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Jeera Rice (Indian Cumin Rice) – 3 ways

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Make perfect non-sticky, fluffy Restaurant Style jeera rice with my 3 different foolproof and easy methods.

Jeera Rice is one of the most famous and staple dish from India, that is generally cooked daily and goes well with dal, curries or as a side.

Jeera Rice is one of the most popular dishes in restaurants or in parties. It is also one of the most common rice recipes made at home. It goes well with simple everyday dal or more commonly paired with Dal Tadka.

Jeera rice or Jeera bhaat or Indian cumin rice is a simple rice dish where rice is flavoured with Jeera (cumin). The tempering is best done in ghee (Clarified butter) to enhance the flavor, but one can use oil too. 

Jeera means cumin, and I am sharing today a very easy method of making Jeera rice. I make two of these Jeera rice in two ways or rather three ways (If I count the rice cooker method too.) Depending on how I am serving it.

Jeera Rice in Pressure Cooker

As said Jeera rice is one of the recipes which is cooked by most homes daily. So when I am doing everyday cooking and in a mood to make Jeera rice, or in a hurry, I make it in a pressure cooker or the pulav method. 

In a pressure cooker, I add the ghee. Temper it with jeera. Soaked rice, water, and salt are added. 1-2 whistles in the pressure cooker and the rice is done. 

This is a very quick and easy method and the rice literally gets cooked in max of 10 minutes. Of course, the pressure cooker has to cool down a bit before you can dig in.

Release the pressure naturally after 7-10 minutes, or else the rice will get soggy.

Top view of Jeera rice in a black bowl with paneer makhani gravy in the bakcground.
Jeera rice cooked in a pressure cooker.

Open Pan method – Jeera Rice

The next method is the open pan method. One of our favorites. In this method, the rice comes out very fluffy and each grain is separate. In a pressure cooker too we can achieve the same, but we need to be careful of the timing when we open the pressure cooker. 

This method requires the rice to be precooked in an open pot. Once the rice is cooked, drain to remove all the excess water and spread it on a colander so that the rice is separate. This helps in the rice not sticking and mushy too. 

Then the tempering with the required spices is made. This method is also good for using your leftover rice. Jeera rice with cooked or leftover rice is one of the best ways to use some leftover rice.  

Close up look of Jeera Rice

Jeera Rice in Rice Cooker

Another method is when I sometimes use my Rice cooker. This is something to add to everything and forget. In this, I add the rice, water, and salt to the rice cooker. Then do a tempering separately and add it to the cooker. Then put the rice cooker in cooking mode and let the rice cooker do the magic. 

This is good when you need to make it for parties and do not want to babysit. It is best when you want to serve hot rice but do not want to work in the kitchen when you have guests around. 

I keep everything ready in the rice cooker. Just 30 minutes before serving dinner or lunch I mix everything one time and switch on the rice cooker. The rice gets cooked and you have some hot steaming Jeera rice ready to be served. 

Spices used

I keep my Jeera rice very simple. I just used cumin seeds to flavor the rice. Ghee (Clarified Butter) is used as fat and to do the tempering. One can use oil too, but ghee enhances the flavor.

I keep my jeera rice seasoning simple, as when I serve it, I serve it with either a spicy curry or dal. 

However, one can add Bay Leaves, cinnamon, and cardamom. Saffron can be added too, to give a nice beautiful colour and fragrance to the rice.

Jeera rice in a black bowl with paneer makhani gravy in the bakcground.
Jeera rice cooked in a pressure cooker.

Dishes with Jeera Rice

This side dish Kongu Thakkali Kuzhambu goes well with Jeera rice. The classic pair of Jeera Rice Dal Makhani is another simple dal with Jeera rice. I love to make this chaar dal(Mixed Dal) with it.

Jeera Rice is one of the most famous and staple dish from India, that is generally cooked daily and goes well with dal, curries or as a side.

Tips on making the perfect fluffy Jeera Rice

Quality of Rice

It is advisable to use the best long-grain Basmati rice to get the perfectly cooked fluffy texture and non-sticky rice. Good quality rice will expand and fluff up better. Said that you can even get the same using short-grain rice but the best results are with Basmati Rice. 

Rinsing Rice

The rice needs to be cleaned and thoroughly rinsed before using it. Use your hands to clean the rinse and gently or lightly rub the grains in your hand while you are rinsing the rice. This helps in removing the extra starch and the rice is less starchy. 

Soaking Rice

It is always best to soak the rice at least for 30 minutes when making Jeera rice rice for Biryani or even day-to-day rice. 

Soaking rice helps it to swell up and after it is cooked it comes out nice and fluffy. Remember once the rice is soaked, do not scrub it with your hands. The grains after being swelled up are delicate and will break the rice.

Rice to water ratio

This depends on the quality of the rice and if you are soaking the rice or not. 

If the rice is soaked and using the pressure cooker method, it is generally a 1:1.5 rice-to-water ratio. If it is not soaked it is 1:2. 

For the Rice cooker, I always use a 1:2 ratio. When I am using the open pan method I do not follow any specific measurements, as I drain the rice in a colander. So in general I take around 3-4 times of water. 

The above ratios are a rough guide. Some rice takes more water and some less. You will understand once you start cooking it or after 1-2 attempts. 

Cooking Rice

When making rice using an open pan method it is best to cook the rice at 90-95 percent and for Biryani around 80 percent. This will help the rice to be firm and get the restaurant-style perfect Jeera rice. The remaining cooking will be done during the tempering or while the biryani is cooking.  

Handling Rice once cooked

Once the rice is cooked always be gentle. When using a spoon, be as light as possible. If you apply pressure to remove the rice the grains will break. Try to use a fork to fluff the rice. 

Make perfect non-sticky, fluffy Restaurant Style jeera rice with my 3 different foolproof and easy methods.

Jeera Rice (Indian Cumin Rice) – 3 ways

Make perfect non-sticky, fluffy Restaurant Style jeera rice with my 3 different foolproof and easy methods.
5 from 9 votes
Print Pin Rate Save
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Indian, North Indian
Keyword: Leftover, PartyFood, Rice, Vegetarian Thanksgiving
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Soaking Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 6 Servings
Author: Renu Agrawal-Dongre

Equipment

Ingredients

  • 1 Cup Basmati Rice
  • 1 tablespoon Clarified Butter (Ghee)
  • 1 teaspoon Cumin Seeds (Jeera)
  • Lemon juice (optional)
  • Salt to taste
  • Water Quantity depending on the method used

Instructions

  • Clean and rinse the rice nicely. See instructions above on how to rinse the rice.
    1 Cup Basmati Rice
  • Soak the rice for at least 30 minutes in normal room temperature water.
  • Once soaked, drain and give a quick rinse. This step is to just remove any dirt. Here we are not rinsing with hands or anything. Just removing and replacing the water.

Open pan method

  • In a wide open pan add 4 cups of water.
    Water
  • Cover and let it come to a boil.
  • One can add a few drops of lemon juice. This helps to get perfect white rice.
    Lemon juice
  • Once the water has come to a boil add the rinsed and drained rice.
  • Let this cook for 5-7 minutes. The rice will cook faster. Keep an eye on it.
  • You will understand when the rice starts floating on the top.
  • If you remove one grain and lightly press it against the spoon or your worktop, it will break.
  • This is a sign when the rice is done.
    Rice getting steamed in a large pot
  • Cook it only 95 percent. That is grain should be a bit firm and not mushy.
  • Drain the rice in a colander.
    Rice removed in a colander
  • Let it rest for 5 minutes so that the excess water is removed and the rice cooled a bit.
    Perfectly cooked Steamed Rice
  • Now in a heavy bottom wok or a kadai add the Clarified Butter ( ghee).
    1 tablespoon Clarified Butter
  • Once hot add the cumin seeds.
    1 teaspoon Cumin Seeds
  • Let cumin seeds crackle.
    1 teaspoon Cumin Seeds
  • Add rice, salt to taste and gently toss the rice.
    Salt to taste, 1 Cup Basmati Rice
  • Be gentle and slow. The rice will mix and coat the tadka all over.
  • Serve it hot with curry or dal of your choice.

Pressure cooker or Pulao method

  • In the pressure cooker wok add the Clarified Butter (ghee).
    1 tablespoon Clarified Butter
  • Once hot add the cumin seeds.
    1 teaspoon Cumin Seeds
  • Let cumin seeds crackle.
  • Add rice, salt to taste.
    1 Cup Basmati Rice, Salt to taste
  • Add 2 cups of water if the rice is not soaked. If soaked add 1.5 cups of water. If not soaked add 2 cups of water.
    Water
  • Cover the lid and let this cook for 1-2 whistle max.
  • Switch off and let the pressure settle.
  • After 10 minutes, once the pressure has settled, open the lid and serve.
  • Do not cover the pressure cooker tightly or else the rice might turn mushy later.

Rice cooker method

  • In the rice cooker add rice, 2 cups of water and salt to taste.
    Water
  • In a small skillet (I use this cast iron skillet) or a tadka pan add the Clarified Butter (ghee).
    1 tablespoon Clarified Butter
  • Once hot add the cumin seeds.
    1 teaspoon Cumin Seeds
  • Let cumin seeds crackle.
  • Add this to the rice and water mixture in the rice cooker.
  • Switch the mode to cooking and let the rice cook until done or it goes to the warm mode.
  • I prefer to remove the top container of the rice and keep it on a cooling rack.
  • As the heat from the bottom of the rice cooker at times, cooks the bottom layer and sometimes it gets over done.

Notes

  • 1 Cup = 240 ml, 1 tbsp = 15 ml, 1 tsp = 5 ml
Tried this recipe?Share your feedback @cookwithrenu_ad or tag #cookwithrenu_ad
Disclaimer: I am not a nutritionist. The nutritional information is provided as a courtesy and is an estimate only. It varies depending upon the product types or brands.
Jeera Rice is one of the most famous and staple dish from India, that is generally cooked daily and goes well with dal, curries or as a side.


Updates

This post was first published on 28th September 2020. Today the 17th of November 2023, I am updating it with more pictures and content for the best user experience.

I am sharing this with Foodies_RedoingOldPost and earlier I shared it with the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM#116

Foodies_RedoingOldPost



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Recipe Rating




Jayashree T Rao

Tuesday 5th of December 2023

Jeera rice with a curry or dal is one of the preferred dishes at home. Nicely explained at depth of the different methods of preparing it.

Kalyani

Thursday 30th of November 2023

Much of the North Indian Sunday meals at home revolves around Jeera rice, esp for the kids; Lovely methods explained here, Renu... esp the stove top which is also my preferred method.

Veena Krishnakumar

Thursday 30th of November 2023

Nothing like a quick comfort food such as Jeera rice. You have explained it so beautifully that it can be cooked in 3 different ways. Perfect guide for a beginner

Mayuri Patel

Monday 27th of November 2023

Renu a perfect recipe for beginners. Like how you've explained three different ways to make jeera rice. We love jeera rice.I do add the other spices,but next time will try it with jeera alone.

Sandhya Ramakrishnan

Saturday 25th of November 2023

Jeera rice is such an essential part in our menu! I love your detailed recipe to cook the perfect jeera rice. I like to cook it on open pan at times and your instructions were very helpful!