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Rice Hacks: 11 Time-Saving Tips for Cooking Rice in Hurry

Rice is a staple in Indian households, and it’s often the base for many delicious dishes like biryani, pulao, and curries. It is loved for its simplicity and adaptability. Whether you’re preparing a quick weekday meal or a last-minute dinner party, knowing how to cook rice efficiently can be a real lifesaver. However, cooking rice can be time-consuming, especially when you’re in a hurry to get to the office or get  dinner on the table. In this blog, we’ll share some valuable time-saving tips and hacks to help you cook perfect rice without sacrificing quality or flavour.

1. Choose the Right Variety of Rice

The type of rice you choose can significantly impact cooking time. Begin by selecting the right type of rice. Long-grain varieties like Basmati and Jasmine generally cook faster than short-grain varieties like Arborio or sushi rice. Opt for these when you’re short on time.

2. Rinse Your Rice

Rinsing rice is a crucial step in reducing cooking time. It removes excess starch from the grains, preventing them from sticking together and causing a gummy texture. To rinse rice quickly, place it in a fine-mesh strainer and rinse under cold running water until the water runs clear. This should take about 30 seconds. Rinsed rice grains are less likely to clump together during cooking, resulting in a fluffier end product. 

3. Pre-Soak for Speed

If you’re really pressed for time, consider pre-soaking your rice. Soaking rice for 15-30 minutes before cooking can reduce the cooking time by up to 20%. Simply place the rice in a bowl, cover it with water, and let it soak while you prepare other ingredients. Soaking rice allows the grains to absorb moisture more rapidly during cooking, reducing the overall cooking time.

4. Use a Pressure Cooker: 

A pressure cooker is your secret weapon for quick cooking. Follow these steps:

  •  Rinse the rice until the water runs clear.
  • Combine rice and water (usually 1:2 ratio for most white rice) in the pressure cooker.
  • Seal the cooker and bring it to full pressure on high heat.
  • Once it’s at pressure, lower the heat and cook for the recommended time (usually 5-7 minutes for white rice).
  • Let the pressure release naturally, fluff the rice with a fork, and it’s ready!

5. Use a Rice Cooker

Investing in a rice cooker is a game-changer when it comes to time-saving rice preparation. Most rice cookers have a simple one-button operation and automatically switch to “keep warm” mode when the rice is done. This frees up your stovetop for other cooking tasks, making meal preparation more efficient.

6. Utilise Boiling Water

Boiling water is faster than waiting for rice to cook on a stovetop. This hack works particularly well for recipes like fried rice or rice salads. Here’s how to use boiling water for rice:

  • Bring a pot of water to a rolling boil.
  • Add your rinsed rice and cook for 4-5 minutes.
  • Drain the rice and rinse it under cold water to stop the cooking process.
  • Your partially cooked rice is now ready for further cooking in your chosen recipe (e.g., stir-frying or simmering in a sauce) for enhanced flavour.

7. Use Stock or Broth

For an extra flavour boost without adding significant cooking time, cook your rice in vegetable, chicken, or beef stock instead of plain water. This adds depth and richness to your rice.

Flavour Boost: Cooking rice in stock adds depth to your rice, enhancing the overall dish.

No Extra Time: This method doesn’t significantly extend cooking time, making it a convenient option.

8. Opt for the Microwave

When you need rice in a hurry, the microwave can be your best friend. Here’s a quick method for microwave rice:

  • Rinse your rice thoroughly.
  • Place the rinsed rice in a microwave-safe bowl.
  • Add water (usually a 1:2 ratio of rice to water) and a pinch of salt.
  • Cover the bowl with a microwave-safe lid or a microwave-safe plate.
  • Microwave on high for 5 minutes, then reduce the power to 50% and cook for another 15-20 minutes.
  • Let it sit for a few minutes before fluffing with a fork.

Speed: Microwave rice cooks in mere minutes, making it a great choice for when you need rice in a hurry.

Minimal Supervision: You can focus on other tasks while the microwave takes care of the rice.

9. Stir-Fry for Quick Fried Rice

If you’re craving fried rice, here’s a shortcut: use pre-cooked or leftover rice. The grains are already separate and firm, making them perfect for stir-frying. Saute your choice of vegetables, protein, and seasonings in a hot pan, then add the cooked rice and stir-fry for a few minutes until heated through.

Use of Precooked Rice: Stir-frying works best with pre-cooked or leftover rice, which reduces preparation time.

Quick Cooking: The high heat of stir-frying ensures that your meal comes together rapidly.

10. Invest in an Instant Pot

Instant Pots are a favourite among busy cooks for their versatility and time-saving abilities. Cooking rice in an Instant Pot is quick and hassle-free. Simply add rinsed rice and water (usually a 1:1 ratio for white rice) to your Instant Pot, select the rice setting, and let it do the work for you.

11. Make One-Pot Meals

One-pot meals are not only time-saving but also minimise cleanup. Combine rice, protein, vegetables, and seasonings in a single pot or pan. This method allows all the flavours to meld together while the rice cooks, saving you both time and effort.

Minimal Cleanup: Fewer dishes mean less time spent on cleanup.

Flavour Fusion: Cooking rice, protein, vegetables, and seasonings together allows flavours to meld while saving you time.


Cooking rice in a hurry doesn’t mean compromising on quality or flavour. Preparing rice in a hurry no longer needs to be a hassle. With the right techniques and time-saving hacks, you can enjoy perfectly cooked rice in minutes. Whether you prefer the convenience of a pressure cooker, rice cooker, microwave, or stovetop methods, there’s a quick rice-cooking solution for everyone. Bid farewell to long waiting times and savour your favourite rice dishes without the stress of time constraints. So the next time you’re in a rush, remember these rice hacks to save time without compromising on flavour. Happy cooking!



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