Instant pot brown rice

Instant Pot Brown Rice Recipe

By Swasthi on October 25, 2022, Comments, Jump to Recipe

Instant Pot Brown Rice Recipe – A detailed step by step post on how to cook brown rice perfectly in your instant pot every time. Rice is one of the most consumed grain across the globe. With the growing awareness towards health & fitness a larger population has moved from consuming white rice to brown rice. At home we eat a variety of whole grains like brown rice, millets, quinoa, oats & bulgur.

Instant pot brown rice

Brown rice is one of the staples and most often we prefer eating it for our dinner. It goes so well to serve with dal, curry or to make fried rice, rice salad or even tempered variety rice. Similar to white rice even brown rice can be cooked in few different ways.

For several years I had made it on the stove top, cooking it in surplus water and draining off the excess once it is done to our liking. This method needs some patience & time. Most times I would do this while I prepare the sides.

Later I began to cook brown rice in traditional pressure cooker with inconsistent results. Sometimes it would turn too soft & at times hard due to varying intensity of flame, kind of rice, size of the cooker etc.

But with this instant pot brown rice recipe the results are consistent and you will love how fluffy & perfect the rice turns out each time.

I also cook quinoa in instant pot. I have been using my instant pot to make most of my dishes. Here are some you may like to check
Pulao recipe
Khichdi recipe
Tomato rice
Carrot halwa
Kheer recipe

More similar recipes
Instant pot dal & rice
Instant pot potato curry
Lemon rice

2 Ways to make Instant Pot Brown Rice

I make instant pot brown rice in 2 ways. In this post I am sharing both the methods.

  1. Pot-in-pot method.
  2. Cooking in the inner pot of the IP.

1. Pot-in-pot method : Often I prefer to cook foods following the pot-in-pot method. The ability to pressure cook multiple foods at one time is what I love the most in this method.

If you are a small family and love to cook 2 to 3 kinds of foods in one go then this method is great for you. I usually go with this when I have to cook something else along with my brown rice.

The pot-in-pot method yields more softer rice (not mushy) than the other method. We prefer this to go with the sambar, rasam or any dal.

Make Brown Rice (Pot-In-Pot Method)

  1. Rinse 1 cup brown rice thrice & drain the water completely. You can also soak it up to 30 mins for softer rice.
  2. Add it to a pot along with 1¼ cups water and 1 tsp oil (optional).
  3. Pour 1 cup water in the inner pot of instant pot.
  4. Place the rice bowl and cover it.
  5. Secure the lid and set the steam release handle to sealing position.
  6. Pressure cook for 20 mins & allow the pressure to release naturally.
  7. When the pin drops, open and fluff up the brown rice with a fork.

Following this method I cook up to 2 cups of brown rice along with any one of these – ¾ cup dal, 1 cup soaked chana, 1 cup soaked rajma or up to 4 chilled eggs at one time in my 6 Qt IP.

Some times I also cook whole potatoes, yam, beetroot or sweet potatoes along with the brown rice.

This method is great as you don’t need to clean the large pot of the IP. You will be left with just the inner pots for a clean up.

2. Cooking in the inner pot : I cook brown rice directly in the inner pot when I have to make over 4 servings or over 2 cups. Usually rice tends to get mushier when made in large quantity following the pot-in-pot method.

Cooking it directly in a larger pot prevents the mushy texture. Each grain gets enough space to expand and cook well in a larger pot.

Adding a small amount of oil or ghee to the pot prevents the grains from turning sticky & mushy. So absolutely no mushy brown rice even when you cook a lot of it!

Sometimes I saute the brown rice in little oil or ghee for 2 mins before pressure cooking. I always feel this sauteing also brings out the nutty flavor of brown rice.

Most times I prefer not to flavor my brown rice as we mostly serve it with curry. However you can also flavor it with some garlic, cumin, whole spices, lemon zest or herbs.

All you need to do is just saute your flavoring ingredient before adding the rice to the pot.

How to Cook Brown Rice in Instant Pot (Stepwise Photos)

In the step by step photos, I had made rice by sauteing it first. This method is good to follow if you are making brown rice for fried rice or a rice salad.

1. Heat the instant pot by pressing saute button. When it displays hot, pour oil or ghee in the inner pot.

oil to make instant pot brown rice

2. Add the rinsed & drained brown rice. Saute for 2 to 3 mins. If you like saute some spices or garlic prior to adding the rice. Cumin, star anise, mace, cinnamon, cloves & cardamoms go well.

frying brown rice in instant pot

3. Pour water and add salt if you like. I do not add salt. You can also use broth or stock instead of water. Give a good mix.

water and salt to make brown rice in instant pot

4. Secure the lid of the Instant pot. Set the steam release handle to sealing position.

instant pot sealing

5. Pressure cook on high pressure and set the timer to 23 mins.

6. When the pressure releases naturally open the lid. If you see a layer of rice being hard, then quickly fluff up with a fork and cover the lid back. Rest for 2 to 3 mins.

cooked brown rice in instant pot

7. You will get fluffy, flavorful & perfect instant pot brown rice.

fluffy brown rice cooked in instant pot

Serve brown rice with any curry or dal. You can also use this for fried rice or any tempered rice.

instant pot brown rice

Tips to Healthy Brown Rice

Both the above methods are a quick fix to making brown rice instantly. But if you eat brown rice regularly then the following tips may help you.

  1. Brown rice has the highest levels of arsenic when compared to other grains. If you prefer the instant methods, then buy brown rice from brands that test arsenic levels before marketing.
  2. Soaking brown rice overnight & discarding the water before cooking helps to reduce arsenic levels up to 80%. Every cup of soaked brown rice needs only 1 cup water to cook.
  3. Alternately cooking rice in 6 parts of water and then draining the water completely reduces arsenic in brown rice to a large extent.
Instant pot brown rice recipe

Related Recipes

Recipe Card

instant pot brown rice

Instant Pot Brown Rice Recipe

Recipe to make fluffy, non sticky & perfect brown rice in the Instant pot. 
Pin Recipe Print Recipe

For best results follow the step-by-step photos above the recipe card

Prep Time1 minute
Cook Time34 minutes
Total Time35 minutes

Ingredients (US cup = 240ml )

  • 2 cup brown rice or 390 grams
  • cup water or broth or stock
  • ¾ tablespoon oil or ghee
  • teaspoon salt optional (skip if using broth or stock)


How to Make Brown Rice in Instant Pot

  • Rinse the brown rice well at least thrice in lot of water. Drain the water completely.
  • Add it to the inner pot of the instant pot. Also add oil & salt if using.
  • Pour water or broth. Mix well & Cover the lid of the Instant pot.
  • Press the pressure cook button & set the timer for 23 minutes. Set the steam release handle to sealing position.
  • When done allow the pressure to release naturally. This takes about 12 to 15 mins. 
  • When the pin drops, open the lid and fluff up the brown rice with a fork.
  • Serve with dal, curry or use it to make fried rice or tempered rice.


If you see the top layer of the brown rice slightly hard. Then fluff up and cover it back. Rest for 2 to 3 mins.
You can halve the recipe & reduce the cook time to 21 minutes. To double, reduce the water by ¼ cup.

Alternative quantities provided in the recipe card are for 1x only, original recipe.

For best results follow my detailed step-by-step photo instructions and tips above the recipe card.

NUTRITION INFO (estimation only)

Nutrition Facts
Instant Pot Brown Rice Recipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories 367 Calories from Fat 45
% Daily Value*
Fat 5g8%
Sodium 84mg4%
Potassium 254mg7%
Carbohydrates 72g24%
Fiber 3g13%
Protein 7g14%
Calcium 36mg4%
Iron 1.7mg9%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Tried this recipe?Mention @SwasthisRecipes or tag #swasthisrecipes!

© Swasthi’s Recipes

Instant Pot Brown Rice Recipe

About Swasthi

I’m Swasthi Shreekanth, the recipe developer, food photographer & food writer behind Swasthi’s Recipes. My aim is to help you cook great Indian food with my time-tested recipes. After 2 decades of experience in practical Indian cooking I started this blog to help people cook better & more often at home. Whether you are a novice or an experienced cook I am sure Swasthi’s Recipes will assist you to enhance your cooking skills.

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5 stars
Hi Swasthi, you have a great collection of recipes. Regarding the pot-in-pot method, what kind of pot have you used in the instant pot? How big is it? Can you use any kind of pot? I have a Zojirushi NS-LGC05 rice cooker, can I use this pot inside the instant pot?

5 stars
Hi Swasthi, I have been thinking of buying the Instant pot. Do you think it’s worth getting it (for both Indian and western cooking)? Also, just a suggestion as an avid follower of your blog – it would be great if you can have a separate category of appliances and cookware you use. Novice cooks like me will really appreciate it 🙂

Thanks a lot, will definitely look into it now. And yes I understand you can’t do product reviews but you can add a disclaimer at the start if you want. But either way thanks for the recommendation 🙂

5 stars
I have made brown rice by soaking for 7 hours.Turned out fantastic. Would love to try frying the rice. If I want to add chicken when should I be adding it. Does the recipe require any modifications?

Hi Swasti
Thanks for the recipe. I have few questions.
1. What type of brown rice is used? Is it the one sold in a supermarket in Singapore that comes from SEA or Kerala type Puzhungalari. Have you tried with this Kerala rice?
2. Where did you buy this appliance, have not seen in shops in Singapore. Is it the normal rice cooker?