How to cook brown rice at 8000+ feet?

I can cook it on the stove, bake it in the oven, or in a rice cooker.

  • Posted by: Robin
  • August 22, 2016


Robin August 23, 2016
Thanks, I will try this!
dinner A. August 22, 2016
I do cook brown rice with a pressure cooker; it is so much more reliable in producing excellent texture than any other method I've tried for, and should be insensitive to atmospheric pressure. Here's my procedure:
Use 2:1 by weight water to rice (I've only tried short to medium grain; long grain might require a different proportion of water).
Bring to high pressure (my Fagor pot only has two settings, low and high) over maximum heat (this takes ~7 min for me), then reduce heat to medium high (gas level 7 out of 9 for me) and cook 21 min.
Turn off the flame and allow the pressure to release naturally, not using the "quick release" (maybe ~5 min for me?).
When it releases, stir it up (it will still be a little sticky) and let it sit in the closed pot for at least 5 min, but longer is better.
caninechef August 22, 2016
The problem is the water is boiling off at a lower temperature, so the rice not exposed to as much heat. A pressure cooker, if worth the trouble, would do the job.
Susan W. August 22, 2016
Oh I did see a lot of references to pressure cookers being the way to go. Hard boiled eggs must be tricky too.
C S. August 23, 2016
In La Paz Bolivia it takes 7 minutes to get a soft-boiled egg.
Susan W. August 22, 2016
I poked around chowhound a bit and everyone had different techniques when it came to brown rice and nobody was excited about the results.

I had an idea. Lately, I've been cooking brown rice the same way I would cook pasta. Large amounts of well salted water. Bring to a boil. Add rinsed brown rice. Cook until all dente. Strain, put back into pot, cover with lid or kitchen towel and let steam for 5-10 minutes. I really like the results.
PHIL August 22, 2016
that seems like a good idea. The general consensus is that the air is thinner and much direr so you need more water and more time to cook.
Robin August 23, 2016
Thank you, I will definitely try this method. (Why rinse the rice first?)
Susan W. August 23, 2016
Robin see CanineChef's input about the boiling like pasta method. It probably won't work because of the lower heat. I think we've all decided you should buy a pressure cooker.

I've been rinsing rice for a long time now. It rinses away excess starch and also would clean it up if there's any sneaky dirt or debris. Here's a discussion with input from others.
PHIL August 22, 2016
I found this: Its all about the science Good Luck:

Follow the standard ratio of 2 cups of water for each 1 cup of dry long-grain white rice when cooking at altitudes between 3,000 and 5,000 feet. Increase the water by 2 tablespoons to 1/4 cup for altitudes above 5,000 feet, adjusting the amount upward as you go up in altitude.

Cook long-grain white rice for 15 to 20 minutes at altitudes up to 5,000 feet; increase the time incrementally as the altitude increases. Expect rice cooked above 5,000 feet to take 25 minutes or more.

Adjust as needed, adding more water if it evaporates too quickly and letting the rice cook longer if the kernels seem underdone.
Robin August 22, 2016
Thanks. It seems to be trickier with brown rice. so I'd appreciate any advice regarding cooking brown rice.
PHIL August 22, 2016
Where are you?
Robin August 22, 2016
Estes Park, CO
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