At its most basic, a good rice cooker should make the task convenient and foolproof—just add a measured amount of rice and water, press a button, and walk away—and keep the rice fresh-tasting for hours. Some models also come with specialty settings and high-tech bells and whistles that supposedly lead to superior results—and they fetch correspondingly higher prices. Would we be able to find the best rice cooker at a nice price?
We purchased five cookers, priced from $19.99 to a whopping $170.45, in which we cooked white and brown rice (in small and large batches), as well as sushi rice. The capacity of each machine ranged from a maximum of 6 to 20 cups of cooked rice. For our testing we used the rice measuring scoop (all roughly 3/4-cup capacity) that came with each model and the water markings inside the pot (no matter the type of rice, rice cookers require slightly less water than stovetop methods to account for the lower rate of evaporation).
Testing All Types of Rice
All rice co...