Instant Pot Sushi Rice is the perfect sticky rice for making homemade sushi. The pressure cooker makes the process simple. This recipe includes traditional methods and ingredients for the ideal outcome.

A bowl of cooked sushi rice

Well executed sushi rice is essential for a perfect sushi roll. Short grain rice is cooked until sticky, then seasoned with vinegar and sugar to give a slightly sweet and sour flavor that pairs perfectly with fish, avocado, chopped vegetables, or whatever else you want to put in your roll.

This foolproof Instant Pot method simplifies the process for perfect sushi rice every single time. You’ll throw out your rice cooker once you realize how much easier it is to use the electric pressure cooker.

Why You Need This Recipe

  • It’s an easy method for perfect sushi rice. Rice is notoriously difficult to cook perfectly. If you undercook it it’s slightly crunchy and if you overcook it it’s mushy or gummy. This recipe is simple and it comes out perfect every time.
  • It’s essential to use sushi rice to make a tasty homemade sushi roll or for sushi bowls. Basmati rice is a long grain rice and won’t be sticky enough to hold your rolls together or have the right flavor.
  • This recipe has the traditional flavors. If you want your sushi to taste like the traditional sushi you know and love this is the recipe for you.
homemade sushi on a platter

Key Ingredients

Short grain rice has a higher starch content which means it will cook up stickier than long grain rice. You can find rice specifically labeled sushi rice in the store (I like this brand of California-grown organic sushi rice).

Kombu seaweed adds a savory umami flavor to the rice. If you’re unsure whether you will like the flavor, you can leave this ingredient out. I use the Eden brand of Kombu.

Unseasoned Japanese rice sushi vinegar will add the perfect balance of sweet and acidic without changing the flavor. I like the Kikkoman brand.

Sugar counteracts the acidic flavor of the rice vinegar for a slightly sweet flavor.

Ingredients for sushi rice

Recipe Steps

Step One

Rinse sushi rice until the water is clear and then drain well in a mesh drainer.

As always, please do see the recipe card at the end of this post for the exact ingredients and measurements.

Step Two

Wipe Kombu carefully with a moist towel but do not remove the white coating.

How to make sushi rice in the instant pot

Step Three

Add rice and water to the Instant Pot with one piece of Kombu and cover. Set to high pressure for 1 minute. Once the cooking time is up, use the natural release method for 20 minutes. Transfer rice to a non-metal bowl.

Step Four

While the rice cooks, combine the other piece of kombu, rice vinegar, Aji-Mirin, salt, and sugar in a saucepan on medium low. Cook until all ingredients come together then set aside.

Step Five

When 5 minutes are left on the natural release, remove the kombu from the vinegar and place the saucepan in ice water to cool.

Step Six

Pour the vinegar mixture over the rice and break up the rice gently with your wooden spoon to distribute the vinegar evenly. Once cooled, your sushi rice is ready to use.

cooked sushi rice in a bowl

Recipe Tips & Substitutions

  • Do not soak the rice before you cook it, as it can become waterlogged and mushy.  The rice is fragile, so handle with care to avoid breaking the grain.
  • Sushi rice is best used right away.  It can be stored 3-5 days in an airtight container in the refrigerator, but the rice will be drier than when consumed fresh.
  • Don’t stir the rice too much with the paddle or it will become mushy.
  • Wait until the rice is cool before using it to make sushi or it can cause the rice to get mushy.

FAQs

What is Kombu?

Kombu is a kelp used in Japanese cuisine. It comes dried in a sheet format.

What is Aji-Mirin?

Aji-Mirin is a sweet and syrupy condiment used in Japanese cooking. It contains between 8-14% alcohol. You can also buy alcohol-free versions.

Can I use other types of rice for sushi rolls?

Yes, but they may not be as sticky. In a pinch, you can use arborio rice but sushi rice is always recommended.

bowls of cooked instant pot sushi rice

Other Instant Pot Recipes You Might Like

Or, see all of my healthy Instant Pot recipes.

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a bowl of sushi rice

Instant Pot Sushi Recipe


Description

Instant Pot Sushi Rice is the perfect sticky rice for making homemade sushi. The pressure cooker makes the process simple. This recipe includes traditional methods and ingredients for the ideal outcome.


Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 1 cup short grain rice
  • 1 cup cold water
  • 1 2×2-inch pieces Kombu seaweed, broken in half
  • 3 Tablespoons Unseasoned Japanese Rice Vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon Aji-Mirin
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 Tablespoon sugar

Instructions

  1. Rinse Sushi rice gently in a mesh strainer placed in a bowl swirling the rice with your fingers. Repeat till water is clear; up to 7-8 times.
  2. Let rice drain well in a mesh strainer.
  3. Prepare the Kombu by wiping carefully with a moist towel. Do not remove the white coating as this provides all the delicious flavor.
  4. Add Rice to Instant Pot with water and one piece of the Kombu. Ensure all the rice is covered with water. Add the cover and set to Sealing. Set the Instant Pot to High Pressure for 0 minutes or 1 minute if your Instant Pot does not have 0 minutes option.
  5. It will take approximately 10 minutes for pressure to be reached. Once the cooking time is up, use the natural release method for 20 minutes. Turn venting knob to vent to release any remaining pressure. Remove lid carefully and place aside. Gently transfer rice to a non-metal bowl.
  6. While the Rice is cooking, place the other piece of Kombu in a saucepan and combine with the Rice Vinegar, Aji-Mirin, salt and sugar. Heat on medium-low heat until all ingredients come together. Do not boil. Set aside to cool.
  7. When 5 minutes are remaining on the natural release, remove the Kombu from the vinegar mixture and place the saucepan in ice water to cool.
  8. Pour the vinegar mixture over the rice making sure to cover all the rice. Using a flat spoon or rice paddle to pour the vinegar mixture onto can help distribute the rice evenly when pouring.  Break up the rice gently by using a cutting motion at a 45 degree angle with your rice paddle to distribute all the vinegar mixture over the rice and use a piece of cardboard or a magazine to fan the rice and speed cooling.  You could also use a small fan to cool the rice.
  9. Once cooled to room temperature, your sushi rice is ready to use or serve. If not using immediately, cover bowl with a damp towel to keep rice moist.

Notes

  1. Do not soak the rice, it will become waterlogged and mushy. The rice is fragile so handle with care to avoid breaking the grain.
  2. Sushi rice is best used right away. It can be stored 3-5 days in the refrigerator.  Rice will be drier than when consumed fresh.
  • Category: Side dish
  • Method: Instant Pot
  • Cuisine: Japanese

Keywords: sushi rice in instant pot, pressure cooker sushi rice, how to make sushi rice

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