This easy pressure cooker yellow rice recipe is definitely different than most - in the best possible way. With flavors of turmeric, cinnamon, and thyme.
This past weekend, my sister asked if I could bring yellow rice to family dinner at my mom's house. I'm sure pressure cooker yellow rice was not on her radar. But it was actually the most complimented dish of the day. Everyone kept asking... "What's that I'm tasting?" Ah! Music to a chef's ears. Well, I told them. And now I'm telling you.
Why Yellow Rice From Scratch? (Why not just use the bagged stuff?)
Wondering why you should try the from scratch method instead of using prepackaged bags of yellow rice? First, while making prepackaged rice that includes a seasoning packet is tempting because there's no need to measure out spices, the amount of sodium in said packet needs a second look. Just 2 ounces of dry pre-packaged yellow rice typically has over 30% of your daily recommended sodium intake. One popular prepackaged brand had 750mg, compared to less than 200mg in this recipe. With homemade, you can control the sodium level and be assured that you're cooking with real, not artificial, ingredients.
Second, with an Instant Pot, making your own yellow rice from scratch couldn't be easier. Third, the flavor in this rice is amazing! Even my family, who like to stick to the same familiar dishes, loved the new flavors in this rice. We've yet to serve this rice to a crowd who didn't devour it.
And this is the AMAZING Result...
More Instant Pot rice recipes:
- Instant Pot Cilantro Lime Rice - Chipotle Copycat
- Pressure Cooker Coconut Rice with Fresh Herbs
- Instant Pot Sushi Rice
- Pressure Cooker Arroz con Pollo
- Grandma B's Pressure Cooker Chicken and Rice
- Pressure Cooker Chicken Broccoli Rice "Casserole"
Can I make this vegan? Yes! Just swap the chicken broth and butter for vegetable broth and vegan butter.
Won't my rice be mush if I cook it for 12 minutes? Not at all. Remember you are cooking on low pressure. The rice will be perfectly cooked.
Can I use dried thyme? Dried thyme would yield a completely different flavor. I highly recommend getting fresh thyme, as the results just won't be the same with dried. If you must use dried thyme, use no more than ⅛ tsp.
★ Did you make this Pressure Cooker Yellow Rice ? Please give it a star rating below! ★
Pressure Cooker Yellow Rice
- 2 Tbsp. butter
- ¼ cup yellow onion diced
- 1 Tbsp. garlic minced
- 2 cups basmati rice
- 1 Tbsp. turmeric ground
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 bay leaf
- 3 thyme sprigs
- 2 cups chicken broth
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- Using sauté setting on Instant Pot - Melt butter, then add onions and cook for about 1 minute until softened. Then add garlic and cook for another 30 seconds.
- Add rice and turmeric; stir well to coat.
- Add all remaining ingredients and mix well. Then lock lid and cook for 12 minutes at low pressure.
- Once cooking is complete, allow pressure to release naturally (will take about 10 minutes).
- Open lid and remove cinnamon stick, thyme stems, and bay leaf.
- Mix well with a fork to fluff, serve, and enjoy!
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Quick, easy and very tasty.
The only thing I will do different next time is actually turn my sauté setting off after my butter melts and just before I add the rice. The heat was too intense when I added the rice and I had to race against time to get the broth in there so I could get the rice off the bottom of the pot to keep it from burning! LOL!
That's a great point. I think I'll add that step into the recipe. Thanks for the feedback!
First time I made this came out fantastic, but seems like 2 tablespoons of turmeric was way too much, for me anyway. I would like to know if I made 3 cups of rice would this work if I just did chicken stock onions and garlic?
Thanks so much for your feedback! One thing I've noticed is that different brands of turmeric have different potencies. I have adjusted the recipe to be 1 Tbsp. now. That should still give great flavor and color.
This was delicious. Thank you! My bf was raving over it!
How many does this recipe serve? Thank you!
Well, you end up with about 4 cups of cooked rice. So it serves quite a few people. Not sure how many servings that is, technically.
I am making rice for 40 people. How much cooking time would I add?
I would not recommend attempting to cook that much rice at one time. Instead, I'd suggest doubling the recipe, except for the turmeric, and cook for the same cook time. Then do a second double batch separately. That should be plenty for 40 people.
Is 12 minutes on low correct? I typically only cook rice 2 minutes on low, and then natural release for 10 minutes. I am afraid 12 minutes would make the rice mushy. I typically use the manual function on my instant pot.
Yes, 12 minutes at low pressure is correct.
My husband and I loved this recipe! The flavors were perfect. This is the first time we tried making our own yellow rice instead of using the pre-seasoned yellow rice you can buy. Thank you for the recipe. This will be a staple for us. Next I'll try the arroz con pollo - yummm!
Thanks Elcee! Yeah, this recipe is definitely different than most yellow rice recipes. So I'm glad you guys liked it so much. My family LOVES it!
OMG it's so delicious! Way better than the super salty store bought one! Thank you!
My pot doesn't have a low pressure setting. Normal cook time for plain basmati rice is 4 minutes on manual plus 10 minutes npr. What should I do?
Yes, that method should work just fine.
Never made yellow rice from scratch until now. I brought it to a family pot luck and everyone loved it! Thanks for the recipe.
I would love to try this, substituting vegetable broth for the chicken broth. Yellow rice is the one thing my vegetarian teen daughter misses eating when I make it. Any suggestions, should I ramp up or add other spices since I'll be removing that chicken flavor? Thanks for this recipe, it sounds amazing and so much better than the box!!!
Nope, just swap out the broth! We've actually made this vegan for our vegan family members by swapping the broth and using vegan butter and it's just as delicious as the original recipe. Hope you enjoy it as much as we do.
This one is going in the bookmarks! I was low on supplies, but figured I'd still give it a shot. Used 1 TBSP of garlic powder instead of garlic, white rice instead of basmati and a sprinkle of cinnamon powder and it still came out great! Can't wait to explore the rest of the site. Thanks!
Help, mine burned within minutes .
Did you remember to add the stock? We've made this rice at least 20 times, never with a burn notice.
Way too much turmeric! I’m trying to find ways to work it into my diet, but this was much too strong. It’s probably good if you are accustomed to the taste, but for those who are not, use less! Also, the rice was a little dry. I will make it again, but will probably halve the turmeric, and add a little more stock.
Have you ever tried it with brown rice?
No, but I bet it would work just fine. 22 minutes at high pressure, with NPR for 10 minutes. Let me know how it goes!
How long would you say for doubled recipe?
Same time should work.
what changes to half the recipe?
Halve everything except the time. Cook time should remain the same.
Delicious. Only used 2 teaspoons of turmeric, as mine is very fresh and pungent. Increased cooking time to 14 minutes + NPR as we live at mile high altitude. All other instructions followed. Will definitely repeat, and add to the guest-worthy recipe file. Thanks!
Too much turmeric, my rice was very dark and Had a VERY strong turmeric flavor. I feel like it should have been 2 tsp instead of 2 tbsp, that was a hardcore flavor.
Sorry to hear that! Was the rice darker than the picture? Did you use fresh turmeric instead of dried?
I don’t usually leave reviews but thought this recipe deserved it! For some reason I can never make fluffy yellow rice, always mushy. I can make fluffy jasmine, white, and basmati, but for some reason never turns out when I attempt yellow rice. I followed the directions exactly and doubled the recipe because I was having a dinner party for Ramadan. I had to change cinnamon stick for a good dash of ground cinnamon, and dry thyme for fresh because that’s all I had. I also used only 2T of turmeric instead of doubling it like everything else. It was so aromatic, fluffy, and delicious! I get more of an Arab style rice vibe instead of Hispanic style, but it still paired well with black beans, fajitas, and sweet plantains. Thank you for this great recipe!
Wow! This was so easy and amazing! I found your recipe while searching for a Mediterranean rice recipe for the instapot. I made it for our small 4th of July socially distanced cookout with my brother-in-law’s family and everyone devoured it! It was a great accompaniment to the chicken shawarma we made on the grill but honestly the flavor profile of this rice is amazing and it will be in the regular rotation.
Thank you for sharing this!
Could you just use the rice setting on the instapot after doing all the needed sautéing?
Yes, I think that should work. But some models may have different times, so I cannot be sure about it.