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A close up of a batter, with Brown and Idli
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4.86 from 7 votes

Brown Rice Idli (Instant Pot)

Learn to make soft brown rice idli batter and idli. This idly is fermented and steamed in Instant Pot(pressure cooker)
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Soaking & fermenting time14 hrs
Total Time14 hrs 25 mins
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: Indian
Diet: Vegan
Allergen: Dairy free, Gluten free
Difficulty: Easy
Servings: 6 people
Calories: 138kcal



To make Idli batter:

  • Wash the dal and rice in clean water, and soak them in separate bowls for 4-6 hours. Soak the Poha for 30 minutes before grinding or blending.
    A close up of a bowl of food, with black gram
  • Strain the water and blend the rice, dal, and poha separately adding just a little water.
    A bowl of food, aval, rice, urad dal
  • Mix all the batter and add salt.
  • Now pour the batter in the inner pot in Instant Pot (Alternatively, you could also place the batter in a warm place in the kitchen)
    Brown rice
  • Press the yogurt setting in Instant Pot and let it sit for about 9 hours.
    A close up of a batter, with Brown and Idli
  • Idli batter will be fermented and ready for cooking in the molds. Gently stir once.

Directions to prepare Idli

  • Transfer the fermented batter to a bowl and add water to the cleaner inner pot and turn on the “saute” mode to boil water.
  • While the water is heating, grease the idli molds with oil. Or if you are using paper cups, grease them with a thin layer of oil.
  • Add a small amount of batter in each mold and stack them in Instant Pot.
  • For paper cups: add ¾ cups of batter inside the paper cups then place the batter filled cups in a vessel and place the vessel inside the inner pot.
  • Close the lid and set the Instant Pot in “steam mode” in “venting” position. The timer function on the instant pot does not work in the venting position. So you have to use a separate timer.
    A close up of a pot with batter
  • In 5- 8 minutes, (10-12 minutes for paper cups), hot steaming Idlis will be ready.
  • Repeat steps 2 through 5 for the remaining batter.
  • Hot Steaming Idlis are ready to be served! Pair them with coconut chutney or sambar for a delectable experience.


IMPORTANT: Normally, it takes anywhere from 9-12 hours for the batter to ferment naturally in warm temperatures.
Use Instant Pot for fermenting batter during the winter or cold weather.
Do not seal the Instant pot during the fermentation procedure. Use a plate or a glass top.
  • First and foremost, you can steam idlis without the molds. Just use paper cups! The Idlis will look like little cups but taste just the same. You can always cut them into small circular shapes, as shown in the pictures. This tip applies to regular white idli as well.
  • I used Kerala Matta rice to get the perfect fluffy texture of the idlis, but you can use any brown rice.
  • Always grease the molds and paper cups before pouring the idli batter.
  • To get soft and fluffy idlis, do not overmix the batter for idli.
  • Adding salt before fermentation will help by not mixing the batter a lot.
  • Add water to the batter as required. Add a little water if you cannot move your spoon around the batter.
  • While grinding the batter, add water gradually to avoid getting runny batter.


Calories: 138kcal | Carbohydrates: 21g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 1g