Rice is the main food in most Asian households. It's generally low-cost, which makes it accessible to most people. However, sometimes making rice is not as easy as it looks. You will encounter some problems one way or the other.
Here is where rice cookers come in. Not only do they cook rice evenly and to perfection, but they also don't burn it. This is why you need the best Asian rice cooker for a seamless cooking process.
Can I Use a Rice Cooker to Make Other Dishes?
Yes, you can. Rice cookers are a very versatile kitchen appliance. Apart from rice, it is easy to make other dishes with this device. However, before making anything other than rice in your rice cooker, it is recommended to check the manufacturers' details.
Still, some rice cookers can only cook rice. Other versatile ones can cook foods like oatmeal, lentils, polenta, and cheesecake, among others. Rice cookers can be very simple, with two options "cook" and "keep warm." They can also have much more advanced settings and functions.
Best Asian Rice Cooker
1) Zojirushi NS-LGC05XB Micom Rice Cooker 3-Cup Capacity
- Multi-menu cooking functions: Special settings for white/mixed...
- Triple heater (bottom, side and lid) generate heat all around for...
- Dimensions (W x D x H):9-1/8 x 11-7/8 x 7-1/2 inches. Detachable...
- Easy to store retractable cord.Interchangeable melody and beep...
- Removable steam vent cap allows for high-temperature cooking...
So cooking rice has always been terrifying for me because my multiple bad results shook my confidence. So I ordered a few cookers to try out. Upon arrival, I was surprised to see that the Zojirushi Rice Cooker has so many functions. Cooking rice has never been easier.
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The accessories include a rice spatula, measuring cup, and a spatula holder. The menu settings include white rice, sushi rice, GABA rice, brown rice, oatmeal, and quick cooking. I was skeptical at first about all these settings.
However, after cooking rice more than 10 times in this cooker, I can safely say every plate of rice was perfect and fluffy. Additionally, the inner cooking pot is detachable for easy cleanup.
2) Cuckoo Rice Cooker CR-0675F 6-Cup Capacity
- MULTI-FUNCTIONAL: Features a versatile multi-cook function that...
- KITCHEN STAPLE: From small family gatherings to entertaining a...
- EASY TO USE: Effortlessly create meals with features like...
- PREMIUM QUALITY: Featuring a non-toxic nonstick inner pot with...
- TRUSTED BRAND: Internationally known for superior quality and...
When it comes to using different rice cookers, I have realized that the better the device you choose, the better the rice you eat. This rice maker will give you perfect rice with a 1:1 water to rice ratio. There will be no need for draining.
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The cooking pot is heavy metal, keeping perfectly cooked rice hotter for longer. I have used some of the best rice cookers on the market, and this one matches some of them. Additionally, the touch screen functionality gives the rice cooker a technological edge.
The three sticky, savory, and soft rice settings are super helpful, and I found that the quick mode is perfect for when I'm in a rush. Cooking brown rice, mixed rice, and jasmine rice has never been easier.
3) Tiger S10u HU Rice Cooker and Warmer 5.5-Cup Capacity
- Keep-warm function up to 12 hours
- Non-stick inner pan
- Retractable power cord
- Spatula and rice measuring cup includes
- Removable and washable steam vent
I was a little skeptical about the synchro-cooking function of this rice cooker. For starters, I have never tried a cooker with a multi-cook functionality. You can cook rice and another dish in the same cooker without the flavors mixing.
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The steam function allows you to steam vegetables and simmer meats for up to 3 hours, which helped with my meal preps. It is a quality rice maker that provides evenly cooked rice all the time and doesn't depend on how much rice you want.
The non-stick pot ensures you have delicious rice all the time. After all, no one wants to buy a rice cooker only to eat burnt rice. Additionally, you can cook restaurant-quality rice with all types of rice, from white rice to basmati rice; the list is endless.
4) Hamilton Beach Rice Cooker and Food Steamer 4-Cup Capacity
- Make more than rice: Make rice, whole grains, hot cereal, steamed...
- Healthy, one pot meals: Steam seafood or veggies while rice cooks...
- Pre-programmed settings: Cook and steam food at the touch of a...
- 2 to 8 cup capacity: Makes between 2 to 8 cups of cooked rice or...
- 2 in 1 basket: Includes rice rinser/steam basket
Rice isn't the only grain this rice cooker can make. I gave other grains mixed in with rice a go, and I was very happy with how it turned out. Additionally, while cooking my rice at the bottom, I could steam seafood and broccoli in the top compartment.
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In the end, I had fluffy rice and a whole meal. The settings are also easy to use and decipher, especially since they are few. My vegan roommate loves the large capacity, and he uses it to cook many different healthy foods. That's not to say we abandoned our best air fryer for under $100 for healthy fried foods. We still use it.
However, this rice maker is different than most conventional rice cookers because it might cause steam burns since the lid is twisted off. Unfortunately, it mostly affects left-handed people. Besides that, it is a great option for people who don't know how to cook rice in a pot over a fire.
5) Toshiba Multi-functional Rice Cooker 5.5-Cup Capacity
- COOK LOW CARB RICE EFFORTLESSLY - This electric rice cooker makes...
- PROESSIONAL MULTI-COOKER - 8 Pre-programmed settings to cook...
- SMART FUZZY LOGIC & INDUCTION HEATING - Advanced Fuzzy Logic...
- EASY TO USE & CLEAN- LED smart digital panel display makes it...
- DELAY TIMER FUNCTIONS - The programmable 24-hour delay timer is...
I bought this rice cooker for the accessories. But I was also impressed by all its bells and whistles. It has multiple options for cooking fluffy white rice, soup, oatmeal, and preparing steamed vegetables.
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The attachments it comes with are soup and rice ladles, an inner pot, a steam basket, and a rice measuring cup. I tried various rice recipes, including fried rice, and this cooker beats most basic rice cookers.
Additionally, this fuzzy logic rice cooker allows the settings to make perfectly fluffy rice by altering the temperature and heating time. Furthermore, everything on this rice maker is detachable, enabling me to clean up easily.
Before purchasing a rice cooker, I learned a few things before, during, and after the process. Getting into it, let's check out some things to consider for the best rice cooker.
The size and capacity of the Asian rice cooker matter. If you have a sizeable family, a high-capacity device will probably cook enough food. However, if it's just for yourself and maybe one more person, you need a smaller one.
Selecting a rice cooker that's too big to suit your needs could pose a problem. Firstly you have to consider how much counter space you are willing to spare for a device. So, for example, if you cook 1-2 cups of rice, you don't need a high-capacity rice maker.
On the other hand, cooking between 3-6 cups of uncooked rice requires a larger rice cooker. Plus, larger rice makers might keep your rice warm for longer.
Investing in a rice cooker and warmer is expensive. Therefore, you need something that will last through multiple uses, even if you use it once a week. Measuring its weight is a good rule of thumb to ascertain how durable a rice maker is.
The more weighty it is, the longer it might last. Rice cookers have heavy-duty aluminum that won't dent or warp in time. Lifting a few rice makers might give you an idea of one to choose.
c) Cooking Time
Everyone has their cooking process. Some people will spend hours in the kitchen without breaking a sweat. However, if you are like me, you might dislike spending too much time in preparing food. Plus, I realized getting the burnt smell out of my microwave and kitchen isn't fun. Which is why I have a rice cooker.
My rice cooker takes 15 minutes to prepare rice. The quick function cuts that time in half. However, I am happy if I can prepare rice and steamed veggies in 30 minutes. Some rice makers take more time to cook rice than others. Before getting one, ensure to know how much time it will take to finish.
d) Ease of Cleaning
Most rice makers come with detachable interior parts. This makes it very easy and simple to clean them. However, not all rice makers have the same features. Additionally, the detachable parts are usually dishwasher-safe.
Wiping food residue and particles off the body of the rice cooker is easier. All you need is warm water with soap and a washcloth. Wiping the cooker after every use is important for the longevity of your appliance.
e) How Much Rice Do You, Cook, Regularly?
Before buying a rice cooker, you should consider how much you cook. If you don't cook rice often, then you might not see the benefit of having such a device. This is true if you know how to cook rice over a fire.
If you cook rice regularly, you might consider getting a rice cooker. Before, I would eat rice once a month because I was awful at cooking it. However, after getting my rice cooker, I eat rice at least three times a week.
Advantages of Having a Rice Cooker
I'll be honest; ever since I got my rice cooker, I have cooked most things in it. I hardly ever use my other pots and pans. So here are some advantages of having a rice cooker.
i) Save Stove Space
I'm not too fond of many pots on the stovetop. Not even the top 10 best pots and pans for electric stove cooking. They look like clutter, and they usually take up space. This is why my trusty rice cooker is the best appliance I have. But fortunately, it only takes its assigned spot on my countertop.
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Additionally, I can cook my meals in 30 minutes or less. Cleanup after cooking is a breeze, and I'm not left with a pile of pots and plates to wash.
While my rice cooker was on the higher side, it has paid for its worth in the years of service it's given me. Additionally, it's still saving me in terms of electricity costs. I cook most of my meals in under 30 minutes with a 400-Watt rice maker.
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Compared to a 1000-Watt stovetop, I'd say my electricity costs are reduced. Of course, the reduction isn't massive, but it's still considerable.
iii) Travel Cooking
On my annual leave, I went on a cabin staycation and carried my rice cooker with me. Safe to say, I spent the least time cooking and more of it exploring the wilderness. When I cooked, I prepared one meal for the whole day.
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I got the most out of my cabin stay, and my meals didn't take more than 20 minutes of my day. I recommend taking your rice cooker with you on a road trip or cabin stay. After all, you are set for most of your trip if there is an electric outlet.
While some rice makers are expensive, others are very affordable. It is the perfect appliance for college students who have to prepare some of their meals. In addition, it is a logical and cheap option for other people with small apartments.
Additionally, cooking with a rice maker is relatively safe, and you don't have to worry about fire hazards in a small space.
For some reason, any meals I prepare on my stovetop always boil over and create a mess. Even with the best wok for an electric stovetop, I still need to do plenty of cleanups afterward. With a rice maker, all these problems are mitigated. There is less to do after cooking. Additionally, I prefer that in the summer, there is considerably less heat in the apartment when I use the rice maker.
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The clock timer on this amazing appliance also allows me to do other chores as I cook. So I don't have to worry about burnt food.
The Bottom Line
Being gentle with your rice cooker and keeping up with maintenance will keep your cooker in service for years to come. Depending on how much you use the cooker, you might need to replace the pot every few years. Either way, we do hope you enjoy your rice maker and try out many recipes.
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