Instant Pot Saffron Rice with Currants and Pine Nuts

Instant Pot Saffron Rice with Currants and Pine Nuts

“Yellow rice,” as I called it then, was my dinner request. Just yellow rice!

The stand-in name was just about right, at least in this instance, because the rice I so craved was a mix my mom would make from a little foil packet purchased at the store. I’m not sure what exactly was in that mix, though I have a hunch: yellow coloring, natural flavors, and salt. It felt like I could eat that rice for days without getting tired of it.

This version of yellow rice is not that yellow rice. It’s made with Saffron—real saffron— and studded with pine nuts and currants. It’s beautiful, and tastes beautiful too. I could eat it for days without getting tired of it. At first bite, I was immediately transported back to Mom’s yellow rice. It’s a bowl of nostalgia, but also global flavors. It’s vibrant, and homey. And, it’s made in your Instant Pot! (affiliate link)

(It seems like as a kid, I often identified foods by their color: get the recipe for grown-up Pink Sauce here).

Instant Pot Saffron Rice with Currants and Pine Nuts
Instant Pot Saffron Rice with Currants and Pine Nuts

For a video of this recipe, click here!

Instant Pot Saffron Rice with Currants and Pine Nuts

Published May 21, 2019 by
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Serves: 6   |    Active Time: 30 minutes


  • 2 cups white rice (such as basmati)
  • 2-1/2 cups water
  • 5 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 1/2 yellow onion, diced small
  • 4 pinches saffron
  • 1 teaspoon salt 
  • 1/3 cup currants
  • 1/3 cup toasted pine nuts
  • 1/3 cup minced parsley, plus more for garnish

  • Directions:

    1. Turn Instant Pot to sauté setting and heat 1 tablespoon of butter. Add diced onion, and sauté, stirring occasionally, until translucent.
    2. In a mortar and pestle, grind the saffron so that it is almost a powder—a few larger pieces is OK.
    3. Add rice, water, remaining 4 tablespoons of butter, saffron, and salt to pot. Stir.
    4. Secure lid on Instant Pot, and set to “Rice” setting, with the vent in the closed position. Timer should set to 12 minutes.
    5. When the timer goes off, release the pressure. Add currants, pine nuts, and parsley to the pot. Use a fork or spatula stir everything together, fluffing the rice as you go.
    6. Serve hot, sprinkled with additional parsley for garnish.


    Moroccan Spiced Carrot Salad (Paleo & Vegan)

    Moroccan Carrot Salad is a quick recipe: only 4 real salad components, if you don’t count the spices that give it that Moroccan flare. Carrots, parsley, raisins, and lemon vinaigrette. Then, ground cumin, coriander, paprika, cayenne, and cinnamon pop in and dress it up. Thanks to those spices, this carrot salad really stands out. 

    To my surprise, little baby carrot heads were popping out from the surface of our garden beds back in early March. They were from seeds planted last year, ones that didn’t sprout before the season ended. And somehow, they grew on through snow and frost and unpredictable Colorado spring weather... hardy little plants to say the least! I’m planning to xeriscape our front yard this year, and build brand new garden boxes, so I’ll likely have to wipe them out before they get fully grow, but maybe they’ll have enough time to grow into baby carrots before then. 

    Carrots are a hardy after they’re picked, too: you can make this the day before, and then drizzle on the vinaigrette at the last minute. The carrots won’t get soggy in the fridge overnight. 

    I use a food processor (affiliate link) with a shredding attachment to shred the carrots — I do not have the patience to do that by hand! 

    This is the perfect side to Moroccan Beef Kabobs, or Lamb & Winter Squash Tagine.

    Moroccan Spiced Carrot Salad

    Published April 17, 2018 by
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    Serves: 6   |    Total Time: 20 minutes


    • 3 to 4 cups shredded carrots
    • 1/3 cup minced parsley
    • 1/3 cup raisins
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground paprika
    • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    • 4 dashes ground cayenne
    • Juice from 2 lemons
    • 1 garlic clove
    • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
    • 1/8 teaspoon salt


    1. Place shredded carrots in a bowl with minced parsley and raisins. Add cumin coriander, paprika, cinnamon, and cayenne and toss.
    2. Make vinaigrette: Mince the garlic and add it to a jar with the lemon juice, olive oil, and salt. Shake to combine. (Makes enough dressing for 2-3 salads). Drizzle about 1/3 of vinaigrette over salad, or to taste. Toss and serve!

    Want to get more recipes like this? Sign up for the Foraged Dish email newsletter. I'll send you a free printable of my favorite Grain-Free Banana Bread recipe. 


    Golden Potatoes

    Golden Potatoes (Curry Roasted Potatoes)

    There was a story I intended to tell you today, about a girl who seems to never be able to find the right bowl of porridge. No, this isn't about Goldy Locks, but it may as well be, for if I were her it would be all: "Too hot!" "Too cold!" "Not soft enough." 

    As a creative soul, perfection isn't worth chasing... or rather, there is no room for it. I've never been a perfectionist. What is perfection, anyways? But in the kitchen lately I've been seeing flaw after flaw. Not because mistakes are more prevalent than usual, but because I've honed in on details that no one else would otherwise notice, leaving "great" in the dust and searching for "best ever," when in reality there is no "best ever" or "perfect" to be found (think of cookies: some like them chewy, some crispy, some nutty, some chocolatey, etc etc etc). This I know, yet it is hard not to push yourself to find "best ever." 

    Golden Potatoes (Curry Roasted Potatoes)
    Golden Potatoes (Curry Roasted Potatoes)

    When I realized that this was happening, I knew I must write. Putting pen to paper--or in this case, finger to key- has always been therapeutic for me. Nonsense becomes understandable when it is written. Trapped feelings become weightless, released into paper form. And this perfection-seeking thing? I knew it had to go. But first, I had to understand it, or at the very least come to terms with it. 

    Anyways, what is "best ever" when you are inventing something new? You get to decide. Right now, today, in this hour, best ever for me is this potatoes. Golden Potatoes, AKA Curry & Turmeric Roasted Potatoes. THEY ARE SERIOUSLY THE BOMB. If you love breakfast potatoes or home fries or spice blends or exotic twists, this one is for you. I hope you are nodding along. I think Goldy Locks might even like them (we haven't met, I'm just guessing. But it seems she'd be into anything Golden, given the name). 

    Golden Potatoes (Curry Roasted Potatoes)

    Golden Potatoes

    Published June 1, 2017 by
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    Potatoes are tossed with turmeric, ginger, and curry powder given them a golden glow and spicy bite.

    Serves: 2-3   |    Total Time: 60 minutes


    • 2 medium yukon gold potatoes (sweet potatoes will also work if you prefer) 
    • 2 cups cold water
    • 1 tablespoon oil (olive or avocado)
    • 1 teaspoon curry powder
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
    • 1/8 teaspoon turmeric
    • 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
    • 1/16 teaspoon cayenne (or more to taste)


    1. Preheat oven to 425°F, and line a baking sheet with parchment paper (or a Silicone Baking Mat).
    2. Wash potatoes, and dice them into 1/2-inch or 1-centimeter cubes. Place in a mixing bowl, and cover with cold water. Allow to sit for 5 minuntes. This step hepls the potatoes become crispy in the oven! After five minutes, drain the water from the potatoes and toss in oil.
    3. In a small bowl, combine spices and mix until well combined. Pour spice blend in with the potatoes, and toss until the potatoes are all coated.
    4. Spread potatoes out on prepared baking sheet in an even layer. Place in oven and bake for 40-50 minutes, until potatoes are tender through and crisping on the edges. Allow to cool 5 minutes and serve.