipe.
  • Trivet: Use a trivet to prevent the rice from sticking to the bottom.
  • Rice Measuring Cup: The rice measuring cup (usually included with your Instant Pot) is handy for precise measurements.
  • Stainless Steel Inner Pot: Ensure your Instant Pot has a stainless steel inner pot for even cooking.
  • Sealing Ring: Make sure the sealing ring is properly placed for pressure cooking.

Other Equipment

  • Fine Mesh Sieve: For rinsing the rice thoroughly before cooking.
  • Wooden Spoon or Spatula: To fluff and serve the rice without scratching the inner pot.
  • Medium Bowl: For soaking the rice prior to cooking.
  • Kitchen Timer: Extra precision with timing can be useful although the Instant Pot has a built-in timer.
  • Measuring Spoons: For accurate seasoning and flavor additions.

Preparation Steps

Follow these clear and concise steps to perfectly prepare your Kerala Matta Rice in the Instant Pot. Each step ensures the rice retains its unique flavor and texture.

Washing and Soaking the Rice

  1. Measure the Rice: Start with 1 cup of Kerala Matta Rice.
  2. Rinse the Rice: Place the rice in a fine mesh sieve. Rinse under cold water until the water runs clear. This removes excess starch and prevents stickiness.
  3. Soak the Rice: Transfer the rinsed rice to a medium bowl. Add 2 cups of water. Soak for at least 30 minutes. This helps the rice cook evenly.

Cooking the Rice in the Instant Pot

  1. Prepare the Instant Pot: Insert the stainless steel inner pot into the Instant Pot base.
  2. Add Water: Drain the soaked rice and place it in the inner pot. Add 2.5 cups of water to the pot.
  3. Season the Water: Add 1/2 teaspoon of salt to enhance the rice’s flavor.
  4. Secure the Lid: Place the trivet in the pot if using a pot-in-pot method. Otherwise, simply secure the Instant Pot lid and turn the vent to the sealing position.
  5. Select the Cooking Program: Set the Instant Pot to ‘Manual’ or ‘Pressure Cook’ mode. Adjust the timer to 22 minutes on high pressure.
  6. Natural Release: Once the cooking cycle completes, allow the pressure to release naturally for 10 minutes. Carefully turn the venting knob to release any remaining pressure.
  7. Fluff and Serve: Open the lid and use a wooden spoon or spatula to gently fluff the rice before serving. Enjoy your perfectly cooked Kerala Matta Rice!

With these steps, you’re set to enjoy a delicious and nutritious bowl of Kerala Matta Rice, cooked effortlessly in your Instant Pot.

Cooking Process

Cooking Kerala Matta Rice in an Instant Pot simplifies the process while ensuring perfect texture and flavor every time.

Cooking Settings and Timing

  1. Add Rice and Water: Pour the soaked and drained Kerala Matta Rice into the Instant Pot. Add 1.5 cups of water for every 1 cup of rice.
  2. Set the Pressure Cooker: Secure the lid and ensure the pressure valve is set to sealing. Select the ‘Manual’ or ‘Pressure Cook’ setting, and set the cooking time to 15 minutes on high pressure.
  3. Start the Cooking Process: Press the ‘Start’ button to begin cooking. The Instant Pot will take a few minutes to build up pressure before the timer starts.

Natural Pressure Release

  1. Allow Natural Pressure Release: Once the cooking time is complete, let the Instant Pot sit undisturbed. Allow the pressure to release naturally for at least 15 minutes. This helps the rice to finish cooking and absorb any remaining moisture.
  2. Release Remaining Pressure: After 15 minutes, carefully turn the pressure valve to the venting position to release any remaining pressure.
  3. Open and Fluff Rice: Open the lid. Use a fork to fluff the cooked Kerala Matta Rice gently, ensuring that grains are separated and evenly cooked.

Follow these steps, and you’ll achieve perfectly cooked Kerala Matta Rice with minimal effort.

Serving Suggestions

Perfectly cooked Kerala Matta Rice pairs wonderfully with a variety of dishes, offering you rich and hearty flavors. Here are some ideas to consider when serving this delicious rice variety.


  • Curries: Kerala Matta Rice serves as a perfect base for spicy and savory South Indian curries. Pair it with sambar, a tangy tamarind-based stew, for an authentic experience. Coconut-based curries, like fish curry or vegetable stew, also complement the nutty flavor of the rice.
  • Sautéed Vegetables: Lightly seasoned sautéed vegetables like beans, carrots, and spinach provide a colorful and nutritious addition. The slight chewiness of the rice enhances the texture contrast.
  • Pappadam: Crisp, wafer-like pappadams add a delightful crunch when served alongside Kerala Matta Rice. Break them into pieces and sprinkle over the rice for added texture.
  • Yogurt: A dollop of plain yogurt can offer a refreshing counterbalance to spicier dishes. Try raita, a cucumber and mint yogurt salad, for added flavor and cooling qualities.
  • Tempering Spices: Boost the aromatics by tempering mustard seeds, curry leaves, and dried red chilies in ghee or coconut oil. Pour this mix over the rice for an extra burst of flavor.
  • Coconut: Sprinkling freshly grated coconut over your cooked rice adds a sweet, rich element. This works exceptionally well with coconut-based curries.
  • Lemon and Cilantro: A squeeze of fresh lemon juice and a sprinkle of chopped cilantro can brighten the dish, enhancing the earthy tones of the rice.
  • Fried Onions: Garnishing with crispy fried onions provides a savory and slightly sweet note, elevating the overall flavor.

Feel free to get creative with these suggestions and enjoy the versatile nature of Kerala Matta Rice with your favorite dishes.

Make-Ahead Tips

When preparing Kerala Matta Rice in your Instant Pot, you can save time and effort by following a few make-ahead tips. These strategies will help you streamline the process, ensuring you always have delicious, fluffy rice on hand.

Batch Cook and Store

  1. Cook in Large Quantities
    Prepare a large batch of Kerala Matta Rice in your Instant Pot. Use 2 cups of rice with 3.5 cups of water for optimal results.
  2. Cooling and Storing
    Once cooked, let the rice cool completely. Divide it into portions and store them in airtight containers. Refrigerate for up to four days or freeze for up to three months.

Reheating Tips

  1. Microwave Method
    To reheat refrigerated rice, sprinkle a few drops of water over it and microwave on high for 2-3 minutes until hot.
  2. Stovetop Method
    Warm the rice on low heat in a saucepan with 1-2 tablespoons of water, stirring gently until it’s hot.


  1. Add Fresh Herbs
    Prior to serving, toss in freshly chopped cilantro or curry leaves for an aromatic twist.
  2. Incorporate Spices
    Enhance the rice’s flavor by stirring in freshly ground black pepper, a pinch of garam masala, or a hint of cumin seeds while reheating.

Preparing your Kerala Matta Rice ahead of time and storing it properly, you’ll always be ready to create quick and easy South Indian dishes.


Cooking Kerala Matta Rice in an Instant Pot offers a convenient way to enjoy this nutritious and flavorful staple. By following the steps outlined, you can effortlessly prepare a dish that pairs well with a variety of South Indian meals. Don’t hesitate to experiment with spices and herbs to elevate the taste further. Whether you’re batch cooking or simply making a quick meal, Kerala Matta Rice in an Instant Pot is a versatile option that fits seamlessly into your culinary repertoire. Enjoy the rich flavors and health benefits of this traditional rice, now made easier with modern cooking technology.

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