This thoroughly tested Instant Pot Rice Kheer gives you slow cooked kheer flavor and texture in a fraction of the time with a time saving ingredient and an easy hack!
What is Kheer?
Although when we speak of kheer we often default to Chawal ki Kheer or Rice Pudding, in my Pakistani household, the kheer my mother made most, was this Bread Kheer. My mother is not one for slow cooking, but I suspect this Instant Por Kheer would meet my practical mama's approval.
A kheer in essence is what we think of as a pudding, creamy, but with some texture coming from a variety of things from rice to bread to even sweet potato!
It's velvety texture typically come from artful slow cooking, like in this traditional kheer recipe inspired, in part, by my MIL.
Does this Kheer taste Slow Cooked?
This Instant Pot Kheer recipe has been a long time coming. I have made, remade, and had it tested and retested thanks to the generosity of my friends and Instagram community. We learnt together that while more evaporated milk was delightful it's natural sugars caused the Instant Pot to go to burn in some models. We also learnt that ⅓ cup was deemed not sweet enough and that some people love saffron (or even rose) in their kheer, while for others it is a hard pass.
Why this Kheer works: Breaking down the Ingredients
Making Kheer in Instant Pot and getting slow cooked results required some playing around, but the combo below works beautifully. Do read through before tweaking!
- Rice: I pre-grind and soak basmati rice to both plump/soften the rice and eliminate the need for aggressive mixing at the end. I also keep the water I soaked it in because that starchy liquid is going to help the texture of the kheer.
- The Trifecta of Dairy: Milk, Cream, and Evaporated Milk combine here to create a base for the kheer that is rich tasting and creamy. The evaporated milk is the secret ingredient for slow cooked flavour, the other two provide the liquid and balance that make this recipe sing.
- Cardamom: With such a low effort kheer it is worth taking the time to freshly grind cardamom because the aroma of fresh truly can't be beat.
- Salt: the tiniest pinch, and I emphasize, the TINIEST pinch, although non traditional brings the other flavors of this kheer sharply into focus.
- To Saffron or not to Saffron: Saffron gives a lovely flavour to kheer, I use it sometimes, but never miss it when I don't. A saffron-less kheer has a clean flavour and a lighter colour than it's warmer fragrant counterpart.
How to use the Instant Pot to make Creamy Kheer
There are three key parts to getting this Instant Pot Kheer right
1.) Dissolve the sugar in the liquids first - this is insurance against preventing burning.
2.) Use the LOW PRESSURE setting. Was that capitalizing a little aggressive? Maybe. Necessary? Use. The low pressure setting prevents burning, and gives the right texture. To change the setting from the default high pressure simply press manual, and then the pressure button.
3.) A quick whisking. Although this kheer requires neither patience nor an arm workout, you do need to whisk it quickly at the end to break up any clumps and make sure the rice grains are evenly distributed.
A note on cooking times: Between the soaking and the IP cooking and release this isn't an Instant Kheer, but the actual active time is minimal and that makes it a total winner.
Kheer & Tikiyaan
It is the month of Rajab so I would be remiss if I didn't share that Kheer and Meethi Tikiyaan are a delightful, classic combination, and such an integral part of my childhood. The crunch and aroma of ghee and saffron scented tikiyaan paired with the clean creaminess of kheer is decadent and delightful.
Instant Pot Kheer FAQs
1.) Can I make substitutions in the three milks?
While you can absolutely make substitutions, any change will naturally alter the final dish. Some, however, are safe, like using half and half instead of Milk + Cream.
2.) What kind of cream do I need?
Any kind of fresh cream works - whether it's table cream, whipping cream, etc. Labeling tends to vary across the globe.
3.) Can I use other rice?
Kheer is best made with basmati rice for the ideal texture and flavour. I would stick to white basmati rice for this one.
4.) Can Kheer be made in advance?
While you can certainly make it a day in advance it is optimal to consume within 3 days of making it.
5.) Can I freeze kheer?
Bread Kheer is remarkably freezer friendly, but rice kheer isn't. I'd recommend consuming it after you make it - or sharing with family/friends!
6.) Can I use other sugars?
While I haven't tried it I suspect that coconut sugar and sugar in the raw would both work. Brown sugar would change the texture, flavour and colour of the kheer so I would steer clear.
7.) Can I add nuts into the kheer mix?
Absolutely! I think making a recipe your own is always wonderful!
Other Popular Pakistani Desserts
- Ras Malai
- Chanay ki Daal ka Halwa
- Instant Jalebi
- Kulfi with Magic Crunch
- Sevaiyan or Sheer Khurma
- Shahi Tukray
- Bread Kheer
Made this Kheer? Thank you! I'd love to hear what you think! Rate the recipe below and do tag me in your recreations on Instagram @flourandspiceblog
Quick & Extra-Creamy Instant Pot Kheer
- Instant Pot
- ¼ cup rice
- ¼ cup water
- 1 cup evaporated milk
- 1 ¼ - 1 ½ cup whole milk (see notes)
- ½ cup cream
- ½ cup sugar
- ⅛ tsp salt (a tiny pinch)
- 5-6 cardamom pods
- saffron (a pinch, optional)
- nuts for garnishing
- Grind the rice before you soak it to a coarse grind. We aren't trying to make to rice flour! Pour over the water and set aside for 20 minutes (or longer)
- When your timer goes off then remove the cardamom seeds from the pods and break them down in a mortar and pestle.
- Put your Instant Pot on sauté and add in your three milks, cardamom seeds, saffron (if using), sugar and salt.
- As soon as your sugar dissolves add in your rice + soaking water, give it a quick mix, making sure nothing is stuck to the bottom.
- IMPORTANT: put your IP on LOW pressure for 18 minutes.
- Natural release for 10-15 minutes (to manage the intense steam release), and then release the remaining steam by turning the valve.
- Whisk through to break any clumps, the kheer will thicken as it cools. Transfer to a bowl and garnish as you please. Instant Pot Rice Kheer keeps in the fridge for 2-3 days.
- for a thick kheer use 1 ¼ cup whole milk, 1 ½ cup yields a kheer that is runnier. You can also always start with 1 ¼ cup and add a little more milk at the end if needed.
- if you are tight on time and can't soak the rice just add the rice and ¼ cup water to the IP and add 4 minutes to slow cooking time. While it is not quite the same, it works in a pinch.
- for cardamom powder use a teaspoons worth, but I would also recommend adding in a few whole pods for their aroma. You can remove them later.