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Easy Instant Pot Nihari

Easy Instant Pot Nihari (Pakistani Beef Stew)

This Instant Pot Nihari recipe takes 30 minutes of prep time but does not compromise on the authentic taste of this traditional Pakistani Beef Stew! Layers of flavor in every bite!
Course Main Course
Cuisine Pakistani
Diet Gluten Free, Halal, Kosher
Keyword Instant Pot Nihari
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 437kcal


Whole Spices

  • 1 small star anise
  • 2 small bay leaves
  • 1 cinnamon stick

Ground Spices

  • 2-3 whole cloves ground into a powder using a mortar & pestle
  • 2-3 green cardamom pods seeds removed and ground into a powder using a mortar & pestle
  • 1/2 tsp fennel seeds ground into a powder using a mortar & pestle
  • ½-1 tsp paprika powder
  • 1/2 tsp coriander powder
  • 1/2 tsp cumin powder
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric
  • 1/4-1/2 tsp Asian red chilli powder or cayenne
  • 1/4 tsp crushed red chilli pepper
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper powder
  • 1/8 tsp garlic powder optional
  • pinch nutmeg
  • 1/2 tbsp Nihari masala powder (I use Shan brand)



  • crispy fried onions
  • 1 inch piece ginger, julienned
  • 1 lemon, sliced
  • 1/4 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1-2 mild green chillies, chopped


  • Select the Sauté setting on the Instant Pot. Once hot, add the oil, ghee, and onion, and sauté until the onion turns golden, about 10-12 minutes.
  • Add the garlic and ginger and continue to sauté until the raw smell disappears, about 15-20 seconds.
  • Add beef and stir-fry for about 4-5 minutes or until it begins to brown.
  • Press the Cancel button to turn off the Instant Pot. Add the whole spices, powdered spices, and salt and sauté for about 20 seconds. Pour in the water and stir to deglaze any browned bits from the bottom.
  • Secure the lid and set the Pressure Release to Sealing. Select the Meat/Stew setting and turn the Pressure Level to high. The meat setting will automatically turn the timer to 45 minutes.
  • Let naturally release for 5 minutes, then move the Pressure Release to Venting to release the remaining pressure. Remove the whole spices, if desired.
  • Take out a cup of the liquid of the Nihari into a bowl. Let it cool a little by adding an ice cube to it. Place the atta or roasted brown rice flour* in another bowl. Bit by bit, whisk in the Nihari liquid to the atta to form a smooth slurry. Slowly stir this slurry back into the Instant Pot to prevent clumps. Taste and adjust salt & seasoning as desired.
  • Secure the lid again and set the Pressure Release to Sealing. Select the Pressure Cook setting and set the cooking time for 10 minutes at low pressure. Let naturally release for 5 min.
  • Sprinkle with cilantro and serve alongside the garnishing with naan.


*Traditionally, atta is used to thicken the curry. I highly recommend you use it for an authentic taste.
*For a gluten-free option, dry roast the brown rice flour in a non-stick pan over low-medium heat for 3-4 minutes. Stir constantly to ensure even browning.
*If you do not use the pre-made masala, increase the rest of the spices per taste.


Calories: 437kcal | Carbohydrates: 19g | Protein: 28g | Fat: 28g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 80mg | Sodium: 845mg | Potassium: 542mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 231IU | Vitamin C: 19mg | Calcium: 68mg | Iron: 4mg