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Instant Pot White Rice (Perfect Every Time!)

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If you’re looking for more ways to use your electric pressure cooker, here’s how to cook perfect Instant Pot white rice every time. Similar to cooking Instant Pot Brown Rice, all you have to do is add water, press a button, and walk away!

cooked white rice in the Instant Pot

How Long Does White Rice Take in the Instant Pot?

White rice cooks in just a 4 minute pressure cooking cycle. Keep in mind, that it typically takes up to 10 minutes for the Instant Pot to come to pressure, and you’ll wait another 10 minutes for the pressure to naturally release, so this could take 24 minutes in total– but most of that time is completely hands off!

The benefit of cooking Instant Pot white rice is that you don’t have to wait for water to come to a boil on the stove, and you don’t have to watch the rice as it cooks to make sure it doesn’t stick to the pot. If you forget about your rice while you’re doing something else in the kitchen, it will still turn out perfectly because the Instant Pot switches to a “keep warm” setting when it’s done.

An electric pressure cooker is a busy person’s best friend– especially if you get distracted easily. It makes cooking rice fool-proof!

Tips for Cooking Rice in the Instant Pot

If you’re nervous about using your Instant Pot, here are some tips you’ll want to keep in mind to get perfect results every time.

  • Use a 1:1 ratio when cooking rice. When cooking 1 cup of rice, you’ll only need 1 cup of water. Keep in mind that you’ll want to rinse the rice first, so you’ll be adding wet rice to the pot with this ratio. If you don’t rinse the rice first, I recommend adding 1/4 cup more water to compensate. (So, 1 1/4 cups water for 1 cup of rice.)
  • Never fill your inner pot past the half-way mark when cooking rice. Rice can release starchy water as it cooks, and you don’t want to risk that starch clogging the vent in the lid of your Instant Pot.
  • Make sure you move the steam release valve to sealing. This is a common mistake, and will result in hard, under-cooked rice that will eventually stick to the bottom of your pot. You need to seal the pot so that the steam will be locked in and will cook the rice properly.
  • Check the silicone sealing ring. The clear silicone ring found in the Instant Pot lid can move around and get stuck in place between cooking cycles. It’s a good idea to check the ring every time you use your pressure cooker, to make sure it has some wiggle room so it can expand and seal the pot correctly. Watch my Instant Pot Tutorial video if you need a demonstration.
  • Get familiar with the floating valve. The silver or red button in the lid of your Instant Pot is called the “floating valve” and it will let you know if your machine is pressurized or not. When the valve pops up, you’ll know the pot has come to pressure, and when the valve drops, you’ll know the pressure is gone and it’s safe to open the lid.

Be sure to follow the step-by-step recipe below if you want me to walk you through the cooking process!

rinsing rice in strainer and adding it to pot

How to Use the Rice Button on the Instant Pot

The rice button on the Instant Pot cooks at low pressure for 12 minutes. You can use this setting for cooking white rice, but for brown rice you’ll want to manually cook it at high pressure for 22 minutes instead.

I personally prefer to use the method below, cooking the rice for 4 minutes at high pressure, but you can use either method with great results. (And if you have another brand of electric pressure cooker, this timing should work for practically any machine.)

How Much Rice Can You Put in the Instant Pot?

It’s important that you never fill your inner pot past the half-way mark when cooking rice. This includes rice and water together, so how much rice you can cook in the Instant Pot will vary by the size of your machine.

water and rice added to instant pot

In the printable recipe below, you’ll cook just 1 cup of dry rice, but you can double or triple this amount based on what you need and the size of your machine. You’ll always use a 1:1 ratio of rinsed white rice to water, so if you need to cook 3 cups of dry rice, you’ll use 3 cups of water.

Here’s how much rice you can put in the Instant Pot:

  • 3-quart: up to 2 cups dry rice
  • 6-quart: up to 4 cups dry rice
  • 8-quart: up to 5 cups dry rice

Keep in mind that these amounts are all theoretical, because I’ve never needed to make this much rice in a single day. These estimates are based on simple math equations.

Assuming that a 6-quart machine holds 24 cups, and you don’t want to fill the machine more than halfway full, you won’t want to make more than 12 cups of cooked rice in a single cooking cycle.

One cup of dry rice makes roughly 3 cups of cooked rice, so 4 cups of dry rice makes roughly 12 cups of cooked rice. I always round down to be on the safe side, so you won’t risk clogging your machine.

fork fluffing cooked rice in the pressure cooker

How to Cook a Small Amount of Rice

If you need to cook less than 1 cup of dry rice, I recommend using the pot-in-pot cooking method. This means you’ll cook the rice in a separate bowl, lifted up on a trivet. (My Instant Pot came with a trivet, but you can also buy an extra trivet if you need to.)

Check out my pot-in-pot cooking tutorial if you need extra guidance, but to cook the rice in a separate bowl, you’ll just need to add an extra cup of water to the bottom of the Instant Pot to get started. This water will boil and make the pot come to pressure. Pour the rinsed rice and cooking water into the separate bowl, then set that bowl on a trivet situated over the water in the bottom of the Instant Pot.

For pot-in-pot cooking, you’ll need to select a bowl that is oven-safe and 7-inches or less in diameter when using a 6-quart Instant Pot.

I’ve used porcelain salad bowls and glass mixing bowls with success, or you can use a stainless-steel baking pan, as long as it leaves space around the bowl for the pressure to build up. (It would be very dangerous to use something that doesn’t allow space for steam to escape around the bowl, so don’t go too big!)

brown rice cooked pot in pot in the Instant Pot

With pot-in-pot cooking, the cooking time doesn’t change for Instant Pot white rice, so it will be ready in the same amount of time as listed below. And as an added benefit, you won’t have anything to clean on the bottom of your Instant Pot when you’re done!

Instant Pot White Rice (in 4 minutes!)

Instant Pot white rice is an easy, hands-off way to make perfectly fluffy rice every time. It requires just a 4 minute pressure cooking cycle!
Course Side Dish
Cuisine vegan
Keyword instant pot white rice
Prep Time 3 minutes
Cook Time 4 minutes
Pressurization 17 minutes
Total Time 24 minutes
Servings 3
Calories 225kcal

Equipment

Ingredients

  • 1 cup white rice
  • 1 cup water

Instructions

  • Pour the rice in a fine mesh strainer and rinse it well to help remove some of the surface starch. (This helps prevent a "gummy" rice texture later.)
  • Pour the rinsed rice into the bottom of the Instant Pot and add in 1 cup of water. Stir well, then secure the lid. Move the steam release valve to "Sealing."
  • Press the Manual or Pressure Cook button (this will vary by machine) and cook at high pressure for 4 minutes. It will take 7-10 minutes for the pot to come to pressure, so the machine will just read "On" until then.
  • When the cooking cycle is complete, let the pressure naturally release for 10 minutes. When the screen reads LO:10, move the steam release valve to "Venting" to release any remaining pressure. When the floating valve in the lid drops, it's safe to open the lid.
  • Fluff the rice with a fork, and serve warm. Leftover rice can be kept in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week.

Notes

If you want to prevent foaming in the Instant Pot, particularly if you are making a large batch of rice, you can add a teaspoon of oil to the pot, when you add the dry rice and water. Feel free to double or triple this recipe to make the amount of rice you need (1 dry cup = 3 cooked cups), but don't fill the pot more than halfway full. See my full post above for more details.

Nutrition

Calories: 225kcal | Carbohydrates: 49g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 7mg | Potassium: 71mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Calcium: 17mg | Iron: 1mg
Nutrition information is for 1 full cup of cooked rice. This information is automatically calculated, and is just an estimate, not a guarantee.

More Instant Pot Tutorials

If you want more guidance on using your electric pressure, be sure to check out my step-by-step recipes in The Fresh & Healthy Instant Pot Cookbook, or try one of the recipes below!

If you try making white rice in the Instant Pot, please leave a comment below letting me know how it turns out for you! And if you make any modifications, I’d love to hear about those, too. We can all benefit from your experience!

Reader Feedback: What’s your favorite way to use the Instant Pot? Cooking two dishes at the same time (like my Instant Pot Butter Chicken with rice) has been such a game-changer on busy weeknights!

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