Cooking rice is much easier than you think if you have the right rice cooker. By using one of the best rice cookers that is available for your budget you will be able to cook the perfect rice that not only tastes awesome but also has more nutritious value in it.
Also, the type of rice cooker will impact the versatility of the cooker because in the long run you might want to try cooking different types of rice and at that time if you have a basic conventional model it might make it difficult to cook those different rice types.
I spent more than 70 hours testing and researching about 30 top rice cooker models to write this rice cooker reviews. In this page you will find the top rice cookers that are available in the market as of now. These machines are made of high-quality materials, easier to use and are also safe and simple. I also included their pros and cons in this review so that you can make an informed decision when you buy the rice cooker.
Best Rice Cookers Comparison Table
Types Of Rice Cooker
Conventional (Standard) Rice Cooker
Conventional rice cooker is a basic type of rice cooker. It is mainly used to cook the uncooked rice and keep it warm for a very minimal time. It contains the most basic features and control mechanisms. Some conventional rice cooker model will not even have a keep warm function. The main advantage of this rice cooker is its cheap price. If you do not mind doing manual pre-soak of the uncooked rice then this rice cooker offers the best bang for the buck.
Microcomputer (Micom) Rice Cooker
Microcomputer rice cookers are one level higher than the conventional rice cookers in the evolution ladder of these machines. They have on-board microcomputer chips on the cooker which helps to adjust and maintain the temperature inside the inner pot at an optimal level when the rice is being cooked. It also adjust the total cooking duration depending on the type of rice being cooked. Problems relating to overflowing and over cooking are reduced very much when using this type of rice cooker.
Induction Heating Rice Cookers (Micom based)
Induction heating is the most advanced heating technology that being used in rice cookers as of date. The main advantage in using induction heating rice cooker is that it allows the precise control of the temperature over the entire cooking pan inside the rice cooker. This allows for faster and more efficient cooking. These induction rice cookers also have microcomputer inside them.
The induction heating rice cooker also have a variant called induction heating pressure rice cooker. In induction heating pressure rice cookers the cooking temperatures can be elevated to much higher level which gives us much softer rice.
Smart Induction Heating Rice Cooker is yet another variant which adds features such as NFC to allow the control of the rice cooker via smartphones.
Best Rice Cooker Brands
There are many rice cooker brand out there but 3 brands stand out the most. They are Cuckoo, Zojirushi and Aroma.
Cuckoo Rice Cookers
Cuckoo is a rice cooker brand that is the number 1 in Korea. All the Cuckoo rice cookers are made in Korea using very high-quality materials. The designs of the Cuckoo cooker models stand out the most. Korea has rice as one of its main food which helps the Cuckoo brand in creating rice cookers that not only solves the basic problems such as overflowing and overcooking but also brings in features that are the most useful. This brand of rice cookers are one of the most versatile ones out there in the market.
Zojirushi Rice Cookers
Zojirushi rice cookers are very famous for a long time now. It is a Japanese brand and most of its rice cooker used to be manufactured in Japan but as of recent times we are seeing some models that are being produced in China. The difference in quality between the models produced in Japan and the models produced in China is very apparent. Each model in Zojirushi has sets of features that are important and is of use. These models are designed with ease of use and durability in mind.
Aroma Rice Cookers
Aroma rice cookers are manufactured by Aroma Housewares. They are a US based company who designs and manufactures a wide range of kitchenware. They seem to manufacture some models in China too. Aroma rice cookers are well recognized in the rice cooker field and have many good reviews on its models.
Top 5 Rice Cooker Reviews
Zojirushi NS-ZCC10 5-1/2-Cup (Uncooked) Neuro Fuzzy Rice Cooker and Warmer, Premium White, 1.0-Liter
This is a decently priced and highly rated rice cooker from Zojirushi. It can cook more than 5 cups of uncooked rice. The inner pan is non-stick and the shape of the interior is designed so as to cook the rice evenly. This cooker has an LCD screen, automatic keep warm function, reheating cycles and many other menu options. The 'Fuzzy Logic' technology used in this model helps to automatically adjust the cooking timer depending on the rice being cooked. It also comes with a 1 year warranty.
This model from Cuckoo is a pressure rice cooker. It is expensive but if you are regular rice eater then this is the best rice cooker that is available in the market.
It can cook up to 10 cups of uncooked rice which explains the pricing of this model. It features an English voice guide and also a NFC to control the rice cooker remotely via a smartphone.
This model also has a water drainage system which helps to maintain the freshness of the cooked rice. The inner pot is made of stainless steel which not only maintain the flavor of the rice but also helps avoid issues related to non-stick coatings.
The test results of the Hamilton Beach 37548 was a surprise to us. It is a 7 cup rice cooker with digital display.
In addition to cooking rice we can also cook beans, whole grains and hot cereals.
It has an automatic warm function to keep the rice warm after it is cooked.
The delay start function of this machine allows us to key in the timer up to 15 hours in advance. The inner pot is made of aluminium and is coated with non-stick. If you are into healthy foods then the streamer function is something that you will love to steam veggies.
The Instant Pot IP-LUX60 is a simple 6 in 1 programmable unit. If you are looking for a decently priced all rounder then this is the model that you would want to buy.
This model can be used as a pressure cooker, slow cooker, steamer or a rice cooker. Also, this rice cooker can be used for Saute or browning purposes.
The control panel is large and is quite suitable for old people too. This model also has a delay start feature which can be used to set the timer up to 24 hours in advance. The inner pot is made up of stainless steel which increases the life of the rice cooker.
This is one of the amazing rice cooker in the market at the moment. You can cook up to 3 cups of uncooked rice. It can be used to cook different types of rice like white rice, porridge and brown rice using the functions that are built-in to this model.
The detachable lid helps with easier cleaning of the machine. It also has a reheating cycle and a delay timer.
Zojirushi NS-LAC05XT can be mainly used by medium sized families since this is a 3 cup rice cooker. Also, care should be taken while washing the inner pot since the coating is prone to scratches.
Next 5 Models
- Zojirushi NS-LAC05XT Micom 3-Cup Rice Cooker and Warmer
- Zojirushi NP-NVC10 Induction Heating Pressure Rice Cooker & Warmer
- Cuckoo Electric Heating Rice Cooker CR-0631F
- Zojirushi NS-TSC10 5-1/2-Cup Micom Rice Cooker and Warmer
- Zojirushi NS-VGC05 Micom 3-Cup Electric Rice Cooker and Warmer
- Aroma Housewares 10 Cup Digital Rice Cooker (ARC-150SB)
When choosing a rice cooker there are many features to consider so that later on you will not end up regretting your purchase. Let us take a look into the most important features to consider.
One of the most fundamental things is capacity of the rice cooker. The best way to choose capacity is by taking into consideration the number of people that you will be cooking for and how much rice does each person eat.
- Small Rice Cookers: 3 - 4 cups (Suitable for 1-2 persons)
- Medium Rice Cookers: 5 - 6 cups (Suitable for 2-4 persons)
- Large Rice Cookers: 8 - 10 cups (Suitable for 5-7 persons)
- Jumbo Rice Cookers: 14+ cups (Suitable for 7+ persons)
The inner bowl material is yet another important feature that needs to be considered when you are purchasing your rice cooker. Most of the models now-a-days use aluminium bowl with a non-stick coating so that it will easier to clean and also the rice will not stick to the surface of the bowl. If you do not want a Teflon coated bowl then the best option is to go for a stainless steel bowl.
Number of functions available in the rice cooker is an feature that acts as a driving force when comparing two identical models from two different brands. Because depending on the functions available a rice cooker can be used as a slow cooker, pressure cooker or as a bread maker. This is helpful when you have a small kitchen because having a multi-tasking machine will reduce the space needed. If you like to eat different kinds of rice then going for a model that will cook different kinds of rice will make sense.
Delay Start is a simple feature that my life a lot easier. It is very useful if you are a working person. You can set the rice cooker to start cooking at a set time later in the day so that you will have freshly cooked rice when you get home. Without this feature your physical presence is required to start the cooking process.
Eating rice will get boring if you are eating the same type of rice all the time. There are so many different types of rice, each having its own unique flavor. Each of these different types of rice will need a different cooking method. So if you would like to eat different kinds of rice like white rice, brown rice, etc then you would need to buy a rice cooker that has all the different built-in functions to cook all these types of rice.
Now that we went through all the top rice cookers available in the market and also the buying guide on how to buy a rice cooker, I think that it is time to conclude this review.
If you are a rice enthusiast who wants to move beyond the basic rice cooking routine then buying the Cuckoo Electric Induction Heating Pressure Rice Cooker CRP-CHSS1009FN is our recommendation. Even though it is expensive the rice cooked using this model tends to be most flavorful. Since it is mainly made for the Korean people you can be assured of the refined technology that they use in this cooker to cook the best rice possible.
If you feel that Cuckoo is out of your scope due to budget constraints but still want a versatile rice cooker then we recommend you to buy either Zojirushi NS-LAC05XT Micom 3-Cup Rice Cooker or Instant Pot IP-LUX60 6-in-1 Programmable Pressure Cooker.
Product Images Sourced From Amazon.com