Best rice cookers for 2020: Oster, Tiger and more

Rice was one of the first dishes I learned to cook as an adult. I’ve spent hours perfecting mine Rice cooking techniqueI learned how long to soak rice, what grain lengths I preferred, how to make sticky rice or more al dente cooked rice. Then I had children and all of my time learning to make the best rice possible disappeared. Step into the rice cooker, a smart little one Countertop device This frees you from all of the complicated timing involved in perfecting your own cooked rice. Since I bought it, I’ve used my rice cooker almost every day to whip up loads of rice for them Lunch for children or the perfect base for a mix of kimchi and Garden vegetables.

The advantage of an electric rice cooker is that it – at least in theory – delivers perfect rice with little cooking time. But with so many options out there ranging from $ 20 to $ 200 or more, how do you know which rice cooker is best to buy? I’ve tested 12 of the most popular options, covering the range between affordable and luxury rice cookers, and I will update this regularly. Here are the ones you should be considering right now to cook amazingly delicious rice.

David Priest / Tips Clear

The perfect white rice is almost a paradox: it’s moist but not mushy; It’s toothy but not tough. That perfect fluffy rice is hard to pin down, so the quality edition for the $ 25 price of this Easter rice cooker is kind of insane. No, the rice isn’t perfect – brown rice in particular is a little too chewy – but the head and shoulders are better than other herds under $ 100. It has a tempered glass lid with vent and a steam basket.

In addition, Easter is quick, whipping a cup of white rice in 15 minutes and brown rice in 33 minutes. There was also none of the spillage or mess of other stoves so cleaning was quicker too.

If you love rice and eat it regularly but don’t want to break the bank, the Oster is a fantastic countertop option.

David Priest / Tips Clear

Zojirushi is a household name and reputation for rice cookers elite. The $ 183 Neuro Fuzzy Rice Cooker not only produces perfect rice in relatively large quantities, it also lets you personalize your rice if you prefer it drier or wetter, as well as well-calibrated settings for brown rice and other grains.

This Zojirushi rice cooker has a few drawbacks: its price is intimidating, it takes up a lot of space, and it takes time to cook rice (for example, a cup of white rice takes over 40 minutes to cook). Even so, in many cases, raw speed is less important than an appliance’s ability to keep rice warm and perfectly fluffy for extended periods of time, and Zojirushi is an unmatched rice maker in this regard.

If you are looking for the best rice no matter the price, Zojirushi is my recommendation.

David Priest / Tips Clear

Okay, so maybe you’re the Goldilocks consumer who doesn’t need the super expensive Zojirushi but can afford to spend a little over $ 25 on your rice cooker. The $ 123 Tiger Stainless Steel Rice Cooker could be the best for you. It’s bigger than Easter, which makes it better for families, and it’s the fastest rice cooker I’ve tested. A cup of white rice is ready in just 13 minutes.

It’s also simpler than the Zojirushi, has a single switch interface, but is still great in output. The Tiger and Zojirushi easily produced the best rice from the devices I tested, with the Tiger offering a slightly more tooth-like bite than the Zojirushi, which may just be a preference for most people.

One disadvantage of the tiger was the fact that it was really only built for cooking white rice. The instructions don’t even include instructions on other subjects. But when I threw in a cup of brown rice and just a touch more water than the standard measure for white rice, the end result was impressive – just a little drier than the zojirushi.

How we tested the best rice cooker

I tested 12 rice cookers side by side, boiling a measuring cup of white rice and a measuring cup of brown rice, following the individual instructions and using the default settings of each device for both. Almost every device recommended allowing the rice to steam an additional 15 minutes after it was finished, and I allowed that time for each one.

I shook and tried rice from each stove at the 15 minute mark (which was between 28 and 56 minutes in addition to cooking time) and then again after about an hour on the “warm” setting.

Since some people prefer their cooked rice with slightly different moisture levels, I focused on those Problems in the yield of any rice cooker, be it inconsistency in cooking, uncooked rice, grains that were not cooked through, or those that had lost their distinction and became mushy.


David Priest / Tips Clear

The rest of the field

The 12 rice cookers I tested fell into three loose categories: small, affordable appliances, mid-range multi-cookers, and specialized high-end rice cookers.

Every little rice cooker I’ve tested like the $ 20 Imusa 3 cup and the $ 17 Black & Decker 3 cup Mini rice cooker – along with my favorite from the pile of Easter – Provided decent, small servings of white rice. The Imusa and the Black & Decker both struggled a little more with brown rice and mixed rice.

The $ 30 8-cup Hamilton Beach Rice Cooker Seems like good deal for the size, but the rice was inconsistent, with heavily overcooked sections. Zojirushi’s 3 cup option also disappointed with rice that was too wet and easily degraded and lost the distinction of well cooked white rice.

Cuisinarts 4-cup and Black and Deckers 7 Cup Rice cookers were some of my least favorite because they were both so messy. Cuisinarts was cooking every time I used it, and the larger Black and Decker model ran on my counter, requiring significant cleaning.


David Priest / Tips Clear

With the multikookers in the middle range, the cooking time was slow and the results consistently slightly different: an 8-cup flavored rice cooker and steamer, Instant Pot’s Zest Cooker and a 5-cup Panasonic All of them got me excited with the various functions on their interfaces, but all three produced overcooked, slightly mushy rice, possibly due to the slow cooking.

Finally the high-end rice cooker tiger and Zojirushi were both impressive as I noted above. It is clear that these devices are carefully calibrated, and Zojirushi even offers a little bit of personalization for how your white rice should be cooked. This was a welcome addition for my wife and I as we have slightly different preferences.

Which rice cooker fits? she?

If you like rice but it’s not a staple in your diet, I wouldn’t recommend buying a rice cooker. Cooking rice is not difficult, and you can get great results in a pot of boiling water with good technique. That said, if you eat a lot of rice, a stove can really streamline that cooking process and preparation so you can focus on the other elements of the meal.

I was surprised by the range of capabilities of the devices I tested and, frankly, disappointed in some. But if you pick one of my top 3, be it for the price, the pot size (large families can eat a lot of rice), or simply because you want the best rice that you can get every time, you should be completely satisfied.

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