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Instant Pot Brown Rice is fast, easy, healthy, and foolproof! Ensure you’re using long grain brown rice in this recipe for best results.
CAN INSTANT POT COOK BROWN RICE?
I love the Instant Pot because it’s a multifunctional product that can replace some of your other kitchen appliances. For example, the Instant Pot can function as a slow cooker, steamer, saute pan, yogurt maker, and rice cooker! Imagine the space you could save in your kitchen.
One of the most popular functions in pressure cooking is making rice. Instant Pot rice is an absolute staple!
However, it takes some time to figure out the right water-rice ratio and cook times. Each variety of rice cooks a little differently! I made it easy for you with this 7 Kinds of Instant Pot Rice list.
In this post, I share everything you need to know about making perfect Instant Pot brown rice.
WHICH POT SHOULD I USE TO MAKE RICE?
Instant Pot or Rice Cooker?
Sometimes people ask me, “Which is better, the Instant Pot or a rice cooker to make rice?”
My response is generally, “It depends.”
I find that anything long grain (basmati, white rice, Jasmine rice, or brown rice) will cook beautifully in the Instant Pot.
Medium grain rice is thicker and generally takes more water and a lot longer to cook. I have had inconsistent results making medium grain brown rice in my Instant Pot, so I prefer to use my rice cooker.
Some short or medium grain rice such as arborio rice can be made in the Instant Pot, but you should find specific recipes and not rely on the ratios for long grain rice.
WHICH INSTANT POT SHOULD I USE TO MAKE RICE?
Since I’m usually making the main dish in the larger Instant Pot, I like making the sides in the 3 quart.
This recipe is compatible in a 6 or 3 quart Instant Pot. To make brown rice in an 8 quart Instant Pot, use the same ratio, but start with 2 cups of rice and 3 cups water or liquid.
If I make Japanese sticky rice which is short grain white rice, I always use my Japanese rice cooker.
IS BROWN RICE HEALTHIER THAN WHITE RICE?
Before I teach you how to cook brown rice in an electric pressure cooker, let me break down what’s special about brown rice and how it compares to other rice varieties.
Did you know white rice begins as brown rice?! Brown rice is milled to remove the husk, bran, and germ to create white rice. This process makes white rice more shelf stable, but less nutritional.
Brown rice contains the whole rice grain, resulting in more fiber, vitamins, and minerals. On the other hand, white rice is typically easier to digest because it is low in fiber. Because of this, it’s often characterized as the “healthy” kind of rice.
Though “healthier” by some classifications, it still does contain carbohydrates and in excess, can be unhealthy.
Brown rice is a nutritious option to make ahead for meal prep! It stores well in the fridge and freezer. Add it to grain bowls, salads, or serve as an easy and healthy side.
HOW TO COOK BROWN RICE IN INSTANT POT
Just like cooking long grain white rice in the Instant Pot, the process is the same for making brown rice in an Instant Pot.
All you need for Instant Pot brown rice is long grain brown rice, water, and a dash of salt (which is optional).
How to Make Brown Rice in Instant Pot:
- To make Instant Pot brown rice, add the ingredients to your pressure cooker. Make sure you’re using long grain brown rice for this recipe!
I like using a 1:1.5 ratio of rice to water. If you’re using one cup of rice, add 1 1/2 cups of water.
If your rice tends to stick to the liner, prevent that by spraying some cooking spray in the liner before adding the water and then the rice. Make sure you do not stir the rice when you do this!
- After you add the ingredients to the Instant Pot, lock the lid, turn the knob to sealing, and then press the manual or pressure cook button. Adjust the time to 15 minutes.
Note: I use the “Manual” or “Pressure Cook” button, NOT the “Rice” mode button. See below.
- Allow a 10 minute natural pressure release, after the 15 minute pressure cook. The display will start counting up to 10.
When the display reads L0:10, release the rest of the steam by turning the knob from sealing to venting.
- Enjoy your tender, fluffy, and nutritious brown rice! Serve it with one of my popular chicken recipes.
Tip: Use a wet rice paddle to fluff your rice before serving! This helps the rice not stick to the serving paddle.
MANUAL vs. RICE BUTTON ON INSTANT POT
As noted above, I prefer to manually set the time on the Instant Pot when cooking rice.
The “Rice” setting on the Instant Pot is a preset cycle that was designed specifically to cook long grain white rice. It defaults to 12 minutes on low pressure.
Pressing the “Rice” button on your Instant Pot when cooking long grain brown rice will result in undercooked rice.
When using the rice function for any type of rice, always ensure to allow a 10-15 minute natural pressure release after the pressure cook time.
Instant Pot Brown Rice 2 cups
If you’d like to make 2 cups of brown rice in your Instant Pot, add two cups of brown rice and 3 cups of water to your Instant Pot. Cook for 15 minutes on high pressure with a 10 minute natural pressure release.
This is the minimum amount of rice to use in an 8 quart Instant Pot or electric pressure cooker.
how long to cook brown rice in instant pot
After testing it multiple times, I’ve found the perfect time for cooking Instant Pot brown rice is 15 minutes on high pressure with a 10 minute natural pressure release.
HIGH ALTITUDE INSTANT POT BROWN RICE
I cook in a dry, high altitude location in Utah. Many factors can affect cook time:
- Freshness of ingredients
- Elevation and humidity
- Size of ingredients
- Temperature and location
I share my tried, tested, and true cook time. However, it might require some experimenting to master your perfect Instant Pot brown rice cook time. But once you do, you can make it just how you like every time! My advice is to start with the time I recommend and test/adjust it a few times to find your favorite cook time.
If after using this method, your rice is slightly undercooked or dry, add ¼ to ½ cup additional liquid or water and cook for an additional 2-5 minutes.
I also recommend you check your Instant Pot lid to ensure there are no leaks or breaks in the seal. If you forgot to turn the sealing knob to the sealing position, there may have been too much evaporation to have a successful pressure cook. Add a little additional water, then resume pressure cooking.
Should your brown rice be too soft, reduce your liquid in the next batch by 1/4 cup.
If you live in a different location, please comment with your Instant Pot brown rice cook time to help other readers!
SHOULD YOU RINSE RICE?
It depends. The rice I buy (enriched long grain brown rice) actually specifies on the package not to rinse the rice. This washes away nutrients that the rice was enriched with.
If the packaging on your rice specifies to wash or rinse the rice before cooking, you’ll want to do that. Whether or not to rinse rice is a point of debate amongst most cooks, but you can do whatever you like.
However, I will say that I personally almost always rinse my rice. Sometimes there are little rocks or dirt in the rice that I prefer not to cook with. I’ve been cooking and eating rice since I was little, and I swear by this rice rinsing basket made specifically for rinsing rice. I’ve converted many people to using this incredibly affordable and helpful tool.
HOW MANY CUPS OF RICE CAN YOU COOK IN AN INSTANT POT?
In a 6 quart Instant Pot, I recommend a maximum of 5 cups of uncooked rice. For an 8 quart, I recommend a maximum of 6.5 cups.
SHOULD I ADD OIL TO RICE?
There’s no need to add oil to your rice unless you like the flavor. Doing so can affect the texture and flavor of the cooked rice.
I find that the flavor doesn’t change at all, whether or not I add oil! I just save the calories and skip it.
If I want to make a brown rice pilaf with extra flavor, then I will add oil. First, toast the rice on saute mode with olive oil or butter, then add liquid.
CAN I COOK INSTANT POT BROWN RICE WITH BROTH INSTEAD OF WATER?
Absolutely. Any rice can be made with almost any liquid. Brown rice will cook beautifully with chicken, beef, seafood, pork, or vegetable broth. It’ll definitely add a lot of flavor and aroma to the finished rice.
I recommend using a low sodium broth so you can control the sodium content of your brown rice. Do not use 100% dairy while cooking rice. For example, you would not pressure cook rice with just milk.
Rice could be made with water and a splash or portion of cream or milk, but too much dairy can burn and curdle the milk.
Other popular liquids to cook rice in are coconut milk, broth with citrus juice and herbs/spices, water or broth with a splash of Italian salad dressing, teriyaki sauce, or tomato sauce.
other Instant Pot rice recipes
- Perfect Instant Pot Basmati Rice
- Instant Pot Brown Rice
- Instant Pot Long Grain White Rice
- Cilantro Lime Rice (Instant Pot or Rice Maker)
- Instant Pot Cajun Sausage and Rice
- Easy Instant Pot Mango Sticky Rice
- Instant Pot Vanilla Bean Rice Pudding
- Dairy Free Coconut Rice Pudding (Instant Pot)
- Instant Pot Quinoa
SHOULD I ADD SALT TO RICE?
There’s no need to add salt to rice, but it will always add a little flavor. I now only use Redmond Real Salt– I’ve become a total salt snob! It is the most pure, best-tasting, natural salt I have ever tasted.
You wouldn’t ever think you could tell the difference, but I love it! I find a big difference in my cooking now that I only use Redmond Salt.
You can get a 15% discount on Redmond Real Salt using my code IPCOOKING.
Rice Sticking in Instant Pot
If your rice is sticking to the Instant Pot, check that you’re not doing the following:
- Leaving the cooked rice in the rice cooker too long after it is done pressure cooking. Leaving it on “keep warm” mode for too long after cooking will dry out the rice quickly, and it’ll stick to the bottom of the pot.
- Not using enough water. If your water ratio is off, the rice will absorb the water too quickly, burn, and stick to the bottom of the pot.
- Your lid has a leak or break. If the sealing ring is not properly placed or has a rip/tear/break, it will not seal and pressure cook anything inside the Instant Pot. Ensure there are no leaks, which can lead to evaporation, water loss, and burning or sticking.
- Not turning the sealing knob to the sealing position. If the sealing knob is left in the venting position for too long, the liquid/steam will evaporate out of the pot. This will cause sticking and burning.
HOW TO STORE AND REHEAT RICE
Store Instant Pot brown rice in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week, or the freezer for up to three months.
This is the perfect brown rice recipe to make ahead and use throughout the week or month!
To reheat, microwave rice in a microwave-safe container covered with a damp paper towel (this trick helps to retain moisture!).
Rice will naturally always dry out in the refrigerator or the freezer, so you will not get the exact same texture and fluffiness with reheated brown rice as fresh rice.
Adding liquid or or moisture back into the rice somehow is the best way to duplicate fresh rice.
What to serve with Brown Rice
Now that you know how to cook brown rice in an Instant Pot, you can serve it with all sorts of delicious main courses like Instant Pot Kalua Pork, 4 Ingredient Instant Pot Country Style Ribs, Air Fryer Steak, or Instant Pot Chicken Legs from Fresh or Frozen.
Instant Pot Long Grain Brown Rice
- 1 cup long grain brown rice*
- 1 1/2 cup water
- 1/4 teaspoon salt optional
- Add rice, water, and salt to the Instant Pot.
- Lock the lid, turn the knob to SEALING, and cook on Manual High pressure for 15 minutes. Your Instant Pot may not have a "Manual" button; it will say "Pressure cook".
- Allow a 10 minute natural pressure release after the 15 minute pressure cook. The display will start counting up to 10.
- When the display says L0:10, release the rest of the steam by turning the knob from sealing to venting.
- Using a wet rice paddle, fluff the rice and enjoy!
PRODUCTS WE LOVE
- Ensure you are using long grain brown rice, not medium or short grain.
- Some readers have had their rice come out too wet after pressure cooking. With so much variability in different brands of long grain brown rice, I recommend starting with the 1:1.5 ratio of rice to water, but if it comes out too wet, reduce the water to 1:1.25 like in my Instant Pot long grain white rice recipe. There are more troubleshooting tips in the post. If the rice is too wet, you may also remove the lid from the Instant Pot, turn on the Keep Warm or low saute button, and let it “dry” out for a couple minutes, fluffing the rice intermittently to keep it from sticking.
- If your rice has a tendency to stick to the pot, spray the inner pot with cooking spray before adding the ingredients.
- Long grain brown rice can be rinsed or not rinsed before cooking. It does not affect the water ratio or the cook time.
- You may use broth in place of water for this recipe, such as chicken broth, vegetable broth, beef broth, seafood broth, etc.
- If you would like to add spices, herbs, onions, garlic, or lemons, you may add them directly to the rice.
- In a 6 quart Instant Pot, I recommend a maximum of 5 cups of uncooked rice. For an 8 quart, I recommend a maximum of 6.5 cups.
- If cooking in an 8 quart Instant Pot, add no less than 2 cups of rice and 3 cups of water.