Easy Instant Pot Chana Pulao

Instant Pot Pakistani Chana Pulao (Chickpea Pilaf) – 20-minute prep!

This Instant Pot Pakistani Chana Pulao is easy, flavorful, and it takes less than 20 minutes of total prep time! Perfect for a weeknight dinner yet elegant enough for guests. Naturally gluten-free and vegetarian! 
Course Main Course
Cuisine Pakistani
Keyword Easy Instant Pot Chana Pulao
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 4


  • 1 ½ cups aged long grain basmati rice
  • 2 tbsp neutral oil such as grapeseed or avocado
  • 1 tbsp ghee
  • 1 medium onion thinly sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic crushed
  • 1/3 inch piece ginger crushed
  • 2 small bay leaves or 1 large
  • ½ tsp whole black peppercorns
  • 1- inch piece cinnamon stick
  • 1 small black cardamom optional
  • 5 whole cloves
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 15 oz can of chickpeas rinsed and drained
  • 1 1/2 tsp heaped salt or to taste
  • 2 cups water


  • Thoroughly wash the rice and soak it in water. Set aside.
  • Turn Instant Pot to high Sauté Mode. Once hot, add the oil, ghee, and thinly sliced onion. Sauté, stirring often, until the onions are golden, about 8-10 minutes. The color of the onions will determine the color of the rice so you want to get them even and golden.
  • Add the garlic and ginger and sauté for another minute or until the raw smell disappears. Deglaze the pan with 2 tbsp of water and continue to sauté.
  • Add the whole spices and drained chickpeas and stir to combine.
  • Drain the soaked rice and add it to the Instant Pot along with 2 cups of water and salt. Mix gently and press down the rice and chickpeas so that they are submerged in the water. Taste the water - it should be saltier than you would normally prefer. If it's not, add a bit more salt. Scrape the sides to remain all the rice is within the pot.
  • Cancel sauté. Cover and pressure-cook on high for 6 minutes. Let naturally release for 15 minutes. Fluff with a fork.


To make this in a rice cooker - Prepare the onion/chickpea mixture in a saucepan and transfer it to a rice cooker along with the drained rice and 3 cups water. Cook the rice cooker on regular rice setting.