Instant Pot Congee

Instant Pot Congee
I didn't appreciate it then, but one of the food memories that sticks out most from my childhood is going to my grandparents' every Sunday for congee and noodles. Congee, or savoury rice porridge, is one of my husband's favourite comfort foods - knowing how to make it in the Instant Pot means it's easy to score brownie points whenever he is sick. 😉
Cuisine: Chinese
  • 1 rice cup (180 mL) white rice (long-grain is fine, though I prefer a short-grain rice, like sushi or arborio rice, which is starchier and makes a thicker, creamier congee. Avoid using brown rice, as it is not starchy enough.)
  • 6 rice cups (1,080 mL) water or broth
  • 2" (5 cm) knob of ginger, peeled and sliced or julienned (I usually leave them in big slices so people can pick them out, or you can julienne if you don't mind eating it)
  • Salt and white pepper, to taste
Optional Toppings
  • Soy sauce
  • Sesame oil
  • Chili oil
  • Chinese pickled vegetables
  • Chopped green onions and/or cilantro
  • Fried garlic and/or shallots
  • Pork floss
  • Peanuts
  • Leftover vegetables or meat
  1. Place the rice into the inner sleeve of the Instant Pot. Rinse, changing the water a few times, until the water starts to run clear.
  2. Add water or broth (it should come up to the 6 cups mark in the Instant Pot), and toss in ginger.
  3. Close the Instant Pot, ensuring that the lid is set to "Sealing". Press "Manual" - the time should automatically set at 30 minutes. Allow to naturally release (I have tried quick releasing before, and if you do it too soon, the congee does bubble out of the spout!)
  4. Open the lid and stir the congee, which will slightly thicken. If you desire a thicker congee, set the Instant Pot to "Sauté" and push "Adjust" until the red light under "Less" turns on. This will bring the congee to a boil, so that you can simmer off some of the extra liquid.
  5. Season with salt and white pepper, as desired, or leave it unseasoned so that people can season their own bowls, and add desired toppings.
Chicken or Turkey Congee Variation:
Great way to use up leftover roast chicken or turkey - use chicken or turkey broth if available, and add bony pieces (i.e. chicken carcass or turkey neck) in with the ginger before cooking, and remove the bones when the cooking is finished. Stir cooked meat into the cooked congee.
Ground Beef Variation:
Use beef broth if available. Add frozen ground beef (about ½-1 lb) in with the ginger before cooking. When stirring the cooked congee, you will need to use your ladle or wooden spoon to break up the beef.
Corn Variation:
Remove kernels from 2 cobs fresh corn. Add cobs in with the ginger before cooking. Remove cobs after cooking, and stir in uncooked kernels. The heat from the congee will cook the kernels.


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