Kashmiri Pulao (Instant Pot Fruit Pilaf)

Kashmiri Pulao in plate

Kashmiri Pulao is a superb rice dish from Northern India. Long grain Basmati rice is cooked in ghee, spices, saffron milk and topped with fried onions, dried and fresh fruit.

  • Author: Saima
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4 1x
  • Category: Side
  • Method: Pressure cooking
  • Cuisine: Indian
  • Diet: Vegetarian


  • 2 tbsp ghee
  • 10 almonds, skins on
  • 10 cashews 
  • 20 raisins
  • 1 small red onion, sliced fine
  • 2 green cardamom
  • 1 black cardamom
  • 2 cloves
  • 1-2 small cinnamon sticks
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 cup long-grain Basmati rice
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 10-12 strands saffron
  • 1/4 cup plain water
  • salt, to taste
  • 1 tbsp rose water (optional)
  • 1/2 cup apple, peeled and diced
  • 1/2 cup pomegranate seeds


  1. Soak the saffron in warm milk and keep aside.
  2. Rinse the rice until the water runs clear, drain, and keep aside.
  3. Peel and dice the apple into small pieces
  4. Peel and deseed the pomegranate. 
  5. Switch on your instant pot to sauté and add the ghee. When it melts, add the almonds and cashews. Fry to a golden-brown doneness, then remove and keep aside.
  6. Cancel sauté and add the raisins. They will bloom and puff up immediately in the hot ghee. Remove them and keep aside.
  7. Press sauté again and fry the onion until it is reddish-brown. Remove and keep aside.
  8. Add the whole spices and fry for 30 seconds.
  9. Add the rinsed rice and fry it in the ghee for a minute.
  10. Cancel sauté. Add the saffron-soaked milk, water, and salt and mix well. Secure the lid and make sure the steam release vent is sealed. Press the pressure cooking button (high) and set the timer to 4 minutes. 
  11. When the timer beeps, wait 5 minutes before releasing the remaining pressure. Open the pot and add the rose water if using. Fluff the rice with a fork. 
  12. Add the fried almonds, cashews, raisins, apple, pomegranate, and fried onions. Gently mix together with the rice. Serve warm. 


  1. Use long-grain Basmati rice and a good quality saffron for this recipe.
  2. Substitute ghee for a neutral oil if you are vegan.
  3. Don't add more saffron than the recipe calls for since it can easily overwhelm the dish. If saffron is not available, you can use a very small pinch of yellow food color. 
  4. Fluff the rice with a fork after opening the pot or it will clump together if it cools down in the pot itself. 
  5. Add or subtract the fruit according to your preference. You can use pineapple chunks or dried cranberries too in this recipe. 


Keywords: kashmiri pulao, fruit pulao, instant pot rice recipes