How to Cook Brown Basmati Rice in 5 Steps (It’s Super Easy!)

Brown basmati rice is well loved by many cooks because it is healthier and more filling. I also find it more delicious than regular white rice.

However, some people are intimidated by it because it seems a bit harder to cook in the kitchen. Also, when it is cooked incorrectly, basmati rice may turn out either too chewy or hard and grainy.

I’ve cooked basmati rice on several occasions using different methods, and today I will share with you one of the easiest ways on how to cook brown basmati rice that is tasty and filling. It only involves five easy steps and makes use of the ever reliable Instant Pot, or what others call an electric pressure cooker.

Things You Need


  • 1 cup of brown basmati rice
  • 1 ¼ cups of water
  • ½ teaspoon of salt
  • 1 tablespoon of butter

You can add other ingredients in the pot to make your basmati rice more flavorful. I like adding a teaspoon of fresh lemon juice per cup of rice to give it a bit of zest. Adding ground dried chilies will give your rice a bit of a kick while adding raisins will help make it a little sweet.


  • Medium-sized bowl
  • Mesh strainer
  • Instant Pot
  • Wooden or silicone spoon
  • Kitchen glove
  • Fork


Step 1: Rinse the rice thoroughly.

​Pour the brown basmati rice in the bowl and add about a cup of cold tap water. I usually use Royal Brown Basmati Rice because I like its nutty aroma, but you can check out other brands as well.

Using your hand, gently swish the rice grains around the bowl until the water starts to look cloudy.

Strain the water from the bowl by pouring it out through the mesh strainer. If you do not have a strainer, you can also tilt the bowl to one side and slowly let the water spill out. Use your free hand to keep the rice in place or cover the bowl with a plate halfway to stop the rice from spilling out.

Repeat this step at least two more times until the water turns out clear.

Step 2: Add the rice, water, and other ingredients in the Instant Pot.

​Place the rice, water, butter, and salt in the Instant pot. You can also add other ingredients if you want to add more flavor to your rice.

As a guideline, I use 1 ¼ cups of water for every cup of brown basmati rice. This means that if you want to cook 2 cups of rice, you need to add 2 ½ cups of water in the pot.

Gently mix the ingredients with a wooden or silicone spoon to distribute the salt, butter, and other ingredients (if any) evenly.

Step 3: Cook the rice.


​Once you’ve mixed the ingredients, you may now cover the pot and start cooking the rice. Make sure the Instant Pot is set on sealing and not venting to keep the pressure in.

Set your pot to Manual and adjust the cooking time to 22 minutes. And that’s it! You can leave your rice to cook while you do something else or prepare another dish in your kitchen.

Do not open the lid of your Instant Pot before the 22 minutes is over to avoid releasing pressure from it. Doing this may cause your rice to undercook and come out hard and grainy.

Step 4: Release the pressure from the pot.

​Before you open the lid of your Instant Pot, you need to release the pressure in the pot first so you won’t be surprised with the quick pressure release.

To do this, wear your kitchen glove and turn your steam release handle from sealing to venting. Make sure you don’t place your hand or face directly above the handle because you may end up hurting yourself.

Once the excess pressure has escaped, you many now open the lid and check your rice.

Step 5: Fluff your rice and serve.

​Scoop out your rice and transfer it to a medium-sized bowl. Use a fork to fluff it so that the grains will separate. Let the rice sit for a few minutes to allow the excess moisture to evaporate.

Once the rice has sat out for about five minutes, you can now serve it any way you like. I like eating my basmati rice with a piece of roasted chicken thigh or lamb. You can also make a healthy salad with it by tossing it with nuts, herbs, and olive oil.


You don’t need to be intimidated by cooking brown basmati rice. Just remember to follow the rice to water ratio to make sure your rice comes out perfect, and don’t be afraid to add other ingredients into the mix if you want more flavor to your rice.

Make sure you use a premium-grade brand like Royal Brown Basmati Rice so that your rice will turn out aromatic and delicious.

Did you enjoy this article? What other methods do you use to cook brown basmati rice? Share them in the comments’ section below. I’d love to hear more! And please share this article and my other recipes with your family and friends. Remember: Sharing is caring!

Jack Smith

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