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How to Cook Basmati Rice?

Thursday, May 2, 2024

How to Cook Basmati Rice?

Basmati rice is a special kind of long-grain white rice that's very popular in Indian cooking. When we say "long-grain," we mean the grains of rice are about four times longer than they are wide. This type of rice has a really nice smell, kind of nutty, which makes it different from other types of rice.

When you cook basmati rice, it becomes light and fluffy, not sticky like some other kinds of rice. Plus, it's gluten-free, which means it's safe for people who can't eat gluten.

Cooking basmati rice is easy and requires minimal preparation. 

  1. Wash: First, rinse the basmati rice a couple of times in cold water. You can do this in a sieve or a pot. Just swish it around with your hands and drain the water. This removes excess starch and makes the rice less sticky.

  1. Soak (optional): Some people soak the rice in water for about 30 minutes to make it softer, but you don't have to do this step if you're in a hurry.

  1. Add water: For every cup of basmati rice you want to cook, add a cup and a half of water. So, if you're cooking two cups of rice, add three cups of water. Easy, right?

  1. Cook: Now, you have two options. You can either use a rice cooker (if you have one) or a regular pot on the stove. If you're using a pot, make sure it has a thick bottom so the rice cooks evenly. Put the rice and water in the pot, bring it to a boil, then lower the heat and let it simmer (cook gently) with the lid on for about 15-20 minutes. That's it!

Just remember the ratio: 1 cup of rice to 1.5 cups of water, and you'll have perfect basmati rice every time.

How to cook basmati rice in the cooker


  • ½ cup Basmati rice 

  • 1 cup Water 


1. Rice to Water Ratio: For Basmati rice, use 1 cup of water for every ½ cup of rice. This makes the rice soft and long. If you prefer firmer rice, you can reduce the water ratio to 1 & ½ cups for every 1 cup of rice. For example, if you're making fried rice, use less water; for dishes with gravy or South Indian rice varieties, use 2 cups of water.

2. Cooking Process: Boil 1 & ½ cups of water in a pressure cooker. Once boiling, add the rice to the cooker and close the lid.

3. Pressure Cooking: Cook the rice under pressure for 2 whistles. This helps the rice cook evenly and quickly.

4. Natural Release: After cooking, allow the pressure to release naturally. This means you don't manually release the pressure; instead, you let the cooker cool down on its own until the pressure indicator drops.

5. Fluffing and Serving: Once the pressure is fully released, gently fluff the rice with a fork or spoon. This helps separate the grains without crushing them. Keep the rice covered until you're ready to serve and enjoy.

How to cook basmati rice in open pot


  • 1 cup Basmati rice

  • Sesame oil few drops

  • 6 cups Water


  1. Boil 6 cups of water with oil in a large pot.

  2. Add the rice to the boiling water and bring it to a boil again.

  3. Stir the rice once and let it boil for 5 minutes.

  4. Check a grain of rice by mashing it between your fingers. If it's still hard, continue boiling for 2 more minutes.

  5. Pour the rice over a colander to drain the water. Collect the starch water in a bowl.

  6. Discard the starch water and place the colander over the bowl. Cover the rice and let it stand for 15 minutes.

  7. Fluff the rice gently and transfer it to a serving bowl.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Do I need to rinse basmati rice before cooking?

Yes, rinsing basmati rice helps remove excess starch and makes the rice less sticky.

  1. Is soaking basmati rice necessary?

No, soaking basmati rice is optional. It can make the rice softer, but it's not required if you're in a hurry.

  1. Should I use a rice cooker to cook basmati rice?

Yes, you can use a rice cooker for easy and consistent results, or you can cook it in a regular pot on the stove.

  1. What's the ratio of water to basmati rice?

Yes, for perfect basmati rice, use a ratio of 1 cup of rice to 1.5 cups of water.

  1. Can I adjust the water ratio for different rice textures?

Yes, you can adjust the water ratio based on your preference. For softer rice, use more water, and for firmer rice, use less water.

  1. How do I cook basmati rice in a pressure cooker?

Yes, you can cook basmati rice in a pressure cooker. Boil water, add rice, pressure cook for 2 whistles, allow natural release, then fluff and serve.

  1. Can I cook basmati rice in an open pot?

Yes, you can. Boil water with oil, add rice, boil for 5 minutes, drain water, let it stand for 15 minutes, then fluff and serve.

  1. Should I cover the rice while letting it stand after cooking?

Yes, covering the rice helps it finish cooking evenly and retains moisture.

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