Today’s recipe is one of my favorites! I love Adas Polow, rice with lentils. I find this rice be such a great go to recipe when hosting friends who are either vegetarian or vegan. I am often asked by readers about how to make Polow, mixed rice, in a rice cooker. I have mentioned before how much I love using my rice cooker and how it makes cooking Persian rice much faster.

In the past I have posted a recipe for Baghali Polow in a rice cooker as well as a post about a Persian meal made in just an hour. Today’s recipe not only can be made fairly quickly by Persian standards, but it can be a very comforting and delicious go to meal any time you don’t necessarily feel like cooking.

I really enjoy making our recipes the traditional way, but sometimes shortcuts are necessary to speed up the process. For me one of said shortcuts is using my rice cooker which cuts down rice making time considerably. The great thing about this Adas Polow is the fact that the ingredients used in the rice can be made ahead of time. In fact, one of the shortcuts for this recipe is simply making a batch or two of the sautéed onion, lentils, and raisins ahead of time and then placing them in the freezer for later use. Once you are ready to  make this rice, then simply either remove the mixture from the freezer in the morning before going to work or by simply defrost in the microwave.


3 cups rice
1 onion
1 1/2 cup lentils
1 cup raisins
1 tsp cinnamon
2 tbsp Advieh
4 tbsp brewed saffron
12 dates
salt & pepper
olive oil
canola oil

Cook lentils in salted water until just tender.

Saute onion in olive oil until golden. Add cinnamon and advieh; mix well and allow the spices to warm through. Then add raisins. Give it a stir and continue cooking until the raisins warm through.

Completely drain the lentils, then add to the onion and raisins. Adjust seasoning as needed with salt and pepper. Mix well.

At this point if you are making this mixture ahead of time for later use all you have to do is allow to come to room temperature and then place in the freezer. Alternatively, this can be made the night before and placed in the fridge. Once you are ready to use, simply warm through before adding to rice.

Wash rice until water runs clear. Load rice in the rice cooker. Add 1 teaspoon of salt and 2 to 3 tablespoons of canola oil. Add water based on rice cooker instructions. For my rice cooker I have found that the best ratio is equal amounts of water and rice. Cover , press cook and allow the water come to a boil.

Add the onion, raisins, and lentil mixture to the rice and mix well. Then add 4 tablespoons of brewed saffron. Cover and continue to cook until the water has been mostly absorbed.

At this point gently mix the rice again if needed as some of the ingredients have a tendency to float on top of the rice. Make sure that the pot of rice does not move and that it stays in place. I have found that if the pot moves or is removed from the rice cooker, it throws off the cooking process. Place the dates on top of the rice.

Place a towel over the lid of the rice cooker and continue to cook until the rice cooker’s light automatically switches from cook to warm. From start to finish this process should take about 45 to 50 minutes.

I personally love eating Adas Polow with a side of yogurt and Salad Shirazi. I seldom miss having a side of meat or chicken with this rice because the rice and lentils are pretty filling not to mention that lentils are a great source of protein. However, if you wish to serve a side, I highly suggest using the delicious chicken recipe in the A Persian Meal in Just an Hour post.

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