Spiced Instant Pot Brown Rice is a flavorful side dish that requires very little hands-on time. Don't have an Instant Pot? I have you covered with stovetop directions!
When I was a kid, spiced rice was a special supper at our house. My pops would cook up a big pot of rice, packed with sweet, dried fruit and plenty of deep seasonings. This recipe is my Instant Pot version of that childhood fave.
I also converted this recipe from a white rice recipe to a brown rice one, because I love the rich, nutty flavor and chewy texture of brown rice. You can make this with white rice, too, but you'll need to adjust the amounts of water, spices, and the cooking times accordingly.
How to Make Instant Pot Brown Rice
I LOVE cooking grains in my Instant Pot, and this spiced brown rice is no exception. Making Instant Pot brown rice is super simple, and it's the base for this flavorful recipe.
The trick with making brown rice in the Instant Pot is getting the water-to-rice ratio right. On the stove, you use a two-to-one water-to-rice ratio. Because the Instant Pot doesn't lose as much moisture during cooking, you want to back off slightly on the water.
For a cup of brown rice, I like to do 1 ¾ cups water.
To cook your Instant Pot brown rice, add your rice and water to the pot. Lock the pot, and cook for 22 minutes with a 10 minute natural release. You can quick release the remaining pressure, once you've waited that 10 minutes.
If you did accidentally overdo it on the water, that's ok! Your rice will just be a little bit soupy, but you can just strain the excess water out and serve as usual.
For this Spiced Rice, you'll also add your fruits and spices before locking the pot, and you actually do use a two-to-one water-to-rice ratio. That's because the dried fruit will soak up that excess water.
How to Serve Spiced Instant Pot Brown Rice
Dish up this Spiced Brown Rice as a side dish, the base for a grain bowl, or even as a breakfast porridge.
You can let the deep seasonings carry the dish and serve with steamed or sauteed veggies. For a protein, chickpeas, lentils, or baked tofu all work well.
If you want to go for a super flavor explosion, pair this rice up with baked tofu and veggies, topped with my All Purpose Coconut Curry Sauce.
The mix of sweet, savory, and nutty flavors makes this dish extra special, no matter how you serve it up.
Instant Pot Spiced Brown Rice
- 1 ½ cups brown rice
- 3 cups water
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ⅛ teaspoon ground cloves
- 2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
- ½ cup golden raisins
- ½ cup chopped dried apricots
- ½ cup roasted cashews - (or pumpkin seeds, if you don't do cashews)
- In the Instant Pot: Combine the rice, water, spices, raisins, and apricots in the pot. Cook at high pressure for 22 minutes with a natural release. Top with the cashews or pumpkin seeds just before serving.
- On the stove: Combine the rice, water, spices, raisins, and apricots in a soup pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer, covered, for 45 minutes. Top with the cashews or pumpkin seeds just before serving.