Best rice cookers for 2020: Oster, Zojirushi and more

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Rice is the proper consolation meals for fall: heat, fluffy and filling. On a chilly day, there’s nothing higher to me than completely cooked rice with kimchi and soy sauce or garden veggies. And when you have leftovers, you’ll be able to all the time make rice pudding. Enter the rice cooker, a intelligent little countertop appliance that whips up completely fluffy rice with none work, except for scooping rice and water right into a bowl. Since shopping for it, I’ve used my rice cooker virtually day by day, whether or not to prepare dinner up a batch of rice for the kids’ lunch or to make a extra elaborate meal for company.

The advantage of an electrical rice cooker is that it delivers good rice with little cooking time — a minimum of, in concept. However with so many choices available on the market, starting from $20 to $200 or extra, how have you learnt which is the perfect rice cooker to purchase? I examined 12 of the preferred choices round, overlaying the gamut between inexpensive and luxurious rice cookers, and I will replace this periodically. Listed here are those it is best to take into account for cooking amazingly scrumptious rice.

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The proper white rice is nearly a paradox: It is moist, however not mushy; it is toothsome, however not chewy. That good fluffy rice is hard to seize, so the standard output for this Oster rice cooker’s $20 price ticket is sort of loopy. No, the rice is not good — brown rice specifically comes out simply barely too chewy — however it’s head and shoulders higher than different cookers beneath $100. It has a tempered glass lid with a vent and comes with a steaming basket.

What’s extra, the Oster is fast, whipping up a cup of white rice in 15 minutes and brown rice in 33 minutes. It additionally did not give any of the spillage or mess of different cookers, so cleanup was quicker, too.

If you happen to love rice and eat it repeatedly, however do not wish to break the financial institution, the Oster is a improbable countertop possibility.

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For rice cooker elitists, Zojirushi is a family title, and the repute is earned. The $170 Neuro Fuzzy rice cooker not solely produces good rice in pretty massive portions, however it additionally permits you to personalize your rice, in case you favor it dryer or moister, together with well-calibrated settings for brown rice and different grains.

This Zojirushi rice cooker has a number of downsides: Its price ticket is intimidating, it takes up a major quantity of house and it takes its time making rice (a cup of white rice, as an illustration, takes over 40 minutes to prepare dinner). That mentioned, uncooked velocity is much less essential in lots of instances than a tool’s capability to maintain rice heat and completely fluffy for prolonged intervals of time, and Zojirushi is an unmatched rice maker in that regard.

If you happen to’re in search of the perfect rice, no matter worth, Zojirushi is my advice.

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Okay, possibly you are the Goldilocks shopper who does not want the tremendous costly Zojirushi, however who can afford to spend a bit of greater than 25 bucks in your rice cooker. The $130 Tiger chrome steel rice cooker is perhaps finest for you. It is bigger than the Oster, which makes it higher for households, and it is the quickest rice cooker I examined, ending a cup of white rice in a mere 13 minutes.

It is also less complicated than the Zojirushi, boasting a single-switch interface, however nonetheless wonderful in its output. The Tiger and Zojirushi simply produced the perfect rice out of the units I examined, with the Tiger providing a barely extra toothsome chew than the Zojirushi, which can simply come right down to desire for most individuals.

One down facet of the Tiger was the truth that it actually is barely constructed to prepare dinner white rice; its instructions do not even embrace directions on the rest. However once I threw in a cup of brown rice and only a smidge extra water than the usual measurement for white rice, the tip outcome was spectacular — solely a bit of dryer than the Zojirushi’s.

How we examined for the perfect rice cooker

I examined 12 rice cookers facet by facet, cooking one measuring cup of white rice and one measuring cup of brown rice in every, following the person instructions and utilizing every gadget’s customary settings for each. Nearly each gadget advisable permitting the rice to steam for a further 15 minutes after the prepare dinner accomplished, and I allowed that point for each.

I fluffed and tasted rice from every cooker on the 15-minute mark (which, along with the prepare dinner time, ranged from 28 to 56 minutes), after which once more after about an hour on the “heat” setting.

As a result of some folks favor their cooked rice at barely totally different ranges of moisture, I centered on the issues in every rice cooker’s yield, be it inconsistency in cooking, any raw rice, kernels that weren’t cooked via or ones that had misplaced their distinction and grow to be mushy.


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The remainder of the sphere

The 12 rice cookers I examined fell into three free classes: small, inexpensive units, midrange multicookers and specialised, high-end rice cookers.

Every small rice cooker I examined, just like the $20 Imusa 3-cup and the $17 Black & Decker 3-cup mini rice cooker — together with my favourite of the bunch from Oster — provided respectable, small servings of white rice. The Imusa and the Black & Decker each struggled a bit of extra with brown rice and blended rice, although.

The $30 8-cup Hamilton Beach rice cooker looks like deal for the scale, however its rice was inconsistent, with severely undercooked sections. Zojirushi’s 3-cup option additionally upset with rice that was too moist and barely damaged down, shedding the excellence of well-cooked white rice.

Cuisinart’s 4-cup and Black and Decker’s 7-cup rice cookers had been a few of my least favourite as a result of they had been each so messy. Cuisinart’s boiled every time I used it and Black and Decker’s bigger mannequin leaked onto my counter, necessitating important cleanup.


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When it got here to the midrange multicookers, I discovered the cooking time to be sluggish and the outcomes constantly a bit of off: an 8-cup Aroma rice cooker and food steamer, Instant Pot’s Zest cooker and a 5-cup Panasonic all obtained me excited with the varied capabilities obtainable on their interfaces, however all three produced overcooked, barely mushy rice, presumably as a result of sluggish cooking.

Lastly, the higher-end, specialised rice cookers from Tiger and Zojirushi had been each spectacular, as I famous above. It is clear these units are fastidiously calibrated, and Zojirushi even provides a bit of little bit of personalization as to the way you need your white rice cooked, which was a welcome addition for my spouse and me, as we now have barely totally different preferences.

Which rice cooker is true for you?

If you happen to like rice, however it’s not a staple of your weight loss program, I would not advocate shopping for a rice cooker. Cooking rice is not tough, and you may get nice outcomes with good approach in a pot of boiling water. That mentioned, in case you eat a whole lot of rice, a cooker can actually streamline that cooking course of and prep, permitting you to give attention to the opposite parts of the meal.

I used to be shocked by the vary of efficiency throughout the units I examined, and albeit upset in a few of them. However in case you decide any of my high three, whether or not for the value, the pot measurement (large households can eat a whole lot of rice) or just since you need the perfect rice you may get each time, you have to be absolutely glad.

Extra cooking recommendation

#rice #cookers #Oster #Zojirushi


David Priest