Instant Pot Curried Apple Pilaf


This curried apple pilaf is a flavorful side dish that’s both sweet and savory. It’s made with basmati rice, sweet apples, toasty walnuts and plump raisins. Pair this side with any protein for a perfectly flavorful meal.

Curried Apple Pilaf by Ashley of

You can make this curried apple pilaf in less than thirty minutes by using an Instant Pot (this is the model that I have and love)! It’s the perfect side to pair with roast chicken, broiled lamb chops, rib roast – you name it. Anything that goes well with plain rice will go well with this curried rice.

The soft apples add sweetness, the toasty walnuts add a bit of crunch and the curry powder lends a savory flavor to the dish. I also added some apple juice to the rice to give it extra apple flavor. And I used my all-time favorite type of rice: basmati rice – this brand is my favorite!

Curried Apple Pilaf by Ashley of

This is an Indian-inspired recipe – not authentic one by any means. In fact, I consider this more of a western dish than I do Indian. That’s because this recipe calls for curry powder, a spice blend that is actually a British invention. If you’re not familiar with curry powder, you can read this blog post that I wrote about it. While I do post a lot of authentic Indian recipes, the truth is that I like the flavor of this Indian-inspired spice blend because it’s convenient and easier than grabbing several jars of spices. This is crucial when living a busy lifestyle (or in my case a busy “chasing a baby all around the house” lifestyle).

I made this dish for a food blogger potluck that we had in my backyard this past weekend (see my Instagram post about the dinner!). Once I and the other bloggers get all of our apple-themed recipes up I’ll be sure to post a recap of the event here on the blog. It was so much fun and the food was all really good – so stay tuned for that 🙂 In the meantime, make this curried apple pilaf and tell me what you think about it!

Curried Apple Pilaf by Ashley of

Instant Pot Curried Apple Pilaf

Curried Apple Pilaf by Ashley of

Instant Pot Curried Apple Pilaf

4.5 from 2 reviews
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  • 2 cups basmati rice soaked for 15-30 minutes
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 cardamom pods
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 cinnamon stick
  • 1 onion diced
  • 1/2 cup walnuts chopped
  • 1/4 cup golden raisins
  • 2 apples diced
  • 1 cup apple juice
  • 1 cup water
  • 3 teaspoons curry powder adjust to taste
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons salt adjust to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon ginger powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne


  • Soak the basmati rice in cold water for 15-30 minutes. Drain and rinse.
  • Press saute, add butter and once it melts, add the whole spices to the pot. When they begin to sizzle add the onion and stir-fry for 6-7 minutes or until it begins to brown.
  • Add the walnuts and raisins, stir for 1-2 minutes to toast the walnuts, then add the remaining ingredients and mix well.
  • Cook for 6 minutes at high pressure. When it is done, wait 10 minutes then release any remaining pressure.
  • Garnish with cilantro.
Did you make this recipe?Tag @myheartbeets on Instagram and hashtag it #myheartbeets!

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Curried Apple Pilaf by Ashley of

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Find out more about my cookbooks Indian Food Under Pressure and South Asian Persuasion.

About Ashley

Hi, I’m Ashley. Thanks for being here! I truly believe that food brings us closer together. Gather around a table with good food and good people, and you’ll have the ingredients you need to create some happy memories. My hope is that you find recipes here that you can’t wait to share with family and friends.


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  1. Jen says

    4 stars
    I made this on Christmas day. For some reason, I got the burn signal, just as the IP reached pressure point. I just switched it off and left in there for another 16 minutes. I had a little that got stuck to the bottom, but the dish in itself was delicious.Next time, I will add an additional tsp of curry powder, I know you said adjust to taste, but when I make a dish for the first time, I follow the recipe to a T, so I can figure what to adjust next time. This tasted fantastic with some Indian mango pickle. I think you can pair this with any spicy dish, the sweetness of the apple balances it out. Another keeper, Ashley!

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Jen, I’m so glad you liked the flavor of this dish! Thank you for sharing! A bummer that some of it was stuck at the bottom though – sorry about that! I’ve heard the newer models are hotter/show the burn sign more often even when food doesn’t actually burn but not totally positive about this. Hope that doesn’t happen again!

  2. Maneesha says

    5 stars
    Hi Ashley! This recipe is such a slam-dunk hit! My husband and I loved the sweetness of the apple with the spices and masala in the rice. I shared the recipe with my mother, who went absolutely BANANAS about it! Loved it!

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