How to Cook Arborio Rice

Arborio rice is a versatile, short-grain rice that can be cooked using various methods, including an Instant Pot, on the stove, or in a slow cooker. In this article, we’ll provide you with tips and instructions on how to perfectly cook Arborio rice so it’s tender and fluffy, making it an ideal fat-free, gluten-free side dish for any meal. Achieving the right texture requires precise measurements of liquid, but don’t worry, we’ve got you covered with the correct water ratio needed for each cooking method.

Whether you’re using a pressure cooker, stove, or slow cooker, this guide will ensure that your Arborio rice is cooked to perfection. We’ll also discuss the best ways to store leftover rice and address some frequently asked questions about Arborio rice. So let’s dive in and help you master the art of cooking this delicious Italian rice.

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Key Takeaways

  • Learn three methods to cook Arborio rice: Instant Pot, stove, and slow cooker
  • Correct water ratio is crucial for achieving tender, fluffy rice
  • Discover storage tips and common questions about Arborio rice

Instant Pot Arborio Rice

Focusing on the pressure cooker, it’s the top choice for cooking all types of rice, including jasmine rice, long grain, and Arborio rice. White rice is generally popular, fast-cooking, and budget-friendly, so you will want to follow the pressure cooker recipe we provide for this method.

While cooking brown rice in a pressure cooker is also possible and is healthier due to the husk and higher fiber content, it takes longer and has a stronger, drier taste.

To make the most of your Instant Pot experience, consider these helpful tips:

  • Bookmark an Instant Pot recipe page for easy access to new weekly recipes.
  • Print an Instant Pot cooking time cheat sheet to better understand how long meat, vegetables, and beans take to cook in your pressure cooker.
  • A good-quality Instant Pot cookbook and a set of wooden utensils are highly recommended.
  • Invest in a non-stick pot for your pressure cooker to prevent excessive sticking.

Keep in mind that deglazing your pressure cooker after sautéing is essential, but using a non-stick liner can help minimize potential issues.

As a reference, a 6-quart pressure cooker has provided great results for many recipes, including the Arborio rice we’re discussing here. Remember to enjoy your Instant Pot journey, and if you haven’t already, sign up for a free newsletter to stay updated on new posts, recipes, and tips!

Pressure Cooker Arborio Rice

To cook Arborio rice in a pressure cooker, like an Instant Pot, Foodi, or Crockpot Express, maintain the same ratio and timing. Use a 2:1 ratio with a minor variation of 1/4 cup, depending on the type of rice.

  • 1 cup Arborio rice
  • 1 3/4 cups water or broth

Enjoy experimenting with different cooking methods to find your favorite way of preparing rice.

Ninja Foodi Arborio Rice

As someone who has grown up eating rice, you likely have personal preferences when it comes to the texture and consistency of your rice dishes. The Ninja Foodi can help you achieve the perfect result, similar to a high-quality rice cooker or Instant Pot. Here’s a simple method you can follow using your Ninja Foodi:

  1. Optional: spray the inner pot with olive oil for easier cleanup.
  2. Combine rice and water (or broth) in the Ninja Foodi pot, stirring well.
  3. Set the device to high pressure and cook for 5 minutes.
  4. Allow the steam to release naturally for 5 minutes, then perform a quick release for the remaining pressure.
  5. Fluff the cooked rice with a fork and add butter, salt, pepper, and parmesan cheese to taste, then serve immediately for the best flavor and texture.

Now, let’s address the rinsing debate. Traditionally, rice is rinsed to remove the white powdery substance found on the outside of each grain. This process results in separate, less sticky rice when cooked. However, if you prefer stickier rice like that served in restaurants, you can skip the rinsing step. Although restaurant rice is usually sushi rice—which is pricier—the consistency of your unrinsed Arborio rice cooked in the Ninja Foodi will be quite similar without adding extra water at the beginning. Enjoy your perfectly cooked Arborio rice!

What is the Proper Arborio Rice Water Proportion?

To achieve the ideal fluffy texture in Arborio rice, use a 1:1.5 ratio. That means you’ll combine 1 cup of rice with 1.5 cups of water or broth, such as chicken broth, in your pot. Then, bring the mixture to a boil, give it a quick stir, cover with a lid, and let it simmer for 20 minutes until tender and plump. Remember to occasionally ladle in more chicken stock if needed, and watch the sodium levels for optimal taste.

Cooking Arborio Rice on the Stovetop

To prepare Arborio rice on the stovetop, use a 2:1 water-to-rice ratio. Combine the water and rice in a saucepan over the stove. Bring the water to a boil, then mix in the rice. Place a lid on the saucepan, lower the heat, and let it gently simmer for around 20 minutes. The rice is ready once all the water has been absorbed. Finally, fluff with a spoon and serve your perfectly cooked Arborio rice.

Slow Cooker Arborio Rice

Arborio rice, known for its high starch content, is stickier than long-grain rice varieties. Cooking it in a slow cooker works surprisingly well, and it can be a delightful meal. Once the water has been absorbed, you can add 1/2 cup of shredded parmesan on top to enhance the flavors.

For an Italian twist, include some seasonings and sprinkle chopped parsley over the finished dish. Pair it with grilled chicken and a glass of white wine for a delicious and satisfying meal. Give it a try and see how the slow cooker method enhances the arborio rice experience.

While arborio rice is not typically used for rice pudding, you can still indulge in a fantastic dessert. Opt for Minute rice to make a delicious slow cooker rice pudding. Alternatively, you can try our Instant Pot rice pudding recipe, which takes less than 30 minutes to prepare. This homemade dessert will surpass the taste of any restaurant offering. Enjoy your meal and don’t forget to treat yourself with a fantastic rice pudding dessert afterward.

Optimal Method for Storing Leftover Rice

While leftover rice may not taste exactly like fresh rice, properly storing it can make a difference. To maintain its quality, place the cooled rice in an airtight container or resealable freezer bag, ensuring all air is removed. Store it in the fridge for no more than 24 hours.

To reheat, transfer the rice into a microwave-safe dish, add about 2 tablespoons of broth, and microwave for 1 minute, stirring at the halfway point. Remember to use a colander when cooling your white rice to attain the best results. Enjoy your rice with its flavors still intact!

9 Really Good Alternatives to Arborio Rice You Never Knew About

How to Cook Arborio Rice

Quick and easy method to cook arborio rice.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 4
Calories 187 kcal


  • Pressure cooker or stove pot


  • 1 cup Arborio rice
  • 1 3/4 cups water or broth


Pressure Cooker Arborio Rice

  • Add rice and water (or broth) to the pressure cooker.
  • Stir them together.
  • Cook on high pressure for 5 minutes.
  • Allow the steam to release naturally for 5 minutes.
  • Release any remaining steam.
  • Fluff with a fork and serve.

Stovetop Arborio Rice

  • Combine 1 cup rice and 1.5 cups water or broth in a pot.
  • Bring the mixture to a boil.
  • Stir once, then cover with a lid.
  • Simmer for 20 minutes.
  • Remove the pot from heat and let it stand for 10 minutes.
  • Fluff the rice with a fork.


Calories: 187kcal
Keyword how to cook arborio rice
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Frequently Asked Questions

Arborio Rice: Water Quantity for 2 Cups

For 2 cups of Arborio rice, you will need 4 cups of water or liquid (like broth).

Ideal Water to Arborio Rice Ratio

The recommended Arborio rice to water ratio is 1:2, which means 1 cup of rice to 2 cups of water. This creates the perfect creamy texture for dishes like risotto.

Arborio Rice Cooking Method Comparison

Yes, Arborio rice can be cooked like regular rice, but it’s more commonly prepared by gradually adding liquid for a creamier, risotto-style dish.

Pre-Soaking Arborio Rice: Is It Necessary?

No, you don’t need to soak Arborio rice before cooking it. Just rinse it under cold water to remove any excess starch.

Boiling Arborio Rice Similar to Pasta

Yes, you can boil Arborio rice like pasta. Simply cook it in a pot of boiling water or broth for around 10-12 minutes or until it reaches your desired texture. Then, drain the excess liquid.

Arborio Rice to Water Ratio in a Rice Cooker

For Arborio rice in a rice cooker, use the same 1:2 ratio as stovetop cooking. You might need to adjust the settings if your rice cooker has different options for types of rice.

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Cassie brings decades of experience to the Kitchen Community. She is a noted chef and avid gardener. Her new book "Healthy Eating Through the Garden" will be released shortly. When not writing or speaking about food and gardens Cassie can be found puttering around farmer's markets and greenhouses looking for the next great idea.
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