Rice cookers are used for their convenience in cooking rice effectively and effortlessly. You simply add rice to the dinner bowl, and the necessary cold water depending on the type of rice you want to cook. Today I will intro the benefits of a rice cooker.
Usually, you will find graduated marks on the sides of the rice cooker. I will show you exactly the right amount of water you need to cook for that specific type of rice. White rice takes less water while brown rice needs more. You then simply start the rice cooker and come back later. The greatest thing is even if you come an hour later your rice cooker will keep your rice nice and warm for hours.
When looking for your stainless steel rice cooker you ideally want it to have other uses than simply only cooking rice because you can often use it to cook other things such as chili, soup or grains.
Also, many of them come with a basket at the top that gives the rice cooker additional uses as a “rice cooker steamer” since it can help you in other tasks such as steaming veggies, buns or dumplings.
If you use it for something else than rice, some rice cookers don’t let you then specify a time like a microwave so after 20 minutes. Whatever the maximum time your rice cooker allows, you might have to restart it. If you are not doing rice and what you are currently cooking needs more time.
Also on the topic of choosing a suitable stainless steel rice cooker to keep in mind that stainless steel is the combination of multiple metals. The important ones are chromium and nickel which explains some of the codes used in describing these pieces. For example, if the advertiser says that it’s 18/8 that means it is made of 18% chromium and 8% Nickel.
Ideally, you want 18/10 for most stainless steel pieces, including of course a stainless steel rice cooker. This information is not always given for rice cookers since it’s even more important for pans and other cookware pieces but it’s always nice to understand the numbers if they are provided.
What are the Advantages?
A rice cooker simplifies cooking. It doesn’t matter what kind of rice you cook – it will always be cooked to perfection. Here are some of the pros of owning a rice cooker:
- Automatic cooking:
With rice cookers, there’s no need for manual intervention while cooking rice. It stops automatically when it’s cooked so that the rice is neither overcooked nor under-cooked.
- Uniform Cooking:
When you cook rice on a gas stove, oven on low heat, there might be a layer of overcooked rice at the bottom. But with a rice cooker that doesn’t happen. You always get uniformly cooked rice.
- Not just for cooking rice:
Rice cooker helps you cook cereals like oatmeal for breakfast. You can also steam vegetables or small servings of chicken and fish in it.
- Makes rice non-sticky:
It solves the biggest concern every person who cooks rice has – making it non-sticky. Rice cookers cook rice in such a way that every grain will be separated from the others.
- Programmable settings:
Rice cookers come with programmable settings that allow you to cook different types of grains and lentils too. Apart from being user-friendly, it also reduces your cooking time and effort.
- Multiple Options:
Since rice cookers come in different shapes and sizes, you always have an option to choose one basis of your requirements.
What are the disadvantages?
Counter space- Rice cooker needs to be plugged into an electrical socket. Thus, you always need to place it in proximity to the electrical socket. The unit takes up considerable space and it can be a disadvantage if the counter space near the electrical socket is less.
Rice drying- The warm feature of the rice cooker can result in drying of the rice grains if left for a long period. Thus, you need to be careful to keep the rice in the cooker for a short period as possible.
However, it is important to be aware of both the advantages as well as disadvantages associated with a rice cooker.
What You Need To Know About Rice Cookers Right Now
You never really think you need a rice cooker until you end up owning one… and then you can’t imagine why you waiting so long to purchase one!
A rice cooker makes cooking this dietary staple a simple, easy process. You simply put in the rice, add the water and spices you want to have to flavor the rice. Then the rice cooker does the rest! The inner pot is made with a nonstick surface, often with measurement levels listed on the side of the pot. So that you always know how much rice is being cooked!
One of the biggest complaints that people have with rice cookers today is that they tend to boil over. This is because there is a lot of starch in the outer covering of the rice grain and the boiling water breaks down the starches in the water.
To get rid of this problem, all you’ve got to do is soak your rice for a few minutes before cooking it. The best rice cookers will help you facilitate this process because you can set a delay timer as you create your recipes. With delays often reaching 13 hours and access to these timers through an LCD, owning a rice cooker means you can have rice almost every day if you want including brown or wild rice that is notoriously difficult to cook on a stovetop.
The benefits that a rice cooker can bring into a kitchen don’t just stop with rice! This kitchen appliance is a versatile machine that can help you bake a cake or create a stunning soup in no time at all. Some even come with a rack that fits inside the rice cooker so you can steam meats or vegetables inside the pot without difficulty. It’s the perfect little Crockpot if you’re just one person in need of a slow-cooked meal!
If you’re on a budget, you can still get a reasonably good rice cooker that will help you quickly make rice without having to fuss over a saucepan. An entry-level rice cooker won’t give you any control over the baking process, but you do get one-touch convenience to add this dietary staple to any meal in about 20 minutes.
The key to purchasing a good quality rice cooker is to get one that is very easy to clean. Even if you don’t get any starch overload that causes your inner pot to boil over. You’re still going to have a lot of water vapor and starchy condensation building up inside the inner lid of the rice cooker. Look for a glass lid that you can just toss into a dishwasher or a detachable lid. You can quickly clean and reattach once the cooking has been completed so you can maximize your time.
Make sure you have a scoop or spatula that works with this surface. So you don’t accidentally scratch the surface and add Teflon or other chemicals to your food. Many rice cookers come with a serving utensil, but having a heat resistant spatula on-hand to help complete a cooking cycle is never a bad thing.
As a final consideration, you’ll want to look for a rice cooker that has some version of a stay-cool handle. So you can access your rice without burning yourself. Some rice cookers need you to stir the cooking rice a time or two to prevent it from browning, toasting or burning the bottom layer of the rice. So get something that you know you’ll be comfortable handling when you might be in a hurry.
How Do You Find the Best Rice Cooker?
You don’t need a lot to get a lot out of a rice cooker. The best rice cooker is all about the size of the cooking container that you need. Even a basic rice cooker that has an on/off switch will provide you with a quality result! Some have additional features to consider, however, that you may wish to consider:
- Steaming options. Did you know that you can steam your vegetables in a rice cooker? Some appliances come with a tray that lets you place vegetables on them with water underneath. Once heated, the steam cooks the vegetables and you keep the vitamins and minerals.
- Baking a cake? Some pot-style rice cookers give you a baking option that allows. You create mini-cakes in the appliance for those moments when you want a sugary pick-me-up.
- Multiple rice cooking stages. Instant rice is going to cook faster than standard rice. Wild long-grain brown rice takes over an hour to cook sometimes. The best rice cookers give you timing options for all kinds of rice.
- Programmable options. If you want to delay the start of your rice cooker or know how long it you’ve got left in the cooking cycle. Some of these small appliances provide this feature for a small price upgrade.