instant pot meethe chawal into a bowl

Instant Pot Meethe Chawal / Kashmiri Sweet Pulao

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Meethe Chawal also known as Zarda rice or Kashmiri sweet pulao is sweet rice laced with fragrant whole spices like cinnamon, saffron, and cardamoms. This Instant Pot Kashmiri Meethe Chawal/Zarda Rice is an undemanding and effortless homemade dessert that is popularly served at weddings, parties and gatherings among Kashmiri’s. It is sweet, aromatic, and in other words, very delectable. It is best served warm, but it’s also great at room temperature.

instant pot meethe chawal

Rice is a staple food in Indian and Kashmiri cuisine. Rice in the form of dessert is commonly served among Kashmiris. In addition to meethe chawal, thick and sweet kheer, and phirni are staple desserts. These are typically served at all weddings or social gatherings after dinner.

What is Kashmiri meethe chawal / sweet rice/ Zarda rice ?

Meethe chawal is an easy and simple dessert made with white basmati rice, ghee, nuts, dried coconut, whole spices, saffron, sugar and water.

There are many ways to cook this popular homemade dessert. For instance, some people cook it in a pot on the stove-top while others prefer to use a pressure cooker. I’m sharing the instant pot method.

Ingredients

Dry dates: Don’t use the soft mushy kind. You certainly need to use dried dates. Soak them in water for 10 minutes before chopping them. These are available in Indian grocery stores or on Amazon.

Almonds: Raw almonds. These are available in Indian grocery stores or on Amazon.

Basmati rice: Long grained basmati rice

Dried coconut strips. These are available in Indian grocery stores or on Amazon.

Other ingredients: Milk, saffron strands, dried bay leaf, green cardamom pods, black cardamom pods, whole black peppercorn’s, cinnamon stick, whole black cloves, sugar, golden raisins, ghee, water, and ground turmeric.

And most importantly an Instant Pot.

dry fruits whole spices

How do I make Instant Pot Kashmiri Meethe Chawal?

Prep:

Firstly, Rinse and soak the rice it in water for 10 minutes. This step speeds up the cooking time because the soaked rice has had time to soften and absorb moisture. Drain and discard the water. 

Secondly, soak a pinch of saffron in 1 tbsp milk for 10 minutes. Saffron adds a great fragrance in addition to a great color. Moreover, it adds a tinge of yellow color to the rice.

saffron closeup

Further, mix sugar in 1 and ¼ cup water along with turmeric and stir well. This step enables the sugar to mix well. Set this aside for 10 minutes.

sugar and turmeric water

Place the dates in a bowl and cover them with boiling water to fully submerge the dates. Let the dates soak for about 10 minutes. Use a serrated knife to slice the dates lengthwise into thin strips.

Place the raw almonds in boiling water to fully submerge the almonds. Let the almonds soak for about 10 minutes. Use your fingers to gently squeeze the almonds and loosen the skin from them. Use a serrated knife to slice the almonds lengthwise into thin strips.

STEPS:

Firstly, select sauté on the instant pot and adjust to normal. Add ghee to the pot. When the ghee is hot add almonds, coconut, and dates. Sauté till they change color and turn fragrant and brown.

saute dry fruits in instant pot

Remove them and set them aside.

remove  dry fruits aside on a plate

Then add the whole spices (bay leaf, black cardamom pods, green cardamom pods, whole black peppercorn’s, cinnamon sticks, and cloves).

add whole spices to instant pot

Let them sauté for a minute.

Finally add white rice, the soaked turmeric and sugar water, nuts, golden raisins, and saffron + milk. Give it a good stir. Make sure the rice is under the water.

adding all remaining ingredients

Press cancel. Secure the lid on and select manual/high pressure for 8 minutes. Most importantly, let the pressure release naturally.

Meethe chawal is best served warm, however, it is also great at room temperature.

transfer instant pot meethe chawal to a bowl

Tried this recipe yet? Give us a rating, comment below in the reply section and let us know what you think.

Try some of our other dessert recipes:

Instant Pot Indian Rice Pudding / Instant Pot Kheer

Instant Pot Phirni/ Firni -Instant Pot Indian Rice Pudding

Instant Pot Meethe Chawal / Kashmiri Sweet Pulao

Instant Pot Meethe Chawal is an easy and simple dessert made with white basmati rice, ghee, nuts, dried coconut, whole spices, saffron, sugar and milk.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Total Time35 mins
Course: Dessert, Side Dish
Cuisine: Indian, Kashmiri, Pakistani
Keyword: Easy Instant Pot Zarda Rice, Electric Pressure Cooker Rice, Instant Pot Meethe Chawal, Instant Pot Zaffrani Pulao, Kashmiri Meethe Chawal, Meethe Chawal, Multi Pot Rice, Saffron, Sweet Rice Instant Pot
Servings: 6
Author: Shilpa

Equipment

  • Instant Pot

Ingredients

Instructions

Prep

  • Rinse the rice and soak it in 2 cups water for 10 minutes. When ready to cook, drain and discard the water that was used to soak the rice.
  • Soak a pinch of saffron in 1 tbsp milk for 10 minutes.
  • Mix the sugar in 1 and ¼ cup water along with turmeric and stir well. This step enables the sugar to mix well. Set this aside for 10 minutes. Do not discard the water. This water and sugar mix will be used to cook the rice.
  • Place the dates in a bowl and then cover it boiling water to fully submerge the dates. Let the dates soak for about 10 minutes or more. When ready to cook, discard the water used to soak the dates. Use a serrated knife to slice the date lengthwise into thin strips.
  • Place the raw almonds in boiling water to fully submerge the almonds. Let the almonds soak for about 10 minutes or more. When ready to cook, discard the water. Use your fingers to gently squeeze the almonds and loosen the skin from them. Use a serrated knife to slice the almonds lengthwise into thin strips.

Cook

  • Select sauté on the instant pot and adjust to normal. Add ghee to the pot. When the ghee is hot: add almonds, coconut, and dates. Sauté till they change color and turn fragrant and brown. Remove the sauteed almonds, coconut, and dates from the inner pot and set them aside.
  • Add the whole spices (bay leaf, black cardamom, green cardamom, whole black peppercorn’s, cinnamon stick, and cloves) to the ghee in the inner pot. Let the whole spices sauté for a minute.
  • Then add white rice, the soaked turmeric and sugar water, sauteed almonds, coconut, dates, golden raisins, and saffron soaked in milk. Give it a good stir. Make sure the rice is under the water.
  • Press cancel. Secure the lid on and select manual/high pressure for 8 minutes. When done let the pressure release naturally. Discard the bay leaf and cinnamon sticks.
  • Serve hot.
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