This quick and easy Instant Pot Lemon rice makes a fabulous addition to any meal. Rice is flavored with lemon and dill and quickly cooked in a pressure cooker for a quick and easy Greek inspired side. Add excitement to boring white rice and serve something different for dinner tonight!
Rice is one of the best things to make in a pressure cooker like the Instant Pot. It is an easy way to cook rice perfectly every time, quickly and easily.
I serve rice as a side dish with dinner multiple times a week, but lets face it, rice by itself can be kind of boring. Especially when you are eating it a few times a week!
So I like to change things up and make some more interesting flavored rice sides, like Instant Pot green rice or Instant Pot Mexican rice. This Instant Pot lemon rice is subtly flavored and perfect for serving with grilled chicken or steak.
Lemon rice is popular in both Greek cuisine and Indian cuisine. This rice recipe is spiced more like Greek rice would be, so it is more Greek inspired although I am sure it is not authentically Greek!
The ingredients for Instant Pot lemon rice are:
- Rice – I use long grain white rice and the instructions reflect that. If you are using a different type of rice see the rice chart below for modifications.
- Onion – It takes only a few minutes to add a little sauteed onion to the rice, and it adds a lot of flavor.
- Broth – I use chicken broth but vegetable broth would work too if you want to keep this dish vegetarian.
- Lemon juice – Fresh lemon juice is always best, but bottled lemon juice works too.
- Oil or butter – This is used for sauteing the onion and quickly toasting the rice.
- Seasonings – salt and dill
Step by Step Instructions
1. Saute the Onion and Rice
Put the Instant Pot on Saute and add the oil. Wait 2 or 3 minutes for the oil to heat up and then add the onion to the pot.
Cook the onion, stirring, for 4 minutes. Once it has started to soften and brown add the rice to the Instant Pot. Stir it for about 1 minute.
Frying the rice in a little bit of oil before boiling it adds flavor by caramelizing some of the starch in the rice. It adds a lot of taste with just a little bit of effort.
2. Deglaze and Add the Remaining Ingredients
Turn the Instant Pot off and add the broth to deglaze it. Scrape the bottom of the Instant Pot to make sure there are not bits of onion stuck on the bottom.
Properly deglazing the Instant Pot makes it less likely that a Burn error will occur. Then add the lemon juice, salt and dill to the pressure cooker and stir it to mix it well.
3. Pressure Cook the Rice
Put the lid on the Instant Pot, checking to make sure that the sealing ring is in place and the pressure valve is closed. Set the Instant Pot for Manual, High pressure, for 5 minutes.
It will take about 10 minutes for the Instant Pot to reach pressure after you start it.
4. Let Pressure Naturally Release
The texture of the rice will be best if the pressure releases naturally. So let the pressure release naturally for at least 10 minutes.
After 10 minutes I find that I can release any remaining pressure and serve the rice. You can also let it continue to release naturally until you are ready to serve it.
Different Types of Rice
This is a simple recipe that is well suited to almost any type of rice. So use whatever kind you have in your pantry!
Here are the suggested cooking time for different types of rice
|Type of Rice||Pressure|
|Jasmine rice||3 min|
|White long grain rice||5 min|
|White basmati rice||5 min|
|Wild rice||25 min|
|Brown rice||25 min|
The natural release time would be 10 minutes no matter which type of rice you use.
How to Serve
This rice has a just a little bit of tangy lemon flavor that is subtle but delicious. I like to serve it with lemon slices on side and topped with a little bit of lemon zest.
This is a great side dish to make when you want something that you can just set and forget. Once you put the lid on the Instant Pot there is no more hands on time needed.
So I frequently make this with grilled foods. I can set this up to cook inside and then ignore it while I cook outside on the deck.
Once the rice is cooked the Instant Pot will keep it warm without overcooking it for at least an hour, so you don’t have to worry about the timing much.
This rice is delicious with my spicy grilled salmon or grilled pork kabobs. And it makes a nice change from basic white rice! Just a little extra flavor goes a long way to make a meal more interesting.
Find More Instant Pot Sides
- 1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1 small onion, diced
- 2 cups white long grain rice
- 2 cups broth, chicken or vegetable
- Juice of one lemon or 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon dill seed, optional
- lemon zest and dill seed for garnish
- Put the Instant Pot on Saute and let it heat for 2 minutes. Then add the oil and the onion. Cook, stirring the onion until it starts to soften, about 4 minutes.
- Add the rice to the Instant Pot. Cook, stirring, for 2 minutes to toast the rice grains slightly.
- Turn the Instant Pot off.
- Add the broth to the Instant Pot to deglaze it. Scrape the bottom of the Instant Pot with a spoon to make sure there are no bits of onion stuck to the bottom.
- Add the lemon juice, salt and dill seed. Stir to mix.
- Put the lid on the Instant Pot, making sure the sealing ring is in place and the pressure valve is closed. Set it on Manual, high pressure for 5 minutes.
- It will take about 10 minutes for the Instant Pot to reach pressure. Once it has finished cooking let the pressure release naturally for at least 10 minutes. Then release any remaining pressure, stir and serve the rice.
I make and test my recipes in a 6 quart Instant Pot. Using a different brand or size pressure cooker might affect your results.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 106Total Fat: 3gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 2mgSodium: 670mgCarbohydrates: 18gFiber: 1gSugar: 2gProtein: 3g
Nutrition facts are estimates.