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best rice cookers

The Best Rice Cookers in 2021

Author: Joanna Davis

Home & Kitchen Expert

The rice cooker has become indispensable in Asian cuisine. For our best list, our team has therefore examined various comparisons and tests in order to also be able to provide ratings for filling quantity, keep-warm function, operation, and much more.

Aroma Housewares 2-8-Cups (Cooked) Digital Cool-Touch Rice Grain Cooker

Aroma Housewares 2-8-Cups (Cooked) Digital Cool-Touch Rice Grain Cooker
43,552 Reviews
Aroma Housewares 2-8-Cups (Cooked) Digital Cool-Touch Rice Grain Cooker
  • Multi-Functional Use – Whether you’re in the mood for a…
  • User-Friendly Programming – Easy-to-use with 4 preset…
  • Nutritious & Delicious – The built-in Steam function…
  • 15-Hour Delay Timer – The programmable delay timer is…
  • Compact Capacity – 8-cup capacity yielding 2 to 8 cups of…

Aroma Housewares ARC-363-1NGB 3 Uncooked/6 Cups Cooked Rice Cooker

 Our Pick
Aroma Housewares ARC-363-1NGB 3 Uncooked/6 Cups Cooked Rice Cooker
7,832 Reviews
Aroma Housewares ARC-363-1NGB 3 Uncooked/6 Cups Cooked Rice Cooker
  • Multi-Functional Use – Whether you’re in the mood for a…
  • One-Touch Operation – This cooker is a proud member of our…
  • Simultaneous Steaming – With the included steam tray,…
  • Automatic Keep Warm – Switches to Keep Warm mode…
  • Convenient Cooking & Cleaning – With the included nonstick…

BLACK+DECKER RC506 6-Cup Cooked/3-Cup Uncooked Rice Cooker

 Our Pick
BLACK+DECKER RC506 6-Cup Cooked/3-Cup Uncooked Rice Cooker
26,374 Reviews
BLACK+DECKER RC506 6-Cup Cooked/3-Cup Uncooked Rice Cooker
  • 6-Cup Capacity – Prepare anywhere from 1 to 6 cups of cooked…
  • Automatic Keep Warm – The rice stays ready for serving! The…
  • Nonstick Rice Pot – The nonstick rice pot is completely…
  • Food Steaming Basket – The included food steaming basket…
  • Volts: 120V. Wattage: 300W

Rice Cooker, 6-in-1 Electric Hot Pots

 Our Pick
Rice Cooker, 6-in-1 Electric Hot Pots
6,741 Reviews
Rice Cooker, 6-in-1 Electric Hot Pots
  • Multifunctional Use -12 digital cooking programs that could…
  • 5.2Qt / 20 Cup Ultra Capacity – 20 cup cooked (5.2 Qt)…
  • User Friendly – The MultiUse Programmable rice cooker is…
  • High Safety – COMFEE’ multi cooker is a good idea to make…
  • Easy to clean – Stainless steel external housing is easy to…

Dash DRCM200GBRD04 Mini Rice Cooker

Dash DRCM200GBRD04 Mini Rice Cooker
22,476 Reviews
Dash DRCM200GBRD04 Mini Rice Cooker
  • MORE THAN RICE: Oatmeal, stew, soup, quinoa, rice, and…
  • QUICK + EASY: Set it and forget it! Prep time is minutes…
  • KEEP WARM FUNCTION: Updated with a keep warm function and…
  • PORTABLE + COMPACT: The Dash Rice Cooker is your MUST-HAVE…
  • INCLUDES: The 200-Watt Dash Mini Rice Cooker is backed by a…

Instant Pot Duo 7-in-1 Electric Rice Cooker

Instant Pot Duo 7-in-1 Electric Rice Cooker
167,643 Reviews
Instant Pot Duo 7-in-1 Electric Rice Cooker
  • 7-IN-1 FUNCTIONALITY: Pressure cook, slow cook, rice cooker,…
  • QUICK ONE-TOUCH COOKING: 13 customizable Smart Programs for…
  • COOK FAST OR SLOW: Pressure cook delicious one-pot meals up…
  • QUICK AND EASY CLEAN UP: Finger-print resistant,…
  • GREAT FOR GROWING PROVEN SAFETY FEATURES: Includes over 10…

Aroma Housewares Digital Rice Cooker

Aroma Housewares Digital Rice Cooker
14,284 Reviews
Aroma Housewares Digital Rice Cooker
  • Multi-functional use: whether you are in the mood for a…
  • Nutritious & Delicious – The built-in Steam function…
  • Slow Cook Function – This multicooker not only includes…
  • User-Friendly Programming – This product is a proud member…
  • XL Capacity – 20-cup capacity yielding 4 to 20 cups of…

COMFEE' Asian Style Rice Cooker

 Our Pick
COMFEE' Asian Style Rice Cooker
3,460 Reviews
COMFEE’ Asian Style Rice Cooker
  • Perfect Rice Every Time – To achieve the ideal cooking…
  • Cooking Versatility – The 17 digital cooking programs…
  • High Safety – COMFEE’ electric multi rice cooker operating…
  • 10 Cup Ultra Capacity – 10 cup uncooked (5.2 Qt) capacity…
  • Humanized Designs – The rice cooker is user friendly with…

Frequently Asked Questions: Rice Cookers

What is a rice cooker?

As the name suggests, a rice cooker is used to prepare rice. Apart from rice pudding, all types of rice are suitable. In this country, these practical kitchen gadgets are still not very widespread, but they offer countless advantages during preparation. In other regions of the world, where rice is served more frequently, a rice cooker can be found in almost every household.

How does a rice cooker work?

Modern heating cookers work like a cooking pot with an integrated heating element. A stovetop is therefore not necessary, only a power outlet is required for operation. To prepare rice, the user puts both the desired amount of rice and the appropriate amount of water into the device.

The latter is much more important in a rice cooker than in a saucepan, because all the water evaporates during heating. First, the rice cooker heats the water to 100° until all the water is used up.

After that, the temperature of the heating elements increases, which is automatically registered by the electronics. Subsequently, the device then switches off or switches to a keep warm function. Depending on the model, there may be slight differences in the mode of operation, but the principle of operation is the same for all rice cookers.

What are the advantages & use cases of a rice cooker?

The biggest advantage of rice cookers is that they are automatic. Users do not have to do anything other than put rice and water into the rice cooker. Thus, it is not necessary to check the rice for its cooking point, as this is done automatically. Also useful is the keep warm function of many devices. This keeps the rice hot inside for up to two hours, depending on the model, so it can be prepared in advance, for example.

The taste also benefits from a rice cooker. In the cooking pot, it takes a lot of practice to hit the optimal cooking point. It is easy for rice to be taken off the stove top too early, which makes it too firm. In this state, rice is also difficult to digest, which can lead to discomfort after consumption.

On the other hand, if the rice is cooked for too long, it becomes too soft and quite often takes on the consistency of porridge.

Users of a rice cooker do not have to fear any of this, as the rice is only ever heated for as long as is necessary. In most cases, the devices also come with instructions that provide information about the exact amount of water for different rice cookers. Alternatively, this information can also be found on the rice package or on the Internet. Especially in households where rice is served frequently, a rice cooker takes a lot of work off your hands and always delivers excellent results.

The rice cooker can be used at home at any time of the day. It reliably prepares perfect rice for lunch and can also be used for semolina or other cereals at dinner. No preheating is required for use, so nothing stands in the way of spontaneous use. The numerous advantages of rice cookers have also long been discovered by professional companies. Therefore, there are corresponding devices in almost every restaurant that offers rice dishes on the menu.

What types of rice cookers are available?

Rice cookers come in numerous variations, each suitable for different purposes. Below we briefly introduce the main types of rice cookers.

Japanese Rice Cooker

Japanese rice cookers are the most common today and are also considered classic rice cookers. They are suitable for preparing almost all types of rice and are particularly easy to use, which is also their biggest advantage.

Often, they only have a switch to turn on and off. Such models are also available with an integrated keep-warm function.

Persian Rice Cooker

Persian rice cookers are still widely used in Iran today and are also gaining popularity in the rest of the world. In principle, they work like a Japanese rice cooker, but they offer the option to regulate the heat. With a higher level, it is possible to get a crust on the rice. This crust is also known as tahgid, which is considered a delicacy in Iran.

However, unlike in a saucepan, the precise regulation of heat means that burning does not occur. At low levels, a Persian rice cooker behaves just like a Japanese model.

Rice Cooker with steaming function

A steamer insert quickly transforms a simple rice cooker into a multifunctional appliance. It is then possible to gently heat fish, vegetables, potatoes and many other ingredients. This not only preserves the nutrients better, the vegetables also always remain firm to the bite and do not simply overcook. As a rule, such models are classic Japanese rice cookers that come with a corresponding steamer insert.

Therefore, they do not offer any obvious disadvantages, but they are also often a bit more expensive.

What should I look for when buying a rice cooker?

When buying a rice cooker, the cooking quality is particularly important. This determines how the rice tastes after preparation and what consistency it has. You can find out whether a particular rice cooker is convincing in this respect or not in our product reviews. Apart from this feature, it is above all the very own requirements that are important. Everyone should choose a rice cooker that suits their own ideas. So, if you only want to prepare small portions, you don’t need a device with too much volume. For those who have only a small kitchen, microwave rice cookers may be of interest.

The brand plays only a minor role in the purchase. Well-known manufacturers are an indication of high quality, but there are also numerous convincing rice cookers from the no-name segment. Incidentally, there are also many a brand-name product with one or two shortcomings. Buyers should therefore not rely too much on one brand, but instead study current rice cooker tests as closely as possible before buying in order to find the best possible model.

Of course, the price also plays a not unimportant role when buying a rice cooker. It is not necessary to spend more than necessary for such a device. If you do not have great demands, you can definitely be happy with a simple model. Very inexpensive rice cookers, for example, are excellent for preparing smaller quantities of long-grain rice, basmati or similar varieties.

Conversely, those who place higher demands on a rice cooker should not save at the wrong end. If you want the appliance to prepare as many types of rice as possible and also function as a steamer for vegetables, it may be worth making a somewhat higher investment.

When buying a rice cooker, be sure to look at the scope of delivery. This way, you can make sure that all the accessories that are important to you are already included and that you don’t have to buy any additional items.

Rice Cooker Accessories

Since most rice cookers already come with all the necessary utensils, the selection of accessories is quite manageable. However, a rice cooker spoon is always useful. It has the ideal shape for removing rice from the rice cooker quickly and easily. If you like to prepare sushi, you need both a sushi board and a rolling mat, ideally both should be made of bamboo. For rice enjoyment on the go, there are also practical food containers that can keep a dish warm for many hours.

For the perfect paella, the rice cooker helps only a little, here it requires much more the right pan. Paella pans are usually not higher than 5 cm, but are available with different diameters. If in doubt, it is better to choose a slightly larger model. Last but not least, cookbooks are also a wonderful addition to the rice cooker in your own home. All amateur cooks and those who want to become one will find inspiration for new dishes in them.

Rice Cooker Alternatives

The most common alternative to the rice cooker is probably cooking in a saucepan, preferably with cooking bags. With enough experience, this method undoubtedly produces good rice, but it involves a lot more work and is not nearly as energy-efficient. However, a steamer works almost as well as a classic rice cooker.

Here, too, depending on the model, it is possible to prepare different types of rice completely automatically and without the user’s intervention. One advantage is that other ingredients such as vegetables or meat can be gently steamed at the same time. However, this is also the disadvantage of steam cookers.

If you only want to cook rice, you will use more energy than with a rice cooker, and the handling is a bit more complicated. This variant is therefore only suitable for those who like to enjoy rice frequently in combination with steamed ingredients.

For those who do not want to have an additional device in their kitchen, there are special containers for the microwave. In these, the rice can be gently heated with steam, much like in a rice cooker. To prevent the rice from drying out, these containers are tightly sealed and have only a few small holes through which steam can escape.

In direct comparison with a real rice cooker, the rice does not always turn out perfectly, but it is always enough for the occasional uncomplicated rice enjoyment. Such containers are available in many different sizes, so that everyone can find the right one. Singles can easily prepare small portions, or the whole family can be catered for. The only disadvantage is that the rice cannot be kept warm in this version. It is therefore advisable to consume it immediately.

Last product update on 2021-09-23 | Source: Amazon Affiliate