Best Rice Cookers 2016

It’s true that one can ably produce an acceptable few cups of rice on a stove top. But only with an electric cooker controlled by microprocessors and software designed to gauge heat and humidity can one consistently produce rice with the level of taste and consistency approaching the ideal.

Why Use a Rice Cooker?

Speed is not a reason to purchase a rice cooker. One can make rice faster in a pot than any of the machines we tested—even when they are set to “quick” mode. An hour or more cooking time is not unusual, with brown rice taking even longer (the Zojirushi even has a special cooking option that takes about 3½ hours).

The point of a rice cooker is consistently making better tasting, fluffy rice that you would be proud to serve your most important guests. There’s also the convenience factor: once you’ve set the machine, you can go about chopping, cleaning and cooking the rest of the meal. There’s no need to worry that it’s going to boil over or burn or even go cold. All the models we tested have automatic “keep warm” functions that kick in after the cooking is done and will last for several hours.

The final reason to use an electric rice cooker boils down to two words: brown rice. No matter how adept you are (or think you are) at making white rice on the stove top, brown rice is a different matter. It usually ends up under or overcooked in a pot. Fuzzy logic cookers, whose microprocessors really come into their own with difficult brown rice, get it right every time. No crunchy kernels or mushy brown clumps.

Our team of experts have selected the best rice cookers out of hundreds of models. Don’t buy a rice cooker before checking out these top models!

Zojirushi NS-LAC05XT Micom 3-Cup Rice Cooker and Warmer, Black and Stainless Steel

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Aroma 8-Cup (Cooked) (4-Cup UNCOOKED) Digital Rice Cooker / Food Steamer, Stainless Steel Exterior (ARC-914SBD)

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Hamilton Beach Digital Simplicity 7 Cups uncooked resulting in 14 Cups Cooked Rice Cooker and Steamer, (37549)

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Zojirushi NS-ZCC10 5-1/2-Cup (Uncooked) Neuro Fuzzy Rice Cooker and Warmer, Premium White, 1.0-Liter

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