Pressure Cooker Brown Rice - It Works! - Pressure Cooker Cooking Blog at - 248957

Pressure Cooker Cooking

Pressure Cooker Brown Rice - it works! 
Sep. 3, 2011 8:25 am 
Updated: Sep. 3, 2011 10:16 am
I've spent hours researching how to use a pressure cooker (PC) to make brown rice and have not come up with a persistent pattern of advice from all my sources. So today's blog is my attempt to identify a reliable baseline; one that provides direction and also describes what I'm seeing during various parts of the cooking process.

My successful, non-pressure cooker recipe for use in a non-vented pot calls for a relationship of 1 cup of rice to 1.5 cups of water. Once the mixture boils, cooking time for any amount of rice/water is always the same, cover, simmer for 20 to 30 minutes (I use 20), turn off the heat, then let sit covered for another 10 minutes. Works like a charm.

Adding more water and prolonging cooking time determines the softness of the rice, whether stovetop or PC.

What I've learned from PC sites so far is:

+ Add a Tablespoon (or so) of olive oil to the water to keep it from foaming up during the cooking process. This helps keep the PC's steam vent clean.
+ Boil the water before adding the rice to it and when you do add the rice, watch out for a bit of spitting. That said, I don't really know if boiling before adding the rice affects cooking at all, but it does allow for stirring.
+ Use a heat diffuser under the PC so that the rice doesn't burn around the points nearest the direct flame (or heat). This is, of course, always a good idea on a gas stove even without a PC.
My brown rice experiment used 1 Cup of short-grain brown rice, 1.5 Cups of water, and a slosh of olive oil. I boiled the oil/water, then added and stirred the rice, secured the PC cover, brought the PC's temperature to high (15 PSI), reduced the heat, and let it cook for 15 minutes.

Many recipes say that at this point, you should just let the PC lose its pressure naturally, but I did a fast release after 5 minutes because I was curious. What I saw and tasted at this point looked and tasted just great!

Obviously, over the course of cooking, rice tends to sit while the cook does other things, although I suppose very hungry people would want to eat immediately when the rice was done. If those hungry people immediately ate my test rice, they would have been pleased.

I took the photo (below) of the rice at about 10 minutes after turning off the heat. The rice looked a bit glossy, which I attribute to the oil, but it is not at all mushy. Each grain holds its own.

I am not a rice tasting expert (nor can I determine the differences between wines other that they are white, red, or pink), but what I made seemed OK to me. I imagine adding a 1/4 cup more water to each cup of rice (1 C rice to 1-3/4 C water) would make it softer and eliminating the oil would make the rice a bit less glossy.

Did I save any time cooking with a PC over my non-PC procedure? If you are not in a rush to eat that rice right out of the pot and tend to hover around the kitchen during rice preparation time, you'd find that the PC does not save an earthshaking amount of time.

Non-PC: 20 minutes simmer, then sit covered for at least 10 minutes. 30 minutes in all.

PC: 15 minutes simmer, 5 minutes sitting covered at which time you can fast release. 20 minutes in all.

Rice tends to change texture as it sits, so that texture is a matter of personal taste. I suspect that a rice cooking appliance will produce different textures, with most being a matter of timing and the type of rice used. As everything is pre-set, the cook would not have to experiment as much to get the perfect combination. (If anyone is a rice cooking expert, please chime in!)

My first attempt at making PC rice was identical to this one EXCEPT that I added 1/3 of a large, white onion, chopped, and one medium orange pepper. That resulted in a really fantastic dish, with the onion providing an almost creamy addition to the rice itself. The rice, however, was not creamy.

Would I use my PC again to make rice? I'm thinking about it. The pot I use for rice is non-stick, whereas my PC is stainless and needs a bit of washing, which I will do by hand because I won't be using my dishwasher until this evening. My PC did NOT burn, but it did have a starchy residue when my cooking was done.

That first recipe I made with the added veggies was so wonderful (IMHO), however, that I'll continue doing things like that - adding ingredients to the rice while it cooks, rather than after. I'll probably use my PC for things like that "just because."
Brown rice cooked in a pressure cooker
Photo Detail
Sep. 3, 2011 8:42 am
I am ashamed to admit that I finally succumbed to a rice cooker after many years of being stubborn and swearing to my stove top method. I LOVE my rice cooker and now I wonder why I waited so long. Now you have got me thinking about a pressure cooker LOL Thanks for sharing.
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About Me
My name is Karen Little. I'm a travel writer (see and adult kick scooter evangelist ( My current love is going sightseeing around the USA on my trusty kick scooter and encouraging others to do the same!
My favorite things to cook
I became a vegan (vegetarian) in January 2011, then switched to being a modified vegetarian in August. While I still primarily eat vegetarian meals, I now eat meat a few times a week. That said, I enjoy vegetable and grain-based meals very much. They are great on the tummy as well as the budget.
My favorite family cooking traditions
My mom's favorite dishes included hotdogs, baloney, and undercooked chicken. My mother-in-law's favorite dish was pot roast. As I grew older, my favorite foods were all served in fast-food restaurants. I now live somewhat near "Carlos Bakery" (owned by "The Cake Boss") in Hoboken, NJ. I would regularly buy Bear Claws there, but can't because of all the tourists vying to get in front of me. TIP: If you can actually get in Carlos Bakery, make sure you leave with a box full of fresh Bear Claws.
My cooking triumphs
I am currently excited about using a pressure cooker.
My cooking tragedies
Happily, I don't have any tragedies, but you never know what Anthony Bourdain would say about my culinary skills. Then again, considering the types of things he eats from street vendors, maybe he'd be really pleased.
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