How to Cook Japanese Brown Rice in Pressure Cooker

5 from 3 votes

Japanese Brown Rice is a more healthy alternative to white rice. And if you prepare using pressure cooking, you’ll be amazed at how easy it is to make fluffy, starchy, perfect brown rice!

Japanese brown rice in a bowl

If you eat rice every day and are looking for a healthier option, Japanese brown rice (genmai in Japanese) is the perfect rice for you!

You can get tons of health benefits by changing your rice type. Brown rice contains more dietary fiber and vitamins than white rice.

And one of the best ways to prepare it is by using a pressure cooker. I will show you how to make the best brown rice in this easy recipe.

    This recipe is for you if:
  • You love Japanese rice.
  • You want to cook Japanese brown rice.
  • You want to know how to cook brown rice in a pressure cooker.

Are you curious about how to cook it? I cover everything you should know here, so let’s get started!

About This Recipe

  • Japanese brown rice recipe in a pressure cooker
  • The benefit of brown rice
  • Partially milled brown rice
  • Helpful tips for cooking brown rice

📋 Japanese Brown Rice

In Japan, we typically eat short-grain rice, which is characterized by its short and round shape. Japanese brown rice is also short-grain rice but also includes rice bran and rice germ, just like long-grain brown rice. See the recipe below if you are also interested in cooking Japanese short-grain rice.

How To Cook Perfect Japanese Rice on The Stove
5 from 13 votes
No rice cooker? No problem! Learn how to cook Japanese rice on the stove for fluffy and delicious results, and savor a wholesome Japanese meal at home – read on!
Make This Recipe
Japanese short grain rice in a pot

Brown rice is healthy rice!

Japanese brown rice grain.

In general, brown rice is healthier than white rice because the bran and germ (that give it the brown color) are high in nutrition.

Here are some of the nutrients that brown rice contains more than white rice:

  • Dietary Fiber (prevents constipation)
  • Vitamin B1 (efficiently converts sugar into energy)
  • Vitamin B6 (promotes protein metabolism)
  • Iron (makes blood, prevents anemia)
  • Magnesium (supports the action of enzymes)

I’ve experienced plenty of these benefits by just replacing white rice with brown rice, so I’m sure you will, too.

You may get indigestion…

Japanese brown rice (raw) on a plate

While brown rice is a super healthy whole grain, some people may have issues with indigestion.

It happened to me when I started eating brown rice that was prepared in a rice cooker. I often felt bloated and uncomfortable.

Unfortunately, it’s more difficult to digest than white rice because the skin is harder.


Once I changed the following, I no longer had indigestion issues!

  • A pressure cooker: I used to cook it in a regular rice cooker. Then I switched to a pressure cooker, and I found it was totally different. The brown rice I made in the pressure cooker had a perfect consistency. It was so fluffy, soft, and easier to digest.
  • Partially milled rice: Partially milled rice has fewer nutrients than brown rice, but it’s softer. See the following section for the details.
  • Chew well: Digestion starts from the mouth, so it’s better to chew well (not only for rice!) to digest food smoothly.

Partially Milled Brown Rice

Japanese white rice, half milled rice, and brown rice.

What is partially milled brown rice?? It’s rice that is between white rice and brown rice and has various degrees of milling.

  • 30% milled brown rice: 30% of rice bran is removed. It’s similar to regular brown rice, but it is softer.
  • 50% or half-milled brown rice: Half of the rice bran is removed. It’s in the middle of brown rice and white rice.
  • 70% milled brown rice: 70% of the rice bran and part of the rice germ is removed. The texture is more like white rice.

Smaller numbers are closer to brown rice, and larger numbers are closer to white rice. I like half-milled brown rice because it has a good balance of nutrition and digestion.

So, if you have had similar indigestion issues or have small children, I highly recommend trying partially milled brown rice.

Fluffy Brown Rice in a Pressure Cooker

Japanese brown rice served in a bowl.

Have you cooked brown rice in a rice cooker? Did you like it?

I used a rice cooker for years, but in my opinion, it doesn’t taste good because it would always turn out hard and dry. I could never get perfect results…

If you have a pressure cooker, please try it immediately! You will discover how fluffy, starchy, and tasty brown rice is.

My favorite pressure cooker

a pressure cooker

(This information is for those who live in Japan.)

This is my favorite one: Zero Pressure Cooker S Size.

I like this type because:

  • Wide variety of sizes
  • Super easy to use

The smallest size in this series is 2.5 L and light enough to hold with one hand. And it is large enough for families with small children. Great for cooking rice and beans.

It comes with a red weight (high pressure) and a white weight (low pressure), and you can set the pressure with these two weights. You just put the weight on the lid, and no need to change the setting like the dial type.

When pressure is reached, the weight jiggles and makes a whooshing sound, so even beginners of pressure cookers can easily understand the timing of when to lower the heat, so it’s pretty easy to use.

So, if you live in Japan and plan to buy a pressure cooker, I recommend this zero-pressure cooker.


Well, now it’s time to cook! Let’s go through the steps. You can also watch this video.

How to cook Japanese brown rice in a pressure cooker
  1. Soak brown rice: Put brown rice in a pressure cooker, rinse quickly, and soak in water for 8 to 12 hours.
  2. Add water: Drain the water out and add 400ml of water.
  3. Cook over high heat: Close the lid and cook over high heat.
  4. Cook over low heat: When pressure is reached (weight starts jiggling), lower the heat and simmer for 15 minutes.
  5. Steam: Turn off the heat and leave it for 10 minutes.
  6. Stir gently: Once the remaining pressure has been released, open the lid after and stir the rice gently. Note: If you don’t stir, the rice will become hard and stick to the bottom of the pot.
Japanese brown rice in a bowl

Serve it in a bowl and enjoy fluffy and nutritious brown rice!


If you have leftovers, wrap one serving in cling wrap and store it in the freezer. It will last up to one month.

Helpful Tips

#1 Rinse lightly

Rinsing Japanese brown rice under cold water.

Since brown rice is not milled like white rice and the water doesn’t become cloudy, you can rinse it lightly a couple of times.

By the way, dried rice absorbs water quickly, so it’s best to use clean water (filtered water or mineral water) if possible.

#2 Soak in water

It is important to soak the rice in water.

If the soaking time is too short (or not all), you will end up with hard and dry brown rice. So, I recommend preparing rice the previous day and letting it soak overnight (8 to 12 hours).

#3 Amount of water

Japanese rice cups.

(We use a Japanese rice cup, which is 180ml for 1 cup.)

It is important we use the ratio of water to rice. My water-to-rice ratio is 1.1 to 1.5 cups of water (200ml to 270ml) to 1 cup of brown rice (180ml). In this recipe, we use 2 cups of brown rice (360ml) and 2.2 cups of water (400ml).

First, make brown rice according to the recipe, and if the rice is hard, please try again by adding more water (max is 540ml).

Similar to white rice, each variety of brown rice may require different amounts of water for cooking. Some may require less water, and some may require much water. So, you may need to experiment to get great results.

#4 Cook Time

In this recipe, we cook it for 15 minutes over low heat. You might need to tweak the time depending on the pressure cooker you have. If it seems too short, extend it up to 20 minutes and see how it goes.

#5 Add salt (if needed)

Salt with a teaspoon.

If you don’t like the finished rice taste, adding a little salt may help. Salt can also help to get rid of the smell and bitterness of brown rice.

What To Serve With

Brown rice pairs well with anything, such as grilled fish, tamagoyaki (Japanese rolled omelet), stir-fried vegetables, and simmered dishes.

Here is a sample light lunch menu for you!

How To Eat It

Japanese brown rice onigiri(rice ball)

There are different ways to enjoy brown rice (similar to regular white rice). First, eat it as it is, then try these fun variations below.

  • Onigiri: This is so classic, but onigiri (rice ball) is the best way! Stuff with pickled plum, bonito flakes, or grilled salmon and shape it. This is simple and delicious (See onigiri recipes).
  • Miso paste onigiri: Make onigiri first, spread miso paste on, then grill it until brown. This one is a little special.
  • Mix in other ingredients: Mix in edamame, green peas, toasted sesame, steamed vegetables, cheese, and so on.
  • Cook with beans: Cook brown rice with soybeans, adzuki beans, or black beans together and make rice pilaf. Adding either of these will make a great side dish!

Thanks For Stopping By!

Japanese brown rice in a pressure cooker.

Once you’ve succeeded at making chewy and delicious brown rice, you will want to make it again! For future meals, why don’t you try making it maybe every other day or once a week at a slow pace?

I hope you will like the recipe!

Thank you for taking the time to read my blog♡. If you’ve tried this recipe (or any other recipe on the blog), please give it a star rating below!

Also, feel free to leave comments if you have any questions. I love hearing from you!

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More Rice Recipes You Might Like

Japanese brown rice in a bowl

How to Cook Japanese Brown Rice in Pressure Cooker

5 from 3 votes
Print Pin Save
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes
Total: 20 minutes
Servings: 4 to 6 servings
Author: Juri Austin
Japanese Brown Rice is a more healthy alternative to white rice. And if you prepare using pressure cooking, you'll be amazed at how easy it is to make fluffy, starchy, perfect brown rice!


  • 1 Zero pressure cooker
  • 1 Shamoji (rice paddle)
  • 1 Rice cup


  • 360 ml Japanese Brown Rice, 300g/2 Japanese rice cups
  • 400 ml Water, 2 Japanese rice cups


  • Soak brown rice: Put brown rice in a pressure cooker, rinse quickly, and soak in water for 8 to 12 hours.
  • Cook on high heat: Drain the water out, add 400ml water, close the lid, and cook over high heat.
  • Cook on low heat: When pressure is reached, lower the heat and simmer for 15 minutes.
  • Steam: Turn off the heat and leave it for 10 minutes.
  • Stir gently: Open the lid after pressure is released and stir the rice gently.



  • Storage: If you have leftover rice, wrap one serving in cling wrap and keep them in the freezer. It will last up to one month.
  • Portion: This recipe will make 4 servings for adults and 6 servings for children. 1 serving for adults is 150g for children is 100g. 
  • A Japanese rice cup is 180ml.
  • After steaming for 10 minutes, don’t forget to stir the rice. If you don’t stir, the rice will become hard and stick to the bottom of the pot.
  • How to use a pressure cooker might be different, so please confirm your pressure cooker’s instructions.


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 289kcal | Carbohydrates: 65.6g | Protein: 4.9g | Fat: 1.8g | Sodium: 5.8mg
Course: Rice
Cuisine: Japanese
Keyword: How to cook Japanese Brown Rice
Did You Make this recipe?Please Leave a star rating!

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