Instant Pot Khichuri – Bengali Red Lentil Risotto

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recipe by Rinku Bhattacharya

  • Time icon
    Total Time
  • Serves icon
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based on 2 ratings

A khichuri or khichdi is a classic rice and lentil mélange, prepared differently in different parts of India. This particular red lentil variation is from the Bengal. It is distinct in its use of fried onions to imbue rich flavor into the dish and is replete with cauliflower and potatoes and green peas. It gets done with in less than twenty minutes of cooking time with a beautiful drizzle of cumin scented clarified butter or ghee. To keep this dish vegan, you can use coconut oil instead of the ghee.

Inspired by:

recipe updated Jul 1, 2020


  • Red onion icon
    Red onion
    1 (135g)
  • Ginger icon
    1 tbsp (5g)
  • Yukon gold potato icon
    Yukon gold potato
    1 (213g)
  • Vegetable oil icon
    Vegetable oil
    4 tbsp (59ml)
  • Red lentils icon
    Red lentils
    about ¾ cup (151g)
  • Basmati rice icon
    Basmati rice
    about ½ cup (98g)
  • Ground coriander icon
    Ground coriander
    1 tsp (2g)
  • Cayenne pepper icon
    Cayenne pepper
    about ½ tsp (1g)
  • Salt icon
    1 tsp (about 6g)
  • Ground turmeric icon
    Ground turmeric
    about ½ tsp (1g)
  • Ground cumin icon
    Ground cumin
    1 tsp (2g)
  • Water icon
    4 cups (960ml)
  • Cauliflower icon
    2 cups (182g)
  • Frozen peas icon
    Frozen peas
    about ½ cup (61g)
  • Ghee icon
    1 tbsp (14g)
  • Cumin seeds icon
    Cumin seeds
    1.5 tsp (3g)
  • Chili flakes icon
    Chili flakes
    about ½ tsp (0g)
  • Dried chilies icon
    Dried chilies
  • Lime juice icon
    Lime juice
    2 tbsp (30g)
  • Cilantro icon
    1 tbsp (2g)


  • kCook icon Wooden spoon
  • kCook icon Stove
  • kCook icon Instant Pot
  • kCook icon Inner pot
  • kCook icon Frying pan

Step preview

  1. Add vegetable oil to the inner pot
  2. Pre-heat until hot - Sauté, Normal
  3. Add red onion to the inner pot
  4. Sauté until light golden - approx 6 min
  5. Stir red lentils, basmati rice, ground coriander, cayenne pepper, salt, ground turmeric, ground cumin and ginger into the inner pot
  6. Add yukon gold potato, water and cauliflower to the inner pot
  7. Stir until combined
  8. Cancel - Sauté
  9. Close and lock the lid and turn the steam release handle to Sealing
  10. Pressure cook - Manual, Low, 4 min
  11. Natural release - 15 min
  12. Quick release
  13. Stir well
  14. Cancel - Keep warm
  15. Heat - Sauté, Normal
  16. Then stir frozen peas into the inner pot
  17. Cook while stirring occasionally - approx 1 min
  18. Add ghee to a clean frying pan
  19. Heat - medium heat
  20. Add cumin seeds, chili flakes and dried chilies to the frying pan
  21. Cook in frying pan until fragrant
  22. Transfer spices to inner pot
  23. Stir gently
  24. Serve
  25. Sprinkle with lime juice and cilantro
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