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Instant Pot Sweet Pongal

Imagine the warm aroma of ghee filling your kitchen as plump raisins and golden cashews dance in a creamy rice pudding. This delightful scene isn’t a dream; it’s the magic of Instant Pot Sweet Pongal, a traditional South Indian dessert that’s both comforting and delicious.

Perfect for satisfying your sweet tooth or celebrating special occasions, Pongal is a versatile dish. It can be enjoyed as a breakfast porridge, a light afternoon snack, or a decadent dessert. In this recipe, we’ll guide you through making the sweet version, also known as Sakkarai Pongal, using your trusty Instant Pot for a quick and hassle-free experience.

Instant Pot Sweet Pongal – A traditional, healthy, luxurious, easy-to-make South Indian dessert similar to rice pudding, made in less than 30 minutes using Instant Pot with everyday ingredients

What is instant sweet Pongal?

Sweet Pongal or Sakkarai Pongal is essentially an Indian version of pudding made from milk, rice, lentils, jaggery, ghee, and some Indian spices like cardamom and is usually served as a dessert.

Named after the Pongal festival which marks the celebration of the first harvested paddy of the season, it is a popular choice for family gatherings, housewarming parties, and festive occasions.

Notably, during Indian housewarming functions, the ‘boiling over’ of Pongal is considered very auspicious and is usually received with thunderous applause and cheers from those present, marking the beginning of a prosperous journey to the new home.

Using an Instant Pot instead of the traditional cooking bowl or pressure cooker greatly simplifies the process.

Why you’ll love this recipe:

  • Delicious and satisfying: as sweet as you want, rich texture, filling, and luscious!
  • Healthy: Lentils help you meet your daily protein intake, while ghee when added in moderation to a hot dish, can improve good fat content and digestion.
  • It takes barely 10 minutes to make, using an Instant Pot
  • Beginners can also make it easily, without any hassle!
  • Perfect for small or large gatherings and festive occasions.

Ingredients & Substitutions:

Rice – I used “Sona Masoori Rice”. You can use any raw rice but do not replace it with basmati rice.

Moong Dal – Moong dal is a split green gram, easily available in any Indian store.

Cane sugar – The traditional recipe calls for cane sugar, which you can get at any Asian store. Brown sugar or white sugar can be used as a substitute.

Milk – Replace it with coconut milk or plant-based milk for the vegan version.

Ghee – Ghee is clarified butter and adds a delicious flavor and richness to the dish. Do not reduce the amount of ghee for the best taste. Replace it with vegan butter or coconut oil if you are vegan.

Nuts & Raisins – You can use all your favorite nuts. Adds a delicious crunch.

Cardamom Powder – Don’t skip it. If possible, use freshly ground cardamom.

Storage suggestions:

Store any leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Before serving, remove it from the refrigerator, add a little hot milk or hot water to the Pongal to thin it, and heat it gently in the microwave or stovetop until warm.

Serving suggestions:

Drizzle a little ghee over the pongal and serve warm as a dessert, snack, or breakfast.

Tips and notes:

Follow the exact liquid measurements to make the best sweet Pongal.

Add jaggery to the rice mixture while it is still hot so that it dissolves easily.

If you are not using organic cane sugar, dissolve the cane sugar in some water in the microwave or stovetop and filter it with a sieve. Add the jaggery water after the rice is cooked.

To prevent the Instant Pot from displaying a fire warning, make sure to remove any bits stuck to the bottom.

Adjust the sweetness to your taste. Add more jaggery if necessary.

You can also toast and add fresh or dried coconut pieces for extra flavor and crunch.

Step-by-step instructions:

Press the SAUTE button.

Add the cashew nuts and fry until they turn a light brown color. Add raisins and continue roasting until golden brown.

Remove them from the pot and set aside.

Add moong dal and roast until it turns light brown.

Add the rinsed rice and mix everything.

Add milk and water.

Mix and scrape the bottom well.

Close the lid and set the valve to the shut-off position.

Cancel the fry mode press the PRESSURE COOK / MANUAL button and set the time to 8 minutes.

Allow the pressure to release naturally. Wait until the metal pin drops down before opening the lid.

Open the lid and mix it.

Add powdered or grated jaggery and cardamom powder to the cooked rice mixture while it is still hot.

Mix until the cane sugar dissolves.

Add the fried nuts and the remaining ghee and mix well.

Serve hot and enjoy!

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Instant sweet pongal recipe video below:

Instant Pot Sweet Pongal

Hari Chandana Ponnaluri

A traditional, healthy, luxurious, easy-to-make South Indian dessert similar to rice pudding, made in less than 30 minutes using Instant Pot with everyday ingredients

Preparation time 5 minutes min

Cooking time 10 minutes min

Total time 15 minutes min

Portions 6

Calories 364 kcal

Cooking modePrevent your screen from going dark

Instructions

  • Press the SAUTE button and add 2 tablespoons of ghee to the inner pot of your Instant Pot.
  • Add the cashew nuts and fry until they turn a light brown color. Add raisins and continue roasting until golden brown.
  • Remove them from the ghee and set aside.
  • Add moong dal and roast until it turns light brown.
  • Add the rinsed rice and mix everything.
  • Add milk and water and scrape the bottom well.
  • Close the lid and set the valve to the shut-off position.
  • Cancel the fry mode press the PRESSURE COOK / MANUAL button and set the time to 8 minutes.
  • Allow the pressure to release naturally. Wait until the metal pin drops down before opening the lid.
  • Open the lid and mix it.
  • Add powdered or grated jaggery and cardamom powder to the cooked rice mixture.
  • Mix until the cane sugar dissolves.
  • Add the fried nuts and the remaining ghee and mix well.
  • Serve hot!

Power supply

Calories: 364kcalCarbohydrates: 46GEgg white: 5GFat: 18GSaturated fat: 11GPolyunsaturated fat: 1GMonounsaturated fat: 5GTrans fat: 0.1GCholesterol: 45mgSodium: 43mgPotassium: 205mgFiber: 1GSugar: 30GVitamin A: 85IUVitamin C: 0.4mgCalcium: 116mgIron: 1mg

Nutritional values ​​are estimates only.

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