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Congee is my new favorite breakfast food. This thick porridge, also called jook, is a classic Chinese comfort food. It’s a stick-to-your-ribs breakfast bowl customized with an assortment of delicious and savory toppings. And it’s super easy to make in the Instant Pot or any electric pressure cooker.
Also called jook, congee is rice porridge, a classic Chinese comfort food. It is also popular in Vietnam (called
The traditional way to make congee is simply to simmer rice in a large amount of liquid for a long time. This causes the rice to break down into a thick porridge. It’s a common breakfast or a curative for someone who’s under the weather, but it also makes a great lunch, dinner, or late-night snack.Jump to Recipe
Your Congee, Your Way
Congee is one of those dishes that is infinitely variable, so you can make it to your own liking. Some people like it super thick, while others prefer a more soupy adaptation.
Some like it vegetarian, while others use chicken broth for the cooking liquid. And you can use any type of rice you like or have on hand—basmati, jasmine, long-grain, short-grain, white, or brown.
Normally a dish that takes nearly 2 hours to cook, with an Instant Pot, you can be eating in 45 minutes.
Put your rice, liquid, and seasonings like salt and turmeric into the pot, set it, and forget it. (If you don’t have an Instant Pot, make this in a regular stockpot on the stovetop. You’ll just need to simmer it for 90 minutes or so.)
Healthy Comfort Food? Bring It!
I think of congee as not just comfort food, but healthy comfort food. It’s the kind of thing I crave when it is cold or rainy
And I’m not saying I have personal experience with this, but I’m pretty sure it is also a slam-dunk hangover cure.
Congee is delicious, filling, and, depending on what you put in it, can pack a whole lot of nutrition. I make my congee with brown rice instead of white, which gives it more fiber and minerals, and a slightly nutty flavor that I love.
I add anti-inflammatory turmeric because it is a nutritional powerhouse. And I like to use homemade chicken broth for the liquid. All of that goes right into the Instant Pot to cook.
Topping your congee is where you can get really creative. I’ve offered a list of topping ideas, but the possibilities are quite literally endless. My favorite congee toppers are poached eggs,
Congee is also a great way to use up last night’s leftovers. Toppings can include anything from bits of cooked meat or fish to raw, sautéed, steamed, or pickled vegetables.
Are there other ways to cook congee?
You can also cook congee on the stovetop by simmering the rice and broth for about 60 to 90 minutes, or cook it overnight in a slow cooker so it’s ready to eat in the morning. I love this slow cooker Mushroom Congee.
Brown Rice Instant Pot Congee
- 1 cup brown rice see note*
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon ground turmeric optional, see note**
- 5 to 6 cups vegetable broth see note***
- In the Instant Pot, combine the rice, salt, and tumeric, if using. Add the broth.
- Close the lid of the Instant Pot and set the valve to the sealing position. Cook on high pressure for 35 minutes.
- When the cooking time is up, quick release the pressure and serve hot with desired toppings.
8 thoughts on “Instant Pot Congee with Brown Rice and Turmeric”
This is the first and only of maybe twenty instant pot congee recipes I have read that says to use quick release. All the rest claim that is very dangerous with something that uses so much liquid. This is safe to quick release? Just wanted to check.
I have not had a problem using quick release with this dish or others like it. Of course, you can always use a natural release if you are worried about it, but in my experience it is fine.
Thanks for the recipe. After following the instructions using brown rice, this came out very watery and grains hadn’t fully broken down to make a porridge consistency – is it meant to be soupy?
It should break down to a porridge consistency. Maybe you need to cook it a bit longer? The cooking times for rice can vary quite a bit depending on how fresh the rice is. If the rice is a bit older, it can be drier and require longer cooking time.
I really like how this dish can be a blank canvas for all kinds of healthy and ethnic variations. For instance, I like to use lentils with the rice and then maybe go towards an Indian variation. I’ve also done cajun, and mexican flavor variations. I pretty much always have some on hand.
I wanted to try this recipe to see how the brown rice would work and i liked to tumeric idea. Reading some of the comments, i would like to address my experience (which was different than the author’s experience)
1) quick release – my instant pot made a mess spewing tumeric infused water from the release valve. This might not happen to you but i think a possible natural release might have been warranted.
2) My congee came out soupy at first, very similar to cooked rice in broth. I found that with frequent stirring and a cool-down period, it started to get to a congee consistency.
Other than that, it is a very delicious congee. Now I have to figure out what other things I should try to add in with it.
I did a 13 minute NR while sauteeing some mushrooms. I used a wisk to try to get the consistency not so soupy, but didnt really work. The taste is great though.
If you prefer a thicker congee, just reduce the water quantity next time.