How to Cook Perfect, Fluffy Rice in the Instant Pot

Gabby Gabby (2)
Fluffy white rice in the Instant Pot
Don't settle for gummy, mushy rice.

One of the Instant Pot’s many multicooker functions is its ability to act as a rice cooker. Whether making white or brown rice, this hands-off method will guarantee fluffy, perfect rice that can be made ahead and kept warm until ready to eat. The secret? Don’t use the Rice button.

Kitchen tools
1 eaInstant Pot Electric Pressure CookerInstant Pot Electric Pressure Cooker
1 eaDry Measuring CupsDry Measuring Cups
1 eaLiquid Measuring CupsLiquid Measuring Cups
1 eaFine Mesh SieveFine Mesh Sieve
Ingredients
1 cupWhite Rice
1 cupBrown Rice
1 cupWater
Dry measure rice

Measure your ingredients using the chart below. You can easily double or triple the amounts using the ratios used here.

Type Rice Water
White Rice 1 cup 1 cup
Brown Rice 1 cup 1.25 cups

Make sure to measure your rice using dry measuring cups, and measure your water using liquid measuring cups. Using the correct tools is much more precise, and when it comes to perfect rice, precision is everything. You can easily double or triple the ratios used here.

Rice in a fine-mesh sieve

These handheld strainers are my favorite tool for rinsing rice or draining pasta. The holes are small enough that rice won’t fall through, and they take up much less kitchen space than a large colander.

Rinsing rice

Rinse rice under cool running water until the water runs clear. Don’t skip this step! Rinsing rice washes away any excess starch from the exterior of the rice–an essential step for fluffy, distinct grains. In addition, the extra water from rinsing is key to the precise water to rice ratio used in this method.

Rice and water in Instant Pot

Add water and rice to the inner pot. Add salt to taste. You can also add a tablespoon of oil or butter for a richer flavor.

Instant Pot steam handle

Close the lid. You will hear a beep indicating it has closed all the way. Make sure the steam handle is turned to Sealing.

Instant Pot control panel

DO NOT use the Rice button on your Instant Pot. This is an automatic program with mixed results. You’re much better off manually controlling the time and pressure.

Press Pressure Cook (or Manual on older devices) and increase/decrease the time using the +/- buttons on the control panel. Select the cooking time using the chart below:

Rice Type Cooking Time
White Rice 6 minutes
Brown Rice 24 minutes

The screen will display ‘On’ while it comes to pressure. Once it has come to full pressure, the float valve will seal and the timer will start.

Instant Pot steam handle venting

When the cooking time is complete, the Instant Pot will issue several beeps. A new clock will be displayed counting up the minutes of pressure release. If after 10 minutes, the float valve has not dropped (indicating all of the pressure has been released), you can manually release pressure by turning the steam handle to Venting. The steam released will be very hot, so I recommend you use a wooden spoon or an oven mitt to turn the handle.

Instant Pot Keep Warm button

I love utilizing the Keep Warm function on my Instant Pot. Instead of stressing about having all of the components of a meal ready at the same time, you can start the rice when you begin cooking and allow it to keep warm until you’re ready to serve. Tap the Keep Warm button at any point in the cooking to use this feature.

Fluffy white rice

Do not stir cooked rice–it will turn gummy and mash up the perfect, distinct grains you achieved. Fluff lightly with a fork and serve!