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Home » Kitchen » The Best Rice Cookers for Effortless, Fluffy Rice

The Best Rice Cookers for Effortless, Fluffy Rice

Given the possibility, the most effective rice cookers can convince even purists who think they like the stovetop methodology and people who hate single-use appliances. But with the help of a rice cooker, you can also make completely tender grains repeatedly with the push of a button, freeing up your time and a spotlight to spend on other elements of the meal. As a result of, for such a simple process, making rice may be finicky, and no house cook wants to put out an overdone or underdone batch. If there’s a one-job kitchen gadget that’s value discovering the cabinet house for, this is it.

Having a rice cooker means you can also make a bowl of sushi rice on even the busiest nights, or prep for a complete week of grain bowls and fried rice by cooking a giant batch on Sundays. Learn more about our top picks below, and scroll all the way down to find out how we tested every machine. Rice cookers are easy to use, simple to wash, and take all of the guesswork out of grain cookery. We examined more than a dozen prime-rated models and many, many cups of steamed rice later, we settled on a favourite that constantly turned out the very best rice, batch after batch.

The perfect rice cooker
The best funds rice cooker
One of the best mini rice cooker
A word on cleaning rice
How we tested
What we appeared for
Other rice cookers we examined
Are cheap rice cookers good?
The takeaway
What else to make in your rice cooker

The perfect rice cooker: Zojirushi 5.5-Cup Induction Rice Cooker

This Zojirushi rice cooker has a generous 5.5-cup capability (uncooked). But the thing that really set this machine apart was its use of induction heating, which gives a precise, even heat supply that warms the entire pot moderately than just the underside. It’s intuitive to make use of and straightforward to scrub. (Most rice cookers merely have a heating component that warms the bottom of the pot, which can result in uneven cooking and browned bits at the underside of the batch.) Rice that got here out of the Zojirushi was never unevenly cooked; it was fluffy, completely tender, and simply overall higher than the rice we made in each different machine. The nonstick inside pot was the heaviest of any we tested, and the markings inside that indicated how a lot water so as to add for various kinds of rice have been the best to see (the markers are white, which contrasts well with the darkish pot). It additionally by no means stuck to the bottom of the pot.

As with all rice cookers, one in all the nice pleasures of using the Zojirushi Induction Rice Cooker was the power to set it and neglect it. It’s a particular pleasure on this Zojirushi because of the automated Keep Warm setting that kept rice proper at serving temperature for hours. It’s also the only certainly one of our prime picks that counts down your cooking time from begin to complete, so you at all times know how far you’re from a bowl of excellent rice. Should you unintentionally added too much water, for example, the machine adjusts cooking times and temperatures in order that you still won’t find yourself with mushy rice regardless of the human error. microcomputerized), it has the intelligence to tweak temperatures and cooking occasions in accordance with suggestions from the machine’s sensors. This is available in handy when your water or grain measurements are imprecise. As a result of this model is a Micom rice cooker (a.k.a.

This rice cooker is absolutely costlier than most however that is because it comes with more than most: its induction heating functionality, large capability, and programmable options. For foolproof, great-tasting rice with virtually no effort, this Zojirushi mannequin can’t be beat. It robotically handles the numerous variables that can result in dangerous rice outcomes on the stove.

There’s little to take problem with relating to how this rice cooker performs, however it is price noting that if you aren’t accustomed to cooking rice in a precision rice cooker, you is likely to be stunned at how long the cook occasions are. Relying on the quantity, white rice will take about an hour, whereas brown rice can require up to two hours, which may appear like lots for folks accustomed to faster cook instances. We feel although, that when you get in the habit of starting your rice first thing when cooking, or utilizing the timer function, this problem will resolve, and the resulting quality in our eyes is worth it. Beyond that, it could be superior if it didn’t cost more than 300 dollars, but hey, what can you do.

Zojirushi Induction Heating System Rice Cooker and Warmer

One of the best price range rice cooker: Toshiba TRCS01 Rice Cooker

This rice cooker carried out right on par with greater-end Zojirushi models. And if you are someone who’s overwhelmed by the precision and slight nuances in cooking function the Zojirushi rice cookers have, the Toshiba will likely be comfy to use however higher than the fundamental one button rice cooker. Every batch of rice popping out very effectively.

The controls are very intuitive and simple to make use of, with presets for white, brown, combined grain, porridge, oats, and more. It also includes a delay timer and comes with a basket for steaming proteins and veggies.

Like many higher-end rice cookers, the Toshiba makes use of fuzzy logic AI, which permits the rice cooker to make nice changes to temperature to be able to optimize the standard of rice you get. The Toshiba will get bonus points for giving us a full countdown from the start rather than appearing 10 minutes earlier than completion. It also includes a delay timer so you can do things like presoak grains overnight and have them cook up routinely.

Whereas the primary cooking settings (white, brown) carried out well, when exploring the opposite settings, we found that the porridge setting in particular fell short. Even with presoaking and the prompt liquid to rice ratios, we discovered that this machine was not great for making congee from uncooked rice. Since this setting is not customary across all rice cookers we didn’t weigh it too closely, however it’s worth noting in case you love congee. It did an okay job with cooked rice, however finally it was easier simply to make it on the stove.

Toshiba Rice Cooker 6 Cups Uncooked (3L) with Fuzzy Logic and One-Contact Cooking, White

The very best mini rice cooker: Zojirushi 3-Cup Rice Cooker

For our testing purposes, we labeled something that could cook 4 cups of uncooked rice or much less as a mini rice cooker: a manageable amount for a family of two to 4. But for the typical user, a small rice cooker (with a 1- to 4-cup capacity) is more than giant sufficient. The overall winning induction Zojirushi and the price range pick Toshiba can both cook a whole lot of rice in a single go, which is nice for big teams or households who’d like to prep rice prematurely for per week of meals.

The Zojirushi 3-cup cooker is a Workforce Epi favorite; it’s simple, easy, a breeze to wash, and doesn’t make a starchy mess when it operates like some other models within the mini class. Because there’s simply the one button to press, anybody can use it, and it’s small enough to tuck right into a drawer or cabinet when not in use. If you’re most often making one cup of uncooked (a.okay.a. It has a glass lid, which is nice for monitoring progress as your rice cooks. three cups cooked) rice at a time-excellent for two with some leftovers-it’s the ideal rice cooker to personal, notably attributable to it’s sub-$50 worth tag.

A word on cleaning rice

Anybody who has ever cooked rice will inform you that rinsing the grains is a key to success. Washing rice removes excess starch, which keeps the rice from sticking collectively when it’s cooked; for some varieties, you need the starch, but for others rinsing off the rice is the quick-monitor to fluffy, tender grains. We adopted every individual rice cooker’s instruction guide for rinsing, which ranged from the obsessive (the Zojirushi induction model requires round eight rinses) to the informal.

Many rice cookers in the marketplace at present come with a slew of programmable options in-built to change the perception that they’re a single-use equipment. However we got here to check each rice cooker’s major operate (without which a stellar steamer basket wouldn’t win us over): making rice. Some make risotto and a few oatmeal and still others come with steamer baskets to cook vegetables and different substances above the rice at the same time.

For the complete-measurement rice cookers, we cooked two uncooked cups of Nishiki Japanese medium-grain white rice in each mannequin; in those who carried out nicely, we then cooked two cups of brief-grain brown rice, followed by two cups of long-grain basmati rice. For the mini rice cookers, we cooked one uncooked cup of the medium-grain white rice in each mannequin.

What we appeared for

The best rice cookers ought to make cooking rice practically easy and require very little human intervention. All the fashions we examined delivered on that intuitive simplicity with manuals that clearly outlined how you can get began, together with details on easy methods to measure and wash rice, how much water so as to add to the cooking pot, which menu setting to use, and what buttons to push to start cooking. In machines that declare they can keep rice warm, we expected the Keep Warm setting to click on soon after the rice was done cooking.

Range in cooking occasions diverse greatly among the machines. Though fast-cooking rice is at all times a temptation, we found that one of the best rice generally took the longest to make. The total-dimension Zojirushi models every took close to an hour for medium- and lengthy-grain white rice and practically an hour and a half for brown rice. By contrast, the instant Pot and Breville Risotto Plus, which both carried out so-so, took around 10 minutes.

We wished to search out an ideal rice cooker that excelled in any respect three varieties of rice we examined. We additionally needed flavorful grains that have been cooked by without being gummy and retained bite with out being too agency. We looked for evenly cooked, flavorful, fluffy rice.

Every rice cooker comes with a couple of key equipment: a measuring cup (don’t get confused, “1 cup” in rice cooker parlance is actually a ¾-cup measure) and a rice paddle. Technical options, such because the hotter or timer, make an already handy machine even more person-friendly. A few of the rice cookers that we examined included steamer baskets, which, within the case of the Hamilton Seaside model, doubled as a sieve for cleaning rice. All however the Cuckoo and the Breville had a paddle holder on the rice cooker itself-a welcome function.

The entire rice cookers we tested, with the exception of the moment Pot, have inner pots with a nonstick coating; this coating is crucial for simple cleaning. You should be able to use your spatula or paddle to scoop out rice without leaving residue or stubborn rice bits stuck on the bottom. The lids of the Zojirushi, Immediate Pot, and Breville machines are additionally washable, an added bonus, especially for individuals who assume merely wiping down the lid doesn’t minimize it. Keep in thoughts that just about no rice cooker is dishwasher-protected

Each machine’s countertop footprint diverse-many of the fashions we examined measured in at beneath a foot diameter, which meant they didn’t take up far more room than a meals processor. Taking up less counter house is at all times better from a storage perspective, but the standard of the rice was extra important to us in the long run.

The machine prices diversified wildly, beginning at $25 and topping $300. Conversely, a machine like the Breville was somewhat underwhelming given its $129 cost. In the end, one of the best rice cooker gained no matter price, although models just like the Cuckoo and Zojirushi 3-Cup received points for performing nicely beyond what their value point would indicate.

Different rice cookers we examined

Not one of the machines we tested were an all-out fail; with any of those, you will be able, at the very least, to cook some rice. That mentioned, there have been professionals and cons with each machine that in the end factored into our ultimate rankings.

The Zojirushi 5.5-Cup Neuro Fuzzy Rice Cooker and Warmer prices significantly less than the induction mannequin, yet features many of the qualities we loved within the profitable Zojirushi. But like the Cuckoo, it solely offers you the remaining cooking time when the rice is about 10 minutes from ending-and, more importantly, it couldn’t match the texture of the rice made in the Zojirushi Induction Rice Cooker. It comes with a equally sturdy cooking pot and has an intuitive, easy-to-use digital interface with a Keep Heat perform and preprogramming choices. We also like its retractable cord and the handles on the pot that allow you to safely raise it from the rice cooker whereas nonetheless warm.

The instant Pot Duo is a multi-cooker, and considered one of the numerous versatile functions it provides is a rice cooking setting. It was very quick, however the result was gummy, difficult to fluff-even with the rice paddle-and stuck to the stainless-steel pot (the only pot insert that held on to rice, possible as a result of it was the only model that didn’t have a nonstick pot). Sadly, it produced probably the most disappointing outcomes of the rice cookers we tested and didn’t advance beyond the medium-grain rice spherical. As a pressure cooker, it’s great, however we would not count cooking rice successfully among the instant Pots’ many features.

The Breville Risotto Plus was additionally a bummer. The underside of the rice took on some coloration, but the grains had been too firm. It lacked the features you’d want in a rice cooker with such a high worth point (and from a trusted title like Breville), like a timer and specific programmable rice settings for every sort of grain, and the medium-grain white rice it made was unevenly cooked.

The Aroma Housewares Digital Rice Cooker made solid rice, though not as fluffy or perfectly textured as our winning models. Additionally, it released fumes that smelled like burning rubber.

The Hamilton Beach Rice Cooker was an thrilling contender. It produced spectacular outcomes with medium-grain white rice and lengthy-grain basmati and possessed a variety of advanced features for a low-cost machine, equivalent to warming and preprogramming options. If you’re not much of a brown rice eater, this might be a good option for you. Nonetheless, it fell brief with the brown rice, which was undercooked after 60 minutes.

The Dash Mini Rice Cooker is very cute and simple to use, with a one-button lever system like the Zojirushi 3-Cup. But the lid was too mild to stay on properly; while the rice cooked, the resulting steam saved popping the lid askew in the bowl. That allowed a lot heat to escape and we had to observe it all through the method. Also, it took the longest of any of the mini fashions we tested to cook one uncooked cup of rice-a whopping 34 minutes.

The Aroma Mi 3-Cup Rice Cooker had a singular shape; tall relatively than squat, it features a aspect-locking lid and top handles for carrying, plus particular person buttons for cooking white and brown rice. It can be an awesome budget-friendly pick for those looking for a smaller rice cooker. It was easy to wash, made very fluffy rice, and emitted a loud beep to let us know when it was finished cooking (then instantly moved to the Keep Warm setting).

Old MicrowaveThe Cuisinart 4-Cup Rice Cooker had the biggest capacity of any mini rice cooker we tested, however it fell short on execution. The rice it made-in file time for a mini, just 19 minutes-was a little bit too firm, and in the course of the cooking process, it leaked barely starchy water everywhere in the sides and down the counter.

The Aroma 2.5-Cup Rice Cooker is a lifeless-simple, one-button machine. It cooked completely passable rice in 25 minutes, and takes up nearly the identical counter house because the Zojirushi 3-Cup. But similar to the Cuisinart, it suffered from some leakage, which in the end cost it a high spot.

The Cuckoo 6-Cup Rice Cooker and Warmer has a fantastic value for the quality it delivers. Also, it has a barely bigger capacity than the Zojirushi, holding 6 cups of uncooked rice in comparison with the Zojirushi’s 5.5. For $90 (at the time of writing), it’s a fantastic deal, and you’ll get nice rice out of it again and again. Nonetheless, the lid jerks open so violently that it can knock itself or different things off the counter, and it additionally does not display the countdown from begin to finish. It beat the Zojirushi by 15 minutes. It produced rice that was close in quality to the Zojirushi Induction Rice Cooker-at a much quicker tempo.

The Nutribullet Rice Cooker produced inconsistent and unsatisfactory results. Some batches had been too dry, whereas others have been too mushy.

Are low-cost rice cookers good?

While we certainly perceive the impulse to always want the “best” possibility on the market when appliance purchasing, we feel snug saying that for many individuals on the market, a budget rice cooker will likely be more than high quality. If you’re someone who eats rice several occasions every week, consider it a fundamental element of your diet, and have exacting requirements in regard to texture and quality, it is price investing in an electric rice cooker with fuzzy logic and an array of exact settings.

Nevertheless, for those who solely cook rice a pair times a month, a high-end rice cooker is perhaps a waste of money. One widespread complaint we hear from people using a Zojirushi Micom or different premium rice cookers for the primary time is that they take a very long time to cook. It’s not unusual for the machines to take between one and two hours, depending on the amount of rice. Many assume that a costlier rice cooker will cook issues sooner, which isn’t the case at all. The sluggish cook time permits the machine to make precise temperature adjustment to ensure that the final product is the best texture and consistency.

For easy batches of white rice that are ready to eat in half an hour, a primary rice cooker, just like the Zojirushi 3-cup, is a superbly good option that we stand by.

Why are Zojirushi rice cookers greatest?

After several years of testing, we’ve discovered that Zojirushi rice cookers proceed to be the most effective rice cookers obtainable in the U.S. That is partially due to the truth that Zojirushi, primarily based in Japan, has had an established presence within the United States longer than its domestic and regional rivals like Tiger, Cuckoo, and Tatung Since we strive our best to focus our reviews on appliances extensively obtainable in the U.S., we haven’t examined as a lot of Zojirushi’s nicely-identified opponents. Nonetheless, as these different corporations continue to develop in our domestic market, the Zojirushi supremacy, and it’s lux value tag, would possibly face challenges from extra inexpensive rivals. market. They stand out for their build quality, cooking ability, and technologically nuanced design.

Rice cookers are sophisticated kitchen appliances which can be particularly attractive to these looking for convenience within the kitchen. For a less expensive machine that’s nonetheless high-quality, purchase the Toshiba TRCS01 Rice Cooker. For those who plan to use yours continuously, consuming rice a number of occasions a week and cooking quite a lot of varieties, buy the Zojirushi Induction Rice Cooker. Should you plan to solely make smaller batches of rice, opt for the Zojirushi 3-Cup Rice Cooker.

What else to make in your rice cooker

To get the most versatility out of your rice cooker, do discover its other makes use of-like boiling alternative grains corresponding to quinoa, bulgur, and farro, steaming eggs and proteins, and making soup.

Frittatas: You’ll be able to definitely cook tender, fluffy eggs and cheese in the pot of your rice cooker. All you must do is sauté the vegetables, add the liquids, sett the machine, and let it simmer. Add leftover cooked vegetables or protein to combine it up.
Soup: Cooking and reheating soup and stew in a rice cooker makes dinner simple and fast. Some models even feature timers with the intention to prep the elements the evening before and have hot breakfast whenever you get up. An immersion blender will easy out any lumps.
Steamed fish: For rice cookers that include steamer baskets or have steamer trays connected, place a piece of fish over the rice to gently cook simultaneously.
Porridge: In a rice cooker, excellent oatmeal, polenta, grits, and rice porridge cook-without stirring-within the time it takes you to shower and prepare for work. Marinating the fish will intensify the taste and punch up the rice as properly.
Apple sauce: Simply lower up the fruit, add a little bit of juice and sugar (if needed), and close the lid to make small-batch apple or different fruit sauces.

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