If you're looking for a quick and easy way to cook rice, look no further than this foolproof recipe for Instant Pot white rice! With very little hands on time needed, this versatile side dish can be made in less than 20 minutes (including prep time and pressure release). It's the perfect addition to your meal, and great for meal prep.
I started off using an Instant Pot to prepare meals and sides about 3 years ago, shortly after my son was born. He was colicky and spent his first 3 months crying and not sleeping, so I had to find another way to make meals that involved little hands on time, and could be made super easily. The Instant Pot came to my rescue!
One of the very first things I made in my Instant Pot was regular ol' white rice. I wanted to start with something simple and versatile and it did not disappoint. Over the past few years, I've tweaked it to include a bit of oil to give a nice, soft result. This is my favorite way to make rice, and is a perfect side dish to a variety of recipes. It goes particularly well with my recipe for Air Fryer Sausage and Peppers (using another time saving appliance!), but you can serve rice with pretty much any meal! It's even great for meal prep. I also have an Instant Pot recipe for wild rice blend if you prefer!
Why You'll Love This Recipe:
- It's an easy and hands free way to make white rice!
- Another great way to use your Instant Pot to create easy meals and sides. No rice cooker needed!
- Takes just 20 minutes including the prep time and pressure release.
- The perfect versatile Instant Pot side dish, and naturally gluten free.
- Rice: Select your favorite brand of long grain white rice. I like
- Oil: I opted for olive oil, but often use avocado oil and butter as well. Use whatever oil or fat you like the taste of best. Butter makes for a flavorful rice, but does tend to be a bit more chewy and gummy.
- Salt: This imparts a little bit of saltiness on the rice (not much!), making it good to eat on its own or as part of a meal.
- Water: You will need enough cool water to make a 1:1 ratio with your rice. If you're using 1 cup of rice, you'll need 1 cup of water.
My Favorite Instant Pot Models:
- Instant Pot Duo 6 qt - This is a standard model that can be used to cook a variety of dishes, and is perfect for rice, veggies, and most main dishes.
- Instant Pot Duo 8 qt - This is the one I keep on my countertop! It's great for making large batches of bone broth, soup, and large roasts.
How to Make White Rice in an Instant Pot
Add your white rice to the insert of your Instant Pot. If you are using an 8 quart sized pot, you will need to cook a minimum of 1 ½ cups of rice (and 1 ½ cups of cool water) in order for the pot to reach pressure properly.
Add in your cool water at a 1:1 ratio (1 cup of water for every 1 cup of rice).
Add in your salt, and then add in your oil.
Stir everything together to make sure the oil and salt is well distributed, and the rice is submerged under the water.
Set to manual pressure and set the valve to "sealing". Cook for 4 minutes.
Do a natural pressure release for 10 minutes, and then do a quick pressure release by carefully flipping the valve to "venting".
Once the pressure has released, you will see the pin drop, indicating it is safe to open your Instant Pot. Open the lid away from your face.
Fluff the cooked rice with a fork and serve immediately, or replace the lid and serve within the next 20-30 minutes.
Doing a Natural Pressure Release
A natural pressure release is when you allow the Instant Pot to finish its cooking time, and naturally release the pressure without touching the valve.
If you have the Instant Pot set to switch over to warm after cooking (this is the default setting), you will see a number on the digital display that reads something like this: L0:08. This is a timer that indicates the cooking time is through and will begin counting up. This is the time elapsed in your natural pressure release.
Quick Pressure Release
Once the display reads 10 minutes (L0:10), your natural pressure release time for rice is finished. You can now either let it naturally release the rest of the way, or you can switch the valve (carefully) to "venting". This will emit a stream of steam that releases the remaining pressure from the pot. Once the pressure is completely released, you will see the pin drop on your Instant Pot lid. Once it does, it's safe to open the lid away from your face.
Rice to Water Ratio
The rice to water ratio for white rice, brown rice, jasmine rice, and basmati rice is all the same: a one-to-one ratio (1:1). You can make multiple batches of rice, as long as you keep this scale in mind. Be sure to also increase the salt and oil in the recipe as well. Note that jasmine, basmati, and brown rice all have longer cook times than standard white rice, so you will have to adjust accordingly.
Rice and Water Measurements
- 1 cup of rice : 1 cup of water
- 1 ½ cups of rice : 1 ½ cups of water
- 2 cups of rice : 2 cups of water
- 3 cups of rice : 3 cups of water
- 4 cups of rice : 4 cups of water
You can scale based on this ratio, but be sure not to pass your Instant Pot's fill line when preparing your rice and water. Larger models (like the 8 quart) need a minimum of 1 ½ cups of liquid to bring it to pressure, so don't use a smaller batch than that.
Note that really large batches of rice may require an additional minute of cooking time, and a longer natural pressure release to avoid becoming chewy.
Frequently Asked Questions
Add 1 cup of rice and 1 cup of water to the insert of a 6qt Instant Pot. Add oil and salt to your taste. Seal and cook on high pressure for 4 minutes. When the time is up, do a natural pressure release of 10 minutes, and then a quick pressure release. Open the lid, and fluff the rice with a fork.
The water to rice ratio for most types of rice (white, brown, basmati, jasmine) is 1:1. That means for every 1 cup of rice, you will need to add 1 cup of cool water to the Instant Pot.
You can either leave the Instant Pot on (in warming mode) or turn it off for the natural pressure release. Leaving the Instant Pot on warming during this time will provide you with a timer, which displays the time that has elapsed since the cook time ended. If you turn off your Instant Pot you will have to set your own timer to know when the natural pressure release time is up.
How long it takes for the Instant Pot to naturally release its pressure depends greatly on what was cooked in the pot, how much room remains in the pot, and how long the initial cook time was. Every recipe will take a different amount of time to naturally release its pressure. Rice typically takes just 12-15 minutes, while a pot of stew may take a very long time.
More Easy Instant Pot Recipes
- Instant Pot Frozen Broccoli
- Instant Pot Creamy Chicken Tortilla Soup
- 5 Ingredient Instant Pot Mac and Cheese
- Instant Pot Hamburger Helper
- Instant Pot Bacon
- Instant Pot Butter Chicken - Two Sleevers
- 2 cups long grain white rice
- 2 cups cool water
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons olive or avocado oil
- Add the rice to the insert of your Instant Pot. Pour in the water.
- Add in the salt and oil, and stir well until combined and the rice is submerged below the water line.
- Place the lid on the Instant Pot and set the valve to "sealing".
- Cook on manual pressure for 4 minutes.
- Once the cook time is up, the cooker will beep to indicate it has finished the cook time. If you have left the warmer mode enabled, you will see a timer that counts up on the digital display.
- Allow the pot to do a 10 minute natural pressure release (the timer should display L0:10 when finished).
- After the 10 minutes are up, flip the valve to "venting" carefully and allow the cooker to vent the steam until all pressure has been released. The pin will drop on your Instant Pot when it is safe to open the lid.
- Open the lid away from your face, and place on the counter next to you.
- Fluff the cooked rice with a fork and serve immediately. You can also set the pot to warm, replace the lid, and serve within the next 20-30 minutes for best results.
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