Instant Pot Brown Rice is the perfect addition to so many meals! With the help of the pressure cooker, this dish is ready in half the time of the traditional stovetop method. Healthy, hearty whole grains just got soooo convenient!
We're going back to the basics! While I know many of you are waaaayyy past the basic pressure cooking recipes, I feel like my blog wouldn't be complete unless I gave attention to these, oh so important basics, that make frequent visits in my home.
If you are just getting started with the Instant Pot, I highly recommend you check out our Instant Pot Basics recipes here.
The basics are what made me fall in love with my pressure cooker in the first place, I'm sure many of you can completely relate to that! Pasta, Beans, Squash, Potatoes, etc, etc all made easier and more convenient in the Instant Pot.
In fact, brown rice was the first thing I remember cooking in the pressure cooker that made me think,
“Whoa, what is this miraculous, cylinder-shaped appliance and why did I grow up thinking it only made mashed potatoes and was likely to explode at any moment…”
If you think you don't like brown rice, I'm gonna predict that once you've made it in the pressure cooker, you will be 100% sold!
WHY YOU WILL LOVE BROWN RICE COOKED IN THE INSTANT POT
- It has a perfectly soft and tender chew that is very reminiscent of white rice.
- The pressure cooker method is HANDS OFF! You don't have to stir, watch the pot, nothin'!
- The whole grain taste is milder when pressure cooked. No longer will your dish be overpowered by a strong grain taste.
- You'll feel like a healthy super mama when your kids don't have a single beef with brown instead of white rice. BIG WIN!!!
HOW TO MAKE PRESSURE COOKER BROWN RICE
- Everything in the pot!
- Cook at high pressure for 24 minutes
- Fluff with a fork and serve!
It's that easy!!!
SEE RECIPE CARD BELOW FOR DETAILED COOKING INSTRUCTIONS
TIPS FOR MAKING PERFECT BROWN RICE IN THE INSTANT POT
- Cook rice in broth instead of water. It adds so much extra flavor!
- Use a natural pressure release. In a pinch, you can release the pressure 10 minutes after the cooking time is complete, but the grain is much softer if given that extra time to sit.
- Unrinsed rice will be a bit stickier once cooked. If you want the rice more separated, rinse the rice well before you cook it to help remove the excess starch. For more details about rinsing rice, visit this Instant Pot White Rice recipe.
TYPES OF BROWN RICE
There are basically 4 varieties of brown rice. They all cook up amazingly well in the pressure cooker and I use the same cook time and water to rice ratios for all of them.
- Basmati: My favorite “everyday” brown rice. The grains are separate after cooked and they have a mild nutty taste.
- Short Grain: This is my go-to when I want a more sticky and very mild tasting brown rice. The texture is very similar to a risotto.
- Long Grain: Not my favorite. Even in the pressure cooker, the taste is quite earthy. The grains are separated similar to Basmati.
- Jasmine: This one is a treasure, although sometimes a little trickier to find. It's soft, separate, and has almost a nutty, butter-like taste.
HOW TO STORE, REHEAT, AND FREEZE BROWN RICE
Brown rice stores, freezes, and reheats well so it’s worth making extra brown rice ahead of time and having it for future meals.
Store: Cool leftover and store in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
Reheat: Add a splash of broth or water to the rice and reheat in the microwave or on the stovetop.
Freeze: Cool leftovers and scoop into a freezer-safe zip top bag. Freeze flat for quicker thawing.
BROWN RICE VS WHITE RICE
I try to serve brown rice most often in my home, but my kids prefer white rice, so I decided to do some research to see if brown rice is really that much healthier than white.
Brown rice is a whole grain, meaning it contains all parts of the grain, while white rice has had the most nutritious parts of the grain removed.
According to this Healthline article, brown rice is much higher in nutrients, fiber, and antioxidants. It also states that white rice is mostly a source of “empty calories and carbs with very few essential nutrients.”
On the other hand, the article says that brown rice may be higher in arsenic, a chemical found on both white and brown rice. I talk about this in more detail in my recipe for Instant Pot White Rice.
The article is a great read if you’d like to dive into the subject further. My takeaway is that I will continue to serve brown rice more frequently than white, only 1-3 times per week.
WATER/BROTH TO RICE RATIO
The general rule of thumb is _about 1 ¼ – ½ cup of liquid for every cup of brown rice. Use the below table depending on how much you want to make:
|Rice||Water or Broth||# of People|
|1 cup||1 1/4||2-4|
|2 cups||2 3/4||4-6|
WHAT TO SERVE WITH BROWN RICE
There are so many good recipes that go seamlessly with Brown Rice! Here are a few of my favorites:
- Instant Pot Pinto Beans
- Instant Pot Green Chile Beef Burritos
- Instant Pot Healthy Crack Chicken
- Instant Pot Chicken Coconut Cabbage Soup
- Instant Pot Orange Chicken (with a Mango Black Bean Salsa to make you cry!)
OTHER INSTANT POT RICE RECIPES
- Instant Pot Meditteranean Rice with Lemon Garlic Chicken (a great spin on plain brown rice)
- Instant Pot White Rice
- Instant Pot Green Rice
MORE SIDE DISH INSPIRATION FOR YOUR INSTANT POT
- Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes
- Instant Pot Honey Glazed Carrots
- Instant Pot (No knead) Crusty Bread
- All our Side Dishes
TOOLS USED TO MAKE INSTANT POT BROWN RICE
Pressure Cooker Brown Rice
Pressure Cooker (aka Instant Pot) Brown Rice is a quick and easy side to any meal. Perfectly soft and tender rice and completely hands off!
- Prep Time: 2 minutes
- Cook Time: 24 minutes
- Total Time: 40 minutes
- Yield: 6 cups 1x
- Category: Side
- Method: Pressure Cooker
- Cuisine: American
- 2 cups brown rice (any variety)
- 2 3/4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Add rice, chicken broth, and salt to the pressure cooker pot and stir.
- Secure the lid and turn pressure release knob to a sealed position. Cook at high pressure for 24 minutes.
- When cooking is complete, use a full natural release, or if in a hurry, release pressure after it rests for 10 minutes, then release any remaining pressure
- Fluff the rice with a fork. Serve immediately.
- Freeze any extra rice in resealable freezer bags. I love having it on hand for quick rice bowl dinners and fried rice
- Cook rice in broth for extra flavor
- Rinse rice for a more separated grain, DO NOT rinse for a stickier rice
Keywords: rice, brown rice, healthy side dish