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Jeera Rice - Indian Cumin Rice (Pan + Pressure Cooker + Instant Pot)

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Jeera Rice - Indian Cumin Rice is an easy, delicious, and aromatic Indian side dish that goes exquisitely with any gravy or lentil dish. This simple & flavorful One Pot Jeera Rice recipe makes the perfectly cooked non-sticky jeera rice.

Cumin rice is so full of earthy and aromatic rice flavors and is quick and easy to make. This is the only recipe you will need to make your fragrant, fluffy, separated and perfectly cooked Jeera rice or Cumin rice. I have shared 4 methods of making Jeera Rice on this page. You can either cook it in a pan, pressure cooker or Instant Pot.

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jeera rice served in a brown earthy bowl on a dark brown background

Perfectly cooked jeera rice should be light, fluffy, aromatic and non-sticky. With this super simple, quick and fail-proof recipe, you will get non-sticky & flavorful jeera rice every single time. 

Cumin rice is vegetarian, gluten-free and vegan-friendly (if you use oil). Another good thing is that this recipe is very simple to make and is not too tricky to follow. Just a few ingredients and a pan and you will have light, soft, and flavorsome Jeera Rice ready in under 10 minutes.

You can make this Jeera Rice or Cumin Rice recipe for a weeknight comfy dinner along with some dal, or make it when you have guests coming over for dinner. No matter how to serve this, it would always be a hit at your dinner table.

Rice dishes play a special role in Indian cuisine. Steamed basmati rice, fried rice, pulao, pulav, pilaf, biryani — they all uses rice as the main ingredient. Steamed basmati rice is also an essential part of everyday Indian thali which consists of dal, Chawal (rice), chapati, sabji, raita, and chutney.

Jeera rice is one of the main staple Indian rice dishes and I have had it zillion of times in my life. I love Jeera rice because of its earthy flavorings. They look really enticing because of the dark brown cumin seeds. I personally enjoy the flavor of the jeera seeds in my rice.

My family and I relish Jeera rice more than the plain steamed rice, and most of the time when I am planning to make a simple ‘Dal Chawal’ for dinner I opt for jeera rice over plain steamed basmati rice. I don’t know about you guys, but I really enjoy cooking with spices. There is something mystical about the whole and powdered spices. I just find an excuse to add these tiny jewels into my meals. :)

This is because Jeera rice is my favorite, and also because this Jeera Rice is:

☛ Super easy to make in a stovetop pan or pressure cooker. 

☛ A very simple dish and only takes a few minutes to prepare. 

☛ Filled with sweet-scented cumin and other whole spices flavors. 

☛ Gluten-free, can easily be made into a vegan dish.

☛ A best restaurant-style jeera rice or cumin rice recipe where each grain of rice is fluffy and well separated.

☛ Is made with simple ingredients which are easily available in any kitchen.

☛ Goes well with almost any spicy Indian curry, dal, or sabji. 

☛ Low carb and it has a full-bodied flavor.

There are many ways to make jeera rice. This one is my preferred because it is easier, faster, fuss-free, and cooked in a single pot. What else you need!

a close up shot of jeera rice and rajma garnished with a coriander stem

What is Jeera Rice?

Jeera Rice or Cumin Rice is an Indian style rice dish that is an ultimate base for many spicy vegetarian or vegan dish side dishes. This jeera rice or ‘jeera chawal’ is a combination of nutty and mildly spicy flavors that are fragrant and delicious enough to accompany a simple vegan gluten-free meal. 

This is an easy vegan recipe, yet delicious and flavorful, and is quick to make in a skillet. The flavors will come out via all the textures and tastes through the creamy texture and crisp crunch. 

What are the ingredients needed for Jeera Rice?

This Cumin or Jeera Rice recipe only requires 6 ingredients which you probably have in your pantry anytime. So cooking your favorite restaurant-style Jeera Rice at home is actually way easier than you think. These 6 ingredients are:

  1. Basmati Rice
  2. Water
  3. Salt
  4. Ghee / Butter/ Oil
  5. Cumin seeds
  6. Whole spices (bay leaf, cinnamon, cloves)

Optional ingredients:

  • Cashew Nuts and Almonds (optional)
  • Freshly chopped coriander leaves for garnish (optional)

How to make Jeera Rice?

Making Jeera Rice or cumin rice is very simple. Just follow this recipe to make cumin rice which has a very delicate flavour. There are two ways of making Jeera Rice. 

  1. One pot Jeera Rice cooked from scratch: Here the rice is cooked directly in a pot or pan. To make this one pot jeera rice, you can either use a thick-bottomed pot, a stovetop pressure cooker or an Instant Pot. In this method, the spices along with cumin are tempered in ghee or oil on a low heat until aromatic. This is a good recipe for a simple home-style fragrant jeera rice.

  2. Jeera Rice prepared with leftover cooked rice: This is a great way of making instant Jeera rice when you have some pre-cooked rice or leftover plain rice. This is also a very quick and simple way of making jeera rice. Making jeera rice this instant way is an excellent idea to use your leftover plain steamed rice and turn into an exotic side dish. Also, this method is an exemplary way of flavoring and dressing up a bowl of simple white rice. 

This 2nd method is used for making Jeera rice or cumin rice in many Indian restaurants. They usually cook plain basmati rice in large quantities and then they simply fry them with cumin seeds right before serving. You can check out the recipe of restaurant style Jeera rice  in the recipe box on this page.

a bowl of indian cumin rice with some coriander leaves and a wooden spoon

Below are the 3 ways to cook one pot jeera rice cooked from scratch. 

1. How to cook Jeera Rice in a stovetop pot?

2. How to cook Jeera Rice in a Pressure cooker?

3. How to cook Jeera Rice in an Instant Pot Pressure cooker?

Let’s learn them in detail.

jeera rice served in white plate

1. How to cook Jeera Rice in a stovetop pot?

Here soaked basmati rice is fried along with the cumin seeds and whole spices and then cooked with water and salt. This is how it is done.

Wash the basmati rice 3-4 times or until the water turns clear. Add 2 cups of water and let it soak for 30 minutes. Discard the water, keep the rice aside. Don’t throw away this nutritious water, we will use it for cooking rice.

Heat ghee or oil in a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium-low heat. Once hot add cumin seeds, bay leaf, whole spices, cashew nuts, and almonds. Sauté them for few seconds. 

Now add the rinsed rice and sauté with ghee and spices for 2 minutes while constantly stirring. Sautéeing rice with spices enhances the flavor of rice. Then add water, salt, and lemon juice and stir well. (Lemon juice helps in keeping rice white.)

Let it come to boil over high heat. Once it starts bubbling, turn the heat to medium-low. Cover the pan with the lid and cook for 8-10 over medium-low heat or until all the water is absorbed and the rice is cooked through. Open the lid and fluff up jeera rice using a fork or a spatula. Serve hot jeera rice with any dal or curry of your choice. For the more detailed recipe, you can also check out the video recipe of one pot jeera rice I have shared on this page.  

2. How to cook Jeera Rice in a  stovetop Pressure Cooker?

Cooking Jeera rice or Zeera rice in a pressure cooker is fairly simple. You can make it by following the same instructions. Just do this; instead of cooking for 6-7 minutes, you need to pressure cook for 2 whistles on high heat. Once the pressure cools off, open the lid. Let it cool for 5 minutes and lightly fluff the rice using a fork. Done! You can see an elaborated recipe for this in the recipe box on this page. 

3. How to cook Jeera Rice in an Instant Pot Pressure cooker?

Instant Pot version of Jeera Rice is extremely easy to make. To make this Instant Pot version of flavorful, quick and easy Jeera Rice, all you need to do is simply rinse, soak, and drain the rice. Once the rice is soaked, add oil to the instant pot. Simply saute cumin seeds and whole spices until fragrant. 

Frying the spices elevates the flavor & aroma of this entire rice dish. Next, add cashews and sauté until they are golden. This is another key step to make nutty and flavorful jeera rice. So I would recommend adding these nuts. 

Then add the rice, salt, and water. Cover with the lid and pressure cook on high heat for 6 minutes. NPR (Natural pressure release) for 5 minutes, and then do a quick pressure release. Once the pin drops, open the lid. Fluff the rice with a fork. Serve jeera rice with any of your favorite curry or dal. You can check out the detailed recipe for this in the recipe box on this page.

jeera rice bowl topped with fresh coriander leaves

What to serve with Jeera Rice?

Jeera rice makes a wonderful lunch or dinner when served with a spicy side dish of dal, curry or sabji. It can be relished with various Indian lentils or curry dishes. It tastes exceptionally well when served with paneer gravy dishes like butter paneer, matar paneer, paneer tikka masala, or paneer do pyaza. Some lentils or beans dishes that taste great with Jeera rice are: rajma masala, chana masala, panchmel dal, or dal tadka.

This also tastes incredibly yummy when paired with some Black Chana Kadhi, some Boondi Raita, and papad. Just pour some hot palak paneer curry over jeera rice and you are ready to enjoy the most delicious Indian feast.

What is rice to water ratio for one pot steamed jeera rice?

The ideal rice to water ratio for making ideal non-sticky jeera rice in a pot or pan is 1:2. This means that if you are using 1 cup of rice, you will need 2 cups of water. This 1:2 ratio is best for cooking in a pan because this way rice is completely steamed in water in a covered pan where steam does not escape. 1:2 rice to water ratio ensures that the cooked jeera rice would have perfectly fluffy and separated grains. If you add too much water then the rice will turn out sticky and will soak up a lot of liquid. It will also be very grainy and lumpy.

This ratio may vary if you are cooking this rice in a stovetop pressure cooker or an Instant Pot. There, the rice water ratio is 1:1.25. 

overhead shot of cumin rice and rajma masala

Tips and variations to make your best Jeera Rice every time:

Jeera Rice is an easy dish, just follow the simple tips to make sure that the jeera rice is cooked perfectly. These tips and variations would ensure that you will get soft and fluffy Jeera Rice with a nice aroma of ghee and richness of cashew nuts and almonds.

  1. Jeera rice has a unique taste. I have added 1 tablespoon cumin seeds for 1 cup rice. But if you never had cumin seeds and are new to this taste, then you can start with 1 teaspoon cumin seeds and then increase the amount if you like the flavor. 
  2. If you want to get perfectly cooked rice grains that are not clumpy, sticky or cooked, then make sure to use the perfect rice-water ratio. The amount of water may also depend on the variety and type of rice. The rice packets usually have the details on how much water is required to cook rice in a pan or pressure cooker. So also make sure you check information on the backside of a rice packet you are using. 
  3. Long grain basmati rice is best for making jeera rice. So try to use only basmati rice if you want a fragrant and aromatic taste of jeera rice.
  4. I like my jeera rice plain without any chilies or onions, but if you like you can also add some onions and green chilies to jeera rice, to amp up the flavors.
  5. Add lemon juice while cooking rice to prevent them from turning yellow and becoming sticky and gloopy. Your jeera rice would come out bright and each grain of rice will be separated.
  6. Once the rice has been cooking for around 8-10 minutes, all of the water should be soaked up by the grains, and the rice will be cooked.
  7. If the texture or rice is slightly chewy or hard in the center then add 3-4 tablespoons of water. Cover the pot with the lid to cook the rice for another 3-5 minutes on low heat. Check the texture again after 3-4 minutes, rice should be perfectly cooked. If the rice is cooked nicely but still there is some liquid, then remove the lid and cook over high heat for 2minutes. This would evaporate all the excess water.
  8. If you want to make turmeric jeera rice, then add 12 of turmeric powder to rice along with water.
  9. You can make vegetable cumin rice by adding some vegetables of your choice.
a brown bowl of cumin rice is sprinkled with some cumin powder and coriander leaves

Perfect Jeera Rice (Restaurant Style) - Indian Cumin Rice (Pan + Pressure Cooker + Instant Pot) [RECIPE]

Perfectly cooked jeera rice should be light, fluffy, aromatic and non-sticky. With this super simple, quick and fail-proof recipe, you will get non-sticky & flavorful jeera rice every single time.
♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ (Rating: 5 from 2 reviews)

INGREDIENTS

For One Pot Jeera Rice:

• 1 1/2 cups basmati rice
• 3 cups of water if cooking in a pan, or 1 3/4 cups water if cooking in a pressure cooker or Instant Pot
• 2 tablespoons ghee or oil (use vegan butter for vegan version)
• 1 tablespoon cumin seeds (jeera)
• Whole spices (bay leaf 1, black peppercorns 4, cinnamon 1-inch stick, cloves 2)
• 3/4 teaspoon salt or to taste
• 8 Cashew Nuts and 8 Almonds (optional)
• Freshly chopped coriander leaves for garnish (optional)

For restaurant-style jeera Rice:

• 2 cups pre-cooked or leftover basmati rice
• 2 tablespoons ghee or oil (you can also use vegan butter)
• 1 tablespoon cumin seeds (jeera)
• Whole spices (bay leaf 1, black peppercorns 4, cinnamon 1-inch stick, cloves 2)
• 3/4 teaspoon salt or to taste
• 8 Cashew Nuts and 8 Almonds (optional)
• Freshly chopped coriander leaves for garnish (optional)

🕐 Prep time 🕐 Cook time 🕐 Total time
☶ Category ♨ Cuisine ☺ Serves
Side Indian 5-6

Nutrition Info: 238 calories // Servings: 1 serving

INSTRUCTIONS:

How to make Jeera Rice (Cumin Rice) in a Pan:

  1. Wash the basmati rice 3-4 times or until the water turns clear. Add 2 cups of water and let it soak for 30 minutes. Discard the water keep the rice aside. (Don’t throw away this nutritious water, we will use it for cooking rice).
  2. Heat ghee or oil in a large heavy-bottomed pot / pan over medium heat.
  3. Once hot, add cumin seeds, bay leaf, whole spices, cashew nuts, and almonds.
  4. Sauté them for few seconds.
  5. Now add the rinsed rice and sauté with ghee and spices for 2 minutes while constantly stirring. Sautéeing rice with spices enhances the flavor of rice.
  6. Then add water, salt, and lemon juice and stir well. (Lemon juice helps in keeping rice white.)
  7. Let it come to boil over high heat. Once it starts bubbling, turn the heat to medium-low.
  8. Cover the pan with the lid and cook for 8-10 over medium-low heat or until all the water is absorbed and the rice is cooked through. Open the lid and fluff up jeera rice using a fork or a spatula. Serve hot jeera rice with any dal or curry of your choice.

How to make Jeera Rice (Cumin Rice) in a stovetop pressure cooker:

  1. Heat ghee in a pressure cooker on medium-low heat.
  2. Add whole spices (garam masala), cumin seed and fry till cumin seeds start to sizzle.
  3. Add cashew nuts and almonds and sauté for 1 minute or until nuts are golden.
  4. Add the drained and soaked rice to pressure cooked and mix well to coat with ghee. Sauté on medium heat for 2 minutes.
  5. Add 3 cups of water, salt, lemon juice and mix everything well.
  6. Bring water to a boil on high heat.
  7. Cover the cooker with the lid and cook over high heat for 2 whistles. Turn off the heat.
  8. Let the pressure release naturally for 5-6 minutes. Then manually release the rest of the pressure carefully with the help of a spoon or a wooden
  9. Once pressure cools off completely, open the lid and gently fluff the rice using a fork or a spatula.
  10. Jeera rice in the pressure cooker is ready to serve.
  11. Serve hot with dal or any vegetable curry of your choice.

How to make Jeera Rice (Cumin Rice) in Instant Pot:

  1. Rinse 1 cup basmati rice 4 to 5 times under running water or until the water turns clear.
  2. Soak the rice in 1 3/4 cups of cold water for 30 minutes. Drain, and set aside. (Do not throw off this water, we will use it in the cooking.)
  3. Press the sauté button of your IP and allow the pot to heat up.
  4. Once it is hot, add the ghee/oil.
  5. Then add bay leaf, cloves, cardamom, cinnamon stick, cumin seeds, cashew nuts, and almonds.
  6. Sauté for a few seconds.
  7. Add the soaked rice to the pot.
  8. Mix the rice with spices and sauté for 1 minute.
  9. Then add water, salt, lemon juice and stir well to combine.
  10. Close the pot with the lid set the valve to the sealing position.
  11. Press manual/pressure cook button and cook on manual (high pressure) for 6 minutes.
  12. NPR (Natural pressure release) for 5 minutes, and then do a quick pressure release. Once the pin drops, open the lid.
  13. Fluff the rice with a fork.
  14. Serve jeera rice with any of your favorite curry or dal.

How to make restaurant-style Jeera rice:

  1. Heat ghee or oil in a broad pan.
  2. Add whole spices, cumin seeds, cashew nuts, and almonds to it.
  3. Sauté for few seconds or until seeds start to splutter.
  4. Now add in cooked basmati rice and some salt.
  5. Mix lightly to combine. Stir fry until heat through. Try not to break up the grains too much.
  6. Serve delicious jeera rice with any of your favorite dal or curry.

NOTES:

1. Jeera rice has a unique taste. I have added 1 tablespoon cumin seeds for 1 cup rice. But if you never had cumin seeds and are new to this taste, then you can start with 1 teaspoon cumin seeds and then increase the amount if you like the flavor.
2. I like my jeera rice plain without any chilies or onions, but if you like you can also add some onions and green chilies to jeera rice, to amp up the flavors.

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Direct Video link: https://www.youtube.com/embed/6WU2kDOwm8g