The 5 Best Rice Cooker in 2020 – Buyer’s Guide & Reviews
Instant Pot Duo 7-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker & Rice Cooker and Warmer
Steamer, Saute, Yogurt Maker, and Warmer, 6 Quart, 14 One-Touch Programs
Zojirushi NS-TSC10 5-1/2-Cup (Uncooked) Micom Rice Cooker
Micro computerized fuzzy logic technology
Tiger JNP-S10U-HU 5.5-Cup (Uncooked) Rice Cooker and Warmer
Stainless Steel Gray and Non-stick inner pan
BLACK+DECKER RC506 6-Cup Cooked Rice Cooker and Food Steamer
great for small or large meals
Aroma Housewares 20 Cup Cooked (10 cup uncooked) Digital Rice Cooker
Slow Cooker, Food Steamer, SS Exterior (ARC-150SB)
Confused which rice cooker to buy? You have landed on the right page! If rice is something that is cooked in your home quite frequently or almost every day, purchasing a rice cooker is a great decision. They make perfect fluffy rice easily and quickly without any supervision. Multipurpose rice cookers not only cook rice, but their use extends beyond that. They may be used for steaming meat, cooking a bowl of oatmeal or even baking cakes. But with so many options available on the market, it can be confusing. Whether you require a multipurpose or conventional rice cooker, let us help you with the process of finding the best rice cooker for your family.
Best Rice Cooker Buying Guide
But, before we dive into the categories of a rice cooker, here are some of the key points to consider:
From microwave and micom to standard and induction heating, there are various types of rice cookers on the market.
- Microwave Rice Cookers:
The cookers in this category are BPA-free plastic containers that enable you to not only cook rice, but bale cakes, cook oatmeal, and other grains as well. Got a limited kitchen space? This would be the right option for you! Besides, having a little extra space on the kitchen counter, as compared to a standard rice cooker, these cookers also help to reduce the time of cooking by 50 percent. Hence, worth the cost. More so, they are typically dishwasher-friendly.
- Micom Rice Cookers:
Micom rice cookers are just like standard rice cookers. They contain a built-in microchip. Hence, they can automatically adjust the temperature and cooking time, ending up making perfect fluffy rice for you. Also, these cookers have plenty of cooking presets for specific food items, such as brown rice, white rice, porridge or sushi-making them more convenient than the standard ones.
- Standard Rice Cookers:
These cookers are quite famous in south Asian families, where rice is the main course almost every day. They have more features and functions than microwave rice cookers. They can be used to steam veggies, stew beef or even bake cakes. From small to extra large, there are different sizes available to serve different purposes. If you desperately need to buy a rice cooker and cost is a priority, a standard rice cooker is worth considering.
- Induction Heating Rice Cookers:
The induction heating ones are the most expensive rice cookers of all. They can range between $200 and $500. While the standard ones distribute heat from the bottom, the induction ones use the entire pot as a heat conductor, creating an induction heating zone. Hence, these models provide better heat distribution which causes the rice to have a better texture with lower energy consumption.
There are a variety of rice cookers on the market with different capacities. From 1 cup to 42 cups, you will find various sizes. If you live alone or with your partner, a rice cooker with a capacity of 1 cup would work fine for you. For small families, the cooker with a 4 to 5 cup range may do the job. However, if you have a large family or if you are someone who frequently hosts parties at home, you may require a cooker with a bigger capacity. While, for commercial use, find models that accommodate 45 to 46 cups at a time.
Cookers with larger capacities typically have more giant footprints. Hence, they take more space on your kitchen counter.
Features and Functions
If you have a busy schedule and don’t have anyone else to cook food for you or the family, don’t worry! Most cookers come with a timer. You can have warm, fresh rice whenever you want to eat. All you have to do is set the cooker to make rice and leave for work with a ‘keep warm setting’ on. And, when you return home, you get fluffy and freshly cooked rice even after hours. This function is also convenient if you don’t want your rice to get cold halfway through the dinner or lunch. With a timer, you can also delay the start of cooking for up to 23 hours. This is an excellent feature for full-timers or moms who don’t have enough time to prepare meals. These cookers may also have a non-stick pot, making cleaning up easier.
Another feature that is common in most cookers is the ‘sealed lid feature’. This feature helps prevent steam from escaping. More so, it also ascertains the rice is correctly done every time in a fair amount of time.
Many rice cookers also have steamer racks that enable the users to stream any kind of food, from fish to veggies or even cakes while the rice is getting ready. While some rice cookers often include another great feature of smart controls. This feature lets the users monitor the progress of cooking through an app. So, if you are away from home for some shopping or at work, you can quickly cook your rice perfectly without having to be present in the kitchen. Some cookers also come with a musical or alert tone that lets you know when the rice is ready to serve. These are nice extras, but we don’t think they are entirely necessary.
Reviews of the Best Rice Cookers
Now that you know the basics and what to look for in a rice cooker, here are our 5 picks for the best rice cookers:
1. Instant Pot Duo – Overall the best rice cooker
Instant Pot Duo currently has 5 versions available on the market, including the Duo, Duo Evo Plus, Duo Crisp + Air Frye, Duo Nova, Duo Plus and Duo SV. These models are available in 3-, 6-, 8-, or 10-quart sizes.
- Durable construction
- Intuitive control panel
- Advanced safety protection
- Great performance on every function
- The alarm sound is not loud enough
Among the 5 versions, the Duo Nova and the Instant Pot Duo are the two most popular models. Why? Because they are not that expensive, practical and easy to use. Both of these versions feature the third-generation microprocessor technology. This is the latest technology that helps the cooker to regulate pressure as well as temperature. It also helps to adjust the heat, enhancing the food consistency and quality.
This rice cooker has the stainless steel inner cooking pot, which is safe to use in a dishwasher, making it durable, reliable, and convenient for cleanup. Since there’s no surface coating, no matter what you cook in this cooker, you will not have to worry about harmful substances chipping off and transferring into your meals.
These models come at a very competitive price with no comprise on quality or necessary functions. Designed with a huge number of options, Instant Pot pressure cookers enable the users to cook almost all kinds of rice; either by selecting the preset or user manuals.
They are also an expert at reheating, sautéing, pressure cooking as well as slow cooking. One of the most effective features that they have is that there is no need to defrost the frozen food before cooking. They can do that job themselves.
They are made on North American Electrical Standards, which means that even if they are working at the highest temperature setting, they don’t get hot from the outside. However, if you are releasing the pressure manually, remember that the steam is very hot, ensure your hands are not in the path from where the steam is releasing.
Difference Between Duo Nova and The Instant Pot Duo:
Apparently, both of them look alike, but in actuality, they both are different. Duo Nova offers a variety of size options, while the latter one is available in 3 sizes only (8, 6 and 3 quarts). Hence, Due nova is well-suited to almost everyone, even those with bigger families.
Moreover, the latest Nova version includes a new feature that is a ‘smart steam release valve’. This feature allows the valve to close automatically when the lid is closed.
From multiple programs to stainless steel inner pot to intuitive controls, these cookers come with all the convenient features. If you have been considering purchasing a pressure cooker that can also cook rice, Instant Pot Duos are certainly worth a look.
2. Zojirushi NS-TSC10 – Best Japanese Rice Cooker
This micom rice cooker is not as versatile as the Instant Pot Duo. Moreover, it is more expensive, but the machine is worth the high price tag. It has a long-lasting inner pot, high efficiency as well as a microcomputer technology.
- Multiple uses
- Compact size
- Automatic keep-warm function
- Easy to use
- A wide range of settings
- No steamer basket for steaming food
- Slow cooking process.
Its latest technology enables the cooker to make adjustments to temperature and cooking time which means you will get the perfect result without having to keep an eye on the food constantly. Just put your uncooked rice in and let the rice cooker do the job.
It yields up to 6 full cups of cooked rice which is enough for 5 people.
Features and Settings:
The easy-to-use digital display helps you set your cooking options, according to the food. You can set the timer for when do you want it to start cooking. The installed musical alert will alert you when your meal is ready. In addition, the power cord length of this rice cooker can be adjusted to fit different demands of the users.
Still not sure whether this rice cooker is worth the price tag or not? Look at its quality and the perfect rice it produces. It will be a no brainer.
If you’re still not sure about whether this product is worth the extra money, consider its quality as well as the quality of rice it produces, and it’ll be a no brainer.
3. Tiger JNP-S10U-HU – Best Budget Rice Cooker
This Japanese product is applaudable for its splendid performance. It can accommodate up to 10 cups at once, making it an excellent option for those with large families or individuals who love to host many dinner parties at home.
- Sleek design
- High-quality construction
- Fantastic keep warm mode
- Makes a perfect batch of white OR brown rice individually
- No steaming feature
- No programmable start time
- It does not cook mixed rice very well
- The catch for its latch is a hard plastic that can break
If you love the stainless steel finish that gives a durable finish and fabulous looks, this product, no doubt, is the right fit for you and your kitchen décor. This rice cooker itself is made with a tight-fitting lid and a good seal that helps your rice stay fresh for longer. Its keep warm function will not let your fluffy and hot rice get cold even after 12 hours of being cooked.
The company is known for its rice cookers; many of which are still in perfect preferred even after 20 years. So, if reliability is what you are looking for in a product, go for Tiger’s rice cooker as they are simply the best rice cookers out there.
This awesome product comes with a set of useful accessories, including a measuring cup and an easy-to-read spatula. It also comes with a retractable cord, making storage hassle-free. The steam vent is very easy to hand wash and can easily remove for cleaning. However, when reinserting it, make ascertain that it is properly aligned.
Want a rice cooker that can stay with you for almost a lifetime? This should be close to the top of your wish list. Despite the high price tag, it is worth every penny if reliability and durability are what you are looking for.
4. Black+Decker RC503 – Best Small Rice Cooker
This one is an ideal option for couples, singles or even small families. The product is not really advanced when it comes to features and functionality, yet it offers enough quality to fulfill your daily cooking needs.
- Stylish and convenient design
- Good size for 1-3 people
- Fast rice cooking
- No off switch.
Despite its small size, it also serves as a food steamer along with cooking rice. Many users have even tried other food items in this rice cooker such as oatmeal’s, stews or even soups which makes it a good value for the price.
Ease of Use:
This mini rice cooker is very easy to use. All you need to do is: rinse your rice, put them inside its pot along with the correct amount of water and turn the switch on. The rice, after 20 minutes, comes out perfectly fluffy and evenly cooked.
Once your meal is cooked, the indicator light installed in the cooker will change its color, and it will automatically switch to the ‘keep warm setting’. So, even if you are not at home, you will not have to worry about your rice being overcooked. Additionally, all of its parts and accessories are safe to use in a dishwasher.
This rice cooker offers excellent value for money. Though it does not have very advanced features, it gets the basic job done perfectly and is a great option for people living alone or with a partner.
5. Aroma Housewares ARC-150SB – Best Brown Rice Cooker
If you are a brown lover and brown rice is what you cook in your daily routine, this options is best for individuals like you.
- Awesome steamer attachment
- Easy-to-use buttons
- Best for cooking brown rice
- Safe and sturdy
- Inconvenient lid
- Cooking time a bit slow
- Does not do a great job in keeping food warm
It yields up to 20 cups of rice and has separate buttons for brown rice and white rice just to make sure the rice is cooked perfectly fluffy every time.
Along with rice cooking, it can also steam veggies and other food which makes this product quite appealing. More so, it also has a slow cooking function as well as a keep warm feature.
It also has a 15-hour delay timer which enables you to preset the cooking time and get the freshly made rice when it’s needed. However, when the rice is left in the cooker for too long, it gets dry.
If you are looking for a cooker that can cook perfect brown rice along with white rice, this multifunction device is what you need in your life. It may not be perfect or best of the best rice cookers available on the market, but it is way better than you would expect it to be at the given price.
Everyone has different preferences and requirements when it comes to rice cooking. From family size to time schedule, there are a number of things to consider when buying a rice cooker for your home kitchen or even restaurant. The above-mentioned rice cookers and their reviews are sure to help you find the best rice cooker that fits your needs and ease the complexity of your culinary world.