How to Cook Perfect Brown Rice (with Recipes)

Brown rice is sort of whole grains 101, which is all the more reason to perfect your brown rice game. Get basic instructions for how to cook brown rice on the stove, in the pressure cooker, in a rice cooker and in the slow cooker, plus some bonus brown rice recipes!

I love the nutty, chewiness of brown rice. It’s my favorite for making anything from Buddha bowls to sushi rolls. I know that brown rice—like all rice—can contain arsenic, but as a sometimes food, it can still be part of a healthy diet. You can also alter your cooking technique to reduce the amount of arsenic in your cooked rice.

Serves 1/2 cup

How to Cook Brown Rice

My favorite way to make brown rice is in the Instant Pot, but you can also cook it on the stove, in the slow cooker, or in a rice cooker. This recipe has instructions for each of these options.

2 minPrep Time

40 minCook Time

42 minTotal Time

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  • 1 cup brown rice, rinsed
  • water (Amount varies by cooking method. See below.)


  1. On the stovetop: Combine the rice with 2 1/2 cups of water. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer, covered for 40-50 minutes, until the water is all absorbed. Let the cooked rice sit in the pot for 5 more minutes, then serve.
  2. In the pressure cooker (or Instant Pot): Combine the rice with 2 cups of water. Bring to high pressure and cook for 22 minutes. Let the pressure release naturally for at least 10 minutes.
  3. In the rice cooker: Combine the rice with 2 cups of water. Turn on your rice cooker (If you have a brown rice button, use it.) When the rice cooker pops, you're ready to serve.
  4. In the slow cooker: Combine the rice with 2 cups of water. Cook on high for 2 to 3 hours, until all of the water is absorbed. Check your rice every 10-15 minutes during that last hour.


The 42 minute cook time is based on the stovetop directions, since this is the cooking method that anyone can use, whether you have kitchen gadgets or not.

More Brown Rice Recipes

Sesame Scallop Fried Rice from Spabettie

1. Sesame “Scallop” Fried Rice – Seaweed and hearts of palm are the “scallops” in this healthy brown fried rice recipe.

Breakfast Rice Pudding from Plant Powered Kitchen

2. Breakfast Rice Pudding – Cooked brown rice is the base for this rice pudding recipe that’s healthy enough to eat for breakfast!

Grilled Dirty Rice Stuffed Peppers from Veganosity

3. Grilled Dirty Rice Stuffed Peppers – Flavorful brown rice and beans and grilled veggies are stuffed into bell peppers. She has grilling and oven directions, so you can still make this, if you don’t have a grill.

Instant Pot Brown Rice Congee from Chic Vegan

4. Brown Rice Congee – Congee is a rice porridge that’s delicious for breakfast, lunch or supper. You can make it on the stovetop or in the pressure cooker. Either way, it’s a delicious, easy meal.

Mexican Veggie Burgers from A Virtual Vegan

5. Mexican Burgers with Adobo Sauce – Chewy brown rice is a lovely addition to a veggie burger, and this is one epic veggie burger recipe!

Lentil Loaf from Dianne's Vegan Kitchen

6. Vegan Lentil Loaf with Cashew Gravy – This is a delicious holiday recipe that’s simple enough to enjoy year-round.

Double Hummus Wraps from Cadry's Kitchen

7. Double Hummus Wraps – Brown rice teams up with two types of hummus for an easy, filling lunch. This would be perfect for packing in lunch boxes!

Vegan Mushroom Risotto from V Nutrition

8. Easy Mushroom Risotto – This recipe uses a sneaky ingredient to turn cooked brown rice into creamy risotto in only 10 minutes.

Lentil Rice Soup from Veggie Inspired

9. Lentil and Rice Soup – Lentils and rice have almost identical cooking times, which makes them a perfect pair in this flavorful soup recipe.

Related at Care2

Basic instructions for how to cook brown rice on the stove, in the pressure cooker, in a rice cooker, and in the slow cooker, plus some bonus brown rice recipes!

Plain brown rice image via Shutterstock. All other images via recipe authors, used with permission..


Sonia M

Good article with some delicious recipes.Thanks for sharing

Jack Y
Jack Y2 months ago


Jack Y
Jack Y2 months ago


John J
John J2 months ago

thanks for sharing

John J
John J2 months ago

thanks for sharing

Ruth S
Ruth S5 months ago


Chrissie R
Chrissie R7 months ago

Thank you for posting.

Marigold A
Past Member 10 months ago

And cook it, and cook it, and cook it. Does the stuff ever get done?

Telica R
Telica R11 months ago

Thanks for sharing

Sachin S.
Sachin S.about a year ago

That's a nice collection of recipes! I am a passionate healthy cook and cooking healthy rice has been my forte -- all thanks to the pure clay pots I use for this purpose. These naturally inert pots are breathable (semi-porous) and let excess water evaporate, leaving rice moist, soft and fluffy. No need to add oils, fats or additives -- the pot does all the work! Thanks to Miriam's Earthen Cookware for making these awesome pure clay pots. With your permission, I'd like to post a link to this fascinating article that introduced me to this healthy way of cooking rice cooking: Just thought I should share this useful information and help people cook healthy.